16 Oct 1985

Dear Mom & Dad,

I got your letter yesterday. I was getting quite concerned about you all. Your letters don't come any more frequent than my letters to you.

We were elated about Diane's news. We were also quite shocked. I hope she is doing okay. Is she feeling better? My sinuses were quite bad when I was pregnant, too. We told Angelique that Diane was going to have a baby. She said, "At her age? Goodness!" I thought that was funny. I can find all kinds of neat baby things here. It will be hard to limit myself.

The Coles' visit went well. No problems. The weather was fine. Just this week it has started to feel like fall weather. We still haven't had any rain. Most areas are rationing water. We are the only city water area I know of that hasn't had water rationed.

Is Laura trying to lose weight because of her ballet? I don't think it will hurt her any. I couldn't decide if she were a little chubby when she was here or if it were that awkward adolescent age weight. She must really be into this ballet stuff to put so much time into it.

I'm glad you got the stuff from Scotland. I was kind of worried about it.

Thanks for the things you sent for Steven's birthday. Yes, it got here in time. The kids enjoyed all the things in the boxes.

You don't need to spend your time worrying about terrorists bothering us here in Naples. The Mafia controls Naples and I don't think even Moammar Kadafi would want to do battle with the Mafia. The Mafia doesn't mind the U.S. Military being here because we pour so much money into the economy. We feel safer here than in the States. There are no violent robberies or murders here (unless you are caught up in the Mafia, which we are not). Thieves here usually work only when they know they won't be seen or get caught ... in other words, they work while you are gone -- like Michael's car.

We finally got money from our insurance company yesterday for our stolen car. Michael has bought a 1979 Ford Fiesta to replace the Volkswagen. He is not super pleased with it. It doesn't have enough get-up-and-go to please him. It is nice to be a two-car family again.

The tax situation and payment on our land sounds fine. I'll keep my eyes open for something for you. Is the tax paid in our name or your name? You know that if someone pays taxes on a piece of land for 3 years that it becomes legally theirs. As long as you are not trying to legally take our land away from us, that's ok. Ha Ha. Has the value of that land gone up or down?

You could send money for our Christmas gift if you want, but we usually buy whatever we want anyway. Michael could sure use a new pair of Levi blue jeans, boot cut, size 33-30's. We have trouble getting those here and his are so faded. I could use some jeans, too, but I'm difficult to fit. There are so many women's styles in jeans these days. Some are too tight to be comfortable and some are too big in the waist for me. How about a nice, pretty dressy white blouse for me to wear with my suits? I don't have a white blouse to my name. I could sure use one and I haven't found one I like here. I wear about a size 8, 9 or a small 10, depending on how it is cut. The kids would indeed rather have a present to open than money.

Steven could use some Lego building blocks. Diane got him some for his birthday and he loves them, but he needs more. Be sure to get the Basic Lego sets. They are for Steven's age - or 5 years and up or so. Anyway, he's ready for them. Just be careful not to get the ones for 7-year-olds and up. Those pieces are just too tiny for Steven's age. A little boy can never have enough Legos and Steven only has a few. The Base toy store does not have them here and I will have to order them if you can't get them.

Angelique would enjoy anything Care Bear or Rainbow Brite. She would like some Care Bear Cousins or anything like that. She also likes art supplies.

I can't think of anything else new. We'll be mailing our Christmas packages soon. Write soon.



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