Dear friends and family December, 2012
Once more the Christmas season is approaching and we take this opportunity to send you our greetings and news.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year


from the


From our deck ........ if you get up early

Jeremy and Ginny appear to have wound down their peripatetic lifestyle and have begun to settle down in Gibsons (on the Sunshine Coast).  They’ve done some very extensive and effective renovations both inside and outside their house and are pausing briefly, at least for the winter. Gene has helped with some tasks including the building of a large deck.   Jeremy starts a new job in Sechelt with the Sunshine Coast Regional District but he (and Ginny) will manage to fit in two weeks in Maui just after Christmas before he really gets into it. Ginny will continue with her position in Vancouver but can do some work from home and so doesn’t have to commute every day. New Deck

Valencia street

The main trip this year was to England and Spain (Valencia area with Hugh and Ann, staying in Jonathan and Sally’s Villa in Siete Aguas) with a stop on the way for the Ontario Rett Syndrome Conference in Mississauga.  The Spanish part was fascinating.  Although Gene struggled with the language, the rest of us definitely appreciated his linguistic efforts and we managed to spend several enjoyable days in Spanish villages before returning to England to stay with Jean and Edward and to enjoy time on their farm and  the beautiful Yorkshire Dales.
J&E field

We also attended the Northwest Rett Syndrome Conference in Seaside Oregon in the summer, which had an especially interesting session on modes of communication.  It helped us decide to simultaneously try various methods.  We’re now trying to teach Elinor to use a touch tablet, a booklet and an eye-tracking computer, all with the same basic logic, to see which works best for her.  The eye-tracking computer from U Vic’s CanAssist program was just installed.  Elinor is building several meaningful and, we hope, enduring friendships, especially with Chantal, Terri and Lillian through her day program and with Lynn who has been with us now for five years.Terri and Chantal

Again, Gene and Mary have been involved in lots of meetings, many connected with our efforts to create a permanent home for Elinor.  We thought that we had a breakthrough in September and agreed that we would buy or build a house, along with another family, who have a daughter Elinor’s age.  We even put in offers on property but had to back out because there is now some doubt that the operating costs of the home will be funded.  Still we have progressed a long way from a year ago and we hope that the next step will be a big one forward instead of backward.The struggle with the City of Guelph to retain some control over Gene’s family’s land there has progressed  towards a settlement without having to plead at the Ontario Municipal Board.  The settlement would allow the Family Trust to put the property on the market in 2013 although the City has just introduced another restriction, which adds further complexity.

At various times during the year we have enjoyed the visits of family and friends and we are happy to have any of you visit in this beautiful part of the world.   We look forward to hearing from you at this time of year and
we wish you all a healthy and fulfilling 2013. 


Gene, Mary and Elinor Valeriote 

5495 Parker AvenueVictoria, B.C.V8Y 2N2250-727-7636
For UK and Spain photos click below:
2012 Photos from England and Spain


Instead of buying Christmas Cards, a donation was made this year
to the
Ontario Rett Syndrome Association
in memory of
Alison Bramson