December 31, 2001 (Houston)
As 2001 draws to a close, we are packing for our extended trip to Australia. The packing list is not yet finalized, but sure to make the cut are Pat's new shoes. This one-of-a-kind design has created a sensation in Houston and is sure to do the same Down Under.
December 25, 2001 (Houston)
No snow for Christmas, but plenty of good cheer. Mimosas for breakfast got everyone off to a good start. We had a mid-afternoon repast of turkey and cornbread dressing and a gift exchange. Monica was obviously pleased with the contents of her stocking.
December 22, 2001 (Houston)
Andy, Deanna, Mike and Monica were in Houston for Christmas weekend. We all drove out to visit with Robyn, Will and family. WD IV kept Mike entertained.
December 12, 2001 (Fort Stewart)
Katherine Stewart Solomons, all 9 lbs., 2 oz. of her, has arrived. Here she is with grandmother Valerie and brother Johnny.
December 12, 2001 (Fort Stewart)
Mark has been selected to attend the Command and General Staff College in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. This is great news as only those officers with potential for advancement get the opportunity to participate. Mark and family will be relocating to Kansas for a year starting in the summer.
December 11, 2001 (Fort Stewart)
Johnny paid a visit to Santa and asked for a baby sister as a Christmas present.
December 10, 2001 (Houston)
Pat entertained a group of her friends with a holiday luncheon at the apartment. She integrated friends from Honolulu, Melbourne, Rio de Janeiro, and Houston for a festive occasion.
November 28, 2001 Houston
Don and Jackie Jones were in town for a convention which enabled us to have dinner together. Don likes Houston because it's OK to wear your hat indoors.
November 12, 2001 (Dog Park)
Kelly and Ross sent along some pictures of their typical day at the office.
October 29, 2001 (Houston)
What a month! After returning from So. Padre, we did a quick turnaround and went back to south Texas for a regional bridge tournament in Donna. Never heard of Donna? It's a suburb of Weslaco. Never heard of Weslaco? It's not too far from Harlingen.
One day after returning to Houston we boarded a plane for Chicago and The Wedding. As you can see from the picture we arrived in style from the airport. Just as well we did as it took as long (two hours) to get from O'Hare to the hotel than it did to fly from Houston to Chicago. Friday night was a pizza party, Saturday the rehearsal, bridesmaids lunch, and rehearsal dinner, and Sunday the Main Event. The wedding was beautiful and the Chicago weather was sunny and unseasonably mild.
As participants we didn't get too many pictures of the actual wedding. As soon as the official pictures get here we will post them. In the meantime, I have set up a temporary wedding page so you can see some pictures of the festivities.
After the wedding we drove up to Lake Geneva WI and spent a few days at the Grand Geneva Resort. This is the original Hugh Hefner Playboy Club Hotel. The buildings were designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and are still beautiful and interesting.
October 6, 2001 (South Padre Island)
Pat's first time ever fishing was a success. When the fish weren't biting in the bay, our guide took us to the Brownsville channel where Pat hooked a large black drum. Lew chipped in with a couple of sea trout. Fishing the rest of the week was pretty slow, although several members of our group caught redfish which were cooked up later in the week.
October 3, 2001 (South Padre Island)
We're off with a group of friends to South Padre for a week of fishing as guests of the Freedman's. The island has been isolated since September 15 when the only bridge from the mainland was severely damaged by a breakaway barge. Our hosts hired a ship to carry us back and forth.
September 30, 2001 (Houston)
News from the West Coast - Kelly and Ross' canine care business is going great guns. Here they are in action at Dog Park in Hollywood.
September 23, 2001 (Houston)
September 11, 2001 (Houston)
Pat's birthday turned out out be a tragic day. We decided to postpone our trip to Hawaii.
September 3, 2001 (Quito)
The Coral 1 is a little small , but the guides are knowledgeable and the food is great. Being on a relatively small vessel allows you access to many places that the big cruise ships can't go. A large pelican decided to make himself at home right outside our cabin.
September 2, 2001 (Quito)
The islands are located 600 miles off the coast of the Ecuador mainland so the only way to get there is to fly on TAME. The airport at Baltra (population 100) looks like Kona. After a ferry ride to Santa Cruz, we joined 16 other passengers aboard the Coral 1.
September 1, 2001 (Quito)
On the ground in Quito waiting for our flight to the Galapagos. Spending the day touring the Old City.
August 20, 2001 (Houston)
We returned from San Miguel (75o) to Houston (100o) and it's obvious why so many Houstonians head south for the summer. A good time was had by all in Mexico, with a lot of bridge played and a lot of Margaritas consumed.
August 7, 2001 (Houston)
We worked as volunteers at the Museum of Fine Arts Latin American film festival. We were able to take in two interesting recent releases from Mexico. The first was La Ley de Herodes (Herod's Law) and the second was Sexo, Pudor y Lagrimas (Sex, Shame, and Tears). Both were in Spanish with English sub-titles - good training for our visit to Mexico starting Friday.
July 29, 2001 (Houston)
We're back from a great two-week trip to Canada. We spent a week in Montreal with Johnny and his parents and uncle, and then a week in Toronto visiting friends from the bridge world. On the day of arrival in Montreal, the family trekked up to the top of Mount Royal to get a fabulous view of the city at dusk (at left).
We traveled back and forth between Toronto and Montreal on the overnight train. This is a fun thing to do, but it is not for the claustrophobic. The trip takes a little over eight hours, about twice the time it takes to drive. You can imagine the number of stops.
We played a few sessions at the Nationals and didn't embarrass ourselves too badly. One of the trip highlights was seeing the play Mama Mia! in Toronto. Don't miss it when it comes to your town. We are ready to go again. Meanwhile, we have to start getting ready for our next trip which is San Miguel, Mexico in less than two weeks.
If you have been waiting breathlessly for new pictures of Johnny the wait is over. Check out Recent Trips.
July 11, 2001 (Houston)
The fabled Houston summertime heat and humidity have arrived with a vengeance. According to our strategic plan it's time to get out of town. We drove to San Antonio for a couple of days last week to play in a Regional and managed to win the Friday Senior Pairs contest (see "trophy" at left). Friday we are off to Canada for a couple of weeks where the temperature has been in the 50's. Look for some new pix of Johnny when we get back.
July 1, 2001 (Houston)
Pat inaugurated our new dining room table with a bridge luncheon for seven of her girlfriends. Lew was the director and scorer. Later we drove over to visit with Robyn, Will and family. WD IV enjoyed being pampered by his two grandmothers.
June 16, 2001 (Dallas)
We survived the Great Flood of '01 with no damage and only minor inconvenience. Living on the tenth floor has its advantages. We drove to Dallas to help Andy celebrate his birthday. A party Saturday night featured real Texas bar-b-que. We got to meet many of Andy's friends and Pat got to meet some relatives (Mack Bottum and family) for the first time. Deanna baked a cake (two actually) using Andy's "nom de work".
June 11, 2001 (Houston)
Pat is back from the Hill Country where she spent a week with four ladies who were good friends in Hawaii a "few" years ago. Lew was compensated for Pat's absence by not having to lower the toilet seat and watching baseball during the day and hockey and basketball at night. We survived the hundred-year rainstorm in Houston, although we did have to drive through some pretty deep water to get home Friday night. This Friday we are driving to Dallas to help Andy celebrate his birthday.
May 15, 2001 (Houston)
Last week we went with some friends to see the Astros play the Phillies. The ballpark is really nice, but the home team lost. We spent the weekend in Georgia with Mark, Margaret, and Johnny. If you've been waiting to see some new pictures of Johnny, here is your chance.
May 9, 2001 (Houston)
Pat has been working out at the gym, intending to sport some new bikinis this summer. Lew has been working out in the kitchen so does not. If you want to know the story behind the Chef Bob monogram, ask Kelly.
April 24, 2001 (Houston)
Things have been pretty quiet around here. We have been spending a lot of time planning how to avoid Houston's summer heat. Looks like we will be gone most of July and August, with a trip to Hawaii looming for September. It's pretty nice right now, so c'mon down.
April 6, 2001 (Fort Lauderdale)
We had a very pleasant evening with Monica and Mike, Monica's parents (Martin and Ilona), and Monica's sister and brother-in-law (Hedy and Mark). We had dinner at a great restaurant in Palm Beach called Charlie's Crab where there were so many good things on the menu that Martin and Ilona had to give it a serious study. Here you can see that Martin was happy with his choice while Monica was still deep in thought.
We also visited with Lew's fraternity brother Mike "Commodore" Lubin on his 58 foot floating condo at the Bahia Mar Marina in Fort Lauderdale. It was easy to see why Mike doesn't spend too much time at his other home in Rochester, New York.
March 26, 2001 (Houston)
After spending the better part of two weeks in Mexico, we are back in Houston to wash clothes and water the plants. We are heading out again on Friday to spend some time in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach with Mike and Monica and to meet Monica's parents, Martin and Ilona. We will also see Kay, the family matriarch. You can reach us at 1-954-776-4880.
Mexico was fantastic. Lew's fraternity had a get together at a resort near Cuernavaca, and then after the reunion we visited the old colonial cities of Queretaro, San Miguel de Allende, Dolores Hidalgo, and Guanajuato. See Recent Trips for more pictures and details.
March 11, 2001 (Houston)
We've been back in Houston for a few weeks now and our entertainment has consisted mainly of watching people jump. We saw the Rockets take on the Portland Trailblazers. Unfortunately the Blazers were jumping higher and won the game. Last night we saw a dance troupe called Pilobulos. They did a lot of jumping also. Music was provided by - get this- a Hasidic New Wave Band named the Klezmatics.
March 3, 2001 (Fort Stewart)
It's not every day that a family member gets to meet the President and a U.S. senator on the same day. Here is Mark with President George W. Bush and Senator Max Cleland. See the February 12 entry below for more details.
February 18, 2001 (Honolulu)
A select group of former PRI/BHP Hawaii hired hands gathered at the Levy household for an evening of food, drink and story-swapping. Some people actually dug through their closets and uncovered company logo wearing apparel that almost fit.
February 12, 2001 (Fort Stewart)
President Bush and his entourage, including Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Senator Max Cleland, visited Fort Stewart today. Among those chosen to escort these distinguished visitors was Major Mark E. Solomons. Here are some pictures from this exciting day. Lucky Margaret and Valerie were there to see the whole thing.
February 3, 2001 (Honolulu)
Pat and Lew participated in a Hawaii tradition by attending the annual Punahou Carnival. As always, the malasadas were the best and worth waiting in line for. We didn't go on any of the rides.
January 29, 2001 (Honolulu)
Life in Hawaii is beautiful. Marilyn and Tom Fagan hosted a dinner party for us at their home in Portlock complete with a sunset over Diamond Head. Mark is heading home from Bosnia in February and will have a new assignment at Fort Stewart. He and Margaret are expecting lots of visitors.
January 22, 2001 (Honolulu)
The bridge Regional Tournament is over and Pat upheld the family name by capturing the Women's Pairs championship with Margee Cooling. Meanwhile Lew was getting in a round of golf at the Oahu Country Club.
January 14, 2001 (Honolulu)
We are back at the Regency and plan to stay for about six weeks. The Hawaii Regional bridge tournament starts tomorrow and runs through next Sunday. After that it will be lots of golf and sun. The big family news is that Kelly's Pet Care has purchased a new white Honda Odyssey for transporting 15 dogs to Dog Park. I hope Kelly and Ross have lots of air freshener.
January 4, 2001 (Reno)
We head for Honolulu tomorrow after three days in Reno. Just thought you might like to see one more picture of Johnny and one more shot of beautiful Lake Tahoe.
January 1, 2001 (Lake Tahoe)
On New Years Eve, Mike and Monica drove to a romantic spot on Mount Rose to see a view of Lake Tahoe by the light of the moon. At the stroke of midnight, on bended knee, Mike made a proposal of marriage and Monica said yes. Get ready for a fall wedding. Afterwards, the happy couple returned to the condo for a champagne toast and a chance to show off Monica's beautiful engagement ring.