Friday, July 8, 2011

My corner of the world

We took our granddaughters back to Roseburg, Oregon last weekend. Faced with removal of my iPad from the back seat, there was scarcely any bickering on the seven-hour drive. I'm hoping they'll make one more trip up in August before they start MIDDLE SCHOOL!

On the 4th we attended a buffet dinner at Seven Feathers, a casino in Canyonville, Oregon. The Cow Creek band of the Umpqua tribe hosted the dinner to honor veterans. My husband Art was in Viet Nam in the 60s, and the military people returning from that war were not received as heroes. So every honoring event we can get to now, we go. At this one, Native drums heralded the arrival of the flag and flag bearers. Later that evening we watched the festivities from the Capital on TV. Our hostess Jeanne told me that being at the Capital on the 4th is on her bucket list. So we're making plans to do that next year. Jeanne is in her 70s so she'll want the company, and it will be a fun quick trip for me.

This is Strawberries week in our garden. Each day I've gone out there and picked a quart or two. We're eating strawberries like crazy. Yesterday I froze some for winter. When I see our garden thriving it almost makes up for our weather!

I'm working on the take-home final exam for my mediation class. It's been two weeks since the last day of class, and I have 16 days to complete it. Time goes very, very fast these days. I have to finish the test before I pick up the Rosetta Stone Spanish course again.

Our daughter Laura is engaged! Laura lived with her dad and me when she was a teenager. She joined the Navy when she was 18, spent eight years in the service, and earned a degree in nuclear engineering at night before she got out. She's now living in New Jersey. Laura and Brian came out for a wedding in May and Brian asked Art for permission to marry his daughter. Lovely! We kept Brian's secret for over a month until he proposed to Laura in Bermuda last week. So we may be traveling to Mexico sometime next summer for a beachfront wedding. We are beyond delighted for Laura and Brian.

Today I filed for Social Security. I'll be collecting a pension starting when I'm 65, but since I didn't pay into Social Security when I worked for that pension, my Social Security check then will be very small. But between now and then (a little over two years), my check will be small but respectable. When I was planning our retirement finances last year I had a feeling I was missing something. This was it. The idea of collecting a larger Social Security entitlement until my pension kicks in hadn't occurred to me. Oh, well!

We're planning a trip to Ecuador for February 2012. Today we decided to forego the side trip to the Galapagos. It's quite expensive, and the Galapagos aren't on either of our bucket lists. But New Zealand and Australia are on Art's, so we're beginning to plan for that adventure which will most likely happen in February and March of 2013. The Galapagos money can be used for Down Under instead.

There's not much else going on this week in my little corner of the world except for naps!








15 comments:

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

You have a lot going on, which of course is not surprising. Have fun with your mediation exam...seems like a really significant step for you.

Out on the prairie said...

The berries sound good, I eat lots.

DJan said...

Gee, I wonder why time is going by so fast, since you're just laying around doing nothing (NOT!). Wow, you are a busy bee. Good luck on that exam, I'm sure you will do just fine. And congratulations to Laura!

Linda Reeder said...

Well, that was just filled with news. We have a few strawberries, but not much is happening there yet. I did pick seven ripe raspberries yesterday. It won't be long before we're picking them every three days, eating and freezing them. It will be hard to keep up with them with company coming July 21, for three weeks. It's would have been better if they had been on schedule.
Your travel plans sound wonderful. I guess we scratched the travel itch well enough in our first four years of retirement, because we have no plans in the offing. Somehow the days have filled up with just living.

Ms Sparrow said...

Lucky you! How nice to have all those travel plans to look forward to, plus a wedding. Even without strawberries, that would make for a lovely summer.

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

You have so many wonderful things going on right now -- from fresh strawberries in abundance to learning new skills (good luck on that mediation exam!) and so much to look forward to -- your daughter's wedding and that terrific trip in 2012. Also, it's so nice to hear that your husband has been getting some much deserved recognition as a Vietnam vet. Whatever one thinks about that war, we need to honor those who risked their lives there. My brother is also a Vietnam vet and when he came out of the Air Force and went to medical school at Stanford, there were people who actually jeered and spit on him when, in what he thought was a practical move, he wore his old flight jump suit to anatomy lab. It's so good that all veterans are being recognized these days. I love hearing about all the busy and happy details of your life!

Rita said...

Wow! A lot of news!! From strawberries to an engagement to travel plans. Happiness abounds!! That was fun to read. Have a great weekend! :)

marciamayo said...

Exciting news about your daughter and your SS revelation.

Arkansas Patti said...

How sweet that Brian asked permission before asking Laura.
Gotta love a kid like that.
Glad you still have travel in your future. Enjoy.

Retired English Teacher said...

You have the perfect solution to keeping kids happy and engaged: an iPad. That was brilliant on your part.

Congrats to Laura.

You are such a busy lady. You go about freezing the strawberries you grow while you study for exams and plan more trips. Whew...I wish I got that much done.

I think you were wise to apply for the Social Security check. I started collecting mine early, before I got my pension because there was no sense leaving that money on the table. Once my pension kicked in, my Social Security was reduced. Now, my medicare is paid by my Social Security automatically and the balance after medicare is paid is deposited in my bank. It is a hefty $1 a month. That is ok because at least it pays my medicare.

wheels4me said...

It is good that you retired, otherwise you would be WAY too busy!

Deb Shucka said...

What a wonderful life you have right now! I can't imagine when you find time to nap in the midst of it all. :-)

Jenn Flynn-Shon said...

Doesn't sound like you could fit much more in, whew! I hope the visit with family was a fantastic time. Congrats on the engagement and good luck with your final! As a sidenote...I could definitely go for a few strawberries right now myself, yum! :-) Australia...definitely on my bucket list too!

Grandmother said...

I'm glad for your husband that he takes part in honoring ceremonies for Viet Nam Vets. My friend who served and felt the lack of support when he left the service went to a powwow and actually cried through the Native American honoring ceremony for Vets. He felt like it was the first time his service was acknowledged and thanked.

Cheryl said...

Not much else to tell...you fit so much in. We have the same issue here with our Vietnam vets - plenty of repair work yet to do. Congrats also to Laura. Wish it was strawberry season here - we're in the depths of winter but spring will come. Good luck with thr exam and fathoming the depths of social security.