Tag Archives: Happy New Year

Good Riddance Annus Horribilis

I sat down and wrote about the top ten things for 2019. It hasn’t been a great year for us. They say retirement comes in three phases. Phase One you are healthy so you travel and do and see things and have a blast. Phase Two something happens health wise and you slow down and enter a period of peaceful quiet living. Phase three, well that’s when you end up in a home so we won’t go there, I hope. 2019 is the year I think we transitioned from Phase One to Phase Two. I still have some hope 2020 will see us back on the road again, but not that much hope.

Here is my top ten blessings for 2019.

  1. One of my children separated from his wife but they reconciled only a few weeks later, much to my intense relief and many thankful prayers.
  2. My beautiful Misty was attacked by two pitbull dogs but she got away relatively unscathed when they turned on each other instead. She also got to swim with dolphins.


    Misty had great fun with a friend she made at our second campsite. This little guy was actually faster than her. We don’t meet a lot of dogs who can outrun her but this boy sure could. He was also an important part of helping Misty get over being attacked.

  3. A dear friend’s daughter got married. We feel like she was almost a daughter to us and we saw her grow up so it was lovely to know she is married even though we could not make it to the wedding due to my husband’s health issues. She just recently announced she’s expecting this summer to add to the joy. Can you see me smiling?
  4. I discovered I love curling. I decided to keep active during our first winter out in the country and I joined the local senior curling group. I did it just for the exercise and the social contact so it was a real surprise to discover I really like curling. So living through winter after ten years of missing it is turning out to be not so bad.
  5. We came through the horrible storm of Canadian Thanksgiving 2019 unscathed. We were prepped and we were fine even though we had no power, no cell phone service, no land line, and no internet for nearly three days.IMG_8099
  6. We found a buyer for our precious property we could not longer manage. The buyer is going to continue to care for the property as it should be, including retaining the conservation agreement. Plus he will clean up the horrible mess left from the EF4 tornado of 2018.IMG_8189
  7. I discovered I have a lot more fix it talent than I thought after I designed and installed a new pantry space for our tiny house along with a few other projects to prepare for living here over the winter, like the new garage door opener.
  8. My health has been great. I was really worried about my asthma acting up again since it always was worse in winter but so far I have not had any trouble at all. I credit that in part to our fresh air intake which has made our indoor air so much better.
  9. We got through the terrible flooding and disastrous storms in the south and midwest without harm and we had a nice time in our travels in spite of it.
  10. The stroke my husband had in June due to a carotid artery dissection after a seat belt accident was very minor and he has made an almost complete recovery. Plus he is finally tackling some risk factors and he’s lost 14 pounds and dropped three pant sizes just by switching to a treadmill desk. We were very fortunate.IMG_1709


So I say farewell to 2019 with gratitude for the blessings and thanks that it is over. Here’s hoping 2020 is better. 2019 certainly could have been a lot worse. I hope we all have the best year ever in 2020!


The view from Riding Mountain National Park to our home some forty kilometres west.

Top Ten Great Things that Happened in 2017.

It wasn’t a perfect year (Oh Trusty Dog!) but we had a lot more good than bad. I like to be cheerful and positive so here is a list of my top ten happy things for 2017.

Stranger Doing an Act of Kindness award goes to Kelly Maes of Aztec New Mexico who found my keys and who then so mailed them on to us here in Florida. The world has many good people and we count Kelly among them.

So here is our countdown of the top great things for 2017.

10. We saw our guy get inaugurated and he has not yet pushed the nuclear button and the world has not ended after all, in spite of all the dire predictions of our leftist friends and family. Some are even beginning to concede he isn’t entirely evil and horrible. MAGA!


9. We made a dramatic change in how we travel and now, whenever possible, we stay two nights when we stop. This allows us to have one day in between each driving day to rest, recuperate, and see some local sights. It does take us a lot longer to get there but we get to enjoy the journey a lot more.


8. We finally got that last state on the list, Utah, and now we can say that we have traveled in every state in the lower 48.


7. We got all the new windows into our house at last! We got a lot of renovations completed this summer and we have more to do, but this is a real milestone in terms of our comfort and quality of life.


6. I did not have one single bad bout with my asthma. No antibiotics, steroid, trips to the hospital or days where I wondered if today I was going to die. Good health is such a blessing never to be taken for granted.


5. Misty joined our household! A year of grief accompanied by great happiness for us as dog owners.


4. We actually managed to have a really great and expanded encore family and friends vacation/reunion at Rushing River. We’re a blended family so some were missing but all my five biological grandkids and three kids and spouses were all in one place for two days (although no one stood still long enough to get a picture). We are hoping to make it an annual event and get even more of the family and friends involved this year.

3. Our book got many excellent reviews. Our science is having a real impact and we’re happy.


2. Our son and daughter-in-law and the two youngest grandsons moved much closer to us so we get to be much more involved in their lives now. I can dash off to do babysitting and spoil the grandsons with only one hour of driving. Yay!


1. We got two new family members to love. Our son remarried and his wonderful new wife not only makes him very happy (which makes us happy), but as a great bonus, she came with another delightful grandson (with the red tie) and our first grandchild who is actually really interested in our science. What’s not to like about that?


Honorable Mention:

Our daughter, our youngest, seems to have ended 2017 on an exceptionally high note. We hope to have some really good news to announce for 2018. Stay tuned!

Happy New Year everyone and go forward with our wishes for the best year yet in 2018!