1994 Christmas Letter


Dear first_name,

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!  It's hard to believe that yet another year has gone by.  As is usually the case, it's been an eventful year for the Zabels.  

Cheryl has continued working on her DMA (doctor of musical arts) in voice at USC.  In September, she gave her first of four required recitals.  She actually gave it twice - at USC on a Friday night followed by a Saturday night at Loyola Marymount University (where she is on the voice faculty).  The recital was very successful, but performances on back to back nights is just too much.  The remaining recitals will be one time only.  Cheryl now has most of her course work done and is on target to finish in the spring of 1996.

Alan was honored to be on a team of five people that won a prestigious "Chairman's Award for Innovation" from TRW.  He got to travel to Cleveland, Ohio in June for ceremonies and celebrations where he was able to tour corporate headquarters and meet  TRW chairman of the board Joe Gorman and other top TRW executives.  And there was also a cash award, which was nice.  This chairman's award was for contributions and leadership on a fantastically successful program (for TRW and for the government) for which Alan started work on the first study back in 1984.

We took two short vacations instead of one long one this year.  In June, we spent a week exploring Cape Cod, Massachusetts.  In August, we went to Yosemite National Park.  We were thwarted by heat and Alan's leg cramps in our attempt to climb to the top of half dome for our first day hike (It was a tough hike when Alan was successful in 1983 and in much better shape!).  We did get close but were very tired and sore.  That wiped out most of our subsequent hiking plans, but we improvised and saw a lot of things by car (for example, Tuolome Meadows and Lake Tenaya) that we wouldn't have had time for if we had just been doing hikes.

We have both remained active in our church, Beverly Hills Presbyterian.  Cheryl continues as the alto soloist.  In 1994, Alan served as co-chair of the Board of Deacons and Cheryl continued to serve as a deacon.  For 1995, Alan was elected to the Board of Elders and Cheryl was elected to serve as co-chair of the Board of Deacons. 

We both still exercise practically everyday but middle age cannot be denied.  Top notch fitness is just pretty hard to achieve.  But we're still both fit and enjoying life.  Alan runs a lot less (3 times a week) than formerly, but rides a bicycle to work (4 miles each way) on many days, and works out at the health club.  Cheryl mixes in workouts of walking, exercycle, and health club.  

We've also started onto the information superhighway in 1994, with several upgrades to the computer.  We now have more memory, a modem, and multimedia accessories.  And we have an America Online account.  Any of the technologically hip can send us electronic mail at azabel@aol.com.

We hope that you have a wonderful Christmas and wish you only the best in 1995.



Alan and Cheryl