Christmas 2008

1747 Somerset Circle
Charleston, SC 29407
December 13, 2008

Dear Family and Friends,

     It is a beautiful, sunny day in Charleston and, as we left a choir rehearsal this morning, I was reminded of God’s blessings upon all of us.  It has been a good year for the Dillons, and we hope is has been for you as well.

    Bryan is finishing his degree in theater at the University of South Carolina this spring and hopes to go to grad school sometime in the future. With his love for movies, his job at the local cineplex this past summer was perfect.  He visited Ginny in Chicago over Spring break.  A highlight was attending a performance of Second City, the "Improv" group.  He continues to live in Columbia with a group of friends. 

Ginny's Graduation    Ginny is spending the year in Chicago after earning her Master’s degree from the University of Chicago, specializing in 17th-century Eastern European history.  We had a great time visiting with all of the Michigan family at her graduation.  (Click the image at left for a larger version!)  She has moved to the north side of town, but went back to Hyde Park for election night, where she excitedly watched the returns from her favorite pub.  She is waiting tables (as all good Masters students do) at a sushi restaurant downtown, and anxiously waiting to hear from PhD programs for next fall.

    Rob is teaching a bit less at The College this semester, having assumed new duties as department “scheduler.”  He is in charge of arranging all the meeting times, rooms, and staff for a curriculum serving 800 majors.  In February, he coordinated the VIIIth annual Darwin Week in Charleston, and is now deep into the planning process for IX, celebrating Darwin’s 200th birthday in 2009.  This summer he spent as much time as possible driving around the mountains in his pickup truck, with his arm hanging out the window. Occasionally he drove back to Charleston, where he wrote proposals trying to convince granting agencies that such behavior might qualify as “research.”  He continues to serve as President of the South Carolinians for Science Education, treasurer of the local Phi Beta Kappa association, and tenor in his pickup barbershop quartet.  In November, Rob was swept back into the constituent school board by a landslide, garnering 96.7% of the vote.  (He was the only candidate running for two seats.)
  Turner Reunion 08
    The Turner-side reunion in Salem was a highlight of our year!  Such a blessing it was to catch up on old times with family from around the country and elsewhere in the world.  It was bittersweet to visit with Rob’s dear Aunt "Sanie," who passed away a few weeks later.  Special thanks to Cousins Emily, Bonnie, and Martha Ellen for making it all possible.

    I continue in my job as the teacher-coach at Orange Grove, where we are in our third year as a charter school.  We are very excited as we watch our new building go up, and anxious to move this summer.  I was honored to be elected treasurer of the South Carolina Association for Public Charter Schools and am serving once again as chair of the state conference.  I keep busy with church and other school activities. I play cards monthly with a group of lady friends and, believe it or not, plan to take ballroom dance classes (along with the Shag) after the holidays.

    We will be traveling to Virginia for Christmas, where we will meet Ginny and celebrate with almost all of our family from Michigan and Virginia.  We will miss Kelly and Ryan down in Australia!  Our hope for all of you is to have a happy and safe holiday.  We treasure you all!

Love,
Shary        



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