Saturday, April 28, 2012

Catching Up

I want to thank all of you for the nice comments on our yard - I wish we could all sit around the picnic table and have a refreshing conversation with coke, Diet DP, tea, coffee, or whatever you desire.  The tulips have been great again this year, the forget-me-nots are spreading like lovely weeds, and soon the irises will make an appearance.  

I had to chuckle at one of the comments - about the fact that even my yard has lots of stories to tell.  So true, and a reference to my most common posts - stories of my life.  I will never be a deep, insightful writer.  I will never make people laugh with my writing style.  But I do love to share stories of things that have made me who I am.

Another friend noted that I hadn't updated all of you about Dwight and his health situation.  He is completely over the celllulitis in his leg as well as the fungus issues, and the rashes that seemed to result from the residue of the antibiotics.  It does seem, though, that his resistance is still compromised, resulting in another sinus infection and pink eye last week.  He seems to be on the mend now, thank the Lord.

I have to say, though, that his strength and endurance seems to be coming along well, since he was able to go golfing twice this week with his brother, who was visiting from Georgia.  That's a good thing for sure.


There is a reason I am copying this next story from a post last summer.  I know some of you will remember both times I have posted about Ann.

If you've been with me since the beginning of blog time, you may remember this story and these pictures. I can't find the earlier post, or I would just re-run it. My cousin, Ann, grew up in Africa, and we only saw our cousins every four years.  But it never seemed like that much time had elapsed when they came home. We usually didn't get to see them very much during their year home, because we lived far away from Minnesota, where they always stayed. Christmas was always very special at Grandma Swanson's house.

When we were all in high school, my sister and I had a great time getting better acquainted with Ann. Someone had sent her a subscription for Co-Ed Magazine way over there in Africa. Does anybody remember this magazine? I remember getting it through home ec. class and really enjoying it. Ann had written a letter to the editor, asking for some fashion advice for her year in America. She wanted to fit in at school. Unbelievably, they met her at the airport in NYC and did a makeover and did lovely story about her for the September, 1965 issue. I loved showing it off at school!

I think you'll be able to read the article and see the pictures better if you double click.

After this furlough, we rather lost touch with each other. I'm not sure why - we all went to college, got married, had kids, and got very involved in our adult lives. We never did correspond by mail for some reason, and that didn't change, unfortunately. It must have been about 15 years ago when Vicki and I took a trip to Minnesota to visit her while she was home, and to meet her husband and children. It was amazing how at home we felt with each other - as if we had seen each other regularly over these many years.

We finally began keeping in touch at least once in awhile, by e-mail of course. Then she got a good phone plan and we talked over the many miles and it sounded as if she were next door. We still didn't get together often, but we felt so close. We had things in common, not specifically, but generally - the fact that we had children going through rough stuff

Ann came to visit my sister and me after her dad, our uncle Al, died two summers ago.  We've been privileged now to keep in touch by Facebook, which has been a blessing.  Recently, if you are up on international news, you may have read or heard about the military coup which took over the government in Mali a small central African country where Ann and her family have lived for close to 30 years.  Two of their daughters have been there teaching English this past year and they've been so happy to be together in the same city.  When the coup happened, they didn't quite know what to do about leaving or staying.  Eventually, Larry and Ann were told to evacuate and join their missionary team in the country of The Gambia.  But they had to wait until their daughters' families were released from their schools, ironically schools overseen by the American Embassy.  Strange, it seemed to me!  

They finally were able to leave at dawn on a Saturday morning, and spent the next 3 days driving through desert country and heat with two cars, 6 adults, and 2 little ones.  I have discovered in my dealings with missionaries over many years, that they are resourceful and adaptable.  They made the best of a tough situation, picnicking along the way.


 They had to go through the country of Senegal to reach The Gambia.  One of the days, they had some fun in one of the huge, spreading trees of the area.

 I haven't heard any details in the last week, but last I knew, they were with their missions team in a lovely setting on the ocean, enjoying cool breezes, fellowship, and a conference.  The young folks are teaching via internet all over the world.  I'm hoping to hear more soon.  I know they're all hoping to return to their home soon. 

Have a wonderful week-end!


Maine Mom said...

I love the picture of Ann's family hanging out in the tree. They do look like they are making the best of their situation. :-)


It's good to hear that Dwight is coming along nicely...golfing even. When a man begins to do the things he loves to KNOW they're on the mend!! Good news.

About Ann...this is an amazing story. I do remember the post you wrote about meeting her once again after so many years...but to know they were in harm's way [even if just to have to evacuate their home of 30 years] must be a horrendous stress on one's life - life style and situation. Hope they can soon return and be safe.

Enjoyed the photo share too Dawn.

Sharon Lynne said...

I pray the family is safe, and made it all the way. Yes, missionaries live an adventurous life. I once wanted to be one. Then I married a musician.

Forty Pound Sack said...

Hoping you get good news from your family soon ~

Glenda said...

Ann's story is so interesting! And yes, I remember Co Ed magazine; I hadn't thought of it, though, in about 40+ years! Oh, my . . . that's a long time!

I'm glad your husband is doing well. Hope you have a good weekend!

Sammy said...

I have a close friend living in The Gambia right now. She's in the Peace Corp and loves it there.

Such an amazing story about your friends. I cannot fathom their strength and courage. I find it exhausting to schlep to the grocery store with two kids. Their journey puts things into perspective for me.

I'm really glad to hear that Dwight is on the mend. Golfing with his brother is a good sign!

Sorry I've missed a few of your posts! The end of the school year is an incredibly busy time. But it's almost summer! We'll have to catch up soon, Dawn.

Ginger said...

Dawn, I'm sure if you and I were to sit down at a picnic table for a visit it would last well into the night and then we would both be too tired to get up the next morning :D

I really enjoyed the update on both Dwight and your cousin. Have had both on my mind often lately and glad you posted about this.

grammy said...

Great to catch up (o:
I especially enjoyed the news about You cousin in Africa. My Daughter is going to Uganda in a week. She is working in a churches Mission department.

Ms. Kathleen said...

So nice to catch up with you and your family. My but they have grown so fast. Happy that Dwight is improving - God is so good. Missionaries do put all their trust in the Lord to be sure. God will bless them mightily. Have a wonderful day :)

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