Monday, July 30, 2007

The Rest of the Story - Part 3

My mother was born quite a few years before any of her cousins. Since she had her children at such a young age, we ended up being peers of her later-born cousins. I can remember having a great time with 3 of them especially at her family reunions. The guys were enough older that we didn't know them so well.

One of the "boys" was the brother of one of the girl cousins that kept V and me in stitches. We would always spend at least one night at her house, just giggling uncontrollably. That's probably why we didn't know her brother so well, because he had to get out of the house to keep his sanity!

This cousin, Darrell, invited all 4 of us to stay at his house while we were in Monti. They live out in the country in a beautiful 101-year-old house that they have spent years restoring and improving. It was a very peaceful, lovely spot to land for several nights while we went on with our trip down memory lane.

I took advantage of the country road to walk two mornings. I haven't done much walking since I joined the gym, but it was cool enough and just a wonderful place to do my formerly favorite form of exercise. This was the view the first morning as I headed down the gravel driveway to the gravel road.
Darrell has a great sense of humor, as various signs along the driveway will attest. I expecially enjoyed this one: Through Street: STOP
I also was amused by these intersecting signs out in the middle of nowhere!
When I returned from my first morning's walk, I discovered dozens of barn swallows having a morning snack of mosquitoes on the eaves of the barn - I never knew before why they were called barn swallows.
I have not been a collector in my adulthood, except for dust, and that is always the first thing that comes to my mind when I see huge collections in people's houses - how do you stand to dust all these things? Both Darrell and Liz are unbelievable collectors, mostly of antiques. Liz told me it takes 12 hours to dust everything. Darrell's barn is full of toys, which we didn't get a chance to see. He also has farm implements and farm tools.
This phone actually rings, but, of course, you can't call out. I had the urge to pick it up, ring Sarah, and ask for Barney or Aunt Bee.
This blast from the past really cracked me up. I hope you can read it. I love that they framed it and hung it in their kitchen.
I wanted to pack this up and ship it home for Care Bear and Feisty. I can't imagine how much fun they could have with it! Their granddaughters, whose pictures are on the wall inside, have long ago outgrown it, but it is kept in pristine condition. Sorry about the fuzziness of the second picture.
On Saturday, we went to Mom's family reunion. There are only two aunts left, one 85 and the other 93. They were both there, and I haven't seen them in probably 40 years or more. I had a delightful conversation with both of them. They were much younger than I am now when I last saw them. That's quite a thought!
I didn't get a picture for some reason, but we had a very relaxing ride on Darrell's pontoon boat - the reunion was at their lake cottage. Another great day.

That evening V and I rushed over to visit more friends down the road about 30 miles. On the way back that evening, I shot a picture of the place Dad worked when he was going to college and keeping up a family of 3 kids and a wife! It hasn't changed much in all those years - amazing.

Sunday morning we attended church where my dad's family were charter members. It's not my grandma's church any more! But it was delightful to be there and catch up with one more couple - the only one still there that we knew (he's the brother of the ones we visited the night before). We've been friends since we were kids. They went to lunch with us and we did some more catching up.

That afternoon, V and I had to go to the park on the river, which is next to the house my Grandma S lived in after she had to leave the farm (which now houses a Super Wal-Mart and other stores), and before she had to go to the nursing home. The park has been upgraded, and we took pictures of the flowers that now live where she used to. She would have loved it.

Can you see the butterfly on this next one?
Here's a better shot of it, if you missed it.
My other grandparents also lived in this town. The Interstate went through their property and all that is recognizable now is the ancient cemetery, which was at the bottom of the hills that was their driveway, and where we used to like to go and try to imagine what happened to entire families that are buried there. I wanted to take a walk over there, but we ran out of time. I can't imagine how that happened!!!

I was sad at how much the old town has changed. It was like Mayberry to us. I know progress has to happen, but it is hard to take when it happens in such massive amounts to a place with such fond memories. I can only imagine what people think when they come here to my town and see what "progress" has done to it.

It was an amazing 4 days. I am so blessed to have been able to do this before it's too late.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Old Memories and Making New Ones - Part 2

A week ago already! How could the time have gone so fast? V and I got up early (in fact an hour earlier than necessary, because I read my watch wrong!), hurried to get ready because of a 7:00 a.m. date with a Minneapolis city bus. (She laid back down, I read my book). We had decided taking the bus was the easiest way to get downtown for our rendezvous with our friend from high school, Maryam. I wrote about Maryam twice in October, here and here. The only time we could arrange to meet was for breakfast before she had to be at work at 9:00.

We spent the time catching up on 45 years. I cannot believe it's been so long. We didn't know each other well, but we enjoyed the friendship that we had. When we parted company that morning, I asked her what her husband thought of all this - he is Iranian and they had trouble getting back to America after they were married. He was pretty amazed by the whole reunion, I think. She said she was going home to tell him that we closed the gap of 45 years in about 45 minutes. Pretty close to true!


I just noticed that V is the only one with her eyes open! It was early, but it's ridiculous that we appear to be falling asleep at the breakfast table!

V headed back to Ann's apartment to meet up with our parents and take them to Monticello, where they met and fell in love when they were only 14 and 17, to be married 3 years later. I had told Diane that I would be wearing red crop pants. It's a good thing I did, because I was watching for her on one street and she arrived on a perpendicular street. But I did stand out in the crowd! You can read her version of our time together here.

As we headed out of the city, Diane told me to grab the bag on the back seat. Oh, my goodness, she blessed me with such a lovely assortment of gifts, beautifully placed in a basket shaped like Minnesota! Everything in the basket had a Minnesota connection.


Front and center you can see a bear at a computer - more about that later. Just behind the bear and to the left is a beautiful moose bookmark - what more appropriate gift could there be for me, who always needs to mark a place in a book?? To the right of the bookmark is a Minnesota-shaped chocolate sucker and beside it is a fish-shaped chocolate sucker. These were for the grandkiddoes - what a thoughtful friend. The red package is wild rice soup mix -I can't wait to taste it, but will wait till it's a bit cooler. Behind the soup are two packages of wonderful-looking truffles with Minnesota scenes on each of the four sides of the package - these are for my kids and their spouses. There was one more goodie, which I had already eaten when I took the picture - pretzel sticks covered with white chocolate, to look like birch tree logs. At the very back is a CD called "Minnesota Morning and Timeless Favorites" - piano music, which is one of my favorite types of music to listen to at work. I played it over and over yesterday as I remembered the good time we had together for those short hours.


Isn't this just the cutest thing? It's called "E-Bear." I have it on my file cabinet at work in a very prominent spot. I had it on the table to take this picture. I must have been really distracted the next morning, because in the middle of the day I got an e-mail from DC asking me if I had meant for him to have it at his desk. I had left it on the table, and it's right where he eats breakfast - he thought I was going to let him have it - HA! I asked him to please, please remember to bring it back to me!

As Diane said, we had to make a stop at the Mall of America. I wasn't sure I was going to make it to this major landmark in Minneapolis, but thanks to Diane, I got to see it. I'm not a shopper in any sense of the word - give me a catalog and my easy chair any day. I would rather return stuff than try things on in a store dressing room! Even though it costs more that way. But you can't go to Minneapolis and not see the MOA - it's like going to Arizona and skipping the Grand Canyon!

I know we didn't even scratch the surface, but we had fun walking around, chatting several miles a minute as we did. We talked of how much fun it would be to bring the kiddoes there and spend a whole day. It's an amusement park as large as any you've probably seen. Amazing. The Lego display is unbelievable. We asked several people to take our pictures and they were all so willing to do so.




We then headed for Diane's home town and had lunch at a lovely place on one of the thousands of beautiful lakes that Minnesota is famous for. What a great time we had eating delicious salads and making new memories. As she said, we talked about you, our friends, and wished you were there with us.


Diane is a very generous person, as you can tell by the gift she gave me. She also took me to Monticello. I can tell you that there were very few silent moments in the 6 hours that we were together. As she mentioned, her 2:00 appointment was cancelled as we headed to Monti, so we had a bit more time than we anticipated. What a blessing. She told you about meeting my dad - the ultimate story teller. I am so glad that she enjoyed his memories so much.

When I began this blogging adventure a little over a year ago, I never dreamed that I would have the privilege, or even have the great desire, to meet someday. As Groovylady said in a comment to Diane, if we never meet on this earth, we will have a great Bloggy Get-together in heaven someday. Shall we set a date 100 years from now??

Diane's son is embarking on the journey to wholeness. It is because of our prodigal sons that we became acquainted. She hosted the big "Welcome Home, Kevin" party when he returned from Tēēn Challenge last June, before I even had a blog (Kristen soon took care of that!). So many prayers have gone up for so many of us and our life crises in the last year. What amazing answers to prayer we have seen. Now we get to watch God work in Diane's son's life.

I have a few more pictures and stories, so I'll quit for now and say "Part 3 - To Be Continued."

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Make New Friends, but Keep the Old . . .

Remember that song? One is silver and the other gold. It's been a week already since I left for my whirlwind trip to my roots in Minnesota. What a wonderful trip it was. We crammed more "remembering" into 4 days than you can imagine.

The first adventure began on the airplane. I always try to get an aisle seat, because I have a problem with claustrophobia (not to mention the need to be able to get to that tiny little room in the back of the plane without requiring the other people in the row to put away their laptops, books, sodas, etc). I was the first one in my row, then the middle occupant arrived. Shortly, the young woman with the window seat made her entrance - and promptly asked if I would mind trading seats with her. I did mind. I specifically asked for an aisle seat. But when I looked at her white face, and saw her heading for the back in a hurry, I decided I would rather be cramped and uncomfortable than covered with you-know-what. She began to chatter uncontrollably and said, "I feel better when I'm talking, but I promise I'll quit when we get in the air." As it turned out, the 3 of us talked the entire hour and 26 minutes. She really had a panic problem and thanked us for the conversation, saying she could not have been in a better row if she'd picked it out herself. It was fun.

My sis (I'll call her V) and I stayed with my cousin Ann (remember this?), who has spent 25 years in Mali, Africa, living in huts in the desert, with R&R trips in to the capital city of Bamako. They have seen 79 conversions in all of this time, but they are Muslims who have found Christ and are living for Him, often secretly. Their lives could be in danger if their families knew of their new faith. They pray with the family at the appointed times, but they pray to God instead of Allah. It is an amazing story they live.

V, Ann, and I suddenly realized it was 12:45 and we'd better get some sleep if we were going to have any fun the next day (her husband, Larry, was up at their cabin in the northern part of the state).

My next adventure was a lunch date with my grade school friend when we lived in International Falls. Both Mary and I realized as we talked that we were pretty "nerdy" and really needed each other. She was friendless for a semester after her long-time best friend moved away. She was waiting for me to arrive, and I really was in need of a friend in this new, intimidating school. We loved reading, and we both remembered being the last one picked for any given sports team at recess - I know we couldn't both have been last, but that's the way we felt about our athletic abilities! She grew up to be a librarian, and I, well you know, I have a book in my hand at all times, in case I might find a spare minute to fill.


That is my sister on the left. The necklace she is wearing was a gift from Ann with a brass African carving and a beaded necklace holding it.

It's amazing how much you can find to talk about with a childhood friend whom you have not seen for 47 years! She was so kind to go up to her home town and take pictures of things she knew we'd like to see - our church, our elementary and junior high schools, the library, the gigantic Paul Bunyan, downtown streets. She brought me a package of Canadian caramels and a nice can of Canadian strawberry jam. Unfortunately, I decided to leave the jam in my carry-on bag instead of trying to cram it into my already very heavy suitcase. Mistake - they confiscated it at the security gate - more than 3.4 ounces of "liquid." I'm not aware of any way that someone could have put something dangerous in an unopened can, which would require a can opener to use - but I was very sad at the loss of this thoughtful gift.

That evening, we had the get-together of those from my dad's family who live in the Twin Cities area and were able to get together.


My dad on the left (age 81) and his oldest brother, Ann's dad (age 86). Uncle Al was a missionary in Africa for 45 years. He told in detail the story of their first trip over in the 1940s, which I had never heard before. He has become very forgetful about present-day things, though, and introduced my dad to their sister and his children.


Ann and one of her grandchildren.


Ann's husband, Larry.


Ann's brother, my cousin Rich, his wife, Sini, and their son, Alain. They met in boarding school.


Dad's only sister and her granddaughter.

The following shots are all of Ann's artistry - she makes wonderful jewelry, weavings, displays of ancient beads and rocks, and the first one is a collection of bracelets made by some of the Africans they have worked with.






Stay tuned for Part 2 - more reunions and a new friendship.

Monday, July 23, 2007


Now I have to figure out a time to get it all down here in cyberspace. What a wonderful week I've had - a real trip down memory lane and up "new friend avenue". What a joy! I have pictures, I have stories galore. I have dirty clothes to wash. I have nothing in the fridge. I had 800 messages on my work e-mail (mostly junk, for sure, but still have to be deleted, and made sure they weren't legitimate and necessary). Who knows how many phone calls I have? Do I want to go back to work? Hardly!!

I need about two more days, at the least, to catch up on all my reading, to write a great post, and to feel like I'm back. But I am, and I must go on.

I'm tired! I feel all used up from so much fun. Besides the fact that the trip home took all day, even though only 1.5 hours were in the air.

It is my sweet husband's 65th birthday today, and I wasn't here. Well, he wasn't here either, but fortunately got home just in time to answer the door for the flowers I sent to let him know I hadn't forgotten. Now it is time to figure out how we're going to celebrate - we've both been gone all this week, and most of our friends are gone, too, so we'll wait till things settle down a bit and celebrate in the fashion we should for such an auspicious milestone.

Thanks to my dear friend, Diane, whom I finally got to meet, and who treated me like a queen. I can't wait to show you the goody basket she had for me when I got into her car. She's as great as she seems on her site.

I hope to have time to write tomorrow afternoon. In the meantime, I think I'd better hit the sack!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Wordless Wednesday

There's Nothing Quite Like a Raspberry Otter Pop
On a Hot Summer Day!!


I'm gone again - will be back next week! See ya then.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Two Pleasant Things . . .

. . . at the end of a hard week.

Before I get into that, though, I want to update you once more on little Feisty. She had a recheck at the doctor's office yesterday afternoon. Her urine is clear, her temp is normal. She had ecoli bacteria in her blood. The doctor wants to send her Children's Hospital in Denver for two major tests. I asked many questions, but stilll do not quite understand why he thinks this is necessary. I would like for Kristen and Mike to get a second opinion before doing something so drastic. But maybe it's necessary. At least they need to call him and get it first hand. But for now, she's doing great and is doing what she needs to do in the potty, because she doesn't want any more shots!

The first really pleasant thing happened right there at the check-in desk of the clinic. I was talking to the receptionist, checking Feisty in, telling her about the emergency room trip that had happened since she was there two days earlier. Suddenly she pulled out a piece of paper and asked me to give it to Kristen to fill out - it was permission for me, or anyone else they wanted to give permission, to be able to officially bring the kids in for treatment. It seems as though she thought I was their MOM until one of the kids hollered "Grandma." She suddenly realized I needed to have this permission. The nice thing was when she said that she never dreamed I was there grandma, because I looked so young. Well, thanks!! So much! Now do you think maybe you should go get your glasses checked??

The other one was equally nice. I've been in my job for almost 14 years. For the first 9 of those years I was assistant to the department head, as well as what I do now, MSW Program Coordinator. When I went to half time to take care of the kids, I kept the grad student piece and gave up job of assistant to the new department head.

My boss for those 9 years was a wonderful, easygoing, kind man named Ben. He was almost retirement age when we began our adventure together. He retired about 5 years ago, but he still is in and out of the office because of his work with Human Animal Bond in Colorado, which was begun by him and his wife.

Ben was so great to work for. He would ask me to do something, give me the space and time to do it, and then be very grateful and appreciative when it was completed - he knew he could trust me to do it well without a lot of micromanagement. (You can read between the lines that this is one of the reasons I kept the part of my job that I did and gave up the other part two years after he retired).

When Ben left his position, he asked me, "Now who in the world is going to make my grant proposals look good?" I assured him that I would still be glad to help him.

Ben had impossible-to-read handwriting. Everybody came to me to ask what he said when he wrote a note to them. I could actually read it after awhile - and still can.

Well, I said all that to say this. Day before yesterday I got an e-mail from him asking me if I knew what dates we had accomplished two particular tasks while he was there. It so happens that I kept the Word folder with a lot of his documents, just in case. I sent him several documents that I thought would cover the questions. Last night when I checked my messages from home, here is what he wrote back to me:

Dawn: First, thanks much! You have been, and are, my very best administrative staff member; and I've had quite a few between California Youth Authority, San Diego Children's Home, San Diego State University, University of Kentucky, University of Tennessee, and (where I worked with him). . .

Wow! It just made me miss him all the more!

What a nice way to end the week.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Thanks for Your Prayers!

The smile you see on Feisty's face in the picture at the end of the last post came back this afternoon. What a relief! When I connected with her at noon today, she was still quite feverish. Kristen gave her a dose of Motrin and we headed for home. She fell asleep in the car, and slept through the commotion of picking up the other two kids, the two kids they had spent the morning with being in the van as well, and the ride home. She woke up enough to know she was being carried into the house. I dug out her Sleeping Beauty sleeping bag and she promptly conked out on the couch for at least 3 hours. Just what she needed most.

When she woke up from that long nap, she came in to where I was and said, "Hi, Grandma!" just as perky as can be. I was so thrilled to hear that cute little voice. She had a nice bath, we washed her hair, then she wanted some cereal. She sat and ate cereal and read a new book someone gave her today. Well, she doesn't read, you know, but she "read" the pictures to herself.

She got better and better as the afternoon wore on. She was cool to the touch (I MUST get a new thermometer!). When Mommy and Daddy arrived, she had the biggest smiles for them and hugs all around.

The doctor did check in with Mike this afternoon, though, to say that the blood test found infection, which had of course gone to her kidneys. So they want to see her again tomorrow afternoon. Please don't quit praying. I believe in all of your prayers. I have seen the difference they have made so many times in the last year.

The end of another work week is upon us already - I hope you all have great plans for the week-end. I'll be heading for our denomination's convention Sunday afternoon and return Tuesday afternoon. Wednesday afternoon Mom, Dad, my sister, and I fly to Minneapolis where I will have a whirlwind of visits with many people from my past - more on that, you can be sure. One of those visits, with a new previously-unmet-friend will be with Diane. I can't wait.

I hope to do at least one more post before then. But until then, please keep praying for Feisty. Thanks again.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

And it's only Wednesday . . . !

tough week

UPDATE: Feisty went to the emergency room at 3:00 a.m. when she began vomiting. The doctor said to take her in if that happened, otherwise to bring her back to him today (Thursday) for a re-check. She did and they did. It's now 7:00 a.m. and she's on i.v. for rehydration. They've taken blood and are waiting for the results of those tests. The doctor she saw yesterday was to be there by 6:30. I'm thankful for that, since he knows what he gave her yesterday. They're going to decide then whether or not to admit her. Please pray!! And please ask others to pray. Thank you.
UPDATE #2: Feisty is home. They didn't admit her, Praise the Lord. But she's pretty sick with another UTI. I think it would help if she'd give in to being totally potty trained! Please pray for that, because I sincerely believe that is what is causing the infection - bacteria-laden pull-ups! She had more of the same antibiotic as yesterday giving intravenously this time, and has to check in again tomorrow. Thanks for praying - don't stop now!

I was settling in to watch a movie with DC and relax before heading back into the work week. The phone rang. It was Kristen. Her husband has been without a job for several weeks, and finally had a new job.
Keep in mind that Kristen had recently gone to full time in her job in order to keep things going until her husband got a job. He had been taking care of the kids in the morning and I took over often in the afternoon so he could go for interviews.

Suddenly we're thrust into the horrible world of the hunt for good child care that wouldn't send them into bankruptcy. Kristen had called everyone in the Yellow Pages the previous Friday and learned that it would take everything she earned to have the 3 kiddoes taken care of by someone else for HALF DAYS. S
he was able to piece together last week, thinking she had this week covered. All of a sudden, nothing was working out. Could I possibly take Monday morning off so she could work on something more permanent?

I am the opener for the office this summer - the only one there at 7:30. My co-worker is supposed to be there by 8:30. She has been involved in a worker's comp claim from a really freak accident during the clean-out of a closet. I never know when she's going to be there. I tried to reach everyone to see if we could have coverage for that first hour before A. got there. I finally reached A. and learned that she was going to be there. She gave me N's number, and he finally called me back at 10:30 to say he could cover the first hour.

The kids and I had a good time - we went to a magic show at the library in the morning and played all afternoon. I stopped by the Day Camp Kristen had discovered, to pick up the paperwork she had to fill out. It is run by the growing babay church our church started a few years ago - their program is not bank breaking, but not inexpensive by any means - we're talking 3 kids, you know.

he kids were at Day Camp by 7:30 and Kristen was at work at her approved new schedule - just a little late. Her hubby's battery is dead in his truck and it's parked down in a parking lot in town. I took him to work at 6:30 - except the crew was parked in a different place than he thought, so we rushed across to another part of town. I got to work by 7:30 as well, by some miracle.

I picked the kids up at noon. All went well with them for the morning, and they had a good time. I thought it would be fun to go to McDonald's at the one with the Play Place, and of course they agreed. What a mess - water all over the floor from melting ice from the soda machine; hundreds of people with the same "fun" idea; wrong toy; wrong food; wrong drinks; NO DIET COKE. Can you believe that one??

We finally got out of there - I haven't been able to find Feisty's sandals since. Did I really bring her home from there barefooted??

I rode my bike to Office Depot (for the second night in a row - Monday night I got there too late), to try to get a wireless keyboard and mouse on a REALLY good sale. Of course, they were out. Of course, they don't do rain checks. I was not happy.

Since she went back to fulltime, Kristen is required to be at a weekly morning meeting on Wednesdays at 7:30. Could I please rearrange my schedule to be able to take the kids to Day Camp on Wednesdays and go to work a bit late? Since I have more leave built up than I can ever use, it was just a matter of getting someone to cover that first half hour until I could get them there at 7:30 and to work by 8:00. Our rhythm was a bit off - I didn't get them dressed, breakfasted, hair combed, teeth brushed, and across town until 7:40. What with road crews and stop lights, I was 15 minutes later than planned. N covered again, very graciously. Neither of my office mates was there today - I only knew about one of them not being there. The injured one is really having a rough time with physical therapy. It's a mess.

I called the Office Depot in the town where I work to see if they had the above mentioned sale item. They did! The young man I talked to offered to put one at the front check-out for me. I was thrilled. Except a slight emergency took over and I wasn't able to stop there on my way home. I finally called them later this afternoon to tell them I would be in tomorrow. Turns out they aren't supposed to save sale items for customers coming in later - but since the young man said he would, they had to do it. Poor young man! I hope he doesn't lose his job. But I'll get my keyboard and mouse tomorrow.

As the kids were waking up, we were thinking Feisty didn't feel her best, in fact felt a bit warm. But she seemed to feel well enough to go to Day Camp. Kristen was worried, though, and got her an appointment with the pediatrician. We got there an hour early, because I didn't want to go all the way back home since the doctor's office was just down the street from Day Camp. We spent an hour in the waiting room - 2 healthy kids and one very feverish little one. They did remarkably well.

We finally got in to see the(very, very young)doc. Feisty had a temp of 102.8! Poor little thing. They needed to do a urine test (she had just finished a round of antibiotics for a urinary tract infection a couple of weeks ago). She couldn't get anything into the little cup that the nurse held for her on the potty. So they had to insert a catheter. The other two were in the room to "support their little sister", but they couldn't take it and headed back to the original room. The doctor finally came back in to tell us she had what he felt was a not-too-full-blown kidney infection. He decided to give her a major antibiotic - in both legs. Poor little sweetie! She was in total despair. So were her siblings. They couldn't watch. They went out to the waiting room. Then we had to wait an extra 20 minutes to be sure she didn't have an allergic reaction to the shots. She has to go back tomorrow for a check on the success of this powerful antibiotic.

The doc also prescribed a cream for another problem she's having, somewhat related. I stopped the prescription off at the drive-through pharmacy at Walgreen's - it would be ready in 20 minutes. I went back while Kristen was soaking Feisty in a warm tub, as the doctor suggested. They told me they didn't have it after all, they would call another store. My question - why didn't you call the other store before I came back a half hour later than they said it would be ready??? Oh, here, they have some. Here - it's $110 - after insurance!! I almost had a stroke. They suggested we call the doc back to see if he could prescribe something just as good and not so pricey. We haven't heard anything back yet. Docs have no idea how much the meds they're prescribing cost, you know.

Please pray for little Feisty - and for her mommy, who is very sad for Feisty. Life just isn't right without her being her feisty self.


This picture was taken just Saturday on a hike with Grandpa.

I'm trusting the rest of the week isn't quite so stressful.