I was doing well today, I thought, by making a trip to Portland and back to see my mother's family as there were a few left in the area from the reunion that I could not make it to over the weekend. Seems people pick the most inconvenient time to get sick and need surgery and then two days of intensive care management before dying. This is the part of medicine that I really really really do not care for; the part where people are dying and you try your best to prevent it but realize once again that sometimes it is that person's time to go and that you can't control it. Still makes it hard.
Anyhow, I was reunited with a former resident from Ohio this evening and was blessed to get re-acquainted with him. He mentioned very nicely that this blog was not exactly the most up to date, so here you go.
Since the last post, over a year has passed. The kids have all done quite well in their home school program Classical Conversations, and the older three all got extra credit for mastering a large body of knowledge. Another year of AWANA (Bible club) has finished with good effect, and we were able to take another very fun family vacation. Since the family survived without drowning or getting eaten by sharks last year on Maui, I tried to shake them again with another more extreme sport; canyoneering. We took a week and went to Utah to visit some National Parks. We spent several days hiking and canyoneering in Zion National Park, which was by far our favorite.
One of the PA students that rotated with me this year convinced me to take the family through some canyons, so I got them all wet suits and tied them to ropes and forced them to explore some beautiful slot canyons for two days in Zion. They were all troopers (the water was REALLY cold), and I think next time I suggest a new experience, I may not have any company, but they did amazingly well. Jan and Alec even let me belay them down a 90 ' free hanging boulder. I don't think I would have let anyone do that to me at that age. Jan and Alec also hiked Angel's Landing with me, and by myself it was no big deal as far as hikes go, but when you realize one off-balance move or slip and you are dead, it becomes a completely different hike (especially when some people's children trip and fall on basketball court conditions).
They all were hiked out I am sure, but hung in there with us and we all had an amazing time in perfect hiking weather. End of May is the perfect time down there. Ever since we returned the weather has been scorching.
The kids learned to rock climb at Smith Rock State Park (in preparation for the Utah canyoneering adventure), so we can add that skill to the bag as well. The year has already been full of interesting operations, family, good friends, and great experiences. This summer promises lots of soccer, a few 5k and maybe 10k races, piano, violin, and guitar lessons. Maybe in another year or so I will get a chance to sit down and post something else.