Friday, September 10, 2010

Round Robin 2010

Here we go again - it's time for the annual Round Robin letter to my high school friends in the class of 1953. We're the SLGs, and we won't tell what that stands for.
Sept. 10, 2010

Hi Everybody!

It’s a beautiful day in Northern Michigan. Our hot, hot summer seems to be over, and we have deliciously cool 60s and 70s. Today is an absolutely perfect day.

We’ve had an eventful year. Here are some brief highlights. At Easter time we went to Washington, D.C. to visit daughter Jana. Daughter Laurie flew up with grandson Dylan to join us and introduce Dylan to that wonderful city. We showed him all of the monuments, including the new FDR memorial and the WWII Memorial, and of course the White House and the Capitol. To our surprise the biggest hit was the Art Museum! He’s been well educated by his art teacher in middle school, and he was really thrilled to see the great masters up close. He especially liked Andy Warhol and some of the abstract things. “Oh, Grandma, that illustrates order and chaos!”

At the end of May, we went to Alaska with friends - spent a week touring Denali, and then a week on a cruise ship looking at glaciers! Magnificent experience - glaciers are truly one of nature’s wonders. Let’s face it, cruising is just a lot of fun,. We had stops in Juneau, Skagway, and Ketchikan. I recommend it.

Our Florida kids came to visit in July and August for about three weeks. We love having Dylan here, and look forward to it every summer. Our son-in-law thinks they’re imposing and offers to stay in a motel - but he’s told, “No, no, you don’t understand - we want Dylan here!”

This year we are the hosts with the most. We’ve hosted three small geocaching events, Dick’s annual family reunion (GenFest), and next week we’re hosting the 46th Annual Kanitz Reunion downstate. This one is the biggest - we expect 150 cousins to come.

It must be our age - so many friends are selling their homes and moving to condos. Nola, Sandy N., and Betty have sold their homes. Our next door neighbors are moving to a condo this very weekend. I ran into Hank Johnson at our Rehab gym last week - he and Sue are selling their home and moving to a condo. Holy cow. Out here on the river, Dick has just ordered another load of firewood for the year after next, so you can tell we have no moving plans in the near future! But we can see the writing on the wall.

This year we were honored by the Michigan Geocaching Organization - one of five teams in the State to receive a special silver coin for “outstanding contributions to geocaching” and other complimentary statements. It was quite a surprise!

Our kids are all fine. Jana is the one we worry about. She’s been unemployed for over two years now, and it’s very troublesome. She does get contract work often, so she’s kind of a free-lance consultant, but it’s very unsatisfying to her.

Dick and I did get our shingles shots a few months ago. We debated and debated because of the cost, but we had watched Mother suffer with it and finally made the right choice, I think. So sorry for those of you who’ve had to experience that awful affliction.

Margo: How great that you are helping homeless folks. Especially these days, more and more are down on their luck. Our Goodwill Inn has expanded, and they are helping many families now. There are many homeless kids in the schools, which is something we haven’t seen before. Good for you - it’s important work!

Mary: Depression is certainly nothing to sneeze at! I’m glad you’re getting treatment and therapy - it’s the only way. Daughter Jana is dealing with depression also, with the help of a psychiatrist and a therapist and medications. Her therapist helps her immensely, and I wish you both peace of mind and comfort. Friends and family are so important.

Betty: Hey, you California girl! Nothing like moving across the entire country for a change of scenery. Seeing your grandkids every day is a big, big plus. I hope you had good luck with your ankle.

June: Glad all is well with you and yours. Sounds like you two have an active, healthy, happy Florida life.

Sandy M.: Sciatic nerve - oh no! Mine was a lot less severe than yours - the epidural took away the pain. I do have nerve damage in my left leg, which weakens it. I’m still going to the Rehab gym (4 years of it) and my Dr. says that now they believe that the nerve will eventually heal over time. Hope you continue to do well.

Donna: Good health news from you! Hope it’s continuing and that you’re getting good reports. The economy is affecting every family in one way or another, isn’t it…good that John is employed anyway - maybe by now he has a teaching job. I hope so.

Debby: When you’re home from Florida let’s get together and you can tell me about your hip replacement and your great family in person!

Freda: What a full life you are living. It’s always a treat to hear about your expeditions and adventures. Get the shingles shot - shingles would ruin your itinerary! Bill’s Parkinson’s will be a challenge, but I believe that you will deal with it in your usual competent fashion. My maid of honor’s husband also has it and she reports that at this point he is only comfortable in his own home, in his own space.

Nan: Northport really is a marvelous place in the summer. In the winter…not so much! Say hi to your husband (my third grade boyfriend)!

Nola: Wow - what a wonderful picture of you and your grandchildren! As you know, Dick and I have one (1) grandchild. Every family is unique! Count your blessings. It will be interesting to hear how you’re enjoying your retirement home - such a big change for you two - but we all will have to make that adjustment sooner or later. Let us know how J & K’s situation is working out. Of course I’m wishing for the best outcome for everyone.

Sandy N.: How nice that you’re close to the lake, and have a great path nearby. I’m thinking that you will be happy and comfortable there, with no worries about maintenance, etc. Hooray for you.