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A Bittersweet Christmas for a Bittersweet Year

It was the first time we had Christmas alone, just Mer and I. As with this Thanksgiving, we had a blizzard that changed all our plans, postponing parties and such. (We've gotten blizzards like this every 8-10 years or so, but twice in one year?) It was quiet, and I was just happy that we were together, safe and warm. It was its own joy, but like most of this year, it was bittersweet. Her parents' house is now sold....

Dream Journaling

Just started reading the second half of "Behind the Veil" by my friend and spiritual brother Daniel Kelley. Last night was the first night I determined to dream journal. Immediate results! I recalled much, and even talked about dream journaling my first dream in my second dream! And much of the meaning in two of the dreams really make me realize a LOT about my personality and where I am in life, especially in...

“The Way Life Should Be”

Our Anniversary trip to Main was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The whole thing was like a dream, and the satisfaction of those memories will last our lifetime. Both ways, we stayed at a pet-friendly Red Roof Inn in Wooster, Mass, to take the edge off driving. We couldn't take turns because it was Merry's standard and she won't let me drive it. It does get insane gas mileage, though. We also hit peak foliage for...

A Season (or Two) Out and About

Merry and I kicked off the warmer part of the year with the Hellenic Festival, even meeting up with a few people -- Roman, David Newman (my beekeeping mentor), and Christina. It was also the first time in years I attended the Pride Parade. I finally got to wear a "Free Dad Hugs" shirt; my car ended up a makeshift float. I kept close to my daughter to not seem like "Random Creepy Old Guy". I tried not to initiate...

Miscellaneous Nails and Screws

It's been a few days since my Father-in-law passed away, and for the first time, I was allowed to go into his basement "inner sanctum". It's the magical place from whence came all sorts of built things over the years, including some hand-me-down tools and such. And of course, there were oh-so-many clock parts. He truly was Father Time, and I am sure we will inherit a few more Grandfather and other clocks. When I...

Father Gary

I almost forgot about him, but not in my heart. Whenever I look at the tiny framed artwork of the Madonna in silver that he gave me, I think of him. Father Gary Kibler was one of my teachers in high school, but much more than that. I was an assistant of sorts in that I was the chapel's sacristan; he was my Confirmation sponsor. But most of all, he was a warm human being. We talked for hours in his office many...

Well into Autumn

I was going to name this post "A Year Without Halloween" but that seemed too negative. It did make me a bit sad, especially when someone came to our door by mistake. Due to a cash crunch, we couldn't afford candy, and there are hardly any kids coming out anyway. We didn't even decorate, except for the usually Autumn decorations. I never did bike that much as planned. Between my back being in and out and not being...

Beekeeping and Joywalking

I have no idea if this is Indian Summer, late Summer, or a mild Autumn. Such labels apply here less than ever it seems. But the bees in our first backyard hive have really ramped up their honey production this last month or so, mostly from "flute-plant" (knot-weed, which I thought my apiarist mentor David Newman meant as "not weed" lol). We got a bounteous 35 lbs. out of the top 8-frame super, and a huge disk of...

College Reunion

I believe I went to my 10th reunion for D'Youville College and I was the only one representing my class. Other than that, I only went to donor's Masses (most years) and the occasional tea. But this year I actually volunteered to reach out to my classmates, and my wife and I attended a handful of the many Homecoming events. Like myself, almost no one kept in touch with more than one or two people. We just weren't a...