Hi there and Happy (belated) Thanksgiving!
Honestly, though, every day could be Thanksgiving, couldn’t it? We spent our Thanksgiving with matriarch Pat and family. The meal was fantastic but the table…no words.
Hopefully you have received our 2017 newsletter, via either e-mail or U.S. Mail. Check your trash/spam folder before you contact me, but if you don’t have a newsletter in there let me know and I’ll get one your way.
I forgot a couple of things in this year’s letter. Of course, as soon as it was done and being printed I remembered:( Clarke Seely, brother of Donna Lou, brother-in-law of Pete the former owner, and cousin of Lee-the-onion-ring-man, passed away from cancer this summer. Clarke was very dry and quick-witted. He never landed at Camp for long–something even he recognized–but it was always a pleasure to see him. Also, we just found out yesterday that John Schlump passed away in 2017 from cancer. Gruper knew John from waaaay back–playing softball–but more recently John had visited Camp with family a couple of times. We are happy he was able to have those times and sad to hear of his passing.
The other piece I omitted was that the hot tub is going to be removed from the Bear’s Den. This doesn’t affect many of you, but some guests will be disappointed. Another part fried, and that tub is so aged that replacement becomes nearly impossible. Our plan is to remove the tub, disconnect the gazebo from the Bear’s Den, and put a nice gas grill in the gazebo for everyone’s use. In all honesty, the grill will get a lot more use than the hot tub;)
So, Gruper and I arrived in Iowa within a week of each other this year. We had to live out of the old fridge in the garage (ours died right before we headed to Canada in the spring) while we waited for a new kitchen floor and fridge. The fridge I wanted was so basic that we had to search high and low! My floor was finally starting to show wear after 23 years, and I am super-pleased with my new luxury vinyl floor:
I certainly plan to get another 23 years out of this one!
Socially, our lives are a roller coaster when we return. Seester Rebecca and I saw the Dirty Dancing musical (nobody puts Baby in a corner). I’ve roadtripped to Amish country, volunteered for and participated in the Turkey Trot with Sal, and gotten right back into my walking and Y classes. Gruper has been fishing a couple of times and has the yard in tip-top shape. I curse Tom Beeks for loaning Gruper his super log splitter;) Gruper has split A TON of wood and I’ve stacked most of it! (Note to John and Marie: I’d like to rent Rylee next year.)
For Gruper’s birthday in early November we visited the Red Rock Grill & Still in Knoxville. The owners are our “island” people who own the cool cabin on 2nd Lake! Many of you have met them at potluck. Let me tell you: the food was fabulous and the atmosphere is perfect! Leave it to me to take Gruper on sushi night;) but he enjoyed a lovely prime rib sandwich, and the menu had something for everyone! We will be back before we head “up” in the spring! Jennifer took the picture we used for the newsletter:
We have booked our winter getaways! Sanibel Island it is for the holidays. I booked us a condo (’cause I like to have a kitchen) for about 10 days. In February we will join good friends Mike and Chris (formerly of Rocky Shore Lodge) in the Gulf Shores area for several days, then head down the panhandle toward niece Anna, her Air Force hubby Benny, AND THOSE TWINS Michael and Joshua!!!
Navy nephew Jake has been deployed for several months but is due home by Christmas (please pray for his timely return). His Navy wife Jessi has been holding down the fort on Whidbey Island, Washington. She has had her hands full with 5-year-old Jack and 6-month-old James. These military families endure so much. Please keep all of them in your prayers, always but especially during the holidays. I hope to get “out west” before I head north in the spring.
Trying to schedule time with the local kiddos is tough! Rebecca accompanied Gavin on his preschool’s trip to the pumpkin patch! He is 3 and very independent these days!
Kay and I have begun preparing for her three grandmas’s Christmas presents! She is nearly my height at 10! She enjoyed her first trip to Canada this year and plans to return in 2018! She is a phenomenal person who cracks me up!
Last Monday I ventured over to my biggest brother’s house to do a craft with the little girls. Dan passed away in April, and Connie is doing a great job of keeping things going. She is such a good mom and grandma:) She took this picture of me with Emma (4), Mya (7) and Alysha (7). Those girls are great crafters and I plan to make this a regular activity for us!
Connie took this pic of Mya with me at the pumpkin patch, too!
She had on the coolest Halloween leggings!
Ms. Freya was an absolute pain in the butt for our trip home! I had to drug her, put her in her carrier in the car, and leave her out there for the night:( She HATES travel. Once home in Iowa, though, she is the happiest girl in the world! She loves it here and rules our small area. She runs all night behind the house–hunting we guess–and this is what we see allllllll day:
I join her a bit each day while it’s so nice. I read a good book and soak up the sun. I think about how grateful I am for these people, this life, our health…this damn cat;)…
and each of you. God bless you all.