Wednesday, June 27, 2007
Saturday, June 23, 2007
Note to Karen: there is a scary part at the end. Go hide behind the green Barcalounger.
I have been able to set up an actual countdown clock (such as it is), obviating the need for further Sesame Street counting posts. Too bad, really. Not being a computery person, I don't know how to resize the clock to fit the sidebar, but it seems more logical to me to have it over there, rather than as a post that will be pushed down the page with successive posts.
So, there you have it. Ten days to go!
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Less than two weeks left!
Rowdy hasn't been able to post for a few days because of satellite problems (the main problem being that his boss didn't pay the satellite bill). He's starting to feel better mentally knowing he only has five days until he leaves Iraq, but physically he's had some problems. He's exhausted and has had some GI issues that he doesn't feel are related to Crohn's--maybe it's an amoeba. We don't know for sure. Nothing will stand between him and coming home, though.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
About three weeks ago, my parents came for a short but very enjoyable visit. We went to Coronado (which was a first for all of us), ate good food, did some nice shopping and shot the breeze. I have been doing a lot of family history work lately, which prompted my parents to tell stories about themselves and our extended family. Some of the stories I'd already heard, but it was still nice to hear them again. I think this put Dad in a nostalgic mood, because a few days ago, he wrote this biography for his high school class memory book:
High School Memories
My best memories are of the great friendships, the sports, the student government and how everything seemed hilariously funny. I’ve never laughed as hard as I did in those days.
I had the great good fortune to be assigned to Miss Hanson’s geometry class my sophomore year. After the first grading period when I received a well-earned “D”, Miss Hanson pulled me aside after class and told me to either do better or she would remove me from her class. The thought of the humiliation of being kicked out of her class got my attention. At that moment, she taught me a great lesson…that if I focused on the task at hand, I could do well. Vivian Hanson was simply the best teacher I ever had, at any level. I owe her a great deal.
The last 50 years
The years immediately after high school consisted of dropping in and out of college (wasting my parents’ money), military service, of living with my parents, of working in the family business, and of merrily accumulating the wages of a misspent youth.
In October, 1960, my life changed. I met Noreen Bright (PHS ’58). We were married the following March. With the change in marital status came a renewed focus. I received a BS (education) from ISU and two years later, an MS (Mathematics) from the University of Oregon.
Professionally, I worked in the computer software industry until my retirement in 2000. There’s not much to report of my professional life since I’ve never felt defined by what I did for a living. The only job that had any importance to me was that of a parent.
Noreen and I have three daughters, all wonderful, gifted, and decent human beings:
Dayna, a cancer survivor and computer software contractor, lives in Austin, Texas;
Diane, who after completing her fellowship in Interventional Radiology at Cornell Medical School in New York City, is practicing her specialty at Kaiser Hospital in San Diego, California;
Karen, who lives in Brooklyn Heights, N.Y., is a senior copywriter for the advertising company, Organic, in mid-town Manhattan.
In 1991, Noreen and I became empty-nesters. We took a fateful trip to Oslo, Norway and upon return to Boise, we loaded up the necessities in a U-Haul, sold the remainder at a yard sale, and began our great adventure by moving (without jobs) to the hill country of Texas.
So…here we are, a couple of transplanted spuds, our roots now deep in the soil of that wonderful, wild, dynamic, funky, diverse, musical, whacky and weird city of Austin, Texas…living happily forever after.
My dad, Basil, grew up in Pocatello, Idaho, the only child of Reed and Irene Dahlstrom. His childhood sounds pretty idyllic. My dad pretty much could go and do whatever he wanted, so he and his friends had quite the rollicking time in that little town.
Noreen, my mom, grew up in Preston, Idaho (of Napolean Dynamite fame) and Pocatello. She and Dad met at a batchelor party (!). No, it wasn't my dad's party, and she didn't jump out of the cake. It was pretty much love at first sight. One of the things my dad said when they were here was that Mom was the first girl he'd been out with that wasn't superficial. She really talked to him about things. And she was good-looking to boot!
I love my parents so much. To paraphrase a Primary song: I'm very glad that he's my dad (and she's my mom); and I know (they) love me too!
Thursday, June 14, 2007
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
Housekeeping is not my forte by a long shot. I don't think that I'm dirty, I'm just cluttery. And when I clean, I'm not really detail-oriented. I just don't have the attention span. When Rowdy is home, he keeps the house pretty clean, but both of us have better things to do with out time.
As much as I love having things so beautifully clean, I have to say that I felt a little uncomfortable being someone's employer. I'm not at all interested in supervising anyone. And then there's the whole squeamishness about, I don't know, about being someone with a housekeeper and a gardener. It's weird to have people "doing" thing for me. The staff at work do things for me all the time, and even after two years of that, it's still a little disconcerting.
Olivia has been cleaning my friend Renee's house for about ten years. Renee had nothing but good things to say about her, and their house always looks great, so I decided to just go for it and hire her for twice a month.
The house looked absolutely gorgeous when I got home yesterday. The slipcover on the sofa was completely straight. All of the carpets were vacuumed. There was no dust anywhere. The bathrooms gleamed. But this is my favorite part.
The stovetop was so disgusting from everyday use. There was burnt-on stuff on the burners that I could never get off, try as I might. All she used was some Easy-Off, and they look like new.
I'm so happy about it that I haven't cooked a thing for a week.