Folena Family 2017

FOUR GENERATIONS! Unfortunately Desta is missing because she took the picture.

The year began with the birth of our first grandson, Jordan Forbes Folena! Jordan is Robbie and Desta's son and he was born on Saturday, January 14 at 1:03PM, 6 lbs. 1 oz. (2.75kg), 19 inches (48.26cm) long at St. Joseph Hospital, Denver. We flew out to Coloradoand arrived in Denver that Sunday and spent a couple of weeks with the family helping out the new parents. Jordan has been a joy to be around even though our exposure to him is limited due to the distance. We look forward to every visit.

In March my position at Eden Medical was restructured and reassigned so my tenure there was short lived. It was unfortunate, but may have been for the better given the commute was something I wasn’t fond of. We move on - I will concentrate on teaching NRP, STABLE and CPR classes going forward.

In early May Paul and I treated ourselves to a 60th birthday outing in Vegas – Paul turned 60 last year and I just did in March. We stayed at the Vdara Hotel which is non-smoking and doesn’t have a casino which is right up our alley. We enjoyed our stay there and highly recommend it. One of the highlights was we caught the Cirque Du Soleil show LOVE that’s all about the Beatles that we thought was outstanding.

In May we celebrated Felicity’s 3rd birthday – she’s growing way too fast. Amanda and Justin had a Disney The Princess and the Frog themed party for her. Tina Simmons made a wonderful cake (she’s our family’s personal pastry chef as she’s made birthday cakes for multiple generations) that everyone including the birthday girl really enjoyed. I have a very hard time believing that our little Felicity is now already 3 years old.

In June we went back out to visit Jordan for a few days – we’re racking up the frequent flyer miles to Denver. It was fun to see how much he had grown in only a few month’s time. He really enjoys taking walks in his stroller around the neighborhood and it keeps Nana and Nonno in shape.

In July we went up to Lodi to attend my niece Shannon’s bridal shower. It was held at the picturesque Sorelle Winery in Stockton and everyone had a great time. Shannon was just beaming as she was accompanied by life-long friends as well as family.

At the end of July, Joanie, Sandra and I hosted a baby shower for Amanda and Justin. The Winny the Pooh themed shower was held at the Biltmore Hotel in Santa Clara. At that time we knew that they were having a baby boy but we didn’t know his name yet – it was to be a surprise just like Felicity was

In early September, Labor Day weekend, we celebrated Shannon and Donnie Marcetti’s wedding in Lake Tahoe. The wedding was held at Our Lady of Tahoe Catholic church and the reception was at Edgewood Resort. Amanda and Felicity were in the wedding as bridesmaid and flower girl. Amanda also sang a stirring rendition of From this Moment On by Shania Twain during the ceremony. Robbie, Desta and Jordan were able to attend as they flew in for the event. It was a wonderful wedding with scenic views, scrumptious food, great music and most of all fun loving guests. The Finnegans really put on a great event – great job Jim and Joanie!

We celebrated Nonna Lala’s 90th birthday later in September. A very pregnant Amanda, Justin and Felicity joined Sandra, Wayne, Paul and myself as we gathered at Lala’s senior residence and had her favorite bundt cake and sang happy birthday led by Felicity. Felicity helped out Nonna by blowing out the candles for her.

Then on Tuesday, September 26, at 5:06PM our 2nd grandson was born: Hunter Sterling Karr! Hunter is Amanda and Justin's son and was born at Kaiser Permanente, Santa Clara. He was 8 lbs. 15 oz. (4.05kg) and 20 inches (50.8cm) long at birth– a big boy. This young man is growing like a weed as he is a very strong feeder and a good sleeper. Felicity is having to adjust some now to having a little brother in the house. She is very affectionate toward her sibling and wants to kiss and hug him all the time. It’s nice to observe the interactions.

In October Robbie’s family flew out for a weekend so that Robbie and Paul could attend the 49ers-Cowboys game. We all took advantage and gathered so that Nonna Lala could meet all her great-grandchildren at the same time. It was the first time she met both her great-grandsons Jordan and Hunter. It was a very special day as 4 generations were all together to celebrate the family.

Then toward the end of October Paul and I took off for our first river cruise in Europe. We cruised from Amsterdam through Germany and France to Basel, Switzerland, on AMA Waterways. It was the first time Paul had been to Europe and we had a great time. The cruise ship and crew were absolutely fantastic. Visiting all the towns and villages along the Rhine was both fun and historic. Paul couldn’t believe the quality and quantity of the open air farmer markets in places like Heidelberg. Zurich was an extraordinary place but very expensive. All in all we couldn’t have had a better vacation.

Click HERE to view a web album of photos from our trip.

At the end of November my brother Jim went to Illinois to babysit Shannon and Donnie’s pet dog while they went on their delayed honeymoon. Unfortunately he suffered a heart attack while he was there and had to have a triple bypass. The good news is that he’s doing well and recuperating just fine - thankfully.

Amanda is currently on maternity leave from teaching at Mitty High School. She is really doing quite well as she’s already introduced some new curriculum and courses. Going back to work in January 2018 will be a challenge juggling 2 kids and a full schedule. Robbie is also doing quite well as a manager for a digital sales team at Centro. Every year he’s given difficult goals to achieve but to this point he’s managed to exceed them. He is being considered for a Director level position and we’ll know soon if he’ll get the promotion.

So 2017 was a year of new grandsons, memorable milestone birthdays, a wedding, once in a lifetime trip and major surgery.

Here’s hoping that your year was a good one and that the New Year brings much health, prosperity and above all joy!

Happy Holidays from The Folena Family

Folena Family Photo Gallery - Year in Pictures

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