Dateline: Somewhere in the vast American Heartland – Xmas ’18
It’s the time of year to think back on what the past has brought us; the memories of friends and fun; and to look forward to what the future may have in store. All in all, it’s been a busy year for our family. One would think we might have the “good sense” to slow down a bit, but….
The Warrens (Kate, Ty, Xander, and Mira) continue to lead a busy life in Leesburg, VA, where Ty is still keeping Comcast running and remains active as a gamer, participating in several charity events; Kate keeps herself busy trying to keep up with the kid’s activities and occasional “girl’s weekends;” Mira is an active HS Sophomore involved with chorus and musical theatre, etc.; and Xander, having graduated from High School, is taking a “gap” year to deal with some ongoing health issues and to study programing under his Dad’s tutelage; the family has adopted two kittens who were born under their front porch last winter and who keep them occupied.
Maggi: In discussing Maggi, one must now include Brian Fritzsche, (to misquote The Fantasticks: “There is this boy.”). They have been dating almost two years with Brian working (as a programmer) in Des Moines complicating, but not stopping, things. In April, M attended the Loyalty Fraud Prevention Association Spring Conference, in Miami (while we were in Calif.) as she has become something of Hyatt’s “expert” on this topic. That has led to a couple of business trips to Chicago (HQ), culminating in her promotion to Lead Investigator for the World of Hyatt Risk and Integrity Team and to a trip to London for the LFPA International Conf. in November. Brian was able to go with her and they got to spend almost two weeks visiting London and vicinity, including the Harry Potter Studio and Stonehenge. They got ENGAGED at St. Dunstan in the East (a very old, ruined church which is now a small park near the Tower of London) on Remembrance Day (Veteran’s Day in the US). No wedding date is set yet, but M will be spending part of the holidays in St. Louis, MO, for Xmas with Brian’s family (whom she has met before). It’s all quite exciting! She and her Dad went to see the touring production of Phantom of the Operaat the Orpheum Theatre shortly after Thanksgiving. M had wanted to see the show for years and her father (who also hadn’t seen the show) was most curious about the special effects.
Bonnie, who never seems to slow down, remains active with the New Neighbors League, where she is on the Board as the Editor of the Newsletter, while also participating in the Giving Circle (charity work), Lady’s Day Out (exploring places in the area), Book Club, attending monthly Luncheons, and sponsoring Needles Unlimited (a sewing/knitting/talking group) at our house. She has also been active with (and on the Board of) the local chapter of the American Sewing Guild, and participates in the 𝛢𝛯𝛥 Alumni group, which awarded her the local Alumni Award, and she threw the group’s Halloween party this Fall. She got a special wish satisfied in the late summer when we purchased two of the two/three seat Adirondack-style porch gliders she wanted to dress up the covered portion of our back deck, which we got freshly stained during the summer. She also planted various roses where tomatoes grew last year and has lots of potpourri to show for it.
Richard, who moves a bit slower than his wife because he can, keeps himself busy by reading a lot and getting a post to his blog, “Dr. B’s Notes,” (@ www.richardsbeam.net) every couple of weeks, which he enjoys and (he hopes) is usually interesting and/or amusing. He is also an active member of the Omaha Sherlockian Society and enjoys following the Formula One racing season on TV (assisted by our DVR to record those middle of the night “live” broadcasts from around the world). Last Spring, he was invited (and paid a bit) to participate in a Jury Research Study conducted by a local law firm, which he found quite interesting. He also got a chance to attend an all-female, abridged production of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar at the local, experimental Blue Barn Theatre, which was quite interesting.
Together, B and R, keep busy with Aquasize classes at least a couple of times a week and being members of the Henry Doorly Zoo, the Lauritzen Gardens, the Joslyn Art Museum, and the Durham Museum. We have attended a number of lectures related to exhibits at several of these. City life provides a number of activities we didn’t get in the mountains. We also continue to be active in an NNL sponsored dinner group. We’ve had visits from Bonnie’s brother, David last Christmas (going to the zoo and the Omaha Community Playhouse production of A Christmas Carol), and Bonnie’s sister and niece, Shirley & Leslie, for the Show Jumping & Dressage competition in Omaha in mid-April. Our cat, George, apparently had a fatal heart attack in January, but his brother, Fred, still keeps us jumping. We traveled to Asheville (briefly) in early January, then to San Diego/ LA in late April to visit DKJ, five art museums, concerts, a new play at The Old Globe and the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios (a big treat of the trip). In July, we visited Chicago for R’s niece, Sarah’s, remarriage and his sister, Janet’s birthday. This allowed us to get to Hackney’s on Harms (a “special” place from the past). From there, we went on to Asheville to see the Chihuly exhibit at the Biltmore Estate (16 installations and many pieces). We’ve been to Shakespeare in Love at the Omaha Community Playhouse in late-mid-April, saw Wicked (again) in mid-May, The Play That Goes Wrong (both on national tours) at the Orpheum, and Newsies at Midland University. We got tickets for the Omaha Symphony Masterworks series this season and have enjoyed the programs very much. We plan to make a brief trip in mid-December to Biltmore House (Asheville) to see the Xmas decorations (especially the Gingerbread Biltmore House). We do keep busy!
It’s been a busy and happy year for us. We hope that it’s been a good year for you and yours and that the next one will be, as well.
Richard & Bonnie The Beams