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!