For a larger version of the picture on left, click HERE. for a larger version of the picture on the right, click HERE.

The big event of the year was the arrival of Laura Ellen Olson (who plays the part of Baby Jesus in the picture) on June 28 as our 4th grandchild and first granddaughter.  Grandma has been buying dolls like… well, like a grandma!  She is

always more than willing to baby sit her cutest baby doll.


Jeff and Rachel moved,  before Laura arrived, into the house of Great Grandma and Grandpa Falck, who moved into the same senior residence in Burnsville where Great Grandma and Grandpa Olson live.  They were able to decorate the house (before Rachel had to go on bed rest) with help from the extended family.  For example, Stacy painted clouds in the baby room. Rachel’s old beloved dog Molly died the same weekend that Laura was born.  Jeff continues to work for Thomson West  ( as a software engineer and Rachel is on leave from her RN job in the Medical Surgical ICU of St. Joseph’s Hospital.  They are both active at First Evangelical Free Church, singing with the Worship Team, and Jeff runs the website (  The site you cannot miss, however, is where the pet pictures have taken a distant second place to pictures of Laura.


Susan and Eric (Anderson) are enjoying their “hobby farm” in Ramsey (just northwest of the Twin Cities) with bantam chickens that give them regular eggs, and their cats who leave the chickens alone.  Sadly their gecko, who hitchhiked from Tucson, died after a long and full life.  Susan does house cleaning and Eric does consulting electrical engineering and they both sell goods and services under Quixtar and have formed their own company called Hensman International.  If you want to visit their site (, you can get a password by calling 763-221-2743 or e-mailing  them at eric.susan.anderson{at}  They have a paper route and Eric just started courier work for EWA (East West Allover). They attend church at Hope Fellowship and have been using their spacious yard for summer entertaining.


Jason and Tami continue to raise their three boys, a more than full time job.  Jason continues to do commercial roofing for Berwald.   Tami sells her handmade products by internet ( including the “Maya Wrap” baby sling and other baby-related products.  Jason built a storage shed in the back yard and is working on the basement.  He has repaired various items around the house like kitchen drawers and  built a sewing area with counter and shelves in their spacious laundry room where Tami sews up a storm.  She is home schooling Christopher and the other two boys want to follow along. They painted their living room and dining room respectively as “peanut butter and jelly.”  They are still undecided about which church to attend regularly.


Christopher is 7 and enjoys bowling – with rails – and swimming.  He likes going to the Zoo, the Science museum and on hikes with grandpa.  He and Patrick got to go on a paddle boat ride in July.  He took an 11 day  trip with Grandma and Grandpa to Ohio to visit cousin Sharonda and swam in every hotel pool he could manage.  He got to ride Uncle Tom Falck’s sailboat on Lake Michigan and see the Indianapolis Speedway.  He is starting to read and is a good helper at home.  His real passions are Transformers and video games.


Patrick is 4 and has come a long way in his speech and can carry on a conversation very well.  He is transitioning out of special education.  He goes to Bible Study Fellowship children’s program every week with Grandma and stays overnight the night before.  His teachers love his exuberant hugs.  He enjoys going to the Children’s Museum and Science Museum and going on hikes with Grandpa.


Aizec is 2 and beginning to find his place in the pecking order and is determined to not always be at the bottom.  He had an operation to remove a cyst from his neck and had a double chin for a while until the swelling went down.  He is talking, talking back and standing up for himself.  He also enjoys going to the museums with Grandpa and looks forward to Bible Study Fellowship with Grandma next year.  She may take both him and Patrick for a year because of an overlap in the ages that they are eligible. 


Stacy is settled in her own place, half of a double bungalow owned by church friends.  She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree — with a major in Illustration — from the College of Visual Arts in May, having finished the course work in December.  This summer she spent two weeks training in mime with Mimestry  in California — including sessions that Marcel Marceau was originally scheduled to teach.  (The school had to cancel his trip because of low turnout.)  Stacy works two jobs, doing promotion and administrative work at Carico, mostly evenings, and also works three days a week as an administrative assistant at First Evangelical Free Church.  There she has been able to use her artistic gifts setting up the Power Point presentations for the pastor and has designed newsletters, banners and bulletin boards.  She co-directed, to rave reviews, a children’s musical, “It’s Cool In The Furnace.”  She also leads a praise dance team – a major breakthrough for a historically Scandinavian church for whom music and movement traditionally have no relationship.


Ross & Karin continue with many of their same responsibilities.  Ross is still a pediatrician at HealthPartners ( and has had  the privilege of seeing many of his patients grow up and even has a few “grandpatients.”   He is webmaster for Twin Cities Creation Science Association ( and takes a group of young people to the monthly meetings.  He also runs his own website ( , filled with (usually) unpublished letters to the editor.  He still teaches Junior Church at First Free and continues to lead the semi-annual “Children’s Hikes,” and has now been injury-free for two years.  He also serves on the Church Council and Outreach Commission (missions).  He and Karin took their first ever cruise, to the Caribbean on a Christian Medical Dental Association Bioethics Educational cruise.  (Now tell me, does that sound ethical?  Well, it was at our own expense.)  Highlights included stopping at some of the islands Ross visited while in the Navy 35 years ago.  Ross had a piece of hardware removed from his ankle that had been in since a fracture repair that occurred in 1982.  We continue to help Chinese Scholars who come to the University of Minnesota for Graduate School or post doctoral fellowships, attending the monthly meetings of China Outreach Ministries.  (


Karin continues as a discussion leader for Bible Study Fellowship and takes grandson Patrick along to the children’s program each week.  She attended their Leadership Retreat in Chicago during the month of April.  She also leads the drama program at church and serves on the Worship Commission.   She had successful surgery in February after exhausting every other treatment option.  After 5 weeks in a wheel chair to facilitate healing, there has been no recurrence of the diabetic ulcers that had not healed for a very long time!  Praise the Lord!  She helped plan a big 80th birthday party for her mother, Edythe Falck in March.  She did not have responsibilities at Free Church Missionary Candidate School this summer because there were no younger children in the group, but looks forward to next year.  In September, she and Ross did a drama about living in the light (and Stacy did a mime performance of Moses) at the pastor-appreciation-celebration for her friend Hattie Horne.  She is co-teaching a Kindergarten Sunday School Class at church.  She is taking an arthritis swim class twice a week for non-weight bearing exercise (she is the youngest person there) and is going to try the “10,000 Steps” (per day!) club through HealthPartners. 


We have appreciated having a guest room (thanks Stacy, for vacating) and have had a number of guests, the longest being Chinese friends Hai and Jing Lin with their 21 month old son Tian Tian, who stayed for about 2 weeks in April while getting settled in America.  They gave Karin the great honor of choosing a name for their daughter who was born August 11.  Her name is Mikayla and we are honorary grandparents.  Our many international friends continue to enrich our lives as well as our extended family’s.


Again at this time of year we think of the enrichment that is only possible because of the Great Guest, Jesus Christ, Who created the world but entered it as a baby and a stranger over 2000 year ago, doing so that all good things could come to us.  Indeed the world is in a big mess right now and at times it looks like evil is winning, but God will bring it all to a conclusion, very soon, we think, and remake the world into what it was  meant to be.  Then every knee will bow and acknowledge Jesus Christ as King.  For some, it will be with gnashing of teeth because they do not want Him to rule over them,  For others it will be with great joy as He welcomes them into the place prepared for those who love Him.  Which group will you be in?  We pray that we will be able to see you and build on our friendship for all eternity.


      May you have the true joy of Christmas,


          Ross and Karin Olson and family

                                  December 2003

Dear family and friends,


We have often been asked over the past few years if we will ever try to top the angel picture taken 5 years ago. This year we tried, and you can decide if we succeeded.  (© Photo JEM 2003 see