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The Year in Review

December 2021
Christmas month began with the annual Sunday School Party, and Jay led the games, which were fun. He loves his games and so now a number of them are posted on this Website. Joyce participated in choir for her church's Christmas Program, and that was also excellent. Jay got away to spend three days with Robert and his family at their new home in LaGrange, Georgia. Jay and Joyce had Christmas Eve dinner with Howard and Michelle Wooden and were back to Hudson the next day for the Kernohan Christmas dinner and other activities. Jay and Joyce also got away to Orlando to stay at the Gaylord Palms over the New Year, and they enjoyed the getaway.

November 2021
About the most significant activity in November was our vacation trip to stay in Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. Or I should say our "planned" trip, because as the time approached, the USA raised the Dominican Republic's COVID Alert to a pretty high level, enough for us to cancel the trip which meant losing some of our no-refund air fare. No regrets on that decision, however. Joyce continued practicing with her church choir for its Christmas Program and she and her friend Lu worked steadily on the hortculture submissions; Lu's for the Florida Strawberry Festival and Joyce's for the Florida State Fair. That way they would not be competing with each other. Jay continued golf though his team didn't do that well at his golf association's Memorial Tournament. His Pickleball group continued to play three days a week and Jay played regularly on the two mid-week games. Thanksgiving was at Michael and Karri Kernohan's house in Hudson. A nice time.

October 2021
Mostly a nice month. Everett turned 10; Braden, Daylin, and Skyler celebrated their first high school HomeComing Weekend; and Joyce and Michelle drove up to Gatlinburg for some Mother-Daughter time to enjoy the mountains and the Fall leaves. Things got rough beginning on the 25th when Jay learned that his Mom, Elaine, in an Assisted Living Facility in Carmel (Indianapolis), Indiana, seem to be taking a turn for the worse, so Jay flew out on the 26th to be there. But within a span of about 24 hours she fully recovered and continues to do well for being 100 years old. Thank to Ellen and her family for being nearby and for all the work they do in looking in on Mom and ensuring that she is being properly attended to.

September 2021
Got to spend the Labor Day Weekend with Karen and her family. We took in Discovery Cove and SeaWorld. Good times at both. Visited Hudson, FL, a few times to look in on Michael and Karri as they renovated their new home there. It is on a canal that leads to the Gulf and has a nice pier and boat lift. The lift was empty so Michael had to buy a 27' boat to go on it. Robert was in town late in the month so Jay, Robert, and the boys had some fun together. The boys are all involved in soccer at West Point, GA, and Robert coaches four teams! The tripletts are into fall sports: Braden (baseball), Skyler (softball), Daylin (Cross Country and Orchestra). Keeps Karen and Cathy busy shuttling the kids to practices and games. Jay and Joyce got away for a nice dinner at Anna Marie Island to close out the month.

August 2021
August was moving month, with Michael and Karri moving to Hudson with a home on a canal leading out to the gulf, and with Robert and Natalie moving to a home in LaGrange, Georgia.

July 2021
Independence Day Celebration. Again at the Bilmar on Treasure island Beach in St. Petersburg, along with Michelle, and also Michael and Karri who were celebrating their second anniversary. During the weekend, we were visited by Joseph and his girlfriend Mallory, and by Tyler and Conner. We brought beach gear and snacks . . . and games, of course. Everyone liked Bocce Ball (beach rules) and Mexican Train dominos. The fireworks on July 4th were also great. We returned home to watch the final two games of the Stanley Cup playoffs between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Montreal Canadiens, and cheered when the Bolts won on July 7th for a second straight Stanley Cup. A few days later Tampa celebrated with a boat parade, something unique to the city.

June 2021
June was not a good month. On the second day of the month Joyce learned that her best friend - who was like a sister to her, Carol Foster, had died in a May 30 auto accident; the news arriving late because Carol's husband, David, was in ICU from the accident and incommunicato. Carol and David had been Joyce and Fred's traveling companions all over Europe and to the Western US for 12 years beginning in 2000. David is Joyce's lawyer and he has done work for Jay also. The funeral service was for family only, but Joyce is "family" to the Fosters so she and Jay attended, and also the reception afterwards. Two weeks later, Joyce was one of only three speakers at the Celebration of Life, and she did an amazing job, her words making the church audience both laugh and cry. Later in the month, Jay drove up to Orlando and joined Robert's family for a day while they were staying at a Marriott resort.

May 2021
May was just another slow month. It began with an nice event: the triples got baptised at St. Andrews United Methodist, where they attend. A few days later we got to hear Daylin play in the All-County Band. Then Robert came by for an afternoon and played Pickleball with our group. Then Jay visited Robert in Lanett to watch the boys play baseball while Joyce and her friend Lu visited Daytona Beach. Braden made the Bloomingdale Youth Sports Association All-Star Team, and Skyler drew attention and praises for her piching and fielding with her softball team. Skyler even got invited to practice with the Bloomingdale High School Softball Team; quite an honor. Jay and Joyce drove to Anna Maria Island and had a nice dinner at a favorite restaurant on the beach there. Jay had his first traffic accident (his fault-one other car involved-no injuries) and the Equinox began a slow seven weeks of recovery and repair$ while Jay got to pay for rental cars. And the month ended with the celebration of Joyce's birthday. Whew.

April 2021
The highlight of the month was traveling to Indianapolis to help Jay and Ellen's Mother, Elaine, celebrate her 100th Birthday. All went well!! Jay and Joyce also got away for a few hours to enjoy the Florida State Fair.

March 2021
This was highlighted by a couple of nice events. This year the Florida Strawberry Festival at Plant City was held albeit with many COVID-19 precautions in place. Normally there is big name entertainment each night but that went away this year. Understandably, attendance was down. We felt sorry for all the food vendors cooking up goodies for people who just weren't there. We did have our traditional strawberry shortcake, however. We also had two trips. Both over the March 26-28 weekend. Jay, with Robert's family and Karen's family, spent three days at Universal Studies while Joyce and her good friend Lu spent that weekend at Daytona Beach, accompanied by their dogs, Cinny and Bella. (Joyce's back just could not take three days of running through Universal.)

February 2021
February was also a relatively quiet month, though Joyce was saddened by the passing of two very close friends, one being her Sunday school teacher whom she had known for 30 years. In terms of the pandemic, it appeared that spring and summer might see COVID-19 pretty much under control, and therefore opening up potential places to vacation. As one might guess, everyone had that same thought and it was surprising to find many places already booked up for so far in advance. Jay took on a small project; assembling some of the Christmas letters he could find. Those letters go back 40 years, and he has about 30 years worth now posted on the BradenClan Webpage.

January 2021
January was a quiet month. It was a little bit of “recovering from Christmas and putting away Christmas decorations“ and pretty much waiting for COVID-19 restrictions to be lifted to the extent where we could begin thinking about travels. Joyce continue making contacts and speaking with the her friends and neighbors who count upon her for medical expertise, and at one point she had 13 “active“ cases of persons needing serious medical attention and seeking her advice. Jay continued with golf and pickle ball, and enjoyed each of these activities, though his golf game could always be better. Speaking of golf, Jay stepped down as his men’s association’s secretary after serving in that capacity for six years. Time for someone else to get that enjoyment.