The Black News Room
Welcome to the News Room
This is where you can check back for all the latest additions to the site, and "Whatsa Happeninn!" with us. I will post new announcements below! Make sure and check back often and as always, email Jon or Jen via the "Contact Webmaster" link if you want to add anything. Thanks for visiting and Good Surfing!
Click here to Subscribe to Email Updates!
Monday, November 11th

Kids in 2019 So Far!

Here is the first half of the year! Been a great one, lots of scouts and sports!

Click HERE for the pics!

smile smile smile smile smile
Jon_News on 11.11.19 @ 03:48 PM EST

Monday, January 21st

Winter with the Kids and Some Xmas Shots!

Been a tough season but was great to see everyone, despite the circumstances. Here are some great doggie and kid pics to start the New Year!

Click HERE for the pics!

Thanks and Enjoy!

smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile
Jon_News on 01.21.19 @ 12:52 PM EST

Tuesday, November 13th

Thanksgiving and 50th at Momma/Gma/Aunt Leslies! 2018

Great times and all 5 guys in one place! So cool!

Click HERE for the pics!

Also, Ben has a google Drive copy if anyone wants originals!

Thanks and Enjoy!

smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile
Jon_News on 11.13.18 @ 08:36 AM EST

Thanksgiving and 50th at Momma/Gma/Aunt Leslies! 2018

Great times and all 5 guys in one place! So cool!

Click HERE for the pics!

Also, Ben has a google Drive copy if anyone wants originals!

Thanks and Enjoy!

smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile
Jon_News on 11.13.18 @ 08:36 AM EST

Wednesday, August 22nd

Kids in Spring of 18!

Some recent shots of the kiddos in the spring of this year. SCouts Scouts and More SCouts. Moving and My Man Malcolm is 13 today! WOW!

Click HERE for the kids page

Jon_News on 08.22.18 @ 04:16 PM EST

Thursday, March 8th

Just Added Summer Pics of Kids and Mom and Pops Fall Shots more to come!

Finally got a second to add some pics of the kids, been NUTS!

Click HERE for the kids page

Click HERE for the shots from Mom and Dad

Jon_News on 03.08.18 @ 02:03 PM EST

Wednesday, May 31st

Spring '17 Pics of the kids!

Kids pics form the first of 17 are up. Gonna get Grandma and Grandpas Alaska trip up soon, if they can find there luggage!

Click HERE for the kids page

Jon_News on 05.31.17 @ 07:45 AM EST

Saturday, January 28th

Last of 16!

Just finishing up 16 and the first of 17. Check them out! SO BUSY with kids, lots and lots and lots!

Click HERE for the kids page

Click on the 2016 menu, still working on the first of '17!

Jon_News on 01.28.17 @ 11:41 AM EST

Sunday, August 7th

New Summer SO FAR for the kids!

Just posted a bunch of summer time pics for the kids, also check out the earlier ones. More to come! Scouts Scouts and MORE scouts!

Click HERE for the pics

Also, check the kids page here:

Jon_News on 08.07.16 @ 12:01 PM EST

Thursday, February 18th

Mom and Dad in FLA! 2016

Shots from Mom and Dad Black's Latest trip to FLA! Great trip looks like! Thanks and ENjoy!

Click HERE for the pics


Jon_News on 02.18.16 @ 05:59 AM EST

Mom and Dad in FLA! 2016

Shots from Mom and Dad Black's Latest trip to FLA! Great trip looks like! Thanks and ENjoy!

Click HERE for the pics


Jon_News on 02.18.16 @ 05:59 AM EST

Tuesday, January 19th


Tessla Claire Hooper made her entrance at 0808 on the 14th - 8 lbs, 13 ounces and 21 inches long!

I'll send some more pics for the website in another email.

Aunt Jen

Click HERE for the new pics


smile smile smile smile smile
Jon_News on 01.19.16 @ 03:54 PM EST

Saturday, January 9th

Finished the years pics out!

Just finished uploading the years pics, been CRAZY! Hope you all enjoyed 2015, looking forward to another great one!

Click HERE for the new pics

As always, thanks!

Happy New Year!


Jon_News on 01.09.16 @ 07:43 AM EST

Tuesday, June 16th

Cullens graduation vvid! (VERY LARGE)

Click HERE for the vid!

Hope the link works, the video is HUGE! So it will take a time to load, thanks to whomever created it!


Get the tissues out it is a good one!
Jon_News on 06.16.15 @ 09:22 AM EST

Monday, June 15th

Joey's Graduation! 2015

Click HERE

Congrats to Joey! Way to Go! Here is to the future! Great Pics.

JB razz
Jon_News on 06.15.15 @ 05:19 AM EST

Wednesday, June 10th

Cullen Graduates! WOW!

Click HERE

Great pics from Dad/Doug/Gpa/Uncle Black, cannot belive Cullen is going to college!

Wow! Video to follow, might have to do it via a dropbox link, it is GIMUNGUS! More to come.

Jon_News on 06.10.15 @ 06:55 AM EST

Monday, June 1st

Train Pics from Doug/Dad/Gpa/Uncle Black

Click HERE

Check out the train pics from the Museum near Dad's house! What a machine!

Thanks pops.

Jon_News on 06.01.15 @ 01:21 PM EST

Tuesday, May 12th


For yall that had trouble opening the Joey pics from yesterday, try this link and let me know how it goes!

Click HERE

Jon_News on 05.12.15 @ 05:51 AM EST

Monday, May 11th

Joey is Graduating! WOW!

Just in from Ben, here is a link to a .zip file with Joey's Graduation pics! Enjoy and thanks Ben!


Jon_News on 05.11.15 @ 01:11 PM EST

Saturday, November 1st

Long Time no Post!

As you can tell it has been a while and as you can see by the pics added, we have done pretty much nothing but Kids/Scouts/Scouts/KidScouts.

Been a busy 2014 so far!

Click HERE

Enjoy and hope to hear from everyone soon on how the year is going! Enjoy!
Jon_News on 11.01.14 @ 09:47 AM EST

Monday, March 24th

Ben's New Email FYI

Can you post this on the family website?

After over a decade, I'm finally ditching my @yahoo email. Please delete it from your contacts and use:

Jon_News on 03.24.14 @ 05:58 AM EST

Thursday, February 13th


Here's some pics of Logan for the family website.

ClickHEREfor the pics!

Particulars --

Logan Thomas Sliker
8 lbs 13 oz
21 Inches Long
Born 6:35 PM - February 9th

Thanks dude!
Jon_News on 02.13.14 @ 08:16 AM EST

Sunday, December 8th

Great Shots from Dad

Great Shots of Yosemite and the Rest of the visit!

Click HERE

As always, Click HERE for the latest from the kids, will be getting some shots of the WS Boy Scout XMAS float up soon!

Thanks! Merry Christmas!

Jon_News on 12.08.13 @ 09:32 AM EST

Friday, November 15th

News From Ben Sliker

From Ben Sliker:

Some news for the site:

Marie is now at 28 weeks with the newest member of the Sliker Clan, check out the video:

She has about 3 more weeks of PTA clinicals and then she'll be home free for the next year to spend with the new baby boy. Due February 5th!

Ben has just finished the first rough cut of his feature film "ROM", check out the first teaser trailer here:

(We highly recommend clicking through to watch it in HD/Fullscreen on Vimeo) Some of you may recognize a certain house in Salisbury, NC that makes a number of appearances. smile

Jon_News on 11.15.13 @ 05:53 AM EST

Friday, October 18th


Hey all, it is Boy Scout Popcorn time! If you are interested in helping Malcolm and his troop out this year, here is the link you need:


Once you get to the link if you need the info, probably will not it should tell you on linking that you are supporting Malcolm, but just in case!

go to to place the order, but you need to provide them with the zip of our troop, which is 27103 and they need to select Malcolm B-Jennifer-Pack0728 as the scout

Raven Know Scout Trip 2013

Email me if you have trouble and THANK YOU for the help and support! Love to all!

Jon, Jen, Malcolm and Anna Claire!
Jon_News on 10.18.13 @ 02:21 PM EST

Thursday, August 22nd

Kids pics! LOTS of EM!

Just added a bunch of great new pics of the kids!

Click HERE

Also, fyi Aunt/Mom Leslie is out of the woods medically and most likely on the way home! WOOHOO! All checked out great and she is feeling MUCH better!

Luv 2 All!
Jon_News on 08.22.13 @ 02:02 PM EST

Wednesday, August 7th


From Ben Sliker!

Marie and I are expecting a baby! Marie just crossed into the 2nd trimester and all doctor visits have been great so far. The due date is February 5th!

Here's a link to a video for the announcement:

And embed code if you feel like being fancy:

An Announcement ... from Benjamin Sliker on Vimeo.


Congrats Guys! Awesome! Hope the pregnancy goes perfect! Good luck!
Jon_News on 08.07.13 @ 06:09 AM EST

Sunday, March 31st

Pinewood Derby and Science Fair!

Got Pinewood Derby and New Science Fair Pics up! Check them out! He did great, got Silver in the Deby and Best of Show!

Click HERE for the shots and check out the other latest ones too!

Jon_News on 03.31.13 @ 11:58 AM EST

Monday, November 26th


From Dad Black:

"Pictures show Dallas Nancy, Chris, Leslie & Doug in front of Dallas’ Barracks in the 82 Airborne home-base area at Ft. Bragg, NC about 3 hours south-east of Salisbury. Also his room. He and another fellow share a suit: two private bed rooms w/closet and reading tables, shared bath and kitchen-et. Dallas is in the 2nd Bn, 503rd Reg, 82 AB-Div. His unit is just arrived back for Afghanistan and begins a new training cycle January 1st in preparation for a potential deployment sometime 2013. His older brother Tyler is also returning to Ft. Bragg from Afghanistan sometime in Dec/January. That should be fun…..;-)"


"All the gang but Jon and family made it to San’s for Thursday’s…Thanksgiving Dinner, a SUMPTUOUS feast of historical significance provided by the Lady Blair and minions. ;-) We’ll see Jon & Jen Saturday for the follow-on Thanksgiving Dinner at Grandma’s house….stay tuned…;-)."

Click HERE for the pics.

Thanks to Ben and Dad for the great shots!

Jon_News on 11.26.12 @ 09:18 AM EST

Saturday, October 13th

Pics from the Beese and SLiker/Hooper Visit!

Well, ALMOST got the whole clan together! Great to see everyone!

Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 10.13.12 @ 09:54 AM EST

Monday, October 1st


These are some highlights from the RCLRC Class 3 machine gun shoot. My rifle was hosting a post-sample select fire trigger pack from Subgun-Ordnance in Racine WI, be sure to check out all their cool stuff at if you are into gun stuff. We ended up shooting 1200 rounds of ammo! What a great time. We will be back again next spring for sure.

Video Link:

Jon_News on 10.01.12 @ 10:38 AM EST

Tuesday, September 25th

More Fireworks from Uncle Rick! COOL!

Well our last shoot of 2012 went off without a hitch. The shells and rockets were great, as ususal, but the topper was the "Thunderin' Over Wisconsin" show...count the number of times I say "Wow" on the video and that will tell you how much fun it was. Here is a link to the video, again big file 200 meg's so it is best to "Save target as" and download to your computer first before you try to watch it. Enjoy.

Thanks Rick! Great to see everyone this past weekend, will have pics up soon, if anyone has others, dont be afraid to upload to me, would love to have!
Jon_News on 09.25.12 @ 09:15 AM EST

Thursday, September 20th

Lots o Pics of Kids!

Just got done dumping a bunch of pics of the kids to the site from all the birthdays! Thanks to the family for all the great presents and cards, as you will see the kids were not lacking for goodies! Thanks to Uncle Rick for the Ghillie Suit! The revolver in the pics is a family heirloom (1952 H and R 7 shot 22 starter) handed down to him from one of my clients, NEAT GUN! Of course it is not his till he is 21, but regardless, it's cool!

Here is a link to the main kids page, check the 2012 Kids Menu and see what they have been up too if you missed previous pics!

Click HERE for the page.

Jon_News on 09.20.12 @ 02:49 PM EST

Tuesday, September 4th

Pics of Dallas' Boot CAmp Grad! HUAHH! Cullen SHots!

Hello everyone,

Leslie and I had a wonderful visit with Chris, Nancy and the kids at Ft. Benning Friday for Dallas’ graduation from Army boot camp. He is Infantry and was selected for further training at Airborne and Ranger school. His older brother Tyler graduated last summer and is currently serving a tour in Afghanistan as an infantry drone operator. The young lady standing very close by is Emily. A very sweet young lady…;-).

Click HERE for the shots!

Thanks Chris and Dad for the pics

Also, Rick sent along the family shots and Cullen!

Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 09.04.12 @ 09:46 AM EST

Thursday, August 30th

Summer Fireworks from Rick!

Here are the links from July and Aug. WPAG, both are large files and will take up to 10 minutes to load. As always it is best to "save target as" and download to your computer first.


Jon_News on 08.30.12 @ 06:51 AM EST

Wednesday, August 29th

More AWESOME! From Uncle Rick!

Hello all, I thought you might want to see this test fire of the M249 SAR project I have been working on for the a last 6 months.

Enjoy! Thanks Rick!
Jon_News on 08.29.12 @ 09:13 AM EST

Thursday, July 26th

Pics of the WIS Trip from Gpa/Uncle/Dad Black!

Check out the latest pics from Uncle/Gpa/Dad Black and the other two video link of him IN A BI PLANE! COOL!

Click HERE for the pics!

Click HERE and HERE for the two videos! ENJOY!

smile smile
Jon_News on 07.26.12 @ 12:10 PM EST

Monday, July 23rd

New Finley Baby Pics! Hunter's 2nd BDay!

From Amanda Sliker-Hooper:

Wanted to send a little hello and send you some pics from Hunters 2nd bday party. It was alot of fun and we even had suprise guest....Grandma and Grandpa beese took the train up and came for the party and the weekend!! He had a ton of fun with his friends and got a lot of fun gifts. Thanks Aunt les and Uncle doug for the card we will make sure the $$ gets spent well ...probably on some fall clothes.

Love the Hooper clan!!

Thanks to Aunt Jen and Manda's for the Pics. Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 07.23.12 @ 06:57 AM EST

Monday, July 16th

Summer Fun with Rick! Thanks!

Here is the latest installment of pyrotechnic fun! It plays best when you "save target as" and play from your computer.

Also, should have some new pics of Amanda's baby to share soon! Thanks!

Jon_News on 07.16.12 @ 05:18 AM EST

Friday, June 15th

Garden Pics and 75th and Canon Shots!

Click HERE for the pics!

Thanks Grandma and Rick! Holy Cow! How tall is Cullen Now?
Jon_News on 06.15.12 @ 10:03 AM EST

Tuesday, May 15th


Well we are back at it again after a long winter break. Good times shooting fireworks, friends and good food! Here is the video. It is an 80 meg file so it is best to "save as" on your computer before you try to view it.
Hope you enjoy the show.

Also, check out the kids page, got some great pics up!

Thanks Rick!
Jon_News on 05.15.12 @ 01:28 PM EST

Monday, March 12th

MS Walk Time!

For those in the family who did not know, since 1998 we have done the MS (Multiple Sclerosis) Walk here in the triad, and been among the HIGHEST fundraisers every year! Dear cause to my heart, two very close friends have the disease. I have a link here, to our fundrasing site, if any of you are interested in helping we would LOVE IT! Thanks ahead of time!

Click HERE for the link!

Jon_News on 03.12.12 @ 05:49 AM EST

Tuesday, February 28th


From Amanda Hooper/Sliker:

The news is in we had the big ultrasound today and Hunter is getting a little Sister!! So now the search for girl names we like. Baby was good everything looked fine besides for the fact she was very shy and sat with her legs crossed for most of the ultrasound until the very end when she finally decided to grace us with her butt. Love you all
Amanda, Ryan, Hunter and Baby Girl.

YEAH!!! Here's to a healthy, BORING, pregnancy! Cannot wait to meet her!

Jon_News on 02.28.12 @ 06:57 AM EST

Sunday, February 26th

Latest Pics!

Just got done putting a bunch of shots of the kids up on the site. If you missed the updates from the end of 2011, check them out! Space Derbies, Pinewood Derbies, Craziness!

Click HERE for the link.

Jon_News on 02.26.12 @ 12:29 PM EST

Monday, January 9th

From Amanda Hooper

"I know that it is hard for some to navigate the cyber world but I
wanted to try to keep everyone as much in the loop with life as
possible. So i created a Hooper Clan Blog. Basically it is a page on
the internet that tells what is going on in our life! So the
grandparents and the rest of the world can keep up and add comments!
Jon if you could please post this to the black page to let all know thank you!
I hope you all enjoy and we love you all
Please pass this on to anyone I missed or who you think will like the site.

Just highlight and put it into the heading and the page should pop up!
Jon_News on 01.09.12 @ 10:04 AM EST

Thursday, December 15th

Rick's Newest Toy! I want one!!!

From Rick Black!

"Well it took 40 hours in the machine shop after 3 months of paperwork and $2000 but here she is! My sound meter was reading at 100-110 db which is a sound reduction of 50- 60 db. That's a full 10-20db quieter than anything else available on the market today. Who said science isn't fun. Now where are those angry zombies at?"

Check it out!!

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 12.15.11 @ 11:49 AM EST

Tuesday, October 25th


From Dan Black about his Growing a Moustache for Charity! DONATE NOW!!!!!!!!!!

If you've been waiting until the last moment well that moment has arrived!
It's been a crazy past few weeks of stache' growing and our final check
point is tonight. I've made it through the itchiness, the worried looks in
the parking lot, those awkward conversations with people at work, the
constant fiddling, removing of debris after eating and the incessant post
beverage slurp to get the excess drink out of what can only be described
as an absolute atrocity on my face.

I look back at the past few weeks and celebrate some of the highlights, the
best comment I heard was: "Your Stache' is competing with your eyebrows for
Real Estate on your face." After explaining the stache' in a presentation
one of the attendees piped up and in pretty much the most unconvincing
manner ever said, "Oh, well, it ... um ... if you hadn't of said anything
... well ... we wouldn't have ... well, it looks good?" And I put a
question mark on that statement because it was actually phrased like a
question. Then there was the random patron of Panera Bread who pretended to
text but the flash on the phone camera went off, I can only imagine what
that message was, "OMG, you are not gonna believe it, this guy ACTUALLY
thinks this is cool, duh, the 70's called and wants their stache' back!."
Even my 2 year old got involved, gently petting my stache' and saying,
"Kitty". But I digress ...

It's not about the stache', the constant torture, the weird looks, it's
about the kids and Pat <> 's Place and making
sure that children who've had something terrible happen to them get the help
they need. And it's about YOU helping me, help the kids by reaching my
goal!!! So, do these things right now:

1. Go to my page and make a donation! to all who have already given!!!)

2. Enjoy the attached pictures

3. Come to the Stache' Bash this Friday evening at Mez in Epicenter 7 pm
and check out the other growers! Proceeds go to the charity!

Thanks to everyone who donates in advance!

Dan Black a.k.a. Inugo Mustachio

Jon_News on 10.25.11 @ 10:36 AM EST

Tuesday, October 18th

A note from Amanda Hooper (Sliker)

Want to let eveyone know that we are closing on a house Oct 25th!!
We found a wonderful 4br 2bath farmhouse with 2.3 acres of land!! We are looking forward to having plenty of space for family to visit and Hunter to run.
Cant wait for spring we are going to put in a sustainable garden for our family with extra to help others and in a year or so when we have done all the research we are going to prob have a couple chickens for eggs!
Its a great old house with a nice addition added for more room so we have plenty of room to grow. We will keep you all posted with pics and updates!
New Address will be:
6625 Wyoming Trail
Wyoming, MN 55092

Love all of the gang in MN
Amanda, Ryan, and Hunter

Jon_News on 10.18.11 @ 06:41 AM EST

Monday, October 17th

Triad Flight of Honor - October 15th, 2011

WOW WOW WOW!! I just had the Triad Flight of Honor on Saturday and what an experience! My vets were great, the sites were great, the trip was amazing and WHAT AN HONOR!!! One vet was career Army, mess Sgt. and the other was 2 years Air Force, airplane mechanic! We had 150 vets and 40 Guardians! Check out the group shot at Iwo Jima! COOL!!!! Mostly Army and Navy, 4 Marines, 1 Coast Guardsmen and 3 WAC Girls! What a group!

Click HERE for a BOATLOAD (roughly 600 pics)! Keep in mind I was photographing the day to chronicle it for my vets, so some pics are just to remind them about where/how/when! I hope you enjoy them as much as I did taking them!


Jon_News on 10.17.11 @ 11:54 AM EST

Wednesday, October 12th

Ben Sliker - Charlotte Film Festival - 2011

From Aunt Jen:

"Here's a little happy news.
Ben had a film in the "Made in Charlotte" film festival this week.
We went to the awards ceremony last night - Ben's film basically swept the awards! Seven out of ten!
Film: Comedy - Internal Affairs (theme for the contest was "What Scares You?")
Best Film
Best Director: Ben Sliker
Best Actor: Tom Olson
Best Screenplay: Tom Olson and Ben Sliker
Best Cinematography, Best Hair & Makeup, Best supporting actor
Here's the link to the film and I have attached a couple of pics from last night.
The film is also going to be screened again on October 20th - details to follow!

Internal Affairs
Internal Affairs Pt. 1 |
benjamin sliker

Also, some pics, Click HERE for the shots! Thanks Jen!

Jon_News on 10.12.11 @ 05:22 AM EST

Monday, October 10th

Rick and Naomi's Friend, Cullens Teacher Passes

From Rick Black - 10/10/2011

"It is with great sadness and regret that I have to announce the passing of our dear friends Dave and Kristin Novaez. They were killed in a motorcycle accident at 2 pm on October 9 2011. They were both beloved teachers and mentors. They will be sorely missed by their students, faculty, family and friends."

Click HERE for a picture of Dave and Kristin. We will be thinking of you guys, we love you!
Jon_News on 10.10.11 @ 10:27 AM EST

Monday, September 26th


From Rick Black:

Cullen and I had a good time at paintball then I went up north to shoot some fireworks. Heres a pictiure and a link to the slideshow.
181 meg file so it may take a while to download to your media program.

Also, check out this great shot of the GUYS in their GEAR!!

Click HERE!

Jon_News on 09.26.11 @ 09:14 AM EST

A Bunch O' Bdays and Helen/GGma Black's 91st!!!!!!

Click here for the Shots from Mom Black's - Kids Galore - Gma's 91st!

Jon_News on 09.26.11 @ 07:39 AM EST

Saturday, September 17th

New Kid Pics!

Summer's done, school's back! Here is what the munchkins have been up too!

Click HERE and check out the 2001 Kids Menu for the latest!

big grin
Jon_News on 09.17.11 @ 02:42 PM EST

Tuesday, September 13th

Amanda and Ryan Hooper - 9-10-2011

Hello all!!
I wanted to share a few wedding pics with you all from our wonderful weekend! Now on to our house buying adventure and thats been interesting !!! Hope everyone has had a wonderful summer and I will have a ton more pictures in a week or so. I had so many wonderful photographers there!! Special thanks to Aunt Les and Uncle Doug ; Grandma and Grandpa for making the trek to MN!
Amanda, Ryan and Hunter Hooper

Click HERE for the pics
Jon_News on 09.13.11 @ 06:14 AM EST

Saturday, August 20th

Chris Black's Stepson Tyler Boot Camp Grad!!! HOOAH!!

Chris Black's oldest Stepson Tyler graduated from Ft. Benning GA Boot Camp (that's Army yall) last week! Way to go Tyler! That long hair hippie (just kidding Dallas) is Chris's other stepson Dallas and he will be entering MCRD Oceanside in the fall (that's Marine Corps Recruit Depot). Way to go guys we are behind you ALL THE WAY!!! Congrats and BE SAFE!

Click here for the shots!
Jon_News on 08.20.11 @ 09:55 AM EST

Wednesday, August 17th

Rick's Famous!

A short clip from the movie we worked on was on you tube. Some of the final cut ended up in Nate's promo reel, 1:00-1:10 the explosions look cool when edited up right. Don't know when it is coming out but I will let yo know.
Jon_News on 08.17.11 @ 09:55 AM EST

Grandpa Earl Beese - Veteran Honor Flight - 8/10/2011

For those who did not catch it, Grandpa/Earl/Dad Beese went on a Veteran Honor Flight on 8/10/2011. Got some pics and a not from Gma (Barb) Beese. It is below the link, also yours truly has also been chosen to be a Guardian on an Honor Flight from NC to DC, mine will be 10/15/2011, look out for pics.

Click HERE for the pics.

From Barbara Beese:

"Dear All: Here are pics from Grampa's Honor Flight to Washington, D.C. He thought the World War II Memorial was awesome to begin with. In these pics there are folks in green polo shirts and they are the Guardians who went with and stayed with the 100 vets on the flight, and took them everywhere in their wheelchairs !! Grampa was the youngest one of the Vets at age 84 (he is 85 on August 17th!!)....and the oldest man was 96. WOW, it was quite an event for all of them. The pic of Grampa with the little girl in the bright blue shirt is in D.C. and she was a student volunteer helper from the Stonewall Jackson Highschool in Manassas, VA. The picture with the young lady in the orange shirt, one of the Volunteers back home, is one holding the sign she made up for him while he was on the flight. She prepared it ahead of time, and then received his picture taken in the morning before they left, and mounted it on the poster, to be given to him when he arrived back home!! She had 10 Vet's to do this for, and said she was up until 2a.m the night before getting them ready so all she had to do was add the picture on the day of the flight. It is amazing all the things they get ready for the one day event. Then there are the pics with all the guys from the 75th Division unit from Ft. Sheridaan. That was Grampa's division in WWII and all of these guys wanted to meet him and talk to him, including their General !! It was amazing. Of course the important thing for me was that Harriet and Harry came all the way down to Midway Airport to the Hotel where I was that day, and joined ,me for supper and then went with me to the Airport for the Welcome Home event. I was so grateful because there were 3000 people in that crowd.....and I needed someone to help me find Grampa at the meeting area . It was a bit overwhelming, believe me. On the plane coming back from D.C. Grampa received his "mail Call" packet...WOW, what wonderful letters you all sent. He had tears and much emotional feelings reading all your beautiful thoughts. He wants to thank everyone who sent him these beautiful messages...and I want to thank all of you too, for the love and caring and support you all are. What a wonderful family we are blessed with. We love you all and wish we saw you more often, but we are "all of one Mind and nothing can really separate us from the Love of God" (and each other). Hugs to all from Gramma and Grampa ""BZ". Thanks Jon for sending this message out :-))"

Jon_News on 08.17.11 @ 05:58 AM EST

Sunday, July 17th

4th of July, Beese Visit, Ray's Memorial - 2011

Thanks to Pops for the upload!

Click HERE for the pics!
Jon_News on 07.17.11 @ 05:58 PM EST

Saturday, July 2nd

New Summer Pics of Kids!

Check out all the latest of the Kids - ala Greensboro NC -

Click HERE for the shots! The 2011 Menu case you missed any I posted earlier!

PS Thank you to the family for all the support recently with Jennifer, her mother and family! We lvoe you all and THANK YOU!!!!
Jon_News on 07.02.11 @ 05:21 PM EST

Thursday, June 16th


Click HERE for the Pics!

Hello everyone!

You should all be getting your wedding invites in the next week here. We had to do them in two rounds smile. Eveything is going well here in MN. Wedding planning is coming right along, school is good I have ditched spanish as my choice for second language and decided that i am doing sign language! I am teaching it to Hunter so i thought why not teach myself as well! Ryan is doing good work for him is busy since we have nice weather!! We had a great trip to England in March lots of fun and relaxed! Ryans parents are going to be at there campsite all summer and its only 4 1/2 hrs away so it will be nice to visit! Just got back from visting Grandma and Grandpa, they had a blast playing with the little guy! Grandma is looking good getting stronger everyday and she cant wait to see everyone who is coming in June! FYI Hunter and I will be in NC from around Aug 2nd to Aug 13thish??? My friend Jen is throwing me a bridal/wedding shower party Aug 6th and it is a family fun day!!! We may even get a bouncy castle!! Well enjoy the few pics and Love you all!!

Amanda, Ryan, and Hunter

Jon_News on 06.16.11 @ 07:32 AM EST

Monday, June 13th

Rick's Summer Time Fireworks - 2011

From Rick Black:

Hello all,

Well the weather was a little chilly but we had a great time at the fireworks shoot. Here is the link to the slideshow. It plays better on some computers if you "Save As" to your system first. Engoy!

Click HERE for the video!

Thanks Rick!
Jon_News on 06.13.11 @ 09:19 AM EST

Cullen Graduates From Jr. High School - 2011

From Rick Black:

Here are a few pictures of the graduation. Sorry about the quality, it was dark and my camera was not cooperating for some reason.

Click HERE for the shots! Congrats Cullen!
Jon_News on 06.13.11 @ 09:17 AM EST

Thursday, May 19th

Dad Gets the Trains up!

Gpa Black/Gpa Choo Choo/Doug/Dad/Uncle Doug has the trains up!

"Attached are shots of the new show cases for the steam trains and an example of my 2x3 bench work modules, one leg and boxes of structure to be made."

Malcolm will Approve!

Click HERE for the pics

Jon_News on 05.19.11 @ 05:29 AM EST

Monday, May 16th

Cullen Turns 14!

Wow Cullen Turns 14, check him out with his buds and dad at Paintball! What a squad!

Click HERE for the pic!
Jon_News on 05.16.11 @ 05:43 AM EST

Thursday, March 17th

Sam and St. Baldrick's

Sam Hulka (Tricia and Mike Hulka's Son) gets a buzz!! St. Baldrick's is a cancer awareness fundraiser, fyi!

Sam was fundraising for St. Baldrick's Day at St. Thomas. He said he wanted to shave his head for his Mommy Tricia because she was bald from cancer. He was very excited to do this. There are 4 others in his kindergarten class plus 35 others at his school.. The shaving took place at 2pm on Wednesday. Sam is also honoring Kaitlin Lynch, who is the daughter of the paralegal in Liane's office. Kaitlin is 16 and currently undergoing a bone marrow transplant and loves when she gets to see Sam and Ollie!

Click HERE for the shots. Thanks Uncle Rod and Mike, he LOOKS GREAT!!!! That's a boot camp shot if I ever saw one!
Jon_News on 03.17.11 @ 05:24 AM EST

Monday, March 14th

Rich Goes BOOM BOOM in the Spring!


We had a great time at the WPAG March 2011 winter shoot. Food and drink were great but the frozen lake shoot site was a little chilly. Here is the video: It is a fairly large file and takes a while to load.

Jon_News on 03.14.11 @ 09:34 AM EST

Monday, February 7th



Hi everyone!! We just wanted to inform everyone that we will be having a wedding Sept 10th 2011!! It will be up in MN and we are so excited to get planning and cant wait to see all the family! Love you all and we are very thankful to have eachother and a beautiful little man!!

Love you,
Amanda, Ryan and Hunter

Click HERE for a new pic
Jon_News on 02.07.11 @ 05:28 AM EST

Friday, February 4th

Pics from Gma and Gpa BZ!

Some shots of Antioch BURIED!
Thanks Gpa BZ!

Click HERE for the Pics

Also, Rick, saw a shot of you and a snowblower, would love some more pics of that too!

Jon_News on 02.04.11 @ 06:40 AM EST

Thursday, January 27th

Baby Pics!!!!

Thanks to Gpa and Gma BZ for the shots of the Baby! HOW CUTE!!!!

Click HERE for the pics

Amanda/Ryan and Clan Visit BZ Land!
Jon_News on 01.27.11 @ 03:10 PM EST

Monday, November 8th

Joey's First Train Ride to GSO!!! - 2010

Check out the Joey Meister on his first real train ride with Gma and Gpa Black to Greensboro to visit Uncle Jon!

Click HERE for the shots.

Thanks Pops!
Jon_News on 11.08.10 @ 02:20 PM EST

Halloween at Dan and Blair's - 2010

Click HERE for shots of the gang in action!

Thanks D.
Jon_News on 11.08.10 @ 01:25 PM EST

Exploding targets! I WANT SOME!!!

Uncle Rick evidently is needing something to blow up after WPAG!!!! Thanks Rick!

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 11.08.10 @ 01:19 PM EST

Sunday, October 17th

Lots O Pics!

Some Shots of Malcolm's B Day and a Picnic HERE

Some Shots of Anna's B Day and Grandma Hiatt Visit HERE

and Some shots from Yesterday's BONANZA at J. Razz and Tazz Farms (CRAZY) HERE

The kids had an ABSOLUTE blast at the farm!!!! Also, notice little Baby Hope is WALKING!!!!! PT is going great and neuropathy in her feet from Chemo is subsiding!!!!


smile smile
Jon_News on 10.17.10 @ 12:55 PM EST

Tuesday, October 5th

Note from Gma BZ

"tO ALL THE North Carolina Families, from Gramma and Grampa Beese

We have been having fun viewing the gathering at Gramma and Grampa Black's house for all the B'day celebrations. These are absolutely the most darling children anywhere!! Boy do we wish we were closer so we could be in on these parties. It reminded us of when Leslie, Jenny, Bob and Bill were little ones, and we got together with Aunt Joanie (Thompson kids) and Aunt Moonie (Frolich kids) for big b'day parties like that. Kids tumbling all around the floor, and paper and packages everywhere. You all looked just wonderful to us and we love all of you so much. We hope you all realize how fortunate you are to be able to do that big family thing, even if it is only once every two or three months!!! I'm sure you do........and Leslie and Doug are very blessed grandparents to have all of you living so close........but somehow we think it was planned that way...RIGHT??!! I'm sure Jenny and Tom miss Amanda, Hunter and Ryan a bunch already. It looked as if Joey, who has gotten so tall we can't believe it, was enjoying his toddler cousins, and of course they love him. It would be lovely if Cullen James could be with the gang more often....I'm sure it would be fun for him too. Well, Grampa and I just wanted to let you know how proud we are of all of you and the dear families. Of course we don't want to leave Gramma Helen Black out of this letter......Imagine looking so beautiful when you are 90 years old !!! Congratulations Helen, you look wonderful. We are fine here in Illinois and enjoying a beautiful Fall season (without all the rain you have had there!!). Of course we will be missing Uncle Ray....Joanie and Grampa and I will now become a "threesome" after 64 years of being an awesome "foursome". We started double dating together even before we were all married in 1947 and they have been our absolutely dearest friends and companions over the years. Joanie is really enjoying all the cards she is getting, so if you haven't sent one as yet, she would love to hear from you. Her address is: 13012 W. Summerview, Huntley, IL 60142. They (the Thompson Family Cousins) have decided to celebrate Ray's life in an Open House next Summer (I think in June sometime), when as much family as possible can attend and just enjoy being together . Ray would like that, and we all have fond memories to share of him.

God bless all of you (which we know He is doing!), and hug the children for us. Love, G &G "BZ""

smile smile
Jon_News on 10.05.10 @ 05:47 AM EST

Monday, September 27th

Fall WPAG Show with Rick!

Well it is then end of another good year and we had a great time at the club shoot. There was lots of great food, fun and of course pyro. The "Thundering of WI" show was the best. I had fun being part of the set up/clean up crew. I put a few highlights of the training seminar and shoot into this video, I hope you all enjoy it.


Thanks RICK!
Jon_News on 09.27.10 @ 07:55 AM EST

Sunday, September 26th

Ggma Black/Malcolm/Anna/Sophie's BDay - 2010

The Birthday Bonanza

Ggma Black - 90
Malcolm - 5
Anna Claire - 2
Sophie - 1

Wow, what a spread, Click HERE for the shots
Jon_News on 09.26.10 @ 03:47 PM EST

Update from Amanda, Ryan and Hunter (Sliker/Hooper)

So we have settled into MN. I think we are finally unpacked and our apt doesnt look like a storage unit. Ryan is working at BNSF railroad and I am very much enjoying be stay at home mommie!! I have joined 3 stay at home mom groups and gone on a few play dates. I really enjoy meeting all the new people. I hav enrolled in school and will hopefully be starting in Jan so that i can finish up school. Hunter is doing great he is now 23in long !!! Still having some colic spells but getting better. We are doing great and really loving being all in one place as a family. We hav dowloaded skpe so that we can chat and people can see the little guy so download it!!

Love you all
Amanda Ryan and Hunter

ps i will send u pics in a few minutes too!!
Jon_News on 09.26.10 @ 10:27 AM EST

Friday, September 10th

From Barbara Beese/Gma Beese/GGma Beese/Mom - :)

Hi Jon: I wrote this recently in honor of our upcoming 63rd Wedding Anniversary on September 13,2010....I decided I should publish it for the family. Since we don't do facebook or such fancy things, I will depend on your site to get it out. Thanks, Love you all, Gramma "BZ"


Why I married and Love Earl, my husband of 63 years:

1. On our first date, when I was 15 and Earl was 17, God told me he was to be my partner for life.

2. He was funny and smart and good looking, and we had fun together....He took me dancing!

3. He continued to date me even though some of the girls in his "gang" didn't like me. Instead

he included me with his close friends and their girls!

4. He was brave and of good courage about going to War (WWII), and he asked me to write to


5. He did not "tie me down" to going steady, but said I should enjoy my senior year in

highschool and date other guys: but to please write to him and be there when he came

home again! I was very happy to do this!!

6. Fast forward three (3) years! He survived the War!! At 18 years of age he was in the "Battle

of The Buldge" in Europe and the Germans were shooting at him. In August of 1947, after

he was home again, he proposed to me and we decided to get married soon. He turned 21

on August 17, 1947 and we were married on September 13, 1947. I was 18 1/2 years old

and I never doubted he would take care of me and any children we had together.

7. We always had what we needed, although times were sometimes tough for us financially.

However, we never got in debt "over our heads". We bought things "on-time" from Sears

and we always paid our bills.

8. Important qualities Earl has are: Honesty (he never lies or trys to cheat anyone.) He has

always let me manage our money, budget and the regular bills...but he takes care of our

taxes, understands our insurance needs, and is generous at all times with travel we can

afford - especially to visit our families/grandchildren/great-grandchildren!!

9. He has been a good father, a fair but strict disciplinarian. :-)) But everybody turned out OK.

I think, and certainly we hope our children know he loves them. He always did a lot with

them when they were growing up. They learned to use their hands as well as their minds.

10. Earl was tolerant of my Christian Science religious beliefs, allowing me to use prayer for

healing myself and the children. He did not insist that they have "shots" and other medical

treatment when they were babies.....but they were always well taken care of and healed

quickly through prayer. He asked questions, and became interested in Christian Science

himself. The kids answered his questions!! In 1957 when we moved up to Petite Lake,

Antioch, IL, he began attending church with me regularly. He joined the Christian Science

Church in Antioch in 1961 and became an active member for the next 43 years, serving on

the Board of Directors, Building Committee, First Reader (3 yrs) , Sunday School teacher,

and was the best Clerk the church ever had for 12 years! He completely handled the sale

and closing of the Antioch church in 2004, and was commended by people in Boston, MA

at The Mother Church for how well he organized all records and details. There were only

six members left at the time we closed, and he handled almost all the work.

11. At this point I need to mention that Earl injured his right eye in the Fall of 1960, and lost the

sight in it. He never complained or felt sorry for himself, but just went on with his life and

ours. He continued to take responsibility for taking care of his family, and soon began to

enlarge his thought about what he could do to "improve" himself. He learned the Insurance

business for a short time, and discovered he was a good student in the classes he took.

When our two oldest children, Leslie and Bob. went off to college in 1966 and 1967, he

decided to go to College himself to become a teacher. He earned a Bachelor's degree in

Education from Colorado State University in 1972, and a Masters Degree from the Univer-

sity of Illinois in 1981. All during this time he supported our family and we had a good life.

I did not go out to work outside the home/family until Jenny, our youngest child was five

years old and going to kindergarten. Earl then taught school for 22 years: Highschool,

Jr. High, and 9 years of Adult Evening School. As long as it was necessary he did side

jobs in the Construction business to fill-out our income needs. He continued to be a good

father, a good husband, and a good man!! He has also been a good soldier, a good

citizen, and a volunteer in our Community in Boy Scouting, History and Museum work,

Church activity, and subdivision and neighborhood efforts.

12. Earl has a very strong sense of integrity and of what is right and wrong. This sometimes

makes him seem critical or judgemental, but he is usually right and almost always fair. As

his partner in life I have tried to be the "softer side" of the equation. Mostly he has been

flexible and would bend in my direction, without necessarily agreeing with me. While we

"argue" and discuss things (we have been told), we have always respected each other and

there has NEVER been any violence between us.

13. Earl has been a fantastic lover!! The best ever!! :-))

14. When Earl was ill and in the hospital 5 times in 2003, I was his nurse, and he did not

complain although he was often "hurting". He was patient and always said "death is not

an option". He improved , had good healing through prayer, (and some medical

procedures which are questionable as to their results!!) Once again, he has not been

a complainer and has continued on with an active life to the best of his ability. I admire

him for that.

15. Lastly, I will say that Earl and I enjoy a lot of activities TOGETHER. I think that is key to

a successful marriage. I have always been able to depend on him to be strong for me,

and I am proud to be his "schatzi" (sweetheart) and share my life with him. To his

family and to anyone else who reads this, I would say he has been a "man for all

seasons" !!.

Barbara Claire (Thiele) Beese

P.S. I have not mentioned Earl's many talents and abilities in woodworking, carving,

geneaology work, house-building, gardening and flower cultivation, plus many

others....but that is not the reason I married him.....I DISCOVERED all those

things afterwards!! What a wonderful surprise and interesting journey we have

had together thus far!!

We wish you all as joyous a life as we have had....thanks be to God!!

Jon_News on 09.10.10 @ 10:13 AM EST

Thursday, August 26th

More Fireworks!

Thanks Rick

Click HERE for the video, it is big and will open from another site.

Let me know if you have trouble getting it and I will post it locally!
Jon_News on 08.26.10 @ 09:31 AM EST

Ma and Pa Black's Trip to WI - 2010

Pics from Dad and Mom Black's Trip to WI - 2010 - Watch the Vino, the Tank Boats and the Fireworks WOOHOO!

Click HERE and HERE for two pic galleries and videos Below!

Click HERE for the vid!

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 08.26.10 @ 07:28 AM EST

Thursday, August 19th

Summer's Ending

New Pics fo the end of Summer with Anna Claire and Malcolm!

Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 08.19.10 @ 11:19 AM EST

Monday, August 16th

Mom and Dad Black and Crew's Trip!

1- Visit to Look Out Mountain in Chattanooga, Tenn. and
2- US Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, AL

Click HERE for the pics! COOL STAR WARS!

Thanks Pops.

big grin
Jon_News on 08.16.10 @ 04:57 PM EST

Saturday, August 7th

BBQ Shots and ROCKETS!!

Shots from Uncle Dan and Kids - Click HERE for the pics.

Thanks D.
Jon_News on 08.07.10 @ 05:14 PM EST

Friday, August 6th

Baby Stats!

Hunter Lewis Hooper
born on July 31st, 2010 at 2:11 a.m.
weight - 7 lbs
length - 19 inches
blue eyes, sandy hair (getting lighter every day)

Thanks Aunt Jen!
Jon_News on 08.06.10 @ 09:05 AM EST

Wednesday, August 4th

Baby Hunter!

Congrats to the Sliker Fam on the new addition! Baby Hunter (details to follow).

Thanks to Jen and Ben (I assume) for the great pics.

Click HERE!

CUTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! smile smile smile smile
Jon_News on 08.04.10 @ 09:32 AM EST

Tuesday, July 20th

Mama Schwarz in München! - 2010

Hier sind einige Bilder des Mamaschwarzes auf ihrer Reise nach München diesen Sommer! Woot Deutschland! Dankt Vater für die Schüsse!

Klicken Sie HIER für die Bilder!

*translation* Mom in Munich - Click Above!!!
Jon_News on 07.20.10 @ 01:07 PM EST

Tuesday, July 13th

4th of July Bang Bang from Uncle RIck!

WOOHOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BOOM BOOM!!!!!!!!!! Thanks Rick!

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 07.13.10 @ 05:17 PM EST

WOOOHOOO BABY PICS.......well not all the way yet!

From Amanda Sliker:

Hey jon

Marie took some awesome pics of me and ryan at the baby shower. Also a few from my beach trip! I played with a few of the and made a few cool prints thought the rest of the fam not on facebook might want to see them!! Love you all so nice to see everyone on the fourth it was alot of fun. DOing good Dr on Wed we will see if anything is new!!! smile

Amanda, Ryan and baby Hunter

CLICK HERE for the pics!
Jon_News on 07.13.10 @ 05:12 PM EST

Wednesday, July 7th

4th of July at Mike and Jen's Place!

Check out the shots (thanks D) from Mike and Jen Black's 4th of July BBQ!

The BEST Steak EVER!!!

Click HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 07.07.10 @ 05:37 AM EST

Thursday, June 10th


Stephanie Hiatt Goins (Jon's Jennifer's Sister) just had a new Baby Boy:

Anthony Weston Goins, 9 lbs 14 oz WOW and 23 inches long 6-10-2010

Mom Steph and Dad Kelly and Brother Ethan are VERY PROUD!

Good job guys and congrats!

Jon_News on 06.10.10 @ 06:55 AM EST

Tuesday, June 8th

June Fireworks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

From Rick:

"I had a great time at the WPAG June 2010 Meeting and Shoot. It rained on and off for the whole day, which made for a muddy shoot site, but then the clouds broke just as the sun was setting and we were able to shoot all of our rockets and shells. Here is a video of the two days, thanks to everyone who contributed photos, see you all next month."

As always, thanks to Rick and the crew for the GREAT VIDS!!!!!!!!!!!! MORE BOOM BOOM!!!

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 06.08.10 @ 03:01 PM EST

Thursday, May 27th

Dan, Blair and the Gang Head to Charleston - 2010

Great pics from Dan and the crew heading to Charleston on holiday! Loving the Masonator in the Surfer Gear!

Click HERE for the shots!

Thanks D
Jon_News on 05.27.10 @ 09:47 AM EST

Thursday, May 20th


Congratulations to Ben Sliker, BEST IN SHOW for his latest film, ROM!

Click HERE for the website!

Well Done!
Jon_News on 05.20.10 @ 05:48 AM EST

Monday, May 17th


Got a screening of my award-winning short 'ROM' in Charlotte on Thursday!!! It is playing as a part of The Light Factory's Filmmaker's showcase!

The film is playing in a block of films on Thursday, May 20th at the Duke Energy Theater (in the same building as the Light Factory - 345 N. College St. - downtown Charlotte) at 7:30 PM. Everyone is welcome to come! Tickets are $7. About 2 hours of films will be shown.

For more info:
About the movie:
About the showcase:



Jon_News on 05.17.10 @ 01:36 PM EST

Sunday, May 16th

The Beese Visit in April and New Kids Pics

Click HERE for the shots of the Beese's Visit in April

Click HERE and HERE for the latest on the kids.

Jon_News on 05.16.10 @ 05:58 PM EST

Friday, May 14th

Rick and WPAG May 2010

CHECK IT OUT!!!! Rick's Inaugural BOOM BOOM 2010

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 05.14.10 @ 06:15 PM EST

Wednesday, May 5th

Uncle Rick goes BANG BANG!!!!

Check out the latest in Police defense against the bad guys. Didn't that round used to be in a SAW?????!!!!! YEAH BABY!

Click HERE for the vid!
Jon_News on 05.05.10 @ 02:17 PM EST

Tuesday, April 13th

Easter at Momma Black's - 2010

Thanks to D for the GREAT shots.....(*cough* Uncle Jon could use one of those lenses and flashes *cough cough*)........anyway...

Click HERE for the shots.

wink wink
Jon_News on 04.13.10 @ 07:19 AM EST

Momma and Jen at the Biltmore - 2010

Here are some great shots of Momma Black and Jen (Mike Black's Jen) at the Biltmore enjoying Spring in NC!

Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 04.13.10 @ 07:05 AM EST

Monday, March 29th

Ben and Marie Sliker's Wedding - 3/28/2010

Congrats to Ben and Marie and Tom and Jen and Fam on the Great Day.

Thanks for inviting us, we had a great time and it was BEAUTIFUL!

Click HERE for the shots (thanks dad).

Jon_News on 03.29.10 @ 07:56 AM EST

Friday, March 26th

New Pics of the Kids!

Check out Malcolm and The Strawberry Fairy in action!

Click HERE for Malcolm's pics

Click HERE for Anna Claire's

Have a great Spring!
Jon_News on 03.26.10 @ 03:06 PM EST

Wednesday, March 24th

Mason and Sophie in action!

Thanks to D for the shots of Mason and Sophie! TOO CUTE!

Click HERE for the great pics.

Jon_News on 03.24.10 @ 02:38 PM EST

Thursday, February 25th

Jenny Update!

Dear Friends and Family;

A quick update on the continuing adventures of Jenny Sliker. Please pardon any duplication as I am trying to get this out to everyone...Jon, maybe you could put a blip on the family website too??
Most of you know that I have been working for the Girl Scouts for about 4 months now and I really love it!
Circumstance change, and as we are doing some staff restructuring (typical for a newly merged organization) I have had the opportunity for a promotion and will become the Director of Community Relations in our Colfax office in early March - yes, right around the corner!
Moving was not my first choice, but it is only 150 miles away and I am grateful for continued and improved employment in this economy!
Our relocation process will take about six months as we have that much time on our lease, so I will be finding temporary living in the Triad area for a few months and coming back to Asheville on weekends as I am able.
So it's going to be a very eventful year for us with this on top of Ben and Marie's wedding in March and Amanda and Ryan's baby due in August (yes if you did not know I am going to be a Grandma - must be the grey hair...)
Blessings out to all of you - stay warm and safe!


Jon_News on 02.25.10 @ 07:30 AM EST

Thursday, February 4th

Dad Black's Famous

More Famous people!!!!!!!!!!!1

Click HERE for the articles about the R.O.M.E.O.'s SEMPER FI!!!!!!!!!
Jon_News on 02.04.10 @ 09:34 AM EST

Tuesday, February 2nd

THERE FAMOUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Check it out!!! The Masonator and Gpa Beese are famous!

Click HERE
Jon_News on 02.02.10 @ 02:06 PM EST

Monday, February 1st

D Man and the Stache ~ Does he look like Chris or what????


Check out the stache HERE!!!!!!

It is with mixed emotions that I send you this e-mail. For the next four weeks, I will be subjecting myself to 'public humiliation and private doubt' by growing what will no-doubt be a ridiculous looking Mustache, in an effort to help raise money for low-income classroom projects.

I hope I can justify this effort with your support. I am asking you to 'sponsor' my mustache by making a contribution to, $1 per day or whatever you can give! This donation will go directly to local low-income classroom projects. I would also encourage you to pass this note on to other Mustache Enthusiasts. You can visit my Giving Page, , to make a donation.

Mustaches for Kids depends on word-of-'stache publicity, so please forward this email to anyone who might be interested in doing good and having fun. Also, I'll note that there are still Grower slots available for those of you who are willing to 'let it grow' and help public school classrooms.

Houston , we have a Mustache,


PS: Picture updates will be available on my Facebook page. I welcome witty and degrading comments but please earn the right to mock by making a donation.

Jon_News on 02.01.10 @ 11:58 AM EST

Fixed the last entry sorry!

Fixed the last entry, try the link below again.

Jon_News on 02.01.10 @ 08:26 AM EST

Sunday, January 31st

Happy January - Snowed in Here

Finally took the time (I know...slacker) to get Xmas shots up

Click HERE for the pics

Looking forward to 2010 full of cool family stuff, keep it coming everybody!
Jon_News on 01.31.10 @ 09:17 AM EST

Monday, December 28th

Christmas at Rick and Naomi's and Gma's New Place!

Got some shots from Rick and Naomi's Christmas - 2009

Click HERE for the pics

Also, take a peek at Grandma/GreatGrandma/Helen Black's new pad! PREE-TEE-FANCEE!!

Click HERE for the shots!

Glad to see your all settled Gma, love ya!
Jon_News on 12.28.09 @ 08:05 AM EST

Monday, December 21st

Early Christmas in Illinois! 2009

Pics from Momma Black (Leslie) from her visit to Illinois and early Christmas! Everyone looks great!

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 12.21.09 @ 08:48 AM EST

Wednesday, November 18th

Mom and Dad Black California Trip - 2009

From Dad/Gpa/Doug:

"Nov trip to Chris: menagerie in the living room, 4 more animals outside plus two teen boys up stairs...;-)

Note Chris at work in INTEL Lab, the equipment is his play-pen! Chrisie in his natural habitat...EXPENSIVE ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT...;-)

Bob and friend Donna in Old Town Sacramento and dinner on the King of the Rover sternwheeler."

Click HERE for the photos.

Thanks Dad for the pics.
Jon_News on 11.18.09 @ 08:29 AM EST

Monday, November 9th

Two Vids and The Vino!!!!!!


Click HERE for the shots.

Also, some neat shots of a project of Cullens, cool vid. Thanks Rick!

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 11.09.09 @ 02:35 PM EST

Saturday, November 7th

Pics Pics Pics

Hey all, got some shots of Malcolm and Anna from the fall and this past Halloween.

Click HERE for Anna

Click HERE for Malcolm

Click HERE for Halloween

Also, I have updated the link on the mainpage to Dan and Blair and the kids pics for them to his Facebook page. He updates there regularly, check it out!
Jon_News on 11.07.09 @ 10:51 AM EST

Friday, October 30th

Chris works at the Food Shelter!

Check out Brother Chris (oldest of the boys), doing the good work!

Click HERE for the website.

Jon_News on 10.30.09 @ 02:01 PM EST

Friday, October 9th

Rick and the WPAG in September!

A new Vid of KABOOOM! From Rick!

Wpag September '09!

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 10.09.09 @ 02:58 PM EST

Tuesday, October 6th

Mike Black's Charity Event - 10/1/2009

More shots of Mike and the Knights hard at work for charity!

Well done Mike, click HERE for the pics from the Fall Jubilee!

Jon_News on 10.06.09 @ 08:46 AM EST

Monday, September 28th

Mike Black and Kid's Rein 2009

Mike and his charity have had Kid's Rein 2009! Way to go Mike and Crew, as always GREAT WORK!

Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 09.28.09 @ 05:17 PM EST

SOPHIA PICS!!!!!!!!!

The QUEEN in the flesh!

Thanks to D for the pics! MORE MORE!!!!!

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 09.28.09 @ 11:53 AM EST

Saturday, September 19th

Sophia Grace Black!!!!

Sophia Grace Black
Born: Sept. 18th, 2009 a healthy 8 lbs 8. oz, 20.5 inches long in
record time all of 7 and a 1/2 minutes at 7:33 pm. Mom is doing great
(although she feels like she got hit by a bus). Baby slept through
most of the night and started feeding right away. Dad is shell
shocked and thinks his name is Batman. Mason is very excited and has
already told Daddy he has to "BE GENTLE" when he touches Baby Sister.

Give my love to the fam.


Click HERE for the shots!

CONGRATS D AND BLAIR! Mason.....take it easy on your sister!
Jon_News on 09.19.09 @ 10:50 PM EST

Thursday, September 10th

They set a DATE!!! WOOOHOOO!!!!!

Marie and I would like to post:

"Ben and Marie's Wedding: March 28th, 2010.

Hey everybody, we finally set a date! Only 200 days away! You can check out everything you need to know about the wedding on our custom website:
Jon_News on 09.10.09 @ 06:57 AM EST

Tuesday, September 8th

Mike in Action!

Mike wins his Trial by Combat as the last event in his Knight of the Heart event

Thanks Dad for the pics.

Click HERE for the shots.

cool eh?
Jon_News on 09.08.09 @ 08:40 AM EST

Monday, August 31st

Mom and Dad Black's Trip - 2009 - NC Mountains and Such

Enjoy the pics from Mom and Dad Black's recent trip, to a friends place and other places in the Blue Ridge.

Click HERE for the shot

Jon_News on 08.31.09 @ 02:38 PM EST

Sunday, August 23rd

Malcolm Turns 4! *can you belive it*

Here are the shots from the big day!

Click HERE!

Thank you to everyone that chipped in on the Bike and Helmet! He loves it. Thanks to all the little guys and gals that showed up, Malcolm had a blast with you. And thanks to the parents who made it, total chaos contained!

Also, thanks to the Hiatt's and Black's for making the trek!

See you next year!

Jon_News on 08.23.09 @ 05:55 PM EST

Sunday, August 9th

The Indonesia Trip - 2009

Mike and Jen Black recently (first week of August) got back from Indonesia, here is the trip, divided by country. Click the country for pics:





WOW! Cool! Thanks to Mike and Jen for the disk of shots!

What a trip!
Jon_News on 08.09.09 @ 04:40 PM EST

New Pics of Malcolm and Anna

Click HERE for Malcolm this far!

Click HERE for Anna this CUTE!

Jon_News on 08.09.09 @ 02:35 PM EST

Baby Shower Pics and a TANK VIDEO!!!!

Check out the pics from the Baby Shower for Dan and Blair Black (Baby due Sept 18th)

Click HERE for the Pics.

And Uncle RIck is at it again! A TANK! SWEEEET!

Click HERE for the vid!

More Pics of the Kids getting posted today too and Mike and Jen's big trip to INDONESIA!!!!!

Thanks to all for the shots/vids!
Jon_News on 08.09.09 @ 02:09 PM EST

Wednesday, August 5th

Marine Mud Run - 2009

Jon (yours truly) and some co-workers did the 3rd Annual Marine Mud Run Challenge this year!


Click HERE for the pics.

Click here for the website of the charity. The Marine Leauge raises money for injured Marine's and their families (mom there is a link on there to donate, you had asked about that). GREAT CAUSE! Thanks to pops/ma/Joey for braving the drizzle and supporting the team!

Semper Fi and OOH RAH!!!!!!!!!!!

Jon_News on 08.05.09 @ 10:26 AM EST

Friday, July 31st

Great Vid from Dan

Check out the boys and G-Rents at the Tiger World!

Click HERE for the vid

Jon_News on 07.31.09 @ 05:25 AM EST

From Gma...

"Dear Jon the webmaster, and everyone who contributed pics: Thank you so much for all this work, Jon. For me, Gramma BZ it was a wonderful trip down memory lane of one of the most wonderful family summers of activity that we have ever seen. To have been able to visit with all of you this past few months at different times was just terrific....and all the pics of the little children having so much fun. I think back to the "old days" when we had all the stuff on slides, and would put up a big screen in the living room and just enjoy looking at all the places we had been and family members we had visited...(many of them now gone from this world, at least). What a grand record you are accumulating on this family site. We can all share in all the things everyone is doing and it brings us all so close, even if we live so far apart. Quite amazing that we all got together so much this year !! I will be sure to direct Aunt Joanie's attention to the "sundry" item on the list, since that was the "cousin's reunion" we had at her house while everyone was here for my B'day Celebration . Years down the road everyone will say "But we thought Gramma was born in January ??? How come the celebration took place in July ??" Well, if everyone could see how much snow we had on my birthday in January, they would know the answer to that question. The only thing I could see that was missing in that huge posting of pics, was some taken of you, Jennifer, Malcolm and Anna Claire, when we saw you at your Mom and Dad's when we were there in May for Aunt Jenny's graduation. You really should insert a few if you have some !! Once again ....Thanks to all of you for the pics, and thanks especially to you,Jon for all this "love" you pour into the family site. Grampa and I think we have an amazingly wonderful and talented family......God bless you all. Love, Gramma BZ (and Grampa too!!) "
Jon_News on 07.31.09 @ 05:19 AM EST

Wednesday, July 29th

The Largest Picture Post in History!

Here it is (glare at Doug and Les), the WORLD'S LARGEST PICTURE POST IN HISTORY!

Events spanning 3 months, a virtual famililial (spelling) bonanza! Ready.....*deep breath*

Harriet's Visit May 2009 - Click HERE

Uncle Bill's Carving Show (Summer 2009) - Click HERE

Dan's BBQ and a Beese Visit June 2009 - Click HERE

Aunt Jenny's Graduation - May 2009 - Click HERE

Grandma BZ's 80th Bday!!!! - Click HERE

Antioch's 4th of July Parade - Click HERE

Rick's 4th of July Fireworks and Jelly Belly Factory Trip - Click HERE

Various and Sundry Goodness - Click HERE

Joey's BIG Atlanta Trip - Click The Place to see the pics!

The Aquarium!

The Zoo!

The Train Museum!

The Coca-Cola Factory!

*EXHALE* PHEW! Now that is A LOT OF PICS! Enjoy and keep them coming, great to see everyone and hope all is well.

Jon_News on 07.29.09 @ 05:24 PM EST

Tiger World!

Grandpa/Dad/Doug takes the guys to Tiger world in Rowan County (NC):

"today's trip to Tiger World located about 15 miles SE form the house near Rockwell NC. We had a 15 minute session with the baby white tiger...what a trip!!! Her name was Bandit...and was she a doll baby. Rambunctious as all get out but very nice. The one year old in the cage next door was a sweetie too. Bandit was 3 months. Joey really liked it but Mason was not so sure it was a good deal until the ice cream came out at the end....;-)" Doug Black

Click HERE for the pics.

Thanks Dad!
Jon_News on 07.29.09 @ 08:00 AM EST


Uncle Dan starts to play with IMovie! Too Cute Mason!

Click HERE for the YouTube Video!

Thanks D.

Jon_News on 07.29.09 @ 07:45 AM EST

Tuesday, July 28th

Uncle Robert's Stairs

Uncle Roberts handywork......he bills out at $1000 an hour!

Click HERE for the shots!

Guess he got some of that Beese Carpenter too.

big grin
Jon_News on 07.28.09 @ 06:14 AM EST

Monday, July 13th

Joey Turns 13!!! NO WAY!!!!!!!!!

Joey's 13th BD Part was held at CC's Pizza in Harrisburg and then we went down the road to Monkey-Joes. Besides the usual suspects, Joeys class mate Dillon and his folks, cousin Mason and his adult supervision, Uncle Rod & Aunt Diane in from Indianapolis, Great Grandma Black and a couple Jennifer went to Dental School were there too. They played till they dropped! Literally...Mason was the last to drop! ;-)

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 07.13.09 @ 03:16 PM EST

New Fireworks from Rick!

Click HERE for the vid!

Thanks Rick! Well Done!

Jon_News on 07.13.09 @ 08:55 AM EST

Monday, June 8th

Jenny's Graduation - Via Harriet

Thanks to Harriet for uploading these shots to Picasa, Jenny's Graduation and the Feasties at GMa/Leslie Black's House

Click HERE for the shots

Thanks Harriet

Jon_News on 06.08.09 @ 09:17 AM EST

Saturday, June 6th

A Day at the Park

Here are some shots of the kids at the park this week. How about that RED hair!

Click HERE for the shots.


Jon_News on 06.06.09 @ 11:51 AM EST

Thursday, June 4th

Chris Beese Graduates!

From Uncle BI:

"Here are a few pics from Chris’ graduation from Vancouver Island University yesterday. He got a Bachelor of Arts in History, “with distinction” too. "

Way to go Chris! Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 06.04.09 @ 10:45 AM EST

Saturday, May 30th

New Pics!

Some shots of the Montana/Cali BZ's and Families . Cousin Beth Graduating from College, GO BETH!

Thanks RIck for uploading and thanks Gma BZ for getting them scanned.

Click HERE for the Shots.

Jon_News on 05.30.09 @ 05:34 PM EST

Monday, May 11th


Click HERE for the vid!

Nice New Logo TOO! Great work whoever did it.

cool eh?
Jon_News on 05.11.09 @ 07:05 AM EST

Saturday, May 9th

Some shots of the Kids so far this summer!

Malcolm and Little Red (aka Anna Claire) are tearing it up together already! Malcolm is continuing to be a great big brother.....most of the time and they get along great. As you see she is Super Red and Mobile!

Click HERE for Anna

Click HERE for Malcolm

Jon_News on 05.09.09 @ 06:38 PM EST

Thursday, April 16th

From Aunt Jenny Sliker

Announcing the spring commencement at Montreat College in Montreat, NC!

Where Jenny (aka Aunt Jen, Mom, little sis, etc.) will be receiving her master’s degree in Management and Leadership…

On Saturday, May 23 at 2:00 p.m. in the main auditorium at the Montreat Campus.

Hooding ceremony at 1:15 p.m. prior to commencement

All are welcome – we will have a gathering afterwards at the house – NEW address: 23 Woodsedge Dr. Asheville, NC 28803

I might get around to sending out actual paper invitations, but in case I don’t in between writing my final research paper and a business plan, everyone will get it here on the family website!

Email, call or Facebook if you plan to attend, and I’ll send you details and directions.

Love, Jenny



big grin
Jon_News on 04.16.09 @ 09:04 AM EST

Tuesday, April 14th

New Pics of Jon and Jen's Kids

and the cuteness continues.....*Malcolm stop that....Anna, no no no, Malcolm, listen to your, no, no not the broom................*

Sorry, oh, yesm, cute, here they are!

Click HERE for Anna

Click HERE for Spawn of Sata.....I mean Malcolm.

Jon_News on 04.14.09 @ 07:47 PM EST

Monday, April 13th



Can you post please?

My Small Screen Premiere (even if it's only a minute!)

A video piece I shot and edited is going to air on the SPEED channel tomorrow (Sat, the 11th) on AMA Pro Primetime (the show). They are going to have an interview with a friend of mine Neale Bayly, who will set up the clip about a Yamaha TZ250 (motorcycle) that I shot him riding at Barber Motorsports Park last fall.

So if you have SPEED, the show starts at 10 PM, and if you don't want to watch the whole thing, my part is in the last segment, so tune in at about 10:50 PM ET.

Thanks dude!


big grin big grin
Jon_News on 04.13.09 @ 08:29 AM EST

Friday, April 10th

The Attic Project

New Pics of Dad/Gpa Black/Doug's Attic

Check them out HERE.

Jon_News on 04.10.09 @ 07:40 AM EST

Monday, April 6th

From Grandma/Barbara Beese

"Hi everyone in the dear Family: Gramma BZ here just to say I am doing just fine and love all of you to pieces. Thank you all for your loving support and prayers over the past two or three would require a huge long e-mail to say all the thanks I want to for everything everyone did to bring me through . God is Good and God bless all of you. Grampa and I hope to see all of you before too long. Love and hugs, Gramma"



Jon_News on 04.06.09 @ 06:58 AM EST

Wednesday, April 1st

Update from Amanda Sliker

"Hello to all of my family and extended family!!!

So the drama of my life continues once again. So for those of you who don’t know (which I doubt is anyone since news in our family travels faster than the water in Niagara Falls!)- Will so kindly decided that we did not need to be together anymore! But no tears or depression because life goes on and I am doing great!!!

I have moved back to Asheville with mom and dad and it is awesome. I have gotten a new job at the VA hospital in the Community Living Center. I LOVE IT!!! I am working in the Hospice wing right now and have been picked to go to Atlanta for 2 days to be a trainer for the new hospice wing. I am working on some school and would love to get my counseling cert so I can work on the substance abuse and alcohol rehab floor!! Aka work with people that have more issues than me LOL!!!!! I am off to England on the 13th of April for a long needed vacation. I am also coaching soccer with dad at the local middle school. We don’t win a lot but it is a lot of fun. I am also staying busy with my two friends Jen and Cindy. They have a beautiful little one named Addie and I am Auntie Amanda. So I take her to swimming lessons and little gym!!! Plus they are getting ready to have another one in Nov. so life will get even busier. Overall I am doing awesome! Thank you all for being my family and loving me even when I am a little nuts.

Love Amanda"

Jon_News on 04.01.09 @ 11:45 AM EST

Monday, March 30th

Wisconsin Spring!

Just uploaded some pics:

Only 6-8 inches of snow at the end of March, that's mild WI Spring. wink

From Rick Black

Click HERE for the shots
Jon_News on 03.30.09 @ 08:27 AM EST

Saturday, March 14th

Latest Pics of the kids

Check out Anna on the move and with teeth!

Click HERE

And the Whirling Dervish/Tasmanian Devil/Complete Ball of Energy....aka My son Malcolm!

Click HERE

Everyone is semi healthy (usual cold and such) but great.

Luv J

Jon_News on 03.14.09 @ 02:57 PM EST

Friday, February 27th

Dad Black's Attic Project

Click HERE for the progress on the attic. Looking great pops.

smile smile razz big grin
Jon_News on 02.27.09 @ 08:03 AM EST

Saturday, January 24th

The Latest from Anna and Malcolm!

Again, pardon the hiatus, script troubles. Here is the latest from Anna and Malcolm. Malcolm is a MADMAN! Anna is so f#$%&@#ing cute! Smiles with her whole face, just like her momma, anyway, she is on to real food, starting to crawl and just pretty much pwning her daddy.

Click HERE for Anna and HERE for Malcolm.

Cheers to the New Year!

Jon_News on 01.24.09 @ 08:05 PM EST

Bear with me

Pardon the lapse in posts, trouble with the script running the email notification, also pardon the spam if it killed some of you. Pics and videos on the way.

Jon_News on 01.24.09 @ 06:50 PM EST

Tuesday, January 6th

Mom and Dad Black's Trip to Williamsburg - 2008

From Dad/Uncle Doug/Gpa Black:

"New Years File is of Mom and me in Williamsburg with Kathy and Gene Kruger, friends from Salisbury.

We visited Jamestown, and saw several events at the Williamsburg First Night celebration...a very nice annual affair with dozens of venues of entertainer and historical events over two days.

It was quite nippy, 35 degrees with a 25-40 Knott wind the first day, that is why Leslie seems a bit 'wind-blown'.

We had a good time, very worth while events, professional, fun and not expensive."

Click HERE for the shots.

Thanks Pops

Jon_News on 01.06.09 @ 10:08 AM EST

Saturday, December 27th

Christmas Pics - 2008

Got some pictures from Christmas Eve at Dan's (Black) - CLICK HERE for the shots.

Also, Christmas Morning at our house and the day at the Hiatt's (Jennifer's family) - CLICK HERE for those shots.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year All!

Jon_News on 12.27.08 @ 01:52 PM EST

Friday, December 26th

Christmas in the Midwest - 2008

A great Xmas video from Rick, time in teh midwest! Thanks Rick! Enjoy.

Click HERE for the Video.

big grin
Jon_News on 12.26.08 @ 03:03 PM EST

Saturday, December 6th

Pictures a KIMBO!

Holy Enourmous Uploads Batman!

Click HERE for Turkey Day shots from Gma Blacks

Click HERE for Turkey Day shots from the Hiatts (Jon's wife Jennifer's family)

Click HERE for Anna in November and HERE for Malcolm in November

And Last, our annual Xmas party at the gym, Dad (Doug) was nice enough to take some pics, I was running around like crazy, thanks dad. Click HERE for the pics.


Jon_News on 12.06.08 @ 04:51 PM EST

Wednesday, December 3rd

Thanksgiving at Nonnie's House - 2008

Just got some pictures from Dan Black, these are Thanksgiving at Blair's Grandma's house, Nonnie.

Click HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 12.03.08 @ 05:50 PM EST

Wednesday, November 26th

The Crib Story continues........

From Aunt Jenny (Sliker):

"Here’s a little addition to the crib story! It must have slipped Grandma Beese’s memory!

When Amanda was only about six weeks old, she slept in the antique crib in February/March 1982 when we were on our way from California (San Diego) to Panama via Illinois, New Jersey and Charleston, SC after Tom got transferred from SIMA to Rodman Naval Station. We drove across country in our little Chevy Chevette and stopped in Illinois for several days, and Amanda slept in the crib – we even have pictures! Maybe I can scan a couple and get them in for the site so you can see into the past!

The legacy lives on!

Aunt Jenny"

big grin
Jon_News on 11.26.08 @ 04:51 AM EST

Monday, November 24th

Rick Getting TASED! SWEET!

*WARNING NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART! (just kidding but don't try this at home)*

And now a message from Rick.....

"Well we finally go our new Taser's and I got to try out the vest cover I designed and made last year when I heard these were in the works. Most of the guys took the hit pretty good. Sorry about the "focus" issue, it was my friend's camera and it was going in and out. Anyway, good training, successful test, and don't try this at home kids! RB"

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 11.24.08 @ 03:16 AM EST

Thursday, November 20th

Mom and Dad Black's Trip out West - 2008

Click HERE for the pictures and a little description below from Dad Black

"Trip to Old Town Sacramento for dinner at Crab-Shack

New kittens born in our closet 1st night there...;-)

Nancy and Chris get Tree-of-Life tapestry from Belgium.

Robert and friend Jane at Sacramento Rail Road Museum."

Jon_News on 11.20.08 @ 07:18 AM EST

Friday, November 14th

History of the Crib

A little story about the crib in the recent pictures of Anna from Grandma/Barbara Beese:

"Dear Jon and Jennifer and all the family: Thanks for all the wonderful family pics during our visit and for Halloween, etc. It is a wonderful website and makes us feel close to all of you. The history of the little crib is that it goes back to the Civil War era and so is about 150 years old. At the time that my sister Muriel (Aunt Moonie) was to be born in 1922, my parents were visiting a very old lady and man who are in the old family movies. We don't know exactly what their relationship was in our family, as Grampa (Earl) has never been able to find them in all his geneaology research. We don't know their last name!! Anyway, they always said when they showed the old movies, that that was Aunt Mary and Uncle Hermann. Aunt Mary gave my mother the crib, which was hers when she(Aunt Mary) had her first baby!! She was about 80+ yrs old at that time, and if she had her first baby at about 20 yrs old, then the crib wa s already 60 yrs old in 1922. That would take it back to the 1860's if it was new then. We have seen many spool beds and cradles in Museums which are dated in the 1860's, and look very much like this crib. So after Moonie was in the crib, we assume Joanie and I (Gramma Barbara), were in it too. Also, I remember my younger brother Robert Gordon Thiele, being in the crib, and also several of my older sisters and brothers babies. Everyone seemed to want it to be a different color, so there were many coats of enamel on it when Grampa and I found it in the corner of my Dad's basement when we were expecting your Mom, Leslie Ann, in 1948. Grampa Earl asked my Dad if we could have it...he recognized it to be a wonderful black walnut crib under all those layers of paint!!! He spent many evenings in his little workshop area in the basement of 4927 Winona Street, Chicago, where we had our first apartment downstairs from his parents, Ruth and John Beese. Wel l you can see he did a beautiful job of taking off all the pink,blue,ivory, and pale green layers of paint, to reveal the beautiful black walnut finish which he put on it all those years ago. Subsequently, of course, Bob, Bill and Jenny all slept in the crib, and then it was loaned out in my family to Joanie, Moonie, and my niece Patty James Lloyd, who had 6 children who all slept in it for awhile. I think my niece Judy Frolich Parchman also borrowed it for some of her babies too. Finally it came back to rest in our home in Antioch, Il at Petite Lake, on Summerside Drive where it held my dolls and resided in our Master bedroom...Until a very important baby came along in 1997...our Great-grandson Cullen James Black, who lives in Salem, Wisconsin with his Mommy and Daddy, Naomi and Richard. (Note: We already had a very important first Great-grandson, Joey Black, Mike's son,but he did not live near us or sleep in the crib). So the crib was taken up to Salem and Cullen slept in it for about two months, I think..Anyway Naomi will remember. It was then returned to Nanny and Poppy's house . There it stayed until this October 2008, when we transported it to North Carolina and gave it to Leslie and Doug to care for and share. It is a true "family heirloom" and Anna Claire Black is the first Great-GRANDDAUGHTER of ours to sleep in it, now that it is in her Gramma Leslie, and Grampa Doug's home in Salisbury, North Carolina. I do have to note that Leslie put both Christian and Richard in that crib when she was visiting us when they were tiny babies. I don 't think any of our other grandchildren slept in it because they were never here when they were small enough to use it. So now you can all print yourselves a copy of this e-mail and the history of the crib will never be lost. But we sure would like to know who Aunt Mary and Uncle Hermann were!!! Love to all of you, Gramma and Grampa (Earl and Barbara) Beese"

Thanks for the history Grandma! I am happy to have added a "daughter" to the story!

Luv 2 All

Jon_News on 11.14.08 @ 03:29 AM EST

Saturday, November 8th

Lotsa Pics!

We got Pics GALORE!

Click HERE for Pics from the latest BZ trip down south!

Click HERE for October with Anna!

Click HERE for Pics of Malcolm latest!

Take note of the Halloween goodness, he was a race car driver, she was a monkey, the pumpkins molded! Gotta love 80 in Carolina in October! Also, take note of the crib Anna is in in the BZ visit pics at the end, Gma BZ can give you the whole story, very cool!

Thanks to all.
Jon_News on 11.08.08 @ 02:40 PM EST

Tuesday, October 21st

New Pics of Anna!

Anna and mom visited the photographer at 3 Weeks Old!

Check it out HERE!

Jon_News on 10.21.08 @ 06:25 AM EST

Monday, October 20th

A post from Rick!

From Rick:

"I put together a small video of my friends Andrew and Kaline Gillespie's wedding reception. We all had a wonderful time and the food and drink was out of this world. I've known these kids for a few years now and they are the best! We miss everyone there and hope to see you all next year at Amanda's wedding"

Click HERE for the vid!

cool eh?
Jon_News on 10.20.08 @ 10:55 AM EST

Tuesday, October 14th

This just in.....

Ok Will and I are getting MARRIED. YES YES it is tru amanda is engaged and I have not ran away or killed him yet. We are looking to do something small in may around the 16th so that any family can come for the wedding stay a week and then go to moms graduation for her masters.
We are living in Mooresville where I am working at the Brian Canter a rehab place for old folks and Will is welding during the week and working on a pit crew for nascar on the weekends. I am still in school plugging away at the Sociology/Social work thing along with getting my RN as well. I just got a pay raise and a promotion at my job which is good. I am also in the process of becoming a Gardium At litum for iredell county. We love you all my family is always there no matter what!!! Miss you all.

Love Amanda and Will
PS wills last name is Lynn and that is my middle name go figure!!!

*Amanda Sliker*

Jon_News on 10.14.08 @ 05:19 AM EST

Monday, September 29th

Tom and Jen Update

Just got an update to Tom and Jen's page, check it out HERE!

Thanks Jen
Jon_News on 09.29.08 @ 06:32 AM EST

Sunday, September 28th

Mom and Dad (Leslie and Doug) Greece Trip - 2008

"These photos cover several days of activities in Athens, the Plaka, Shopping on 3 Island cruise, Acropolis, Agora, Piraeus Sea Port and War Ships Museum as well as a two day guided tour by bus to Delphi and Meteora.

You'll see our sea-side hotel, the local neighborhood homes in the area and related beach, scenes from the old market, The Plaka, lots of small store fronts, The Acropolis with Parthenon, the Ancient Agora, old market (500 BC), The 500 BC wooden Trireme war ship, the temple ruins at Delphi- ancient sooth-sayer central for folks like Alexander the Great and a host of lesser figures and ending with a tour of the rain-shrouded monitories on the rock panicles at Meteora (12th century) 200 miles NW of Athens very near the Romanian boarder.

Great trip, exhausting, good food, nice people, interesting sights."

*Uncle Doug, 9/28/2008*

Click HERE for the Greece Pics!

big grin
Jon_News on 09.28.08 @ 03:39 PM EST

Thomas the Tank and Rick's Fireworks!

We got some shots of the guys (Mason and Malcolm and gang) at the Thomas and Friends event in Spencer NC this Saturday. It was WET AND MUDDY, but the guys had a blast!

Click HERE for the shots.

Also, this just in, Rick and his band of Pyro-Prone Pals have gotten together again, check out the WPAG September Show.

Click HERE for the vid!

Jon_News on 09.28.08 @ 11:01 AM EST

Friday, September 26th

Mike and the Knights in Action!

Check out Mike and the Knightly Order at the Annual Charlotte NC Blues and BBQ Festival

Click HERE for the PICS.

big grin
Jon_News on 09.26.08 @ 04:00 AM EST

Cullen's in 6th Grade!

Can you belive it!

Click HERE
Jon_News on 09.26.08 @ 03:51 AM EST

Thursday, September 11th

New Pics of Anna!

Check out our girl, she gets a visit from Uncle Dan and Aunt Blair and has a bath!

Click HERE

cool eh?
Jon_News on 09.11.08 @ 10:51 AM EST

Tuesday, September 2nd

Grandpa Beese turns 82!

Happy Birthday Grandpa/Great Grandpa/Uncle/Brother Earl (depending on the reader's relationship!).

Hope the day was great and HERE are some pics! Thanks.

big grin
Jon_News on 09.02.08 @ 03:07 AM EST

Saturday, August 30th

Slight Correction on the Name and More Pictures!

Jen and I decided to change her name at the LAST minute before leaving the hospital.

Anna Claire Black! Just dropped the e. Anyway, mom and baby are home and doing great.

Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 08.30.08 @ 06:41 AM EST

Friday, August 29th

She has a name!

Anne Claire Black!

She is named after her Mom, Jennifer Anne Black, her Grandma, Leslie Anne Black, her other Grandma, Lois Anne Hiatt and her Great Grandmother, Barbara Claire Beese.

If you missed her page, here it is, more pics to come!

Jon_News on 08.29.08 @ 03:40 PM EST

She is HERE!

Baby Girl Black (still to be named) decided to arrive yesterday 8/28/2008 at 3:56 p.m. EST and she was 8lbs 8 oz, 19.5 inches tall and is just perfect! Mom and baby are recovering and Dad and Malcolm are business as usual. Malcolm is just FASCINATED by his new baby sister and very proud. More to come.

HERE are the Pics.

Jon_News on 08.29.08 @ 02:59 AM EST

Tuesday, August 26th

New Pics of Malcolm!

Check out our Man turning 3! He had an all weekend extravaganza, school party, home party then the zoo.

Click HERE for the pics.

Then, here is his last year in his class the Lions, he moved on to the 3 year old class this past Monday.

Click HERE for the shots!

wink PS. Still no baby girl, will keep you posted.
Jon_News on 08.26.08 @ 06:47 AM EST

Sunday, August 24th


Click HERE for the August goodies from Rick and his PYRO buddies!

crying crazy hehe LOL
Jon_News on 08.24.08 @ 04:48 PM EST

Wednesday, August 13th

Big Ben Sliker is GETTING MURRED!

PS. MURRED is Southern for Married! Congratulations to Ben and Marie. No date set yet, but we will keep you posted!

Click HERE for the pic!

And can we start a dialog on WHAT IN THE WORLD a women that looks like that (ref. above photo) is doing getting married to Ben?

Congrats guys!

Jon_News on 08.13.08 @ 02:38 AM EST

Sunday, July 27th


Check out the Pics from Tom and Jenny (Jon's Uncle and Aunt) Renewing their vows (1980-2008) in JAMAICA! SWEET!

Click HERE for pics

Mom and Dad Black had a baby shower for Jennifer and me at their house this weekend, here are the Pics.

Click HERE.

Congrats to Tom and Jenny! Awesome. Now if they could only get Jon an update for the website, so people know what they are up to............*yawns*......*yawns*.......(waiting for Jenny's email)........

Jon_News on 07.27.08 @ 03:54 PM EST

Sunday, July 13th

Canon Shoot! Joey Turns 12 and the July WPAG! WOOT!

Click HERE for Rick and his WPAG (Wisc. Pyro. All. Guild!).

Click HERE for the Canon Shoot last weekend!

Click HERE for Joey's 12th Birthday! Can you believe it!

Thanks to all.

Jon_News on 07.13.08 @ 02:42 PM EST

Thursday, July 10th

Mason's Surgery OK!

From Dan, FYI, Mason swallowed a quarter a few weeks ago!

"So now you know what Mason looks like inside and out! Thought everyone might find this as disturbingly cool as I did. First they blow up the stomach with air, then find the quarter, net it, drag it out and then take pics of the stomach, intestine and throat to make sure there isn’t any substantial damage. Mason, got a small scratch on his ughphlobleum (the little tube that goes from stomach to intestine), no worries there. Doc said he may have a small appetite for a few days…yeah right…for dinner he had: 3 bowls of cheerios, 2 snack packs, Pasta and Marinara, ½ an apple, banana, cake, apple sauce, evidently no one informed him that the kid is indestructible!

PS: My favorite pic…the view of the quarter with United States so clearly visible."

Click HERE for the shot of the quarter.

Jon_News on 07.10.08 @ 10:48 AM EST

Tuesday, July 8th

Mason at the Beach! 2008

More from Dan, Mason at the Beach.

Click HERE for the pics.

big grin
Jon_News on 07.08.08 @ 12:18 PM EST

Mason's Second BDay and Rick's Antioch 4th of July Fireworks!

Check out Mason in action on the second birthday! HERE

And check out Rick's handy work at the 2008 Antioch Fireworks Show! Broke the video into two pieces, it was HUGE!

Click HERE for the first part, the parade.

Click HERE for the second part, the fireworks.

Thanks to Dan and Rick for the Stuff!

Jon_News on 07.08.08 @ 07:02 AM EST

4th of July in Antioch - 2008 and Mel Shaikes Tribute Service Video

Here are some shots from the 4th of July in Antioch 2008 - Click HERE

Also, here is a video tribute to Harriet's (mom black's long time friend) late husband Mel Shaikes, he passed on June 26th.

Here is the VIDEO.
Jon_News on 07.08.08 @ 01:32 AM EST

Sunday, June 29th

Mason Gets a Mini-Trampoline!

Check out our man on the mini-tramp. Notice the perplexed look on dad midway through the "Easy Assembly"

Click HERE for the pics!

Thanks Pops
Jon_News on 06.29.08 @ 03:47 PM EST

Monday, June 16th

Father's Day at Jon and Jen's and NEW MASON SHOTS!

First, check out my man MASON in action in June: Click HERE (thanks D)

Also, this past weekend had old Friends from Springfield VA down for Father's day and the crowd up from Charlotte and Salisbury. Check out the shots HERE (thanks D and Pops)

Jon_News on 06.16.08 @ 12:10 PM EST

Sunday, May 25th

Two Vids from Rick!

Check out two vids Rick sent me, one from the WPAG (his we like to blow stuff up group) and then one from Medieval Times!

Click HERE for the Fireworks!

Here is the other video!

Click HERE for the Show


Jon_News on 05.25.08 @ 05:48 PM EST

Friday, May 23rd


I have received a very neat video of Chris presenting new products for Intel,

Give it a look!!!

Luvya, Dad
Jon_News on 05.23.08 @ 07:53 AM EST

Tuesday, May 20th

Cullen's BDay Video!

"We all had a good time at Cullen's 11th Birthday Party at our place. We had steak (of course) corn on the cob, green beans and Nanny made a cake. Cullen got an new bike, cell phone, model ship and lots of $ to spend on video games. Hope to see you all soon, Rick Naomi & Cullen"

Click HERE for Cullens's BDay!.

big grin
Jon_News on 05.20.08 @ 05:54 PM EST

Sunday, May 18th

Mother's Day Shots! 2008

Here are some pics of the fun from Gma (leslie) Black's today and the ensuing rain storm. Lots of goodies and Mason, Malcolm and Joey ran each oter ragged.

Click HERE and then HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 05.18.08 @ 07:57 PM EST

Saturday, May 17th

Mom and Dad and the Fam at the Beach/Jen Graduates!

Here are some shots of Mom and Dad Black's trip to Foley Beach SC with Dan, Blair and Mason. Also Mike's Jen graduated from Dental Tech School (YEAH JEN!).

Click HERE

Congrats to Jen and Thanks for the shots pops.

Jon_News on 05.17.08 @ 02:19 PM EST

Sunday, April 27th

More MS WALK 2008 pics

More Pics from the MS Walk on Saturday!

Thanks Dad/Doug for the shots!

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 04.27.08 @ 09:59 PM EST

Saturday, April 26th

MS Walk 2008

Thanks to everyone who made it! Check out the Family at this years MS Walk!

Click HERE!

Jon_News on 04.26.08 @ 09:23 PM EST

Saturday, March 29th

Name Change for Val and Jed's Baby!

Strike Luke, change that to Jacob Rodney!

Jon_News on 03.29.08 @ 12:18 PM EST

Thursday, March 27th

Val and Jed Sharpe (Black) Have another Baby Boy!

3/24, Luke, 7#s, 11ozs, 19"s long...all well.

More to come when we get it....

Jon cool eh?
Jon_News on 03.27.08 @ 02:28 PM EST

Tuesday, March 25th

More Mason! WOOT WOOT!

Click HERE for more action with my Man.

big grin
Jon_News on 03.25.08 @ 06:15 PM EST

Mason in the New Year!

Check out Mason in action with Dad/Mom and fam! Now who does he look like?

Click HERE for the shots.

cool eh?

Jon_News on 03.25.08 @ 05:42 PM EST

Friday, March 7th

Malcolm in the New Year!

Check out our man in what we in NC call......snow.....*giggle*

Click HERE

And also at his favorite park last weekend, he LOVES this place. Got all the way to the top of the Rock Wall himself!

Click HERE for the pics.

Ps. For those who don't know, Jen and I are expecting August 28th! Not sure if it has made it around the family mill yet. We will keep you posted.


Jon_News on 03.07.08 @ 10:09 PM EST

Friday, February 8th

2 Feet of Snow + Our Family = Domicile!

Proof that there is more to Wisconsin then Miller (insert holy chants of reverence) and Brett Favre (reinsert Holy Chants of Packerdom worship).......

Behold............The Igloo!

Thanks for the pics Rick!

Click HERE!

Jon_News on 02.08.08 @ 09:07 PM EST

Monday, January 28th

Uncle Rick answers Malcolm's Prayers!

Thanks to Uncle Rick for the Video, Malcolm is gonna LOVE IT!

Click HERE for the Best of Rick's Fireworks - 2007 Video.
Jon_News on 01.28.08 @ 04:17 PM EST

Monday, December 31st

Here are the pics Grandma Beese was looking for!

Click HERE to see the pics.


Thanks Dad.

Jon_News on 12.31.07 @ 03:11 PM EST

A Note from GMa BZ



Oh and Grandma, what was in the box was an antique Punch Set from Germany. Mom really wanted it and Jennifer and I got it for her, with a little help from Dad!

Jon_News on 12.31.07 @ 07:57 AM EST

Sunday, December 30th

Xmas at Grandma Black's - 2007

Just got some shots from Gpa (Doug) Black from Christmas today at their place. Thanks to all the relatives for the great gifts, Malcolm will SURELY enjoy them.

Click HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 12.30.07 @ 07:23 PM EST

Friday, December 28th

Mason in December!

Check out Mason (aka The Child that looks EXACTLY like his mother), in action around Christmas!

Click HERE for the shots.

Thanks to D for the pics.

Jon_News on 12.28.07 @ 03:25 PM EST

Tuesday, December 25th

Christmas Eve at Dan and Blair's

Check out the pics from Dan and Blair's Christmas Eve gathering!

Click HERE for the shots.

big grin
Jon_News on 12.25.07 @ 06:14 PM EST

Monday, December 24th

Christmas at the Wisconsin Black's - 2007

Christmas at the Wisconsin Black's!

Click HERE for the Video.

big grin
Jon_News on 12.24.07 @ 09:56 PM EST

Tuesday, November 27th

Rick's Trip - 2007

Check out the slidehsow from Rick, Naomi and Cullen's Trip to the Carolinas!

Click HERE for the Slideshow.

big grin
Jon_News on 11.27.07 @ 10:07 AM EST

Friday, November 23rd

More Pictures!

Some shots from Grandpa Black from T-Day, Rick and Naomi'sproperty in Western Carolina and there visit with Tom and Jen and their trip so far!

Click HERE for the shots.


Jon_News on 11.23.07 @ 09:25 PM EST

Feasting! Turkey Days at the Hiatt's and Black's

Had a great two day run, up to Mt. Airy for the Hiatt FEAST, click HERE for the pics.

Also, I am still sweating from todays feasting at Momma Black's, click HERE for the shots. Had a great visit with Uncle Rod and Aunt Diane, Rick and Naomi and the gang. Thanks Ma for the great food.

Jon_News on 11.23.07 @ 09:13 PM EST

Saturday, November 10th

Reposted Pics

Sorry for the trouble all, server issues this week. Gallery should be working fine now, here is the link:


Jon_News on 11.10.07 @ 02:47 PM EST

Friday, November 9th

Mom and Dad visit DC! - 2007

Check out Mom and Dad Black as Tourists in the old stomping grounds! What a memorial....PS...Thanks Grandpa BZ/GPa Hiatt/GGpa Black......we remember wink

Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 11.09.07 @ 10:07 PM EST

Thursday, November 8th

Culen at Halloween and the BOAT!

EXPERIENCING SERVER ERRORS! If the gallery of Cullen gives you an error, try refreshing this page, (f5) or waiting a minute, should be fixed soon! Sorry Jon! 9:43 pm EST 11/08/07 FIXED!

Make sure and REFRESH to get the new link, (f5 key) sorry for the trouble!

Here is Cullen in action at Halloween! Also a boat project for school, I would be impressed (as with Bill's carving/mike's armor/rick's fireworks)...........but when your Grandfather/Great Grandfather is a carpenter, I would expect nothing less!

Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 11.08.07 @ 09:29 PM EST

Thursday, November 1st

Added Mason to the Halloween Pics in the gallery on the last post!

Tigger Rocks! Click here for the updated Halloween pics......*still glaring at Rick*

Click HERE

big grin
Jon_News on 11.01.07 @ 08:58 PM EST

Halloween Pics - 2007

Here are a few shots of Joey and Mike and Malcolm in action on Halloween. WOuld love to add the other family members kids if you shoot them my way *glares at Rick and Dan.........*


Click HERE for the shots!

Jon_News on 11.01.07 @ 08:32 PM EST

Sunday, October 28th

Punkin' Huntin'

Here are a few shots from this Years Great Punkin' Hunt! And some shots from Mom's


Click HERE!
Jon_News on 10.28.07 @ 06:57 PM EST

Sunday, October 21st

Malcolm in October and at the Beach!

Check out our man in action in October '07. We also had the chance to go to North Myrtle, SC, for one of Jen's "smart people" conferences at a SWEET resort, called the POA (no clue what that means)....anyway, here are the shots!

Click HERE!


Jon_News on 10.21.07 @ 07:28 PM EST

Monday, October 1st

September BOOM BOOM!

Check out the latest from Rick and the Crew in WI/IL!

Click HERE

ALL HAIL AC/DC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! METAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

big grin
Jon_News on 10.01.07 @ 09:33 PM EST

Wednesday, September 26th

The BZ 60th Anniversary and Civil War Ball!

"Hey Jon, I just uploaded some pictures from Nanny and Poppy's 60th anniversary at the Civil War Ball in Lake Ville IL, and outing with Joanie and Ray in Woodstock IL. They had a great time both days and nanny's dress was stunning! Poppy didn't look to shabby himself. " Richard Black

Click HERE for the Pictures

big grin
Jon_News on 09.26.07 @ 06:40 AM EST

Thursday, September 13th

Pics from Sarah Crossman

Here is the latest from Sarah Crossman (Uncle Hamster's daughter, old friend from Germany days with dad)...

Click HERE for the pics

"Hi all! We ventured out for our first vacation after Sam's arrival this Labor Day weekend and while it's
tempting to title our efforts as "The Griswolds Swiss Vacation" or at least our German-French-German-Swiss vacation, I'll just call it our trip to Switzerland. It did, however, start as a bit of an International
Lampoon. We left Saturday morning for four days in Lauterbrunnen in the Swiss Alps and after an easy hour on the autobahn, we hit a ten-mile, four and a half hour traffic jam that turned our plans upside down a bit. We crawled and sat and crawled and sat, and I held Sam in my lap and fed him while Evan watched DVD's on the laptop until she got bored and started pleading to get out of her seat. Steve looked like he was going to spontaneously combust, he was so frustrated, and it just started to feel like we ought to turn around at the first opportunity and go home. The autobahn was closed at the next exit and everyone was herded off the road onto side streets that eventually dumped you out onto the french autoroute. That was an even bigger mess than the autobahn itself. We stopped for a late lunch, comiserated a bit on what we should do (at this point we were only about 80 miles from the house) and as we got back out on the road, we noticed that all the cars getting off the autobahn where we were forced to exit an hour earlier had local license plates, so we knew the road was
re-opened. We jumped on it, and one exit (another ten miles) later, it came to another standstill. So we got off voluntarily, drove over to France to continue our trip south and just started to feel the exhaustion of the day. As a result, we stopped in the town of Colmar, the southernmost town on the Alsatian wine road and got a great dinner and a hotel room. We had been on the road almost nine hours and we were 153.4 miles from home and only halfway to our intended destination. But it was a great evening, and we really enjoyed our brief time there. It's a city we wanted to see anyway, and I think we'll go back in December for their Christmas market and another great meal or two, but it was nice to check it out unexpectedly. It's the home of the Statue of Liberty, which if you recall was a gift from France to the U.S.
We didn't know that's where it came from until we saw the park built as a tribute to the artist. The canals that weave through the old city are beautiful and this time of year they're lined with huge geranium plants, so we just enjoyed wandering around and enjoying the scenery.

We got to Lauterbrunnen pretty fast the next morning and checked into our cabin and relaxed for a little
while before going up the new cable car to the town of Murren for some sightseeing, a little walking and some ice cream. The next day we walked to Trummelbach Falls while Evan rode her bike and then we bussed to another cable car and rode that up the mountain to the town of Gimmelwald. Evan spent a while playing on a playground while we spread out our picnic lunch on a youth hostel table that hung out over a cliff and we ate and stared at the mountains. A short walk through town, and then back down to our cabin where soon after we arrived, it started to rain hard, so we sat under the awning and had dinner and enjoyed the rain. We were exhausted when we got home last Tuesday, but it
was worth the trip, even worth sitting in the worst traffic jam we've ever been in. Ever. I'll attach
some pictures at the end of this e-mail.

Our bigger news is that we have our next assignment. Steve decided to compete for a job as a professor of military science as one of his many options for after Germany and he got an e-mail telling him he'd been selected for the position at Northern Illinois University. We talked about it for a few days and then he accepted it right before we left for our vacation. We were a little uncertain about the
location, but decided that it had a lot of advantages and very few disadvantages. You get to make a list of the schools that you're willing to accept out of the schools whose jobs are opening that year, and while they will only offer you a job at a school or region you indicate you'll accept, you don't actually get to pick your school. Some nameless, faceless person in Virginia does that for you. So next summer we'll be moving to DeKalb, Illinois for either one year or three years - events coming up in December or January will determine how long we'll actually be there. If Steve competes for and is offered batallion command or G2 time and decides to take it, we'll only stay at NIU for one year. If he doesn't compete for it this year or turns it down, we'll stay for three years. At which point he's eligible for military retirement and we can move anywhere we darn well please. It's an hour west of downtown Chicago, which is a city we both love and DeKalb and neighboring Sycamore have been described as very nice college towns with an urban feel in a rural setting. No long commutes, no major traffic to contend with, and a reasonable cost of living. Sounds pretty nice. And while it's not home,
it's a cheaper and shorter flight from home than anything from over here. Although we're going to miss
Europe for a lot of different reasons.

That's all for now. Evan's at kindergarten, Sam's sleeping and I'd like to get a little reading and
cleaning done before he wakes up and we walk to go get her. Pictures attached.

Love to all,

big grin
Jon_News on 09.13.07 @ 03:55 PM EST

Saturday, September 1st

Lots O' Pics

Click HERE for shots of the Big Man, Malcolm "Wildman" Black, turning 2!

Click HERE for August Birthday Shots up at Patrick Hiatts (Jen's Older Brother) House, celebrating Janice, Alfred, Lois and Malcolms August B-Days!

Thanks to everyone for the gifts!

Jon_News on 09.01.07 @ 08:40 PM EST

Monday, August 27th

Rick and The WPAG August Show!

Check out Rick's newest Inventions! Starting to really get the hang of the whole "kaboom" thing:

"Well we had a great time at the annual WPAG picnic this weekend. Everyone got fat on BBQ chicken and sweet corn! Cullen and I had a good time shooting some "C" class fireworks, then I went over to the B-line to shoot the big stuff. My new 3 inch glitter mines shot well and will look really good in the finally of the show I am shooting in Sept. My 4 inch shells were fine too, but the highlight of the evening were the big 6 inch-ers. The double petal was ok, some of the stars blew blind, but I am testing out some new burst mixes. The ring and bow tie was more of a "C" and bow tie, but it is only my first attempt a pattern shells, so I think it went off well. The best shell all night was my monster 6 inch gold glitter to red shell, it went off perfectly and filled the sky with so many stars that my camera could not get all of the 500' burst in one frame. Everyone said it look like a professional shell, some even teased me an said it was "store bought" anyway, here is the video, enjoy. RB"

Click HERE for the video.

Jon_News on 08.27.07 @ 07:51 AM EST

Saturday, July 28th

Malcolm in July!

Check my man....Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 07.28.07 @ 09:39 PM EST

Wednesday, July 25th

More Mason!

Check out the latest of Dan and Blair's Little Man, On the move after the 1st B Day!

Go Mason! Click HERE for the shots.

big grin
Jon_News on 07.25.07 @ 05:39 PM EST

Friday, July 13th

Pics of Mason, 1 Year Old!

"OK, so I am trying to not be such a deadbeat daddy and get some pics out on this site for you guys, here’s an update since April and things we have learned:

Mason can bite the end off a hard boiled egg

Mason, army crawled, then real crawled then toddled, then walked and now likes to be chased up the stairs

Mason will run when chased

Mason likes dirt, bottle caps, electric outlets, swinging doors, dog food but not Gerber Baby Spaghetti

Mason can take a hard cookie and turn it insert cement like paste on his face in less than 7 minutes

Mason can fling peas all the way up to the ceiling

Bubba likes Mason now that he has learned to feed him

Mason can dance and make monkey sounds

When Mason is up he likes for you to join him

Mason holds court with Gunga Punjab, Frog, Tadpole and Turtle in his crib every morning

Mason says da da , ma ma, bub ba, ball, suss sat, va va voom, zzzzzzzzzzz, ou ou ou ah ah ah, dees, can make motorboat sounds, Indian calls and wink at the ladies but he uses both eyes

Mason is 1 years old

Hope you enjoy the pics, talk to you next year, gotta go, everything is quiet and that’s a bad sound.

Dan Black"

Click HERE for the Pics

Jon_News on 07.13.07 @ 07:00 PM EST

Wednesday, July 11th

Civil War Days

Rick just sent me some pictures and video from Civil War Days 2007!

Click HERE for the pictures and HERE for the video.

cool eh?

Jon_News on 07.11.07 @ 06:52 AM EST

Saturday, July 7th

Amidst the Flood!

Here are some shots of Summer so far with Malcolm........back to mopping!

*fyi Jon and Jen's house flooded then got hit by lightning so they are a little pre-occupied*

big grin

Click HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 07.07.07 @ 07:26 PM EST

Thursday, July 5th

4th of July GOODNESS!

Check out the two new videos from Rick, some backyard explosions and a little of the Antioch parade.

Thanks Rick for the videos.

Click HERE to go to Rick's Fireworks page.

Jon_News on 07.05.07 @ 04:35 PM EST

Monday, June 18th

Cool new Fireworks!

COOL NEW FIREWORKS! Adding more daily!


Click HERE for the vids.


Jon_News on 06.18.07 @ 10:14 PM EST

Monday, May 14th

New Fireworks Videos!

Well I had a great time at the WPAG May 2007 Shoot. We put up over 100
shells from 3 inch to 12 inch and I got some good videos of some of them.
Make sure to turn up the volume when you watch the video. (It may be a
little over dramatic but I was having fun!) My 6 inch shells went off
perfect! Enjoy the show. Rick"

Check out all of Rick's videos HERE on his fireworks page. Anything under 2007 is new.

big grin
Jon_News on 05.14.07 @ 08:24 AM EST

Sunday, May 13th

Mother's Day at Grandma Black's

Had a great day at Grandma and Grandpa Black's house, had a BIG crowd and lots of good eats. A ton of presents at the end too, including a weapon for my mother! lots of Great Baby shots!

Click HERE for all the shots.

Jon_News on 05.13.07 @ 09:31 PM EST

Saturday, May 12th

Mike's Charity Organizations - Tournament of Light - 2007

For those of you not aware, Brother Mike, runs a charity along with some friends, located HERE.

They just had a big event, the Tournament of Light, located HERE.

Cheers to Mike and the crew for all the great work they do!

Jon_News on 05.12.07 @ 10:24 PM EST

Saturday, April 28th

New Malcolm Shots and the MS Walk

Just got done posting some new shots of the boy! Click HERE for the man on teh move.

Also, had a great turnout today for the MS Walk 2007, we raised over $2400 as a team! Thanks to all the trainers and spouses who turned out and helped raise money!

Click HERE for the pics from that.

big grin
Jon_News on 04.28.07 @ 09:19 PM EST

Sunday, April 15th

Easter 2007 at Grandma Black's

Had a great day with the family and the "little ones". Great watching them have fun with the eggs. See if you can find the shot where Mason is eating a colored egg, SHELL and all!

Click HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 04.15.07 @ 08:29 PM EST

Tuesday, April 10th


OK, I couldn't resist. Poppy, Cullen and I went out to the range again today...we had to fire the cannon again. Good times...enjoy the film. RB


Jon_News on 04.10.07 @ 07:57 PM EST

Easter at the Wisconsin Black's Con Beese - 2007

OK, let's try it with pictures this time.

Well we had both a quiet Easter this year. I was working so we decided to get Chinese and have a little birthday party at out place. Cullen had a great time opening his Easter basket and really liked the candy, cloths and $...I can't believe Grandpa Doug is letting you put Fake Grass in the Easter basket. I thought that stuff had been permanently banned from the house, . Nanny and Poppy went out to lunch on Easter Joanne and Ray.


Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 04.10.07 @ 07:43 PM EST

Monday, April 9th

Easter at Grandma Hiatt's

Check out Benjamin, Ethan (Patrick, Jen's brother and Stephanie, Jen's Sister's children) in action witt my man Malcolm.

Fun to watch them chase each other around.

Click HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 04.09.07 @ 07:20 AM EST

Wednesday, April 4th

Cannon Project Update - 2007 - Slideshow

Check this one out, thanks to Rick for this.

The Cannon Project 2007 - The Slideshow

big grin
Jon_News on 04.04.07 @ 01:43 PM EST

Monday, April 2nd

Behold the Cuteness that is Mason!

Check out the puss on this little guy, is he a clone of his mamma or what?

Click HERE for the latest shots of the little guy

Jon_News on 04.02.07 @ 05:37 PM EST

Sunday, April 1st

The Cannon Project - 2007 - THE MOVIE!

Click Below for all of the videos Rick sent me, they are great, thrown together with some appropriate music!

The Cannon Project 2007 - The Movie

big grin
Jon_News on 04.01.07 @ 04:59 PM EST

Saturday, March 31st

The Cannon Project - 2007 - At the Firing Range

The Cannon in all it's Glory! Well done indeed! *media player will open in a new window, disable pop up blockers* wink

Cannon Test Fire #1

Cannon Test Fire #2

Cannon Test Fire #3

Cannon Test Fire #4

Congratulations to Gpa and Rick, Great Job!

Jon_News on 03.31.07 @ 09:24 PM EST

Wednesday, March 28th

The Cannon Project - 2007 - Complete!

Well here it is, all done and ready to fire. We had a really good time on this project and I think it turned out great. We should have a movie after the test fire on Saturday. Thanks to everyone for your support and encouragement during the build. RB

Click HERE for the shots!


Jon_News on 03.28.07 @ 09:13 PM EST

Friday, March 23rd

New Pics of Mason!

Check out this Guy! He is HUGE! The latest from Mason.....and Dan and Blair's new crib (that means house, FYI)

Click HERE for the pics.

Just added.....Mason on the move.

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 03.23.07 @ 06:56 AM EST

Wednesday, March 21st

The Cannon Project - 2007

Another few days in the shop and all of the detail parts are finished. I made eyebolts and attached chains for the Key Bolt Pins, then I made the Hooks for the main bolt. We had a warm spell of 65 degrees so I broke out the air brush and got the first coat of black paint on all the metal parts. If the weather holds, I will get the first coat of OD green on the stock tomorrow. My tooling arrived for the cannon ball mold so now I can make my own ammunition...1/4 pound lead cannon balls...sweet! Poppy is busy working on the Limber and Ammunition Box, I will send more pictures when they are done. RB

Click HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 03.21.07 @ 10:20 PM EST

Saturday, March 17th

Latest from the World O' Malcolm

We are learning the fine line between a toy and a projectile, the intricacies of the word No, No and how to stay up all day on weekends with no nap! Other then that it is pretty calm!

Here is the latest of the man in action.

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 03.17.07 @ 02:46 PM EST

Friday, March 16th

Canon Project - Almost Done - This Month!

Well the under straps are finished and I got to work on the Lunnette. Bending 1/4 inch steel is not an easy task. It's a good thing I have a hydraulic press or I would have never got it done. Nanny and Poppy came over for a visit last week and the cannon got a detailed inspection. I only have a few days of work left on the detail pieces and then it will be done. I have to wait for better weather to paint everything, but I am planning for a test shoot before the end of the month. I am really pleased with the way the project turned out. Enjoy the pictures, RB

Click HERE for the pictures

cool eh?
Jon_News on 03.16.07 @ 07:15 PM EST

Saturday, March 10th

Cannon Project Update - 2007 More Upgrades

Well the new motor came in for the machine and it works quite well, no more shop lights dimming during heavy cuts. I got the last of the hub bands and lynch pins finished as well as the furrels (that’s the old time version of a hub cap) I did the cap square keys today and will be starting on the tail pieces and other details next week. Hope you enjoy the pictures.

Click HERE for the pictures.

Jon_News on 03.10.07 @ 08:32 AM EST

Tuesday, February 27th

Cannon Project Update - 2007 More Upgrades

Well another week has gone by and I have finished both tires and 6 of the 8 hub bands. Boy do I have a new found respect for the wheel writes of the 1800's. Those guys must have been "strong like bull" because these 1/2 scale tires kicked my butt. We had a minor set back with the loss of the engine on my milling machine. The poor 110 volt engine finally gave out after several years. Good news is it gives me an opportunity to upgrade to the industrial 220 volt system, he he he.... more POWER! Anyway, hope you enjoy the pictures. RB

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 02.27.07 @ 03:54 PM EST

Monday, February 19th

Canon Project Update - Lift Screw Update

Well, I am up to 24 hours of shop time on the iron work and it is coming along quite well. Here are a few pictures to give you and idea. The bolts will be cut to size after the final dry fitting is done, then it is off to the paint department for finishing.


Click HERE for the shots!

COOL! big grin
Jon_News on 02.19.07 @ 08:50 PM EST

Wednesday, February 14th

Canon Project - Almost Done!


Click HERE for the updated picks with wheels!

big grin
Jon_News on 02.14.07 @ 09:30 PM EST

Malcolm in the New Year!

Well, the boys first full calendar year is done. So far in 2007 we had our first haircut, first snow (that we remember, we are learning to run, we have learned how to turn any household object into a projectile/deadly weapon and we have all our teeth sans 4 molars!

Click HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 02.14.07 @ 08:48 PM EST

Cannon Project Update - 2007

Well the raw stock metal finally arrived and we had a break in the weather, +25!! so I could get out into the shop to get some work done. I was working for about 8 hours today and finished the Elevating Screw and Screw Box. They are not painted yet but you will get the idea. I am still waiting on the Trunion Plates form the CNC shop but they should be here soon. I for see thunderous cannon fire in the very near future!


Click HERE for the pictures

Jon_News on 02.14.07 @ 06:26 AM EST

Saturday, January 27th

The Cannon Project - 2007

"Well it seems like only a month ago we started this crazy cannon project. For those of you who don't know, Poppy and I are making a 1/2 scale working replica of a Model 1861 12 pound Mountain Howitzer which is similar to those used in the Civil War. Our cannon is of course smaller, but just as noisy! Poppy has come a long way on the stock and carriage, putting to use all of his skill and tools. Great Great Grandpa John would be proud of the wagon wheels for sure. It is turning out to be both fun and quite a challenge. I got the barrel from the forge yesterday and it was functional, but ugly! So I cleaned it up on the lathe and mill then sanded and polished it. Not it is ready for finishing but I will have to wait until the weather warms up to do any painting. Some of the parts were just too complicated for me to machine myself, so I made 3D Auto-Cad models and had them made at a CNC shop. I will do the finish machining myself and I have lots of iron work to do as well. At this pace we should be ready to shoot by March at the latest. Now all I have to do is find some cannon balls and we are ready to make some noise! Anyway, I hope you enjoy the pictures, I will send more later.


Click HERE for the Pictures

Jon_News on 01.27.07 @ 01:38 PM EST

Friday, January 5th

Christmas at Dan and Blair Black's House - 2006

Got some pictures of Mason at Christmas at Dan and Blair's with the Fam! Look at that boy growing!

Click HERE for the pictures.

Click HERE for batch number 2!

big grin
Jon_News on 01.05.07 @ 12:11 PM EST

Saturday, December 30th

Lots O' Holiday Pics!

Hello All, Happy New Year soon to be!

Here are a whole bunch of Christmas shots for you.

Click HERE for Christmas at the Hiatt's (Jen's Parents)

Click HERE for Christmas at Momma Black's House!

Click HERE for just a whole bunch of shots of Malcolm havin' fun at Christmas.

Thanks to all for the presents! Luv to All!

big grin
Jon_News on 12.30.06 @ 07:49 PM EST

Tuesday, December 26th

Christmas in Wisconsin - 2006

"Merry Christmas to everyone from all of us. This year we had a wonderful dinner at our place on Christmas Eve. Everyone ate too much and got lots of great presents. We got cards from all our friends and family and it was so nice hearing from everyone, we miss you all so much. Cullen had so much fun opening all his gifts and sends a big "Thank You" to the whole family. Poppy's wood work is progressing on the cannon project and Cullen finished his Mars planet model for the science fair. I got good news from the foundry in Indiana, the cannon barrel will be done in 2 weeks! We hope you Christmas was as wonderful as ours.
Rick, Naomi, Cullen & Chewy"

Click HERE for the Photos

Jon_News on 12.26.06 @ 08:36 PM EST

Monday, December 11th

Getting Ready for Christmas!

Check out Malcolm in action! Helping with the tree, lights, all the good stuff! Love to all for the holiday and see you soon.

Click HERE for the photos

Jon_News on 12.11.06 @ 08:11 PM EST

Saturday, November 4th

Pictures from Jennifer's Fathers 50th Ruritan Event

My father in law, Alfred Hiatt, had the walking trail dedicated to him today at the Flat Rock (suburb of Mt Airy, aka Mayberry for those of you who don't know! Shame on you!) Ruritan's 50th Celebration.

Congratulations Alfred! We love you bud!

Check out the pictures HERE.

big grin
Jon_News on 11.04.06 @ 09:34 PM EST

Wednesday, November 1st

More of Mason and Halloween in Wisconsin!

Check out the latest from Cutey Pa Tootey Mason!

Click HERE for the pics.

Also, Cullen as a Jungle Sniper for Halloween!

Click HERE for the shots.

Thanks D and Rick for photos.

cool eh?

Jon_News on 11.01.06 @ 08:19 PM EST

Sunday, October 29th

Lots O' Pics!

Check out 2006 Statesville Hot Air Balloon Festival! Thanks Dad for the pics.

Click HERE for the shots!

Then, an update from Jen Black (the one married to Mike!)

"For those of you that haven't seen him recently, here are a few photos of
Joey. He is Scooby-Doo this Halloween and I've got a few photos from a
costume party we went to this weekend. I've also attached a few current
ones of him horseback riding at Hodges Farm. And some from a Balloon Rally
that we spent this afternoon at in Statesville.

Hope you're all doing well."

Click HERE for the photos.

Love 2 All!

Jon_News on 10.29.06 @ 08:13 PM EST

Friday, October 27th

The New Cousin!

We got a photo and specs on the new addition:

Jeremiah Tristan Sharpe "Jerry" 10-9 06 6lbs 13oz, 19"

Congratulations Valerie and Jed and Rod and Diane! We love yall!

LOOK AT THE BABY! Click HERE for the picture!

cool eh?
Jon_News on 10.27.06 @ 08:15 AM EST

Monday, October 23rd

New Pics!

Check out the new pics of all the gang. Grandma and Grandpa Beese came for a visit and went to Mason's Daycare, then Gala at Momma Black's House.

Check the photos HERE!

Check out Malcolm Punkin' Huntin' HERE! (That's southern for Pumpkin!)

Also, Jed and Valerie had their baby, no pics yet, or specs but I believe Grandma said the boys name is Jeremiah Tristan Sharpe (The middle name is a tribute to his Aunt Tricia!) How cool is that?

Love to all,

Jon_News on 10.23.06 @ 12:01 AM EST

Saturday, October 14th

Pictures from Mikes Charity Event

For those who do not know, Mike and friends run a charity organization called the Knightly Order of the Fiat Lux. Read all about them at their website HERE

Then click HERE for the photos from their latest charity event, KNIGHTS AND KNOODLES 2006!

Keep up the great work Mike! Thanks Dad for the upload.


Jon_News on 10.14.06 @ 11:40 AM EST

Monday, October 9th


Details to follow, Baby Sharpe (Valerie Black's married name) arrived today around 1 p.m. today Arizona time. Congratulations Val and Jed and Rod and Diane on another grandchild!

big grin
Jon_News on 10.09.06 @ 04:42 PM EST

Sunday, October 8th

Fall is Coming!

Well, Malcolm is over a year and running like a madman. Feeding himself and day by day changing and talking and WEARING HIS PARENTS OUT! (try not to laugh too loud Dad). Anyway, love to all.

Click HERE for the latest pictures of Malcolm.

crazy crazy crazy

Jon_News on 10.08.06 @ 01:17 PM EST

Wednesday, October 4th

New Pictures of Mason!

Check out the updated shots of Mason! He is growing fast. Also, some shots of Dan on his rodetrip to the Panthers/Bucaneers Game in Tampa. Thanks Dan for the latest shots.

Click HERE for the pictures.

cool eh?

Jon_News on 10.04.06 @ 04:28 PM EST

Wednesday, September 6th

New Pics of Mason!

Here is the latest from Mason Black.

Think this was a trip to see the Williamsburg family and a first visit with Grandpa.

Click HERE for the photos.

big grin
Jon_News on 09.06.06 @ 12:29 PM EST

Sunday, September 3rd

Photos from BDay BBQ!

Grandma Black (Leslie to some of yall) had a BBQ at her house today for Ben's 22nd Bday and Malcolm's first. Thanks for the chicken mom, thanks for the presents for Malcolm everyone. He especially loves the CD player.

Ben, Jen and Amanda don't forget to send me some updated info for your pages. Thanks to all and love ya.

Click HERE for the shots.

Jon_News on 09.03.06 @ 07:25 PM EST

Saturday, September 2nd

Birthday Pictures of Malcolm!

Here are some shots of the man turning 1! Thanks to everyone for the presents and Granda BZ, we got your card, thank you very much.

He loves Cards, just not cake evidently! HA HA HA

Click HERE for the first shots.

Click HERE for the next shots.

cool eh?
Jon_News on 09.02.06 @ 12:37 PM EST

Wednesday, August 23rd

Thank You from Grandma Beese


"Want to add something to the "thank you" I put on the website. When I read it over I realized that I left out a VIP or two.......First one is Naomi (how could I do that??) Naomi was the local "arranger" for Grampa's 80th B'day party, and she did a great job.She and Rick did such a beautiful job of having all the people coming and going at the "Black Hilton" in Salem. The cake they ordered and delivered to the party was spectacular, as anyone who looks at the pics can tell....and of course Rick's fireworks in the evening capped off a perfect day. Grampa and I had such a good time and didn't do a thing!!! Also, I didn't mention Bev in the first note, and she and Bill came such a long way to be here. It was great having them at the BZ homestead for 9 days, and they were a lot of help when the "gang" was here for the Illinois "Corn-feast" Once again thanks to everyone who participated." (added 9/4/2006)

Barbara Beese, aka Grandma, 8/23/2006

big grin
Jon_News on 08.23.06 @ 03:02 PM EST

New Pictures of Mason!

Check out all the latest from the newest Black Family member, Mason!

Click HERE for the photos.

cool eh?
Jon_News on 08.23.06 @ 07:52 AM EST

Monday, August 21st

More Great Shots of Grandpa/Great Grandpa's 80th

Some shots from Dad Black and their trip "UP THERE"! Thanks Dad.

Click HERE for the Pictures.

cool eh?
Jon_News on 08.21.06 @ 03:43 PM EST

Saturday, August 19th

The First SHots from Grandpa Beese's 80th Birthday!

Earl Beese's 80th Birthday.

Thanks Rick for getting these too me so quick.

Click HERE for the shots.

Congratulations Grandpa........Gosh..........YOUR OLD!

big grin
Jon_News on 08.19.06 @ 08:10 PM EST

Monday, August 7th

New Pics of Mason!

Check out Mason in action with the Fam in Charlotte!

Click HERE for the shots.

big grin
Jon_News on 08.07.06 @ 07:03 PM EST

Pics from WI and the BeeseBlack's

Check out the Summer shots at the Master Mason Picnic! Think Cullen looks like Dad a little? HA HA

Click HERE for the pics.

big grin
Jon_News on 08.07.06 @ 09:06 AM EST

Saturday, July 29th

New Mason Pictures!

Check out the latest pictures of Dan and Blair's new baby Mason!

Almost a month old. Click HERE for the shots.

Thanks Dan.
Jon_News on 07.29.06 @ 07:05 PM EST

Friday, July 28th

New Baby Pics....

Check out the latest of the WALKING man, that's right he is MOBILE!

Check out the pics HERE!

FYI.....been a few days since I have seen Dan and Blair's baby Mason *coughs and glares at Dan*


Jon_News on 07.28.06 @ 08:30 PM EST

Thursday, July 20th

Great New Pics!

Just got some great pics from Grandpa Black. In the collection are:

New PICS of Chris and Nancy's Wedding - 7/15/2006 - Click HERE for Pics.

New Pics of the new baby Mason and some from Joey's 10th Birthday - Click HERE for the shots.

Also, Great new shots (a little old but still good) Dan and Blair's Shower - Click HERE for the shots.

cool eh?
Jon_News on 07.20.06 @ 06:17 PM EST

Friday, July 14th

Big Joey Turns 10!

Can you believe it, he is 10 already! WOW! Here are pics of him and his gifts and cake.

Happy Birthday Joey!

Click HERE for the photos.

Jon cool eh?
Jon_News on 07.14.06 @ 12:36 PM EST

Wednesday, July 12th

New Pics of Mason Black!

Check out the new Boy in action at home with Mom and Dad, his first week!

Click HERE for photos.

big grin
Jon_News on 07.12.06 @ 03:28 PM EST

Saturday, July 8th

More Mason Pictures!

Hot off the press! Thanks to dad for getting these too us (that's Dan by the way!)

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 07.08.06 @ 05:52 PM EST

Friday, July 7th

Mason is HERE!

The PICTURES are in!

CLick HERE to view the newest member of the Black family!

Mason Caldwell Black.

cool eh?
Jon_News on 07.07.06 @ 08:20 PM EST

Wednesday, July 5th


Dan and Blair's Son arrived today sometime close to 3:45 p.m!

Congratulations to Dan and Blair. No details yet on weight and exact time, but everyone is great and the baby is doing fine!

Check back to the new baby page for all the pictures once they start ROLLING in!

Click HERE for the baby page!

WAY TO GO DAN AND BLAIR! Congratulations!
Jon_News on 07.05.06 @ 04:31 PM EST

Sunday, July 2nd

Check out Rich and his Buds in Action!

Click me for a neat set of shows from Rich Black and his Firework Buddies!

Click HERE!

Make sure to watch the Slideshow and Video!

cool eh?
Jon_News on 07.02.06 @ 09:32 PM EST

Monday, June 19th

More Father's Day Pics!

Here are all the shots from Father's Day up in Mt. Airy/Virginia at the Hiatt house.


Click HERE for the pictures.

Jon_News on 06.19.06 @ 03:49 PM EST

Sunday, June 18th

Father's Day Shots from the Black's

Check out all the pics from yesterday at Grandma Black's for Fathers Day and Dan and Blair's Baby Shower.

Click HERE for the pictures.

cool eh?
Jon_News on 06.18.06 @ 12:11 PM EST

Friday, June 16th

New Pictures of Malcolm!

Just got done posting some great shots from the past month or so.

Click HERE for Malcolm's Page. The newest galleries are on the bottom of the 2006 list.


cool eh?
Jon_News on 06.16.06 @ 07:42 PM EST

Saturday, June 10th

Fulton Heights Centenial

"This was the Centennial celebration for Fulton Heights. It was founded in 1906, the second Street Car subdivision in NC. Dilworth in Charlotte being the first.

The purpose of the celebration was to make money to buy playground equipment for a new toddler's park. The city ones the lot which have been vacant since 1906.

The Neighborhood association is funding the equipment and landscaping. The bill is $31,000. With the combined sale receipts from an earlier mega garage sale/fundraiser, sales of paving bricks, outright donation and a couple generous grants along with today's events, we have reached that 31k goal.

So the city will begin construction of the park in the fall.

Mom and Dad created the History Tent. Dad did most of the research and Mom the layouts of the story boards."

Douglas Black

Click HERE for the pictures.

Jon_News on 06.10.06 @ 07:43 PM EST

Friday, June 2nd

New Shots of Uncle Bill's Carvings

"Hi ya’ll. Here are some pictures of the ‘new and improved’ mini-hummingbird carving. I’ve added some foliage to the branch, which I think looks better the bare branch version (#6). Won $100 and best of division at the Richmond BC carving show.

I’m also working on a new base to try out in place of the soapstone…just for fun.

Uncle Bill

Click HERE for the pictures.

Jon_News on 06.02.06 @ 07:28 AM EST

Sunday, May 28th

Grandpa Black turns 60! Woohoo!

Click HERE for all the festivities, pops BDay, the Stratfords came for a visit!

Jon_News on 05.28.06 @ 09:11 PM EST

Saturday, May 27th

Jon and the Gym Crew at the MS Walk

Check out the gang from the gym at this years MS Walk in Kernersville. This is our 9th year!

Click HERE for the shots.

(Notice most of the film dedicated to the boy....of course!)

Jon_News on 05.27.06 @ 04:17 PM EST

Thursday, May 25th

Announcement from Ben Sliker

"Hello Family and Frineds again!

Last time y'all helped me get a finalist prize for the
64 second contest, and here's another one you can help
me out with. The people behind "A scanner darkly", a
movie coming out this summer with Keanu Reeves, wanted
people to Remix the trailer for the movie, and they'll
choose the best one to win, but there is also a
popularity vote as well! That's where you come in.

Here is the procedure:
You must sign up for an account at to
be able to vote for my movie. So:

Go to
Click in the upper right hand corner "register" (don't
worry, give them a good email, they won't send junk),
then go to your email to finalize account.

Then, follow this link to my trailer:

And click on the little heart button (that means you
loved it).
That's it!

Hope everyone is well, this is what i've been working
on the past couple of days, since i'm graduated and
yet to find gainful employment!

Thanks Again!
Ben "

Good Luck Ben!

cool eh?
Jon_News on 05.25.06 @ 11:19 AM EST

Wednesday, May 17th

All New Saftey Video!

Neat new content at Rick's Fireworks page.

Click HERE to view the page and multiple videos.


Jon_News on 05.17.06 @ 03:05 PM EST

Tuesday, May 16th

Pics from Cullen's Birthday and Ben's Graduation

Got some pictures from Cullen's 9th birthday party and Ben's Graduation Party.

Click HERE for the pictures.

big grin
Jon_News on 05.16.06 @ 07:50 AM EST

Friday, May 5th

Pics from Uncle Bill's Latest Show

Some new shots of Uncle Bill's Carvings from this year (Spring 2006) Carving Show!

(Note: the Pacific Loon and the Miniature Hummingbirds are his, the rest are other contestants.)

Amazing as ALWAYS!

Click HERE for the Photos!

cool eh?
Jon_News on 05.05.06 @ 10:26 AM EST

Saturday, April 22nd

Easter Pics from the Black and Hiatt Clan

Here are a BUNCH of shots from a few different Easter gatherings:

First here is the Hiatt Family Easter Saturday up in Mt. Airy on Easter Saturday

Click HERE for pictures

Second, here are some shots from the next day at Grandma Black's Easter Sunday gathering, sans Malcolm (he had a fever)

Click HERE for the pictures

Third, here are the latest shots from Easter part 2 at Grandma Black's (thanks Amanda, he loves the keys!)

Click HERE for the pictures.

Luv 2 All

big grin big grin big grin

Jon_News on 04.22.06 @ 07:30 PM EST

Sunday, April 16th

Easter at the Beese/Black's - WI/IL

"Here are some pictures form Easter weekend at Nanny and Poppy's house. The baskets were plentiful and loaded with sugar......mmmm.......sugar. Love and hugs to all. Happy Easter."

Click HERE for the pictures.

Jon_News on 04.16.06 @ 07:45 PM EST

Wednesday, April 12th

Video from Chris Beese

Check out Chris Beese's video on (FYI YouTube is a website where aspiring videographers/hobbyists can post video and images that they want to share online or for job hunting purposes), VERY COOL!

Click HERE for the Video.
Jon_News on 04.12.06 @ 07:38 AM EST

Sunday, April 9th

New Pics of the Baby!

Check out the man in action at the local Arboretum checking out the Flora!

(Don't worry Uncle Bill he is learning the Latin names I promise! :laughsmile

Click HERE for all the shots!
Jon_News on 04.09.06 @ 11:01 PM EST

Wednesday, April 5th

Daycare Shots for Spring!

Check out Malcolm in his Daycare class photos!

Click HERE for the Photos!

big grin big grin
Jon_News on 04.05.06 @ 09:45 AM EST

Tuesday, April 4th

Uncle Bill's Latest Carvings!

Hi there family,

Just giving you a quick update on our big annual carving show here on “the island”. We had a good turnout: 350 carvings by 150 carvers, and about 1100 people thru the door to see the show. I took a 2-day painting class with a world champion carver up from S.Cal. and it was great.

My 12-year old carving student, Mat, won best of show in the youth division with a killer whale. He did a great job—all done by himself. I did a “demo” whale beside him so he could see how to do things without me working on his carving. He even learned how to use an airbrush!

I did well too. I got the award for “best hunting decoy” for a pintail hen (finished it the night before…as usual…and was worried that paint would come off while it was being floated!) And, I got the “best stylized/interpretive award with a Pacific loon. (pictures attached; uh…the bright shirt was so folks could find me in the hall, since I was show chair)

Now I have to finish my entry for the Worlds at the end of the month!

Love to all,

Wilhelm the woodcarver shocked)

Click HERE for the Photos

Jon_News on 04.04.06 @ 07:08 AM EST

Sunday, March 19th

Just added some Birthday Pics!

Click HERE for all the shots from the gathering at Grandma/Momma Black's for Mike and Blair's Birthday.

Sorry not many shots of Mike or Blair, just the baby! Dad's the camera man.

Jon_News on 03.19.06 @ 06:54 PM EST

The New WI Black Family Dog

"I would like to introduce you all to "Chewey". She is a puggle - pug and beagle mix."


Click HERE for the Pictures

cool eh?
Jon_News on 03.19.06 @ 06:08 PM EST

Sunday, March 12th

Latest from the WI Black's

Cullen has a dance program at school and Rich wins an award for valor!

Click HERE for photos.

Check HERE for the story on Rich's award!

cool eh?
Jon_News on 03.12.06 @ 09:49 PM EST

The Stratfords Head to the Rock Gym!

The Stratford Clan heads to the rock gym! Look at those kids Grow!

Click HERE for the pictures.

Don't remember the Stratfords....Click HERE to find out all about them.
Jon_News on 03.12.06 @ 10:08 AM EST

Friday, March 10th

Brother Rich gets Commondation!

Check out brother Rick and his latest Award!

Click HERE for the website with the story.

Good Job Rick!
Jon_News on 03.10.06 @ 04:38 PM EST

Monday, January 16th

Baby New Year!

All new shots of the little man, in 2006!

Click HERE for the pictures.

Enjoy and Happy New Year!

big grin
Jon_News on 01.16.06 @ 03:40 PM EST

Friday, December 30th

Cruisin Beese's! Ahoy!

Got some great pictures of Bill and Bev's Cruise of the Caribbean back in October!

Beautiful! Click HERE for the Pictures.

Jon_News on 12.30.05 @ 07:04 AM EST

Wednesday, December 28th

More Christmas GOODNESS!

Here are some MORE shots from Salisbury Grandma's Christmas Visits

Click HERE for the photos.

Also, some shots from the Hiatt Family Christmas up in Mt. Airy

Click HERE for the photos.

Luv 2 All.

satisfied satisfied

Jon_News on 12.28.05 @ 05:54 PM EST

Christmas at the Salisbury Black's House 2005

Click HERE for all the pictures of the visit from the California Black's and Group!
Jon_News on 12.28.05 @ 11:27 AM EST

Monday, December 26th

Christmas at the Wisconsin Black Family House

Just got pictures from Rick and Naomi and the Family in Wisconsin. Great shots of Cullen and the Pile-O-Gifts.

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 12.26.05 @ 06:36 PM EST

Saturday, December 17th

New pictures for December!

Click on over the see Malcolm in action, learning to sit up and playing with the Grandma's new present the "Exersaucer"

Click HERE for his page. (the top two galleries are new)

Jon_News on 12.17.05 @ 12:05 PM EST

Thursday, December 8th

Christmas is Coming!

Well, Tis the Season to be DROOLY!

So head on over to see the latest shots of the little "Bug"!

Click HEREfor the Pre-Christmas Shots of our Man!


Jon_News on 12.08.05 @ 07:35 AM EST

Tuesday, December 6th

Mom and Dad's House - XMas 2005

Mom and Dad Black were chosen to participate in the Salisbury Symphony Historic Tour of Homes for 2005. A great chance for "Gramma" Black to get out ALL HERE DECORATIONS!

Click HERE for the pics!
Jon_News on 12.06.05 @ 06:45 PM EST

Tuesday, November 29th

Gobble Gobble!

Here are some Turkey Day shots from Momma Black's house! Notice the "Crazy Guy" trying to kill the turkey

Click HERE for the pics.

Jon_News on 11.29.05 @ 09:00 PM EST

Thursday, November 24th

Thanksgiving at the Grandma and Grandpa Hiatt's

Check out all the photos of the Family in action (aka Stuffing their faces!) at the Hiatt Family Thanksgiving! Of course, lots of shots of the CUTEST BABY IN THE WORLD............oh.....that's my son in case you did not know!

Click HERE for all the photos!

Jon_News on 11.24.05 @ 08:48 PM EST

Saturday, October 29th

New Pics from the Beese's Visits to Greensboro and Salisbury!

Click HERE for the Greensboro Pictures!

Click HERE for the Salisbury Shots!

Enjoy! If anyone wants originals, let Jon know.

Luv 2 All!

big grin
Jon_News on 10.29.05 @ 08:03 PM EST

Tuesday, October 25th

New Shots from the Stratford Clan!

Big Brian Turns 3! I wonder who he looks like? Hmmmmmmmmm.

Click HERE for the Stratford page!

cool eh? cool eh?

Jon_News on 10.25.05 @ 07:11 AM EST

Friday, October 14th

New Shots of Malcolm!

Check out all the Adorable-Ness-A-Tude in September!

Click HERE for September's Parting Shots!

Also, All the greatest from the beginning of October and some grandparent visits!

Check out Grandpa Black and the little man, they are both Grinning!

Click HERE for October #1


cool eh?
Jon_News on 10.14.05 @ 08:44 PM EST

Tuesday, September 20th

More of Rich and "The Pyro Within" and Little Malcolm Shots from this week!

Here is Rich, doing what Rich does best: Finding new and interesting ways to blow things up!

Click HERE for the Pictures!

Also, HOT - FRESH - NEW BABY PICTURES! Check out all the adorablessnessness!

Click HERE for the Pictures!

Luv to All

big grin
Jon_News on 09.20.05 @ 07:21 PM EST

Tuesday, September 13th

New Pics of Malcolm and Family and an Update to Mikey's Page

Hey All! Check out the latest shots of the young Man Malcolm!

Click HERE for the Photos

Also, make sure and shoot over to Mike/Jen/Joeys Page for the latest on their fam!

Click HERE for Mike's Page

Thanks for the update Mike.

Luv to All.

big grin big grin big grin

Jon_News on 09.13.05 @ 07:09 AM EST

Thursday, September 1st

Cullen Hits the 3rd Grade!

"So it continues the annual 1st day of school pictures. Cullen is now in the 3rd grade...where did the time go??? Very grown up (with his Spider Man back pack). His Teacher "Mr. Christianson" seems nice enough...Cullen said he is a nice teacher and that the first day of school was "awesome".

Here are a couple of pictures. Love Naomi."

Dig the Spidy Backpack!

Click HERE for the pictures.

cool eh? cool eh?
Jon_News on 09.01.05 @ 08:43 PM EST

Monday, August 29th


*you will get a LOT of these*

Click HERE for the latest from the "Little Man"

Luv to All. US
Jon_News on 08.29.05 @ 08:40 PM EST

Sunday, August 28th


"Well I just got back from my WPAG (Wisconsin Pyrotechnic Arts Guild) meeting and man it was a blast! (No pun intended. well maybe a little) The day started off with a seminar on fuse rolling, then into the business meeting. After that well had a huge picnic with so much food we could not eat it all. I spent the rest of the afternoon setting up my small class "C" display which I shot latter that evening. It went ok, my time fuse was giving me fits again! A bank of a dozen shells did not fire in sequence, but no one noticed but me. I shot 80 hand made shells and 24 store bought, some people said my home made stuff was better. The real highlight of the meet was the class "B" show. I was selected from the new people to help set up and shoot with the professional team that was there for a demo. I loaded, wired and helped shot 40-3 inch shells, 32-4 inch shells, 24-6 inch shells, 4-8 inch shells and one 12 inch monster shell, the Mother of All Fireworks! My little digital camera did not get the detonations too good but I included a few pictures to give you an idea of what it was like. Happiness is a 20 pound shell!"

c/o Brother Rich

Click HERE for the Pictures of "The Boom Boom"
Jon_News on 08.28.05 @ 08:36 PM EST

Thursday, August 25th


Here are some Birth-Day photos of the little guy! Thank you to all the family and friends for the Great support and visits. More to Come - 4 Sure!

Click HERE to view the photos.


Jon, Jen, Malcolm and the Pupps
Jon_News on 08.25.05 @ 11:42 AM EST

Thursday, August 18th

Found this online! Newsletter about Amanda! You go girl!

Not sure if you all had seen this, found it online:

Click HERE for the article


Somebody let me know if this is from Jenny's Camp?

Luv to All!
Jon_News on 08.18.05 @ 07:44 AM EST

Tuesday, August 16th

New Pics from Rick, Naomi and Cullen

"Some pics from the summer visit from Fred and Sue, the last one is of my home made pyro for the Aug 27 shoot at the pyro club. Just a few 2 inch shells, he he he." c/o Richard Black

Click HERE for the shots.

Have a great last end of the summer yall! (that's southern for you guys btw)
Jon_News on 08.16.05 @ 11:01 AM EST

Monday, August 8th

Summer Shots from the Beeses

Just got some great "Summer Shots" from the Beeses. Check out the gang in action on the lake and all around Grandmas. Love to all.

Click HERE for the Photos.

PS Thanks Gma for the shots.
Jon_News on 08.08.05 @ 07:08 AM EST

Sunday, July 17th

Baby Shower at the Hiatt's

Here are some pictures of the ladies at Patrick and Susan's this past weekend.

The HAUL of stuff is nothing short of DISGUSTING! Thank you to all who gave WAY TO GENEROUSLY!


(I am saying that because I had to unload the car! HA HA)

Click HERE for pictures.

Jon_News on 07.17.05 @ 09:53 PM EST

Saturday, July 16th

Baby Shower Pics

Had a baby shower at our dear friends Mike and Alison Barnes today, great time and Fat Food.

Click HERE for the pics.

Thank you Mike and Ali for hosting and Barnesy for cooking THE WORLDS THICKEST BURGER!

cool eh?
Jon_News on 07.16.05 @ 10:00 PM EST

Wednesday, July 6th

Chris Beese's Graduation!

Congrats Chris! And Bill and Bev too! big grin

Click HERE for the Pics of the GRAD!

big grin
Jon_News on 07.06.05 @ 11:33 AM EST

Tuesday, July 5th

Pictures from Antioch and the 4th of July!

c/o Rick Black

"We spent the morning at the Antioch parade, I have attached some pictures, the afternoon was spent visiting and consuming mass quantities of fried fish, Unfortunatly my neighbor "bob" the fun Nazi called the cops on the July 3rd because we were shooting some little fire crackers and a test shot. Well when the deputy came out, he said we could shoot the small stuff but my big display was too much for Kenosha County's new "Safe and Sane" fireworks rule. So I had to pack up all my good stuff and save it for the fireworks club shoot in August, bummer. Anyway, I got a copy of the new county ordinance and went over it with a fine tooth comb. Then I went to the fireworks store and bought the loudest, most obnoxious batch of "safe/sane" fireworks I could find along with a lot of real nice fountains and other ground effect items. So I put on a nice little ground show and then lit off the noisemakers. Crackle eggs are harmless and wimpy when you light them one at a time. So I fast fused 144! (1 gross) and it sounded like an artillery barrage! The noise, light and smoke was so much, even I had to look away and plug my ears. I bet Bob is wishing I still had a nice quiet aerial display, he he he. To my surprise, we did not hear a peep form Bob. Anyway, the kids had a lot of fun and everyone went home happy. Lots of love, Rick, Naomi, & Cullen"

Click HERE for the pictures

rolls eyes
Jon_News on 07.05.05 @ 12:02 PM EST

Thursday, June 30th

New Shots of Chris Black and the Fam in California!

c/o Chris Black

"Here’s some more pictures for the website…Some sledding, one of Tyler’s track meets, Nancy’s birthday, Dallas’s new amour (home made 3 month project), Allie and her boyfriend Terrence (a.k.a. Tecky), trip to the Sacramento Zoo, some Garden shots, and last weekend’s local Renaissance Faire. Love you brother!! Big hugs for ALL!!"

big grin

Click HERE for the pictures.

Thanks for the Update bro, talk to you soon. Jon

Jon_News on 06.30.05 @ 12:27 PM EST

Wednesday, June 29th

Picture from Momma Black's Upcoming Travel Destination

Mom is heading to Prauge in August! WOOHOO! Here are some pictures from the town she is going to.


Click HERE

big grin
Jon_News on 06.29.05 @ 03:28 PM EST

Monday, June 20th

Great new Father's Day Pics!

Hello All,
Just posted some great Father's Day pictures from the Black's HERE and from the Hiatt's HERE.

Check them out, dig "soon to be Momma Black's BELLY!" Woohoo. We are heading towards week 31 and CRUISIN! Let's keep it that way. Love to all.
Jon_News on 06.20.05 @ 10:53 AM EST

Tuesday, June 14th

Moving Content to a new page!

As of today, I have started a News Room JUST FOR UPDATES on Tricia! I have gotten so many requests to be added that it NEEDED IT'S OWN DIRECTORY!!! WOOHOO! WE LOVE IT! If you are already getting the family site updates, you do not need to subscribe again, I have added you already. You will get an email with the "Paperboy" for Family Fun news and the "MEGAPHONE" for Tricia updates! So keep an eye out for both and as always, if you see anything that needs to be added/subtracted/changed, let me know. Thanks and love to all.

Jon_News on 06.14.05 @ 11:55 PM EST

Great picture from Trish's Friend Scott! NICE!

This is a great picture from a friend of Trish, it about says it all! He evidently just won the Ribfest Chicago Contest! GO SCOTT. Now as far as them asking you to remove the sign, I would have a few choice words!

Hope today went great for you girl, we LUBBS YA!


Jon_News on 06.14.05 @ 12:29 PM EST

Monday, June 13th

Trish says GAME ON! Here is the latest news....

"Game On

Tomorrow I will arrive at the hospital at 10:30 a.m. to begin session one of high dose IL-2 treatment. I will receive my first dose in the afternoon and then as many of the remaining thirteen doses as is safe for my body per the discretion of my doctor. FYI, this is a highly individualized process, so it does not mean that the IL-2 is not "working" or that something has gone "wrong" if I can only tolerate 8 or 10 doses. I have no illusions about how bad this week will be. And lest any of you give me more credit than I deserve, I am scared out of mind. I am also oddly excited. I have been anxious to begin systemic treatment and take aim at the tumors remaining in my body after the initial surgery (and I am now using only a cane to get around, thank you very much smile). I have been eating well (only lost 2 more pounds), resting, and mentally preparing. I'm ready for round two of this fight, and I know you are all with me. I feel your energy and your support. I know there is more love directed towards my family and myself than this cancer knows what to do with. I want you all to know, I have never failed at anything in my life, and I don't intend to start now.

A few more things, I will not be able to have visitors this week at the hospital, as much as I would love to and as much as my spirit is buoyed by seeing the people I know and love. I also would ask for people NOT to send flowers, as much as I have appreciated them in the past. Doctor's orders. Please DO though keep sending all your love, support, positive energy, and prayers this way!

Finally, I have a new mission for teb's troops, but it requires a bit of explanation. When I was in high school I made a list of all the things I wanted to accomplish in my life. It ranged from visiting all 7 continents (I have 3 to go) to being a flower girl in a wedding (a feat I accomplished at the ripe old age of 27...seriously...I have the wedding program to prove it). I want you all to think of at least one thing you've always wanted to do, and expend some effort towards making that goal a reality. There's no time like the present. And with that said, in the words of a good friend, GAME ON."

Jon_News on 06.13.05 @ 09:33 AM EST

Tuesday, June 7th

New Update from Tricia via Jennifer Gilbert

"Forward Motion

It would be understatement to say that last week was one of the
worst...ever. Not you got into a car accident bad, not you missed your
flight bad, not you lost your job bad, but one of those weeks that you
feel that nothing could bring you any lower. When you say, "So this is what
it means to hit rock bottom." We'll we've been there. A few times. But the
good thing about rock bottom, there's only one direction to move. On Friday,
we met with the leading melanoma oncologist in Indiana at the IU Medical
Center. He was very good, very thorough, and very patient. I was hoping
for someone a bit warmer (think ER's John Carter), but instead he turned out
to be a thoughtful, middle-aged man, who shot straight from the hip. He
told us the situation was grave. He had to tell us that. As a medical
professional, he could not assure me that I will live to see Sam's first day of
kindergarten, but neither could he tell me I was going to die. And that,
was a good thing.
As a result of this meeting (which lasted almost 2 1/2 hours) we
formulated a game plan. This week I need to rest, eat, and drink. I have lost about
7 lbs since we learned I have cancer and my intake of fluids and sleep
patterns have also suffered. We need to nip this in the bud pronto to be
ready for my first round of an invasive treatment protocol called High
Dose Interleukin-2. IL-2 is not chemo or radiation, but a type of
immunotherapy. Because of the intensity of the therapy, however, it is strictly an
inpatient procedure. I will enter the IU Medical Center on June 13th
(side note, please, no flowers smile).

Here's how it works. On Monday morning, we will double-check my vitals
and then insert an IV into my neck. Then we start with the doses. I will
receive a dose of IL-2 every 8 hours. Each session includes 14 doses, but most
people can only tolerate between 8-10. I will be closely monitored. Side
effects include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, itching/peeling
skin, low blood pressure, rapid heart rate, and fluid retention. Our doctor
also indicated it would be wise to have someone who knows me with me at all
times because IL-2 can affect your brain and it will be important that if I
start acting "strange" someone can quickly alert the nurses/doctor. The
treatment has some potential serious side effects (kidney failure, stroke, etc.)
that some of you, upon further research, may read about, but that is why it
is an in-patient procedure. I will be fine. And, with hope, I will react well
to the treatment. We are still researching the possibility of going to a
NCI clinical trial in Maryland, but also really want to get started on the
systemic treatment. We'll keep you posted.

On another, and MUCH more important front, Sam has learned to (1) kiss
himself in the mirror; (2) open and shut doors; (3) circumnavigate the
coffee table; (4) and say "mmmmmm" (it's not Mom, but we're getting
there). He also has three new teeth. So take that CANCER!"

big grin
Jon_News on 06.07.05 @ 03:30 PM EST

Saturday, June 4th

Latest on Tricia

Via Uncle Doug:

"Have not see a report from Tricia concerning Friday Powwow with the chief oncology Dr.s.

However, Rod called with and update saying the 1st and 2nd opinions agreed that she was confirmed stage 4; they give her 8 months; the treatment at this point is very limited; they have decided on 'amino-therapy' (17% best response rate to date). Apparently this course of intervention is quite difficult on the patient so they have sent her home with orders to gain as much body weight as possible before beginning. They want her to heal more from the hip & shoulder surgery before the decision to progress is taken.

Tricia has composed a "Got To Do-list" and has marshaled some very close and long term girl friends as 'staff' to assist her with it. One of those tasks is keeping a detailed diary; another is writing letters to Sam for each of his many birthdays to come.

Spoke to Aunt Diane as well, they seem much more settled, resolved and on-task than earlier in the process which is good. Diane has the summer off from school.

Val will remain in Indy and Jed is coming for his two week vacation.

Belle, Tricia's 2 year old golden retriever, is moving to Michael's cousin's home in the country for the duration. Her natural 'doggie-clutter and mess' can and will be avoided during the next many months.

Folks from Tricia's old law firm have raised the money to pay for house-keeping services at home for the next several months.

The hospital staff is working with Mike and Tricia to access appropriate financial assistance programs as required.

Will send Tricia's update along as we get it. I know a few of you get it initially so please forgive any repeats.

Rod will keep us informed as specific needs arise where we might be of assistance. Don't hesitate to call Rod or Tricia or send an e-mail if you are so inclined; despite the seriousness of the situation, a friendly and encouraging word is always welcome. Rod remarked that he "Did not have a sense of impending doom." That is a very good sign.

Thank you for everyone's continued support."

Jon_News on 06.04.05 @ 12:05 PM EST

Thursday, June 2nd

Update from Tricia

This is a copy of the email I got this morning, from Tricia:

"Dear friends,

First of all, thank you for your overwhelming support, encouragement, cards,
flowers, gifts, phone calls, and emails. YOU are all truly amazing.
Second, update after surgery is that I am doing well. I am walking better
than before the surgery (with the aid of crutches), the only drawback is
that I have an excrutiating pain in my right knee that radiates downward
whenever I attempt to sit or stand. We went back to the doc today to make
sure it was not due to another tumor. We had an x-ray that looked fine and
will get an MRI tomorrow. We met with a medical oncologist today who gave
us some basic information on chemo and radiation, but will be meeting with a
melanoma specialist at the IU Medical Center on Friday, who we are excited
about. We hope to start some form of systemtic treatment (chemo/radiation)
soon but feel we may need to consult with additional specialists outside of
Indiana. We'll see how Friday goes.

Third, I wanted to share with you all a posting from my blog, or online
journal. I preface it by saying that I do have moments of weakness.
Moments when I want to crawl out of my own skin thinking about the future.
Moments when I make my husband stop the car, get out, shut the door, and
then I scream at the top of my lungs. Luckily, those moments are few and
far between...but I do let myself have them. Please read on, do what I ask,
and keep HOPING.

Our love,
tricia, michael & sam


I have cancer. Stage IV metastatic melanoma. It's advanced, it's painful,
and it's been growing inside my body for a long, long time. I have a husband
who I love and a 9 month-old son. Those are the cold hard facts. They are
grim, they are awful, they are horrific. There's no way to make this pill
easy to swallow. So we won't swallow it. We're going to fight tooth and nail
for every minute, day, week, month, year. We're going to look this awful
demon in the face and stare it down. We're going to know that even if at the
end of the day it takes my body and my physical presence from the world and
people I love, it will never, EVER take my spirit. To that end, I am
enlisting the troops, my troops, Teb's Troops. I want your support, I want
your energy, I want your prayers, I want your strength. I may ask for more
as time goes on, but for right now your first official mission is to promise
me that sometime in the next two weeks you will take at least one day off
work and spend time with someone you love, even if it's time alone. It's
summer, it's beautiful, I'm giving you two weeks and I want no excuses. Go
for a date, go on a walk, volunteer at a shelter, drive to visit your
cousin/mother-in-law/children/aunt or just sit outside and read a book. Do
it. Enjoy your life. Embrace it. Don't sweat the small stuff. I woke up one
morning and my life changed forever. But my life is not over. I love you
all. Don't despair for me. There is always good in the bad. Let's find that
good. And let's get moving."

Well, you heard her.
Jon_News on 06.02.05 @ 07:21 AM EST

Wednesday, June 1st

Update on Tricia via Uncle Doug

"Thanks everyone for your loving support of Tricia, Michael and Sam. Val is in a for the week to help w/Sam.

Uncle Rod, called this PM to say Tricia is home but in some discomfort. They go back Friday to meet with the head oncology Dr.

The interim diagnosis is confirmed melanoma with the potential of 6 months to 2 years to live. Rod is of the opinion, gained from the medical types, that they simply do not know how to treat this type of cancer well yet.

The final diagnosis and treatment plan may come Friday OR they put that off for a while... while other experts in Huston or Pittsburgh have a look and offer their views.

Needless to say Rod and Diane are on an emotional roller coaster. So focus on overcoming fear and knowing that "There is not spot where God is not." And of course, follow whatever inspirational line that comes to you.

So....lots of work to do still. I'll pass the word when I get it. Look for a report late Friday.

Thanks for the help,

Luv Doug"


Thanks again all for all the great thoughts, lets keep it up. We luv ya Trish.
Jon_News on 06.01.05 @ 08:57 PM EST

Saturday, May 28th

Information on Tricia Black


Tricia Black, Uncle Rod's youngest daughter has been diagnosed with metastatic melanoma Stage 4 (not a pretty initial diagnosis) and hospitalized with issues related! We all just found this out on Tuesday and for sure on Thursday, she was rushed for surgery on Friday, and already we have GREAT NEWS! Here is the latest update from Uncle Rod on her condition:

"Thanks for all the help, it is working!

Uncle Rod called an hour ago and provided the following:
- successful surgery this AM: partial new right shoulder and new right hip ball joint, designed to last many decades.
- immediate result is that all the disabling joint pain that has been crippling Tricia for the past 2 months is GONE.
- no cancer in the bones! Nodules thought to be cancerous are benign legions common the females in the family.
- her melanoma may have kicked up again...maybe...blood tests are negative, won't know for certain till next Friday. That is when all the tests and 'opinions' are in. Then we will see what the verdict is and the course of treatment chosen. So the "30 days-left" (worst-case) scenario is OUT! Well done all.
- Tricia stays in the hospital until Tues when the surgeon expect her to "walk" out on her own. Tricia's spirits are high and she is very functional. Her new Call Sign "Erector-set" :-) it? Rod like it!
- the entire family is in much greater spirits tonight than Tues. (Understandably). Mike's parent are in town as well to provide direct support, Val is showing up Sunday for a week; medicine Man stays on the Rez.
- Little Sam is "getting away with MURDER!" according to my sources. As it should be.

Ok, as you can see, lots more we know: lots we don't, please keep the good work going until we are called off the case. I'll pass the word as I get it. Rod welcomes calls or emails: he really appreciates the avalanche of support from family and friends.

Rodney Black
E-mail Address(es): cell 317-439-5060
Tricia Black
E-mail Address(es):"

This is by way of Uncle Doug, thanks pops. Jen and I just got off the phone with Aunt Diane and also spoke to Trish in her room at St. Vincents in Indianapolis (Room 7412 if you need it). Also, she asked me to spread the word to any and everyone, so here it is! Now, lets get the good thoughts working and get this girl back on her feet!

More later as we find out!

St. Vincents Indianapolis Hospital
ROOM 7412 (till Tuesday next week the 31st)
2001 West 86th Street
Indianapolis, Indiana 46260
Room - 317-338-0514 (Tricias Room)
Jon_News on 05.28.05 @ 01:47 PM EST

Thursday, May 19th

Uncle Bill's Carvings - All Finished

Here is a description of what these are, c/o Uncle Bill:

"They're doing a "weed dance" -- part of a courtship display where both the male and female dive down under the water and pick up cattails and other vegetation, then rise out of the water and meet as shown in the carving. I've only seen a couple of pictures of this in a magazine, otherwise it is hard to find it shown in any books. My 'weeds' are made of very special brass, twist ties and dental floss (used is best)." - Uncle Bill

Click HERE

What an artist! Nice Job Bill!

Have a great weekend all. rolls eyes
Jon_News on 05.19.05 @ 07:35 AM EST

Wednesday, May 18th

Check out Dan and Blair in the Bahamas!

Check out the latest shot of Dan and Blair "CHILLIN BAHAMAS STYLE". I think this trip was for business *wink wink* was Blair's Leadership Awards Trip, not sure if she won, but if she didn't she should have! GO BLAIR!

Click HERE


Jon_News on 05.18.05 @ 06:01 PM EST

Sunday, May 15th

Ronnie Boy Graduates from Law School!

Here are some pictures of my dear friend Ron Grant's recent (5/14/2005) graduation from Law School! We are VERY PROUD of him.

Click HERE

Luv to All

Jon_News on 05.15.05 @ 07:00 PM EST

Thursday, May 12th

Pics from Mother's Day at the Hiatt's

Here are some shots of us up at the Hiatt's for Mother's Day!

Check out your boy with the 12 gauge! GIT ER' DONE! The fact that I only hit 1 out of about 20 is of no consequence! I am still.........a........uh...ok.....shot! So there!

Click HERE

Jon_News on 05.12.05 @ 11:10 PM EST

Monday, May 9th

Shots from Mother's Day at Momma Black's

Hello All!

Click HERE for the latest shots from this past weekend of the food and fun at Momma Black's for Mother's Day......and Happy Mom's Day to all the "mums" in the crowd.

Jon_News on 05.09.05 @ 04:54 PM EST

Tuesday, May 3rd

Pics from Chris Beese's Prom

Here are some great shots of Cousin Chris Beese this past weekend (I think 4/30/05) at the Prom!

Click HERE

Have a great week all!

big grin
Jon_News on 05.03.05 @ 07:47 AM EST

Wednesday, April 20th

Uncle Bill's Latest Carvings!

I am CONTINUALLY amazed at what Uncle Bill can do! Check out his latest "Grebes" carving.

Click HERE (thanks Bev)


Jon_News on 04.20.05 @ 08:30 PM EST

Tuesday, April 12th

New Pics from Rick's Birthday!

Here are some new pics from Rich and his camera from there trip to Grandma (Momma) Black's!

Click HERE
Jon_News on 04.12.05 @ 09:53 AM EST

Sunday, April 3rd

New Pics from Rick's BDay and the Beese Visit!

Check out the "Fats-Tivities!" at Momma Black's for Rick's 45th (just kidding) bday and Grandma and Gma BZ's Visit!

Click HERE!
Jon_News on 04.03.05 @ 10:22 PM EST

Sunday, March 20th

Cullen Black - Pinewood Derby 2005

Big Cullen in action again tearing up the Pinewood Derby!

Click HERE for all the action.

PS. Is it that his Mom is getting smaller, or is that boy "a GROWIN!"
Jon_News on 03.20.05 @ 11:10 AM EST

Wednesday, March 16th


Check out those "bibs".....(that's Southern for Overalls Yall!)

Latest Pics of Sam Black HERE

Thanks Trish.
Jon_News on 03.16.05 @ 08:25 AM EST

Wednesday, March 9th

Chris Black added to family page!

WOOT WOOT! big grin

Big Chris and the Gaggle (literally) are in the HIZZY *for those fo you not privvy to the latest "hip-hop" vernacular that means "yeah". Anywhoo, check him out HERE.
Jon_News on 03.09.05 @ 10:16 PM EST

Friday, March 4th

Sir Joey and His New Armor!

Check out the latest pics of Joey Black and his new Armor! big grinWOWbig grin DAD (Mike) that is IMPRESSIVE!


Jon_News on 03.04.05 @ 07:54 PM EST

Thursday, March 3rd

Nice Note to Amanda from Pops!

Well, take a breath the girl is home! We are circulating some great emails HERE. Keep all of Amanda's friends and fellow soldiers in your thoughts, and remember what she has just done and what many more are still doing. Great Job Girl! We are glad to have you back and safe.

Luv Jon
Jon_News on 03.03.05 @ 06:17 PM EST

Wednesday, March 2nd


Email from Poppa Black Today!

"In case you didn't know, Amanda is safe & sound & on the ground in Indiana. Tom, Jenny, Nanny & Poppy met her when she landed at 9am today. They are at a hotel there. She has 2 days of closing down & then heads for WI. She'll be in NC around the 14th of March. She spent most of the day at the mall & sounds great!
Luv ya All"-
M&D - 3/1/2005


Jon_News on 03.02.05 @ 06:08 AM EST

Tuesday, March 1st

New Samm O Lingus Pictures

Check out Trish and Mike's little guy! Hopefully no KILLER GAS THIS TIME!



Click HERE
Jon_News on 03.01.05 @ 07:58 AM EST

Monday, February 28th

Happy Birthday Mike and Blair!

Check out the latest crazy FAT SPAGHETTI/BIRTHDAY crazy pics from Momma Black's this weekend.

Have a great week everyone. Luv US

Click HERE for the pics!
Jon_News on 02.28.05 @ 08:27 AM EST

Sunday, February 27th

SHE'S COMING HOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Jon_News on 02.27.05 @ 07:06 PM EST

Wednesday, February 23rd

Update: Our Girl From Camp V!

WOOT WOOT! Amanda's Almost Home! Click HERE
Jon_News on 02.23.05 @ 05:53 PM EST

Saturday, February 19th

Amanda Heading home on the 26th........WOOHOO!

Latest Emails on our girl....she is in Kuwait.....getting ready to come home!!! WOOT WOOT!

Jon_News on 02.19.05 @ 11:37 AM EST

Monday, February 7th

All new Email from our Girl in Tikrit!

HERE is some info on her return, it is currently set for the 25th of this month! WOOT WOOT!

Jon_News on 02.07.05 @ 06:22 AM EST

Monday, January 17th

New Information on Amanda coming Home!

Check the latest email from our girl with new Arrival Information....HERE!
Jon_News on 01.17.05 @ 05:06 PM EST

Friday, January 14th

New Pics from the Stratfords!

Check out the latest shots of Brent and Steph Stratford's Daughter's B-Day and Baptism! HERE

Luv 2 All
Jon_News on 01.14.05 @ 07:04 PM EST

Wednesday, January 12th

New information from Amanda and her return!

OUR GIRL IS COMING HOME.......well sort of.....on schedule.......well anyway, click HERE!
Jon_News on 01.12.05 @ 01:56 PM EST

Sunday, January 2nd

Just got some "Canadian Beese" Christmas Shots!

New Christmas Shots from "Up North", thanks Bev! Check them out HERE.
Jon_News on 01.02.05 @ 10:58 PM EST

Thursday, December 30th

New X-Mas 2004 Pics from Trish and Mike and Little Sam

Check them out at Shutterfly, HERE.
Jon_News on 12.30.04 @ 05:02 PM EST

Sunday, December 26th

Just added some great new X Mas Pics!

Well just got back from Momma Black's, had a great Xmas weekend, it was great to see all the family again. Especially the ones we have not seen in a while. HERE are the photos, pay close attention to the "demon diapers" possessed by Trish and Mike's son Sam, I think my olfactory bulbs are starting to recover. LOL

Also, just added some Beese/Black Xmas shots HERE Check them out!

Anyway, have a great New Years and Cheers to All! Luv Jon
Jon_News on 12.26.04 @ 09:20 PM EST

Sunday, December 5th

Stephanie got Hitched!

Well just got done posting Stephanie's (Jen's Baby sister) wedding. The day went off without a hitch.....*ha ha ha, get it*.........anyway, it went great and the shots did not come out that bad. Check all the goodies HERE.

Luv to all.
Jon_News on 12.05.04 @ 09:52 PM EST

Friday, December 3rd

Now it REALLY works!

Make sure and register for automatic updates above. I had the initial program working, but was NOT QUITE perfect yet. I got it today though. SO stay current with the news if you want to and sign up above. It involves your registration and then a click inside a confirmation email the program sends you. Hope to hear from all of you and keep the new content coming.

Also, if you see a family member that is not listed, let me know, or get them to shoot me an email and I can get their page going.

Luv to all and have a great weekend.

Jon_News on 12.03.04 @ 04:09 PM EST

Wednesday, December 1st

Hey all Happy December!

Well, spent most of the day, fiddling with the feature above, (note "Subscribe to Mailing List!) WOOT WOOT! I finally got it working, so if you want emails when new stuff is added, go ahead and add yourself. No worries the file is buried deep in (whisper) secret secret places, so no one will spam your address. Or you can just email Jon.

Also, just added some Turkey Day shots from Momma Black's, check them HERE.

Have a great week! Luv to all.
Jon_News on 12.01.04 @ 09:54 PM EST

Friday, November 26th

Gobble, Gobble, Gobble

Well back at work after a Turkey induced COMA! Got two new emails from our girl in Kuwait now.

Check 'em HERE

Have a great weekend! razz
Jon_News on 11.26.04 @ 06:48 AM EST

Monday, November 22nd

Our Girl made it to Kuwait!

Well here is the latest email from our girl.......HERE

She is taking a new truck from Kuwait up north! Be safe girl. See you all on turkey day and have a Great Week! PS. Mom hope the new job is going great.

Jon_News on 11.22.04 @ 06:17 AM EST

Thursday, November 11th

New Content on Tricia's Page


Trish sent the obligatory, WASSSSUUPP! Newsletter. Check it out.

Happy Veterans Day to all the Vets in the family, thank you, we would not be here without your effort and sacrifice. And for our Girl in Iraq, kick butt, be safe and get home soon. WE LUV YA!

More later.
Jon_News on 11.11.04 @ 12:04 PM EST

Tuesday, November 9th

New Shots of Tricia's Baby!


Hope everyone is having a great week so far! Love to all.
Jon_News on 11.09.04 @ 06:32 AM EST

Thursday, November 4th

Chatting with our girl and adding some videos

Well just got done chatting with our girl on Yahoo! IM. Also, posted a new Mosul video from her CD she sent a few weeks ago.

Check here page here to view the videos marked new, then head on over to the gym site to see the Pencil Box video if you have not already.

Love to All.
Jon_News on 11.04.04 @ 08:06 AM EST

List of what Amanda needs for goodies......

Here is a link to what Amanda wants for goodies....thanks to all for the help getting this stuff to her.


Thanks all. Luv Jon. PS have a great weekend.
Jon_News on 11.04.04 @ 07:08 AM EST

Wednesday, November 3rd

New Amanda Email, requests for goodies for Holidays and Goodies!

*insert Public Service Announcement from Jon*

Below is a link to Amanda's latest email from Iraq. In it she requests certain items for the holidays and other such sundry tidbits. All readers will of course participate in the support and gifting to the aforementioned Seargent (ref. above) or Jon will break your legs. Thank You for your cooperation.

HA HA. Just kidding. If you want to send her some stuff she has mentioned some stuff that would be good. Here is her latest message.

Luv to All.
Jon_News on 11.03.04 @ 08:24 AM EST

Monday, November 1st

New Email from our Girl in Tikrit and Halloween Photos from the Stratfords.

big grin big grin big grin

Just got a new email from our girl Amanda in Iraq, click here

Sending her goodies here in a bit, anyone need mailing infor email Jon.

Check here for the latest from the Stratford Clan

Luv to all.
Jon_News on 11.01.04 @ 06:48 AM EST

Saturday, October 30th

Well that was not so hard....was it!

Just finished getting this News Room working. Hope it helps lead everyone to the newly added stuff as I post it. I am really starting to gather quite the collection "O" family stuff. Thanks to all for emailing me things as you get them. Anwyay, good weekend here, weird warm weather but great for the grass. Luv to all.
Jon_News on 10.30.04 @ 11:58 PM EST

Thursday, October 28th

I figured it out!

I figured out how to embed a news column! YEAH ME! Anyway, check back here for what is going on with Jen and I and what has been updated to the site. Luv to all. Jon
Jon_News on 10.28.04 @ 06:08 PM EST

New Members Added!

Well, working on getting the family site all together and seems to be coming along well. Make sure and check back regularly for updates. Just added Cousin Eric, Trish, Uncle Bob, Uncle Rod and Aunt Diane and Uncle Hamster! WOOT! Working on script to add postings to this page with some cool thing, but not sure yet. More later. Luv Jon.

Jon_News on 10.28.04 @ 06:07 PM EST

Previous News


Jon and Jen's New House Paint Job! YEAH!


The New Year is moving right along. The family photo section is growing and getting better by the day. Keep the fresh content and images coming! Thanks to all who have contributed. Also, make sure and check out the gym site,, on the main page we have added a monthly article as well as a bunch of great healthy recipes. Luv to all, thanks for dropping in.


Well the new gym is doing great! Head on over to the DTFit link to check out all of the happenings. Thanks to everyone for all of their help and support.


Well we are busy as heck getting ready for the transfer to a new facility, not sure where yet............*long drawn out painfully obvious pause*..........will keep you posted. In the meantime, keep an eye out for the all new FAMILY SECTION!


Well we had a great holiday with the rentals, and a BLAST with Cin and Jen tonight. The house is moving along. Also got some great shots of the pupps. So make sure and check the photo album to get the goods on them. Anyway hope I spelled it all right, and your day is going great. Love ya mean it. ME


HOLY WORK BATMAN.....That's all I gotta say about that.


Big Bro Chris came for a visit, loved to see him, he is doing great and he is a COMPUTER GOD! Well More later, Love Bugs!

Sometime in 2002 (Can't remember the date)

Well Ma and Pop Black just got their place in Salisbury and are ready to move in, make sure and check the pics page for photos to come. Have been doing the majority of web page changes to my Tribes page, make sure and check it out. Well, best to all.
Jon_News on 10.28.04 @ 12:29 PM EST