Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A non-stop travel year, and now for a rest!

Our Grandson Dean was born in February in Baton Rouge. I spent a few days with Jack , Erica, Kent and Dean. Kent and I checked out Mike the Tiger on campus at LSU, and spent the better part of a morning at “Jumping Tigers”, an indoor playground of inflatable toys-boats, trains and slides.

This is Erica, Dean and Kent all working on a special sweater project for a new little friend of the family. And to the right, Jack and Kent and Dean are reading about “Hot Air Henry”.

In April we joined Ron’s sister Lisa and her husband Joel in Chicago for two incredible nights of music, one with Yo-Yo Ma and one with "The Dude" Gustavo Dudamel. We stayed at the historic Palmer House hotel, took the river tour, and enjoyed Millennial Park and every minute of our visit.

We purchased Ron’s 1990 325ic from Johnson Chevrolet in the “coal fields” of Southwest Virginia in November of 2009. We took it out after the long winter, top down, to attend the Vintage at the Vineyards BMW rally in late April. It was fun to see several hundred older BMWs in one place.

Anilia, our daughter, and her son Emerson came to Newport in May and spent a few days with us. While here with Emerson, I hatched a plan to travel by car to Tulsa with Kent, to fulfill Ron's goal to get our great grandkids together with their great grandparents.

In July , while I went back to work and planned, Ron headed out on his 7th year at the Vintage Motorcycle Days in Mid-Ohio on the 1968 R60. He visited friends in Virginia and Maryland coastal communities on his way to Ohio. Later in the month he traveled in the BMW 325ic car to Louisiana via Oxford and Clarksdale, MS to see Jack, Erica, Kent and Dean, and traveled with Erica's friend Alice taking pictures of the areas reported to be effected by the oil spill.

The Great Grand Plan fulfilled-

As soon as my classes finished in August, I drove down to Louisiana, picked up Kent and drove to Tulsa. Kent was a great traveler. And our first day in Tulsa, he followed his Uncle Tom around the pool as Uncle Tom installed an Arizona style cooling system on the pool. (which I must say worked really well.)

We flew Jack, Erica, Dean, Anilia, John and Emerson into Tulsa to meet at my younger sister’s Aunt Patty and Uncle Tom’s home. My youngest sister Susan and her husband Bill brought their son and daughter-in-law Tyson and Brichelle and two grand daughters, Tagen and Talyn. Lots of great-grands were present and accounted for!

Patty and Tom were new grandparents by then Brian and Rachel had a baby boy, Dane. Mom and Dad came down from Kansas to meet all their great grandchildren. Ron flew out and drove home with me, we sent Kent home on the plane with his folks. We had a grand old time.

Patty sent me home with the 1959 aluminum Christmas tree, that we found in Mom and Dad’s outbuildings a year ago in October. Here is is with a green tree in the living room.

John, Anilia, and Emerson. E is one year old in this picture. A few weeks later when he came to visit us he was walking…

Kent and Mike the Tiger in Texarkana

Brichelle (in the pool), Tayln and Tyson.

Ah September finally arrives !

In September, we hosted the “BackYard Stone Carver’s” three day carving event. To get ready we cleaned out the garage, moved the big wok away from the house, painted the back deck, and cleaned the house- Ron said it was “like cleaning the house on steroids”. Certainly we would not have accomplished what we did without the help of the stone carvers. Thank you to all who helped…

Terry, Estill, Jennifer, and Ron moved "The Wok,"the back end of cement mixer 40 feet in order to make room for the tented area for the carvers.

The class taught by Bob Lockhart, an internationally famous sculptor working in stone, wood, and bronze castings. We had about 12 local carvers, plus 5 students. Ron videotaped and hosted so that I was able to carve also…what a feast of activity and wealth of knowledge I gained this year. And the weather cooperated for the most part as we worked outside under tents with some in the garage.. Ron says that this is the big event of his year. Thanks to Ron for making it happen. To the right is my product from the workshop the cap is dendritic stone, and the coil and base are Brazilian soapstone.

Utah Alabaster Free Form directed by Bob Lockhart

And now dust ourselves off and get back to Oklahoma ....

Tom, Patty, Michelle, Zack, Rachel, Brian and Dane.

In October, I returned to Tulsa for Patty's daughters wedding. Michelle and her husband Zach had a lovely event and my sister’s and I had the pleasure of helping Patty and Michelle decorate the reception hall. In addition my oldest sister Peggy and her daughter Amy were able to join the family in celebrating as well as Susan and her husband Bill. We giggled and had a terrific time.

Back at work I accepted the Planning Director position which means I am working full time now. But while I have taken on new responsibilities I have been able to order my time so that I spend one evening a week, about three hours at a time, carving at Estill’s studio with Estill and Jennifer. I have learned a lot in the few week I have been able to spend working with these gifted women.

We did make it to Atlanta for Thanksgiving and spent the weekend with Joel and Lisa there, Grandma Leonore, and as always had a wonderful time with family…

We will be home for Christmas this year, Emerson helped me put up the aluminum tree. We are wishing you and yours a Blessed Christmas and a very Happy New Year.

Ann, Ron, Hero, Little Girl and Happi


Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Hi Ron & Ann, WHEW got tired just reading all about your travels. of course, you know we have just stayed home (NOT). It was rgeat fun seeing everyone in GA at Thanksgiving - you left out that trip! Enjoy the holidays - it's actually snowing here on the eastern shore - IMAGINE that!

OldBikeRider said...

Ann wrote this thing and I tried to format it, and switched a few words. By the time November came around she was too tired to write much, but there is one line in the second to last paragraph about it. Most of the people that read this stuff were there, so I guess she did not feel the need to give the details. We are really looking forward to having a few friends over for our anniversary on Christmas day as is our ritual started in Haiti. Low pressure, no cleaning house on steroids!
And you guys: I bet you have more nights on the road than we do. But that is good, travel is a great excuse for living. I enjoy your blog posts, even when I don't make any wise guy comments. Got your mail and forwarded the cards to the others today, thanks, we are enjoying the photos.