December 2012

Since you are receiving this letter, we must have survived the end of the world! Frankly, we expected it to be a bit more spectacular. As we still exist, we produced this, the 19th Annual Janz Family Christmas epistle. Keeping with tradition, our past year involved water, minor home renovations, and work (to pay for it all).

Surprise, surprise, our vacations this year involved sodium dihydrogen monoxide. We are also accumulating a group of underwater amigos. In May, we returned to Belize as a "four pack" with Tom and Sandy. We met turtles close up, lots of spotted eagle rays, our favorite barracuda, and experienced Nitrox withdrawal for the first time (we sure did miss the extra O2). For our XVIII anniversary, we convinced Kay, Bob and Ryan to join us in Bonaire. What a fabulous trip! We communed with squid, saw a sizeable school of silvery fish (technical term), became one with hunting bar jacks, lusted after a large lobster, tagged along with turtles, and phailed to photograph photophobic puffer fish. Kay and Bob were great companions as they cooked us dinner nearly every night.

In addition to our diving vacations, Tom and Sandy introduced us to sailing with their Hobie Cat. We had such a good time that we took a basic small boat sailing class nearby. We managed to keep the sail up and the keel down (Hallelujah!) despite heavy winds that convinced the advanced students to stay on shore. We also made several trips to Tahoe, and for Kyle's Birthday, we went rafting on the Truckee and Zip-lining at Granlibakken with the Schumachers.

Of course, no year would be complete without the obligatory home improvement activity. We've racked our brains, and for the first time in almost a decade, could not identify a single 2012 Tahoe project. As for San Jose, after surviving sharing a single six foot master bedroom closet, we seized space from the adjoining bedroom and created "his and her" closets. How did we survive before? Seeing as our Tahoe house has all new wood and tile floors, it was well past time that our San Jose abode did too! We pried and pulled out all the baseboards and door jambs, painted every interior surface (including ceilings) with nary a thought about where the paint may fall, and had the well worn post-Loma Prieta earthquake carpet replaced with Brazilian Koa hardwood. Notice we didn't say "we" replaced the floor, this effort was outsourced - we must be getting "seasoned". After Thanksgiving, we embarked on a "trivial" 3-day project to replace the kitchen/entry floors with tile that took us almost 2 weeks. We highly recommend the flame thrower approach to removing vinyl flooring. The last baseboard went in 3 hours before our annual Christmas party.

Without our continued gainful employment, we wouldn't have been able to do any of the fun stuff. Work has been busy for both of us this year. Mike had a huge, gigantic, massive customer review that generated zero liens and AI's, which was previously thought to be impossible. Lori is still standing after successfully launching the 3rd generation IntelĀ® CoreTM processor family (22nm with tri-gate technology). It is weird opening the newspaper and seeing her product for sale.

Next month marks Mike's 14th 2nd birthday - it is always a blessing to celebrate another year being cancer free. Lori is still into stamping when her creative brain cells are flowing. Magic is now 18 1/2 years old, and starting to show her age. Marleau still saunters at his own pace, except for when he is jogging after his brother Murray. Murray loves to be in Lori's sink when she is trying to get ready for work, and is on the bed reserving his "spot" at night.

This coming year will involve ... wait for it ... diving and home improvement. This spring, we have booked our next adventure to Yap and Palau (located near Guam which is north of Australia) with Tom and Sandy. In terms of our home improvement list, candidates include remodeling the main bathroom and finishing the backyard landscaping in San Jose and installing deck stairs in Tahoe. Unless we win the lottery, we will continue to work to pay for all the fun stuff.

We hope you have a healthy and happy New Year. Feel free to email us at or visit us at


Mike, Lori, Magic, Marleau, & Murray