- Hello all and Happy New Years! After over a year’s absence from our blog we figured we figured we’d resurrect it for our holiday letter. I hope this message finds you and your family healthy and looking forward to your coming year.
- Our 2009 was relatively quiet and domestic compared with our travels in 2008. The year started with a new addition to our family….Bodie, yet another rescued Cheseapeake Bay Retriever. He has been a great playmate for Alli and his world-class cuddling skills endeared him to us quickly.
- Of course Bodie had to learn how to travel, so in late February Lisa took the van and kids down to southern Arizona for a few weeks in the sun. I enjoyed tracking her with the Spot (her Personal Locator Beacon) but grew a bit concerned when once it showed she was camping in Mexico. Fortunately she called in often enough to let me know she was fine and still North of the border. For a minute there I suspected she was making a run for it! By the time I flew down for my Spring Break the family was in full vacation groove and I quickly joined in. Among other things our sabbatical helped us develop our “chill skills” and we put them to good use while enjoying the camping and climbing at Cochise Stronghold, east of Tucson.
- Summer was filled with lots of regional camping. We spent about a month of camping in the Uinta mountains outside of Logan,UT and were snowed out (in July!) of another trip to the Wind River mountains with our good friends the Gervases. The highlight of the summer for me was having my sister Georgia’s family come to visit us in Idaho which included a camping trip to Stanley Lake in the Sawtooths.
It was wonderful getting to experience the outdoors through the eyes of my nephews!
I did manage to get up to the Canadian Rockies for a fantastic week of climbing with my friend Peter. The Bugaboo spires have been a dream trip of mine since I first saw a picture of them. They certainly lived up to their reputation of long beautiful climbs.
With the end of summer we went back to our routines (for now!) with Lisa continuing to work with her clients and me starting another year at the middle school. I made several trips to Denver to see my parents where they moved to be closer to my sisters family. Visiting our friends the Monroes in the Tetons was our best little getaway trip. Winter break has been quiet, as we’ve enjoyed the local nordic skiing and dinners with friends.
After years of failing health my father passed away before Christmas. I was fortunate to see him over Thanksgiving while he was still telling his stories of college days and the marines over a drink. His death has reminded me of the importance of connection, love and forgiveness. Not just as values but as actions. I saw my dad more in his last three years of life than I had in the previous ten, and because of that, and for other reasons as well, our relationship grew, and changed.
There are some of you out there that Lisa and I met on the road, and we may never meet again. But that does not diminish the value of our relationship. I have friends in Australia I haven’t seen in over 20 years but they are still a part of my life, a part of who I am. So I want to say thank you, to all of you: Old friends, family, fellow travelers, work colleagues and the many more who have touched us. Thank you for your friendship and know that across the miles and infrequent contacts you still hold a place in our lives.
Tod and Lisa