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Happy Holidays
From
Caledonia, MI, USA
December 2007
(You can click an image to see a larger version of it)
Moffat Family in 2007

Hi Everyone

I’m afraid this is going to be a bit late this year, particularly for those not in the US. Looking back now it’s hard to remember where the year went.

Butterfly Girls

In April, Lisa’s brother’s family came for a visit (Jim, Kim and Kathy) to see the butterflies at Frederick Meijer Gardens. We took Zoe, the daughter of Lisa’s local cousins, with us. The two girls had lots of fun together being silly and racing around the outdoor exhibits, including being squashed by the giant horse.

The Clan Moffat Society AGM this year was in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada at the start of July. We were there for Canada Day on 1 July. This is the 10th AGM we’ve been to. The first one we went to was also in Halifax in 1998. Roger drove the car out to Halifax – about 1550 miles (2500 km) each way. This involved 3 border crossings – US –> Canada –> US –> Canada going and the reverse coming home again, arriving in Halifax in time to pick Lisa up from the airport on a Saturday evening. We then had 4 days to travel around the southern part of Nova Scotia –before being back in Halifax by Thursday. It’s quite a bit cheaper to drive the car than to both fly and then get a rental car.

Digby Harbour Low Tide

Our travels included staying two nights in Digby, which is situated just off the Bay of Fundy – home of the highest tides in the world. The picture to the left shows the wharf at Digby, where the tides rise and fall more than 25 feet (7 metres) while other parts of the Bay of Fundy have tides that exceed 50 feet (15 metres). This part of Nova Scotia was settled by Europeans in the very early 1600s (several years before Williamsburg!!!), and Lisa has managed to trace some of her ancestors to these first settlers. We visited the “Melanson Settlement” where the Melanson family lived in the 1600s, and which in recent years has been the site of an archaeological dig by “Parks Canada”. We were also able to go to the local museum and see some of the artifacts from the dig on display. When that was over Lisa flew home, and Roger spent 3 days driving back again.

Riding in the Model T

In August Uncle Roger got to take Kyle, Zoe and Kathy to Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield village for a day. Lisa’s grandfather Harvey Christensen worked for Henry Ford and at Greenfield village so it was fun to take the kids where their great-grandfather had worked more than 70 years ago. Kyle took great pleasure in showing and telling anyone who would listen that it was his great grandfather in the picture we had with us showing Harvey with Henry Ford – Harvey driving a horse carriage (the old way of travel) and Henry driving his first Model A car built in 1903 – the new way of travel.

Dining Under the Wing

Late September saw us flying off to New Zealand for 12 days – we went there to attend the 50th Anniversary of Scott Base (Antarctica where Roger worked for a year) festivities, which included a 500 person banquet on a Saturday evening. The banquet was held at the Wigram Air Force Museum. We sat amongst, and in some cases under the wings of, the olde aircraft that are on display there. We got to meet up with a few people at the banquet and other events who had been to Scott Base with Roger, as well as others we knew who had been at Scott Base previously.

Giant Donut

We had synchronised plans with the rest of Roger’s family so for the first time since Mum’s funeral in 2004 the Moffat family was together again for a couple of days with Alistair and his family over from Australia, and Ruth and her family down from Auckland. Lisa hadn’t been to New Zealand since 2003. So we did some of the usual things together, and some of the unusual – like going to Springfield in a howling Nor’ West gale to see the giant donut that had been erected there a few months earlier for the opening of “The Simpsons” movie. Time was quite limited on this trip, so we didn’t get to make the usual trip down to Dunedin and Balclutha to see family there, or to catch up with other friends in Christchurch.

Knee Scooter

In November Roger had surgery on his left ankle – the same foot that was injured 25 years ago when the blade came off the lawnmower. Since then the ankle had slowly developed “problems” with the joint, and with a tendon that holds the foot to the leg, so surgery was undertaken to clean out the scar tissue and shorten the tendon. The first 4 weeks afterward were no weight at all on the leg, so there was a bright pink cast to hold everything in place, and a nifty scooter to get around the house on. Now there’s 5 weeks with a large plastic “boot” and a gradual progression to weight bearing, so the crutches and scooter still get some use.  Luckily the weather hasn’t been too extreme, so not being able to get outside to deal with the snow hasn’t been as big a problem as it could have been.

Another achievement during the year was the planting of a crab apple tree at Hidden Lake Gardens in memory of Lisa’s father. The gardens actually purchased and planted two identical trees and planted them together, so Lisa’s mother, Joan, has purchased the other one to be her memorial.

We wish you the best for Christmas, the Holidays and for 2007.