December 31st, 2005

Macbeth the Usurper

Christmas Letter and Year End Wrapup

This year started with a passel of work. We had our wedding to organize! All that prep kept us overly occupied and out of trouble. But the good news was, on April 30th, on an unexpectedly rainy day, we married in a cramped tent full our favorite people. (We're told that rain is good luck. Judging by the rain that we got, we've got two hundred years of good luck.) Most folks had a great time, and we learned that the saying is true: Wedding plans either go right, or you get good stories. Thanks to all who came.

Following the wedding, we snuck off to Frederick, Maryland, and cozied up in a historic bed and breakfast. This was definitely the way to go. Two days later, we flew off to Portland to enjoy our honeymoon. We wandered about Portland, seeing the city. Everywhere we stayed was a bed and breakfast. Our first visit was to Powell's Used Books, which some consider the best bookstore in the English language. We visited a Japanese garden called “the best Japanese garden outside of Japan.” We also visited a rhododendron garden when blooms were still plentiful and so was sunlight.

From Portland, we drove up to Mount Hood, the clouds rolled in, and we didn't see the sun for days. Along the way, we discovered a Carousel Museum. From Mount Hood, where we stayed at the Timberline Lodge, we went down to the sea, and spent a few days in Newport. From there, we wandered down to Coos bay, sidetracked into California to see the redwoods, then made our way to Ashland, and the Ashland Shakespeare Festival. Finally, we took a day trip up to Crater Lake. All in all, we wandered about for ten days, then returned home.

Pictures for both the wedding and the honeymoon are online. You can see pictures at

Once we were done with the wedding, we had time to see plays again. On our honeymoon, while at the Ashland Shakespeare festival we saw Richard III and Room Service. Over the remaining year, we've also seen productions of Company, Spamalot, My Life as a Fairy Tale, A Midsummer's Night Dream, and Cabaret. In the future, we would like to see both Wicked and Avenue Q.

Please welcome our new niece. Her name is Anna Qu Donaldson, and she arrived on Thanksgiving Day. Here's a big wave to Singapore, where, if we stand on enough chairs, they just might see us.

We have our first pet. Say hello to our cat, Squirrel. In November, friends found a lovable stray cat, and Jen fell for him. He's not a shy fellow. He walked out of his cage, then proceeded to explore every corner of our house. His motto must be, “No fear.” We think that he's about eight months old, and that he used to belong to somebody. This creature loves people. We do our best to amuse him, although this can be a challenge. He loves playing with string more than anything, including catnip. His favorite toy is a “fishing pole” made from nylon string and a dowel. He can't get enough of “chase the string.”

Christmas came early for us. Jen received full boxed set of all the BBC Sherlock Holmes radio plays, and is gleefully listening to them. Doug received a Canon S2 digital camera, which he is already making use of. He should take many pictures this holiday.

All in all, 2005 was a very good year for us. Thanks for being part of what made this year so great.

All the best from us,
Douglas and Jennifer