Sue-On's 2014 Hillman Family Chronicle
The Annual Massive Missive from 41 Kensington Crescent
Adapted from the Hillman Adventure 2014 site:
There’s no need to wonder whether we will have a white Christmas… It’s here, and we all know what “it” is ;-) In spite of the reasonable temperatures, it is starting to look wintery. So, now is that special time to send you and your loved ones best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Our family has been busy -- nothing new! I’ve been holding off with writing this letter, waiting for the arrival of our new granddaughter! Maybe by the time I get this done, “she” will be here… unless she’s a diva who thinks arriving late is fashionable ;-) Due date is December 14.

While the rest of the family awaits another princess, they’ve been busy with their own activities. 
Ja-On is busy with his Reactive Massage Therapy Clinic. The business continues to grow and another new therapist has been added to the staff. Ja’s not only busy with the clinic, but is also completing his studies and training in osteopathy. The final phase will be done in July, and then it’s on to the dissertation. 

Angela was put off work as a nurse at Rideau Personal Care earlier than anticipated because of the baby. She hasn’t been idle though, not with little Inara to keep her hopping! Angela has taken up sewing and finds creating projects enjoyable. 

Soulin, our 16 year old, is taller than all of us in the family. Wonder what he’s been eating behind our backs?! Soulin is in grade eleven and working at Wendy’s Burgers.  Being a big brother suits him. It’s always a pleasure to see him playing with Inara and his other little cousins. 

Inara, our little 2 1/2-year-old, red-headed princess is a whirlwind! She has always loved music and dance, so she is enrolled in the music program for young children at Brandon University and with a gymnastics program as well. She loves to come up to play our drums, and both of us like to oblige with a “musical jam” whenever she is here. When we get playtime at her house, she keeps us up-to-date with all the latest children’s movies and TV shows. 

Robin and family get out for visits whenever they get a free weekend. Robin continues to work as a web developer with Tactica Interactive Communications in Winnipeg. His latest projects are with MPI’s Distracted Driver Simulator and a French grammar app. 

After her maternity leave, Jen is back working at Dasch (Direct Action in Support of Community Homes) with a youth client she has known for over two years. She still enjoys working in this field along with her sewing and crafting. 

 Oriyen is 9! She continues with her piano lessons and has added swimming lessons and art classes at the Winnipeg Art Gallery.  We know she is still in Girl Guides as we’ve enjoyed several boxes of chocolate-mint cookies? School is going well, and she’s growing like a beanstalk! 

River, our 18-month-old princess, is learning baby signs and words, so she can easily communicate her “wants”.  Books and Sesame Street are her loves, along with her kitties and big pal Keifer dog. Both Oriyen and River have funny bones galore, and they add a lot of laughter to the family.

Daughter China-Li is a Radiology doctor, presently completing her fifth and final year of Residency at Winnipeg Health Sciences Centre and St. Boniface Hospital. American board exams are done, and now she’s preparing for the Canadian board exams in the spring. Come July, 2015, she will start her fellowship year in Boston, Massachusetts.  Upon completion, she will return to a position with WHSC. 

China’s fiancé Ryan is busy with his own web design company:, Technology Solutions. He loves hunting and continues to fill their freezer with wild game. The venison jerky he makes is amazing! They come home as often as their schedules allow. We are very happy that our families have chosen to stay close to “home”.

Bill never seems to be at a loss for projects! A major community project he was involved in was the RCAF WWII Memorial Wall and Statue at the Commonwealth Air Training Museum, Brandon Airport: a national monument that commemorates over 19,000 lives lost in the Second World War. After four years of planning and multitude of meetings, it was unveiled on September 10, 2014, to commemorate the 75th anniversary of Canada's entry into war.  We were proud to see three of Bill’s uncles’s names on the wall.

His other projects seem to be on-going, especially the book – “Bill & Sue-On Hillman: A 50-Year Musical Odyssey”. This should really be called “The Never Ending Story”! This year he’s been scanning hundreds of slides and scrapbook photos documenting our music years. Of course, this adds more fodder to the book which already has many hundreds of pages of text!   Bill’s weekly has stayed on the weekly Friday release schedule since 1996 because of his love for all things on author Edgar Rice Burroughs and science fiction. Not only is he constantly doing research, but others are sending their material for inclusion in the e-zine. In addition, he is in constant contact with other people and organizations for whom he has created websites and webzines as a volunteer.

 One of the most gratifying connections has been with Dr, John Tyman, Bill’s mentor and friend from his early Brandon University days.  The Website they’ve created, “Cultures in Context,” is comprised of thousands of photographs and notes which John has compiled during the times he has spent in the field in remote locations around the globe. The site has drawn much attention from major universities in NA, England and Australia (where John now lives).  This collection on the web will soon be stored in major university archives where it can be accessed for many generations to come.

Sue-On: I am still teaching with the English for Academics Program at Brandon University. The scheduling suits me well as it allows for other activities. A major gardening project was the creation of the pagoda gardens. Plans were researched by our future son-in-law Ryan McIntosh, and he spent a spring weekend in our garage building not one but FOUR pagoda planters. They turned out beautifully and have become all-season planters: flowers in the summer, a Halloween witch, and an autumn gourd display unit. At the moment, one has been transformed into a Xmas tree!

In March, I was sponsored by Healthy Brandon to take training on “Drums Alive!” a musical / drumming exercise program using a stability ball and drumsticks. In the spring, I gave 7 demos in the community. There was a lot of interest with the 55 Plus folks, so I gave two 5-week sessions, “drumming to the golden oldies”.  Bill’s been my music man, in a slightly different mode than in the past 50 years.  Cooking and eating still takes precedent over all other activities. I enjoy taking pictures of the food, and Bill collates them onto webpages. He’s having a hard time keeping up though. Might have to eat out with McD's or A & W just so he can have a break!

Our travels this year have been confined to stateside.  In June, our friend Rudy Sigmund hosted ECOF (Edgar Rice Burroughs Circle of Friends), his second, in Fargo.  He planned many unusual events, such as the private showing of “Tarzan and the Golden Lion”, a silent film with James H Pierce, who later became ERB’s son-in-law. (We had spent an afternoon with them in Tarzana, CA back in 1971). The event was held in the restored Fargo Theatre, complete with music provided by an organist on the majestic Wurlitzer! Rudy had many artists as guests and each received a special leather-tooled commemorative plaque made by Bob Hibbard, ERB fan from Texas. Bill was one of the lucky recipients for his webpage promotions.

In August, we drove to Bryan, Texas, for the second of the annual ERB gatherings -- the Dum-Dum -- with events at the Texas A & M campus, the restored historical La Salle Hotel, and at the Vinson home. It was a great opportunity to see Brad Vinson’s spectacular collection of J. Allen St. John art as well as that of other major artists. We also had a presentation by Buddy Saunders, on his major novel, “The Martian Legion”. Later, Bill was asked to write a review of this mammoth book, which was deemed Burroughs worthy.

While in Texas, we visited both the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum at A&M University, and the George W. Bush Presidential Centre in Dallas, TX. Now, we have visited four US presidential museums, including Bill Clinton’s in Arkansas, and Ronald Reagan’s in Simi Valley, California. In Dallas, we also visited the Sixth Floor Museum in Dealy Plaza, which chronicles the assassination and legacy of President John F. Kennedy.

From Texas, our return trip home took us through Tulsa, Okla. While stopping at Walmart, we spotted the golden glow of a pair of gigantic hands clasped in prayer! Within view were also majestic towers and buildings glittering with “gold” in the sun. Our eyes were drawn to the huge marquee: Oral Roberts University! How could we resist the urge to visit? It was free! The huge studio where live broadcasts were done was very impressive, as were the prayer tower, the gym, the research centre, and the lecture theatres. I loved the gardens, and Bill was particularly drawn to the many statues of Jesus ;-)

We arrived home earlier than anticipated.  Our plan to tour the Black Hills was thwarted by Black Thunder, the annual gathering of bikers in Sturgis. However, it was great to be home and enjoy my garden, which had been under grandson Soulin’s care?

Our ERB connection brought us an invitation to opening night of Tarzan the Musical, staged by our local drama club, MECCA Productions. Director Lisa Vasconselos was a former high school student of Bill’s. It was a fabulous production, another to add to our list of premieres: New York, Amsterdam, Hamburg, Utah, and now, Brandon, MB!

And now, for the best climax ever for our Xmas Massive Missive: The latest addition to our Hillman family tree has arrived!  Tayla Reece Hillman, daughter of Ja-On and Angela, was born on Thursday, December 11. She weighed in at 7 lbs 9 oz, another beautiful granddaughter for us to love. We are now proud grandparents of one grandson and four granddaughters. What a great way to begin the festive holidays?

On that joyful note, we wish you all a Happy and Healthy 2015!

Bill & Sue-On
Brandon MB Canada


Newborn Tayla Reece Hillman
The Web version of this massive missive is at:
Websites Referenced Above: :: :: :: :: ::
Many more of our tall tales are spread across our main Website:
2012 Family Photos
HILLMAN ADVENTURE: 2014 || 2013 || 2012
2011 Family Photos
Grandson Soulin Hillman
Through the Years
A Beatles Christmas
All the Annual Greetings
Archive of Annual Newsletters
 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13
A Coca Cola Christmas
Over 40 Sundblom Santas | Gallery
Box 1 | Box 2 | Box 3
VICTORIAN XMAS 3-D Stereocards
I | II | III | IV | V | VI
Norman Rockwell
Christmas Mosaic
A montage of Christmas album covers
Christmas in the Good Old Days
by David Adams
Classic Old Time Radio 
Christmas Shows
A Science Fiction Xmas
Nostalgia Xmas Comics
Magic Lantern Christmas Slides 
from the Victorian Era
Hillman Family Newsletter
Xmas 2014
Xmas Song Book
Favourite Xmas Videos
Solstice Celebration
Inspiration Pages
Xmas Cartoons
Folio 1 | Folio II | Folio III
| Folio IV | Folio V | Folio VI
Folio VII | Folio VIII
 Christmas On The Web
Histories ~ Trivia ~ Scripts
.Christmas Greetings 
from the Hillman Family

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