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Family Newsletter

January 2000

Past Issues: 1998 June July August September October Nov/Dec 1999 Jan/Feb March/April May June July Sept Nov

From: Nikhil

Nikhil is still teaching math in Nepal. He'd love to hear from you. His address is:

Nikhil Jaisinghani N/189
c/o American Peace Corps
G.P.O. Box 613
Kathmandu, Nepal

From: Jo

We had a wonderful Christmas together. Our whole family was here for almost two weeks and we just talked, laughed and played with Gentry and John. Gentry's favorite thing in the world is to play with everyone ALL the time. John is one now, and his favorite thing is to make "tah, tah" sounds as he explores the world and dumps everything out. The stomach flu hit all of us except Steve, but that really didn't slow us down much.

We celebrated the coming of Year 2000 in good style, eating our traditional New Year's Cookies (I added this to the recipe section, in case you need this) and watching the new millennium come to areas all over the world. What a great time to be alive. Who knows.....maybe Gentry and John will see the coming of Year 2100.

Sorensen Christmas 1999

Frank trying to keep up with John

Gentry and Chris playing "Can't Get Me"

We wish you all a Happy Year 2000. Take time to do something for others, like Mom and Dad did.


We continue to get email messages from folks who have found our webpage. We received several interesting ones since our last update.

One is from Millie (descendant of Peter Pankratz). Her message goes:
I saw the picture of Peter J Pankratz who is also my great grandfather. Do you know who the other people are in that photo? Do you object to my putting it in my personal picture album? Do you have any other pictures of that Pankratz generation that you would share? I remember your grandmother Helena Pankratz Jungas. She was my grandfather's sister. Hope to hear from you. Millie e-mail millie@acsol.net

We also received a message from Denis Xenox, whose wife is another descendant of the Pankratz family. I have his home address, if you want it. His message goes:
To the Descendants of Jacob Johann Pankratz; Peter Jacob Pankratz: Helena P. Pankratz; and Anna Luetta Jungas; I love your Hiebert Family homepage. It is one of the best that I have seen. There has been lots of TLC given to it.
The reason of the email is that my wife is Velma Pankratz and I am now doing the Pankratz Genealogy. I have been in touch with various descendants of Jacob Johann Pankratz. including Standely Pankratz, Marlin Pankratz, Marvin Wiens, Millie Derksen, and John Jungas (at the hardware store in Mountain Lake in mid Aug 1999). As for the picture "Our Great-(Great)-Grandfather Peter Pankratz" I think I have identifed everyone in it.
As with all Genealogists, I am looking for information. If you are willing to check, correct, update; and add the information, I will generate a Hiebert genealogy report for your site. I would be pleased to work with the Hiebert family historian. As you can see below I am missing some middle, last and nick names. I really liked your site. Hope to hear from you soon.
Denis Xenos,The XENOS Genealogy Guy

Another message is from Marion; I copied it and added it below. I'll be checking to see if we can get a copy of this issue. -Jo

From: Marion Jungas Franz

On Wednesday, December 28, the Mountain Lake Observer/Advocate included a supplement, Memories of Our Lifetime. In it Helen Sawatzky has an interesting column on the Jungas Hardware fire. There are also pictures of the fire and of the street before the fire. Thought you might be interested in it, if you have not seen the paper. They have a web site but I do not have the address. Their email address is the following: obsad@rconnect.com and their phone is 1-800-658-2510.

From: Loey and Gary

These are pictures from Loey & Gary's Christmas.

Priya and Gary's godson Steve from England

Ric, Chelsea, Steve and Priya

From: Karen and Rick

Our friend Simon has updated our website once again (www.thebartletts.org.uk) and there is a great family photo there. Also, there is an amazing photo of Phyllis holding Karen and one of Karen holding Toby.... and baby Karen looks exactly like baby Toby! Hope you have a chance to check it out. (We included these below. To see the pictures a little more clearly and the other pictures of the kids, go to Karen & Rick's website. - Jo)

Rick, Karen, Grace and Toby

Big sister Grace with little brother Toby

Phyllis with baby Karen

Phyllis with Grace and Toby

From: Margy & Michael

Year-end, century-beginning message from Margy & Michael. Please note that items are not necessarily presented in any order of importance. Also, these lists are very personal ones. We are also greatly concerned about national and global issues, but that would be another very long list, so we decided to go with a more intimate one.

Things not so wonderful about the 1990's:
1. The worst has to be the loss of Mom/Grandma, Grace and Fran. There are such empty places in our hearts & souls, though comfortingly occupied in part with warm and happy memories.
2. Other losses: 5 cats--Kira, Peanut Butter & C.C. disappeared, and a neighbor's bully dog killed Bubba and Boris in the cruelest way.
3. Michael's unpleasant experiences with a con-man while living on his own in an apartment in slummy district.
4. The unprincipled tenants who inhabited our house last summer and never paid a dime of rent or utilities and trashed the place.
5. We did not win the Florida lottery.

10 best things about the 1990's:
1. Michael was diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome, clearing up a lifetime of mysteries and confusion, and allowing him to accept who he is and plan fora challenging and fulfilling future.
2. We have been very healthy and fit, something Margy no longer takes for granted, seeing so many ill and suffering people where she works, and knowing the various difficulties others in the family are experiencing.
3. We had a life-changing experience spending 2 months at Casa Guatemala orphanage, falling deeper in love with the country and its people. Michael especially fell in love with the children, and they with him. We wish we could adopt some of them.
4. Michael's Asperger advocacy campaign really took off, with an article he wrote being reprinted in numerous newsletters and web sites. Parents of AS children, as well as adults with AS, have engaged in lively internet conversations with Michael. He has had more than a dozen "letters to the editor" published in Florida newspapers on Asperger's and other social/political topics.
5. Margy finished her MSN degree, summa cum laude, and was awarded Graduate Student of the Year award from her faculty.
6. We acquired (a) Maggie May (mix of dalmation & greyhound), a delightful joyous ADHD doggie who terrorizes the squirrels & chickens; (b) Chico & Rosita, brother & sister orange cats of Hispanic persuasion, now quite the chubettes; (c) Sparky the Silky Smooth white & black kitten; (d) kitten Ming the Magnificent/Mischievous/Motor-mouth /Mellow /Muncher/ Merciless. They joined our already cherished family of top dog Robbie the border collie, Bingo the loveable beagle, Commander Data our love-kitty & Katie the Russian queen cat. Can you tell we love animals??
7. We were blessed with a temporary family--Raquel and her children J.R. and Yvonne--who lived with us almost a year. We still miss them, though they have a home of their own now.
8. The relationship between Brian and Margy became deep, solid and loving--he is now truly family with us.
9. Michael owns a car he really likes--'88 Chrysler New Yorker--found at auction at a great price. And it still runs!
10. We are blessed with great family and friends, and have shared great times with them: reunions, dinners, bonfires, hikes, canoe trips, movies, travels, lots of e-mails, conversations, joys and sorrows.

10 best things we look forward to in 2000:
1. Margy's new work (finally) as a nurse practitioner taking care of the elderly in 6 different nursing homes, and (finally) finishing her MPH.
2. Michael is going to complete his Child Development Associate certificate to enter the world of taking care of & teaching young children.
3. We hope to hear favorably from the Social Security administrative judge about Michael's SSI petition.
4. We plan to return to the orphanage in Guatemala, possibly in the fall, for another month or 2 of volunteering in the clinic & school.
5. Michael has ambitious plans to clear out the "back 40" part of our property and landscape it or prepare for building on it. It is lush with trees and tropical plants (and weeds & debris from old buildings).
6. We continue to enjoy our mini-zoo of 6 cats and 3 dogs, including our new adolescent Siamese kitten Ming the Magnificent.
7. Once again we will try our hand with a vegetable and flower garden, with planting commencing around Valentineís Day.
8. Margy and Brian love each other very much and look forward to another year of companionship, dancing and travel. We truly feel like a family--Brian, Margy & Michael.
9. The Female Adventure Club Unlimited, of which Margy was a "founding sister", hopes for plenty of outdoor fun canoeing, hiking, skiing, bicycling and so forth.
10. Michael will continue his Asperger advocacy one-man campaign on internet and fax, taking it to a new level by blitzing legislators both on state and national level with information and advice on how to improve life for AS people.