The best news is that Emery is home, happy and active, and we don't have any medical news to report. Hopefully Bonnie will be able to post periodic updates on her blog so you can keep up with their "back to normal" lives. I am glad this phase of all of our lives has come to a close and we offer our heartfelt thanks one more time for all of your thoughts, prayers, love and good wishes. Although Emery will have ongoing checkups and periodic medical appointments, we are thrilled that the most complicated part of treatment is done.
Our grandson Aidan is playing baseball in Texas and I am wishing we could go to some of his games! It would be great to sit in the stands and cheer him on. Good luck, Aidan--play hard! And, of course, we miss the little girls, Ally and Elle, too. Some day we will live closer and will be able to pop in and out more often.
There's been lots going on here but I haven't had the energy to blog about it! I never wrote about the Healthy Native Communities Fellowship after the first night of our arrival. It was a very busy and intense week, with a great deal of learning about working for the betterment of our communities and literally no time for me to write on my blog.
The faculty were superb and renewed my faith that there really are people who walk the walk instead of just being talking heads that tell us what to do. I was so impressed with not only their knowledge, but their spirit and their caring attitude toward all of us, the people we serve, and the community at large. It was interesting and inspiring to meet individuals from all over the country who are working in extremely difficult situations and never giving up--hearing their stories was an amazing experience. In some ways, it was difficult being the new person since I had missed the first retreat in January and everyone had already bonded and formed relationships. On the other hand, it was a good opportunity to listen, observe, and learn from others and I hope that the next trip will bring deeper relationships and more involvement for me.
Although we worked hard all day and had homework each night, we did manage to get out and have a little bit of fun, too. We made it to the San Diego Zoo and did a little bit of sightseeing around town. It was not as hot as I would have liked, after all, but still warmer than Unalaska, of course!
Back at home, there's always lots going on. Last weekend was the Convention and Visitors Bureau annual wine tasting event. Rich was working since he and his crew had to prepare appetizers to go with each of nine wines. My friend Donna and I went together and had a great time visiting with everyone and sampling the wines. Donna even won the grand prize of a cruise! I was teasing her because I picked up our tickets and handed her one of them--if I'd handed her the other one, I would have been the winner! Funny, huh? I guess I said it once too often because she asked me if she should give the prize to me. :) Ooops! I really didn't mean it that way and was thrilled for her!
Beautiful sisters Danielle and Darcel
Rich finally got to come see us at the end of the evening.
The next night was book club at Steve's, where we discussed the last two books, The Book Thief and The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Steve's wife, known on the blogs as Goldfish, made us some lovely snacks, including a delicious potato peel pie! See Steve's blog here for a photo. Thanks, you two! I have highly recommended The Book Thief before and will again. The Guernsey book was a fairly quick feel-good read--a sweet story that I enjoyed but I liked The Book Thief a whole lot more.
The Aleutian Arts Council's annual community art show has been going on for the last couple of weeks, including four sets of photos from Rich this year. For a town this size, we have a lot of very talented people and it's always interesting to see the various pieces of art on display. The show ended with the Arts Council's annual meeting and fundraising auction last night. Rich and his staff prepared the food again but he was able to join me at the event, which we enjoyed with friends. We came home with a couple of door prizes and two cool little baskets that I won on the silent auction.
The snow is melting and spring MIGHT be in the air but it's still a little hard to tell. :)