Some years just seem to go by faster than others. However, despite its swiftness, last year was quite eventful. Here's my yearly update on the comings and goings of the North Carolina "Cookie folks".
Travis and I continue to enjoy our "semi-retirement" by gardening. I buy the flowers and bulbs and Travis digs the holes. Travis tills the garden and I plant the vegetables. I comment "Wouldn't it look pretty to have a little fence around this flower bed?" Travis cuts down the cedar trees and makes me a fence. (See family photo). After 52 years of marriage we still have a great time together. However he has hinted that he may hide all my flower, bulb, and seed catalogs next year. Although we don't work full time at the bakery, our children Ramona and Mike (President and Vice President) still seek our opinion before making any major decision. Amazingly enough, they also ususally follow our suggestions. I guess that's one of the rewards in growing older - the day finally does arrive when your children actually listen to you.
And now for the rest of the family; Last year, 14 year old Granddaughter Madison was promoted to Chief Cookie Taster. She replaced her brother Jed who went off to college. She did a great job! Of course there were a couple of times Ramona (her mother) had to remind Madison that the Chief Cookie Taster does not get to boss the President of the company (her mother) around. Madison's current aspiration, other than being Chief Cookie Taster, is to become an astronaut. She attended two weeks of Space Camp in Alabama this past summer. It was quite a learning experience. To encourage her ambition Ramona bought her an acre of land on the Moon and on Mars. Now I'm sure this was a loving gesture and has nothing to do with the fact that there are days when Ramona wishes she could send her teenage daughter to the nether regions of space to live. I guess this is another reward that comes with age...watching your children deal with their children. Forgive me, but there are times I really do have to smile.
Jed, the retired Chief Cookie Taster, turned 18 and was made Collegiate Marketing Director. He is entering his second year at UNC Chapel Hill where he is pursuing a Physics major with a minor in Music. He loves Carolina and his friends are certainly enjoying his main marketing strategy - sharing his care packages of Moravian cookies. I was very honored last year when Jed requested that I prepare his high school prom dinner. I donned a chef's hat and apron and made his favorite meal for a group of his friends. I must say that my Grandson's willingness to share that evening with me made me feel very special.
Seven year old granddaughter Isabella Hanes, Assistant Cookie Taster is entering the first grade. She loved everything about kindergarten except "nap time". Isn't it ironic that the ones who don't want to take a nap get to have one?
Son, Michael (Vice President/Treasurer) continues his Sunday school teaching, volunteer church work and trying to improve his golf game. He still likes to play on cold rainy days so he can embarrass himself in private.
Mocha (The Dog) is beginning her 12th year as Head of Security. Recently she has been making noises about retirement. However, upon being told she would no longer qualify for a company discount on Sugar Cookies, (her favorite) she barked "Forget that idea".
You will note we have added a couple of new faces this year. Scott is Ramona's husband and father of Jed & Madison. Scott is a computer whiz and can actually read and follow directions. This is a much appreciated talent. The rest of the family, except for Jed, appear to go into an altered state when faced with the task of putting anything together. Scott is going to be working part time at his "real job" and helping us out throughout the year. My daughter Caroline (a high school counselor) and her husband, Norian Fordham (a high school band teacher) are also pictured. They work at the bakery on Saturdays and during our busy season. We really are a family business!
And so there's the news. I hope you can tell from my letter that at age 72, my life is very busy and filled with a lot of happiness. I hope all of you have a wonderful year and as always, thank you for your business.
EVVA HANES President Emeritus, Founder
TRAVIS HANES Vice President Emeritus, Founder
RAMONA HANES TEMPLIN President & Secretary
MIKE HANES Vice President & Treasurer
JEDIDIAH HANES TEMPLIN Collegiate Marketing Director
MADISON HANES TEMPLIN Chief Cookie Taster
ISABELLA HANES Assistant Cookie Taster
SCOTT TEMPLIN, CAROLINE & NORIAN FORDHAM Part-time family help
MOCHA HANES (the dog) Head of Security