Greetings from the Ottawa Mancas - Christmas 2010

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Manca Family - Christmas 2010Manca Family - Christmas 2010
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of our friends and family! We want to share with you all some of our experiences from the past year. We hope you enjoy our Christmas letter. Stay tuned to for updates throughout the year. We promise to update it more frequently in 2011!

What was your biggest accomplishment this year?
Jessica: Somehow, I've managed to continue to be a top performer at work since being back in July. After having a year off, going back was a difficult transition for me. My identity, the way I work, my expectations all had to be reset. I still work hard and long hours but it's all worth it to support my family while Mark takes on new challenges and his life-long dreams.

Mark: Being a father and helping Milo grow through his first full year. It is an amazing experience to see him change. Each day with him is a special treat. Every day he does new things! He is learning how to talk. One of his latest words is "play." He says it when it is time for us to have fun together.
Tell us the best moment of 2010 so far.
Jessica: Milo's first steps during his uncle's wedding rehearsal on the 14th hole in Coeur d' Alene, Idaho. I was absolutely speechless.

Mark: August, 2010 - all the time we got to share with friends and family at my brother Gary and and his new wife Jessica's wedding (there are two Jessica's in the family now!). Milo took his first steps during the wedding rehearsal -- I'll never forget all of squealing from the bridesmaids when it happened. While in Coeur d'Alene for the wedding, I got to take some amazing photographs a full sized and fully functioning replica of the famous Miss Thriftway hydroplane from the 50's. I even got to sit in the cockpit!
What was the biggest challenge you’ve overcome this year?
Jessica: I have managed to stay in Canada! I had had countless setbacks in my immigration processing. The application is long and terrible. There are no advantages to being American arriving in Canada. I'm actually still in Canada under a "temporary" work permit. I've been doing that for 6 years now. When Milo was born, Mark and I agreed we would get permanent residency and then dual citizenship to keep options open in the future.
Mark: Leaving Adobe after nearly 10 years to walk down my own entrepreneurial path. Earlier this year I decided to leave Adobe to continue my burrito adventure of a few years ago -- with a digital twist. I am creating software to allow people to order food from their favourite restaurants via their mobile phones. You could say that the challenge is still ongoing because I'm still in the technology development phase. It is hard work getting a piece of software production ready! And once it is ready, the sales and marketing efforts will begin.
Milo - Christmas 2010Milo - Christmas 2010What’s the best advice you have to give others?
Jessica: Too much coffee can make you edgy not just alert.
Mark: To make family time and to watch minimal TV. Since Milo has been born, we've really curtailed our TV watching. While he is awake, we really don't watch any. He loves playing with us! And we love playing with him! Though I do admit that his latest favourite -- he pushing a toy bus and me pushing a toy truck back and forth across the living room is very tiring! When I was young, I always used to wonder why my parents got tired when they played with me. Now I know!
What will you miss most this year?
Jessica: No more LOST. Be series ever.
Mark: My Grandmother in Mexico, Tita passed away this year. I'll miss her. I know that she loved me and my family very much.
What are your goals for next year?
Jessica: Still need to work on the balance thing. I had so much more time when I wasn't working! Hence, I'm writing this letter and sending out the Christmas cards on Dec 20! Not every efficient!
Mark: I have lots of goals for 2011! I want to spend more time with Jessica and Milo. My business must get up and running with a great set of customers. And if time and money allow, to travel a bit more than in 2010 so we can see friends and family more often. I know that 2011 is going to be a memorable year!
Milo's Corner (favorite words and ever growing vocabulary, age 18 months)

Up Mas Mama Papa Washer
Bear Cheese Ba Oh-no Beep
Sasha Play Ho ho ho Watch out Get up
Move Don't want it Milo Boots No!
Mine Nose

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