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SPRING 2016 NEWSLETTER

It is almostEaster - peter cottontail time for us to start singing “Here comes Peter Cottontail, hopping down the Bunny Trail…”  Easter comes early this year on Sunday, March 27th.  We did not have a very cold winter season here in Florida.  It appears that the folks in the north also experienced a milder winter than normal.  Some trees in the area are covered with red or lime green buds.  Our Iris plants have sent us some early blooms.  Alas, is it really Spring???

Jimmie and I are still doing our volunteer work; picking up food prepared by a local church on Wednesdays.  We then deliver it to a senior citizen low-income complex, “By the River.”  We also stay and help serve the Meals on Wheels food for those that chose to eat in the community room.  Jimmie does the “dishing up” and I serve as waitress.  We finish by washing dishes, storing away any leftover food and general kitchen clean-up.  It is a very nice group of people and they appear to really appreciate our help.

Our social calendar has not been extremely busy since Christmas.  We did take advantage of neighbors for dog sitting purposes and visited the casino a time or two.  One of my friends from Albany visited overnight in February.  We had a visit from some friends that currently live in St. Petersburg.  They used to be neighbors in Clifton Park.  I had some minor laparoscopic knee surgery to remove a rebel piece of cartilage and to fix a small meniscus tear on Feb. 23rd.  I am already able to ride my bike and the knee feels great.

A year ago October, we took a 22 day road trip out West with our futon mattress on the floor of the Dodge Caravan.  We attended a couple of days of the Albuquerque Hot Air Balloon Fiesta and visited with Jimmie’s ole Navy buddy, Clayton and his wife Suzanne, just outside of Phoenix.  We really enjoyed that, so we are planning another trip.  We will visit Clayton again.  I would also like to include parts of Colorado this time.  We will probably plan that trip for the fall.  All last summer Jimmie spent hours scouring the Internet looking for a vehicle that we could use for that trip.  He looked at all types of campers – big motor homes all the way down to conversion vans.  There really are hundreds to choose from.  The tricky part for us – we did not want big – we did not want expensive.  However, I did want all the conveniences (bathroom, kitchen, dining room table and roomy bed.)  Well, believe it or not, this was not an easy task.  However, I am glad to report that we are now proud owners of a 2010 Four Winds Majestic 19G.  Our final selection – older, higher mileage = lower cost.  Small size = easy to maneuver, better mpg.  Sure, I really like the shiny brand new models, but we are thinking, “Just how many road trips will we take?”  We are not really looking to do your traditional camping – set up in a location for a week, have campfires every night, etc.  We are looking to travel, in comfort, and when we get tired or hungry; we just pull over and spend a little time to refresh.  So we think we have found a perfect solution for our needs.  And, luckily, Cooper loves to go camping with us.

 

easter multi colored eggs

On a more serious note, I have been doing a lot of pondering about family ties.  I know I have said it before, distance between you and us is really a conundrum.  Distance makes seeing one another almost impossible on a regular basis.  Many of you still have jobs.  You go to work, come home, run the kids here and there – and then crash for a few hours of relaxation at the end of the evening.  Those of us that are retired might not have as many commitments; we are a bit slower after all.  However, we still have the need to crash at the end of the day.  Telephone conversations are far and few between.  We no longer have a clue as to what your schedules are.  We really do not want to be considered an interruption in your lives.  And we have our busy times too.  I have lunch with a couple of gals once a month, we have gone to friend’s homes to play cards or board games, we sometimes kayak, we sometimes do bike rides, we love stopping in at a local arcade for a couple of hours or taking a day trip to a casino 2 hours away.  We walk with a couple of friend’s by the Indian River most evenings, and then we (mostly Jimmie) do clipping and trimming of the various foliage we have on our property.  Sebastian is great at having some craft and art shows, concerts, and activities to keep us busy.  And for the past couple of days, Jimmie has been working on replacing two sections of our fence that have rotted away.  I spend some of my time maintaining the website I created for our home owner’s association.  And occasionally I sit down to write a newsletter to the family.  Today, all of our lives seem to be very busy.

So can we do anything that would make it easier, make it better!

Do we want to live in the colder climate? – NO.
Do we enjoy our slower paced life? – YES.
Can we fit our lives more into your lives? – HOW?

I really do not see our lives changing much.  We are all where we are because of many different reasons.  It does seem to be mostly working for all of us.  Yet, there are those times where we do get a bit melancholy because we are not more connected.

Joyously, I have to say THANK GOD FOR TECHNOLOGY!  I check Facebook daily for new postings from those of you that are using this social medium.  I myself do not post all that much, but I am keeping up-to-date on your postings.  I have also chosen to use one of my passions to try to keep connected with you – writing!  Even though I do not write regularly, my thought is that at least occasionally you hear a bit about our lives and it satisfies the “sharing” need I have.  I do hope that it also lets you know that you are always in our thoughts.  We do wonder how you are doing?  We wonder how school is going for the grandkids?  How are your jobs going?  What fun are the retired among you having?

Regarding the grandkids, we have images of the boys playing their instruments at school, riding their four-wheelers in the yard, throwing a ball for Rocky.  We have images of the girls enjoying their classes, riding their bikes in the neighborhood, dressing up in their cute outfits.  We have images of the college students learning worldly things expanding their knowledge base, making friends from all walks of life, experiencing independence and confidence as world citizens.  We see you sitting in your homes, going to dinner with friends, spending time with your family.   We see some of you working on “projects” that you have in your lives.  Even though the season is not quite right, I often imagine some of you working in your gardens, canning foods, creating wonderful recipes. We imagine you on your travels and vacations.   We pray with you and for you during times of stress and sadness.  We celebrate with you during times of success and happiness.  We hope that your health is perfect.  We hope you are getting expert care if it is not.

easter rainbow chickies

We do all have a close, current circle, whether large or small, of friends in our lives.  However, to me, family members still hold the most important connection.  Please know that you are never far from our thoughts.  The memories of times spent over the years keep you and yours very alive in our hearts.  We love you all!!

Wishing you a very Blessed Easter time.