Christmas – 1976

To the Yuletide Followers of the Barker Saga — Greetings!

Welcome in the tenth edition of selected Barker trivia, southern style. That’s right, for ten years you’ve had to read this stuff. Can you believe it? It seems that this letter, like death and taxes, has become a pre-destined event.

In 1967, with the first letter, Karen was in Junior high, Bruce and Diane in grammar school and George was just entering kindergarten — now Karen has just graduated from Georgia Southern and plans entering the Technical Nursing Program at Florida Junior College this winter. Bruce entered the University of Georgia this fall and is in a pre-Forestry curriculum. Diane is in her Sophomore year at Georgia Southern and is majoring in Early Childhood Development. George has just entered Senior high school, and has started driving with a learner’s permit this year (I don’t know if I can stand it).

Now on the face of it, things sound simple enough, but you know how that goes …. Take Karen, for example; you see this guy Barry. He is a student at Georgia Southen and lives near Savannah. Since graduation in August, the travel back and forth has been regular and predicable to to the point they could buy a van and establish a shuttle run on a regular basis. Does this mean they are serious? Well, I guess so. It looks like they will be married next December when Karen finishes Nursing School. Not only are Joyce and I delighted, but it will be a positive energy conservation.

That’s not all — Bruce, what about him? Well, her name is Susie and she lives in Jacksonville area (about 25 miles away). Is he serious? Heck, he was home for a four days on vacation before I knew it, and I know it then only when I couldn’t find my favorite tie! Like Karen, his taste is good (a chip of the old block!), Susie is a doll. They have announced their intention but with no final date set yet, (final may not be the right word, but upon reflection, it is as good as any). He has two years and a quarter to go at Georgia, so it will probably be a while. Not only does he have some real tough course work, but he was elected President of the Camera Club and to the Pandora (yearbook) staff. Riding his bike up and down the hills (mountains by Florida standards has kept him in shape.

Diane is playing it cool, and as far as we know there is no impending announcement from her, but that’s o.k. A Sophomore now, she has been elected into the same sorority as Karen. She is an officer and is serving as Ritual Chairman. This keeps her pretty busy. There are strange course requirements in this education business. I saw Diane stomping something in the carport the other day and thought she had gotten into a bed of ants, but she was only practicing for her tap dance recital. On occasion, she snitches a ride to Jacksonville with Barry, which makes it nice.

George is in Senior High and loves it. He made Eagle Scout this year, exactly two years to the day since Bruce made it. He has just been elected as Senior Patrol Leader and is enjoying the experience. His year was highlighted by a 50 mile canoe trip down the Suwannee River. George is the only one home I can “play” with this year., if you call getting up at 4:30 to go freeze in a deerless dear stand, play. Our greatest excitement was when a bee landed on my knee and decided to explore in detail.

Mom and Dad’s activity seems to be primarily trying to keep up with all of the others and wondering if we’ll ever make it. We will, of course, and with great joy; and same joy we extend to all of you this festive season.

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