It’s finally starting to get cold here in Omaha, encouraging us to curl up and think of friends and family and times gone by. It’s been a pretty busy year for us, and a pleasant one. It would seem that retirement is agreeing with us.
The Warrens (Kate, Ty, Xander, and Mira) remain busy in Leesburg with Mira in 7th Grade and Xander a sophomore in high school. Mira keeps busy with a number of after school activities, was in the recent talent show, is active in her school chorus and even was selected for the All-District Chorus. Xander is also very much a “chorus guy,” and is currently looking forward to being in his school’s production of Oklahoma! at the end of fall semester. His chorus’ trip to Disney World last spring was (apparently) quite an adventure for him (and his father, who helped chaperone). Ty continues keeping Comcast running and “gaming.” He participated in a 24-hour charity marathon not long ago which sounds both challenging and exhausting. Kate (who calls us several times a week) keeps us up to date with the family between trips to Target, organizing “teacher appreciation” events for Mira’s school (which keeps her much busier than one would think) and, recently, coordinated the middle school talent show complete with “unscrambling” the school’s light board. She even visits various “sheep and wool” events every so often with some of her knitter friends.
Maggi continues to work at the Hyatt Call Center where she is tied up in meetings and conference calls a good deal and has had a chance to travel to headquarters in Chicago several times. Last summer, she created and started marketing a line of hand-dyed yarns (for knitting or crocheting) including a way of dying it so than it can be knitted into striped socks without changing the yarn. She and her mother have developed a fascinating way of preparing the yarn for dying in order to achieve this result, but it’s quite difficult to describe. She calls the yarn line “Wool of Bat” and it is available on her Etsy site @ https://www.etsy.com/shop/magickalmiscellany. She had a good response at the show she attended in Chicago, where several friends assisted her (and were needed). She also finally got a chance to experience Salem, MA, during October, although she did have to come home before Halloween, so that will have to wait for another occasion.
Bonnie continues to put together the Dogwood Crafters Newsletter, which is complicated a bit by distance, but remains manageable. She had a great time going to a reunion with some college chums in Bloomington, IN, last June. She has gotten involved with several groups from the New Neighbors League, so she runs off to meetings of a book club and the Giving Circle at least once a month (and occasional meetings of other groups, as well). She has accepted a position on next year’s NNL Board. She also has joined the American Sewing Guild, goes to her sorority alumnae meetings, makes embroidery items for Maggi’s shop and, on occasion, attends sewing clubs sponsored by a local sewing machine store.
Richard keeps himself occupied with a lot of reading, especially of books on Shakespeare and (when he can find one) on the Salem Witch Trials of 1692, a subject he finds almost as intriguing as Shakespeare. He also often indulges himself with a good mystery and has become a frequent attendee of the meetings of a Sherlockian Study Group which meets once a month at a local library. He has found this a very pleasant diversion. He also tries to prepare a new entry for his blog, “Dr. B’s Notes” (found on his web site @ www.richardsbeam.net) every 10 days to two weeks, although he doesn’t always accomplish this.
Together, B and R have made many visits to the Lauritzen Gardens (the local botanical garden/arboretum), the Durham Museum, the Joslyn Art Museum, and the Henry Doorly Zoo. The ready availability of such pleasant distractions is quite a change from the limited opportunities of Cullowhee, although trips to North Carolina always include Biltmore House, which beats them all. They also try to get to an Aquasize class at the Y about three quarters of a mile from their house 3-4 times a week. Much of the time they are successful, but those breakfast and luncheon meetings get in Bonnie’s way at times. They also have become members of a couples’ dinner out club through the NNL called D.U.M.P. (Don’t Underestimate My Preference). Once a month, one couple serves as “host,” providing appetizers and drinks and selects a “mystery” restaurant for the group to attend. This has led to some most interesting choices featuring a variety of cuisines (all good). This is a VERY “foody” town! It’s said by some to have the highest number of restaurants per capita of any place in the USA.
They have also been to several concert and theatre performances at various local theatres. There is a considerable variety of theatre groups and venues within fairly easy driving distance and they have been enjoying the chance to be “civilians” and go to occasional events which R is NOT directly involved in. They saw I Hate Hamlet, Spamalot and The Man of La Mancha at the Community Playhouse and The Good Doctor and As You Like It at local universities. They plan to attend the UNO production of The Threepenny Opera soon. They also made trips to Wheeling, WV, to see Bonnie’s sister and family, Leesburg, VA, to see the Warrens, and several trips back to Sylva to check on the house they are still trying to sell. They look forward to Bonnie’s brother, David, visiting at Xmas.
All in all, a pretty good year as we have “settled in” to being Omahans. We wish you Peace and Joy and hope that it’s been a “pretty good year” for you as well.