Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Letter

Winter Wonderland
After the heartache and illness we experienced in 2009, I am glad to report that 2010 was filled with joy spent with family and friends along with a bit of job turmoil thrown in for
“fun”. It is rare that I get to see my family more than twice a year but this year I made a surprise visit to Ohio for my mom’s birthday in April, back again to see everyone in May, a dream come true vacation with sister Debbie and Mark to Hawaii in July, back to Ohio
for a couple of great weeks in September including some “sister time” at a cabin on Cowan Lake, and a first time in 25 year visit from my sister Sherri and hubby Chip to our home in Texas in November. WOW. We made a short trip to Angel Fire, New Mexico for a “family reunion” with Mike’s sister Deb and brother Pat in October when the autumn colors were at their peak....another WOW.
    In between these special family times both Mike and I have had to deal with job “issues”. The good news is we still have jobs. Express Script purchased my previous company, Wellpoint, last January and I was required to work full time. I have found this tough after working part time for so many years and having ample hours in the week to have a life outside of my JOB. I am ashamed to admit I have found myself whining much too often about my situation instead of being grateful. Since total retirement isn’t yet possible, Mike spent this year attempting to change to a part time day shift position after working 24 years of graveyard shift at the Children’s hospital. After months of hiring and training his replacements, he FINALLY started his new position this week. It was weird getting ready for work, sharing the bathroom, and eating breakfast together. I am so used to leaving the house before he gets home from work I almost didn’t know how to act. Ha. I am thrilled for his new opportunity and am hoping that maybe next year I will be allowed to cut back my hours. Meanwhile....since he now has more time on his hands, I am devising lists of household chores for him take charge of while I “toil” away. We’ll see.
    We bought a telescope this summer and joined the local astronomy club in an effort to develop some hobbies together and meet new people. Mike has always had a passion for astronomy and all its technological gear and I love the outdoors and science stuff. So, it has been an adventure for us as we learn volumes of information and sit under the starry skies. Kind of romantic too.
    Last, but not least, I must add that Biskit and Cookie are as frisky as ever and our daily companions whether we are watching TV, walking the neighborhood, or scoping out the heavens.
    As 2010 comes to an end, I pray that the Lord of heaven, Jesus Christ, continues to guide me in His ways as a new year unfolds allowing me another opportunity to know Him and the depths of the riches of His wisdom and knowledge.
                                                            Have a Blessed Christmas !

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Hawaii 2010!

Two years ago Mike and I vacationed for two weeks in Kauai adventuring with his friend Johnny, exploring the volcanos of the Big Island, flying over breathtaking  beaches and waterfalls, freezing on top of  Mauna Kea, and worrying about Mike's dad back in the nursing home. This year we are back again but with my sister Debbie and husband Mark for week one and Johnny for week two. We have had non-stop activity since stepping out of the plane including visiting the Kauai coffee plantation with plenty of caffiene filled samples, surfing lessons, zip lining experiences, golf overlooking the ocean, ATVing, hiking our legs off, swimming in pools and  ocean, helicopter rides, shopping galore, laughing until we cry, eating until we burst and taking a ton of photos. That is just for starters. We have left worries behind for these two weeks and concentrated on enjoying our family, friend and beauty of this incredible place. The picutres  tell it all!!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Driveway Astronomy

Mike has had his head in the "stars" for a long time but now has made it official with the purchase of a telescope and ALL the "necessary" gadgets. In our quest to spend quality time together I am "studying" star charts, reading telescope manuals, using new binoculars, memorizing constellations like the Big Dipper and Leo, viewing the rings of Saturn, counting the moons of Jupiter, and in general struggling to get up to speed with this new hobby taking place in our driveway each clear evening. FUN!!!
  I was worrying about what we will do when/if we retire. The telescope may be our answer. I can picture us packing up the dogs and gear, exploring remote areas, making sure the locations are pitch DARK and sky CLEAR, sitting back in my lawn chair with binoculars while Mike "syncs" the scope to the sky, eating snacks while we check out the "heavens" and I try to identify the 10 measly stars and constellations I have managed to memorize. As the picture shows, we have quite the hi-tech driveway setup. Computer, telescope, kitchen stool, saw horses, plywood board....we are living large!