It is said that “timing is everything,” that’s one way to view the Forbes’ year:
Jim, also known as B-Pa, had been told to give recovery a year after months of chemo therapy for leukemia. He did and now he’s 90% back to normal. Red blood cell count is still a little wacky and it’s hoped it soon returns to normal.
Bobby, also called YaYa, attended a couple of one day workshops last spring finding that physical constraints interfered with painting. A diagnosis of advanced degenerative changes in her spine was added to existing mild scoliosis. Months were spent going to physical therapy followed by a consultation with a physiatrist, a doctor who does non-surgical treatment for back pain. A combination of meds and exercise is still being tweaked.
Last summer was time for reunions. While Jim’s 50th reunion was in 2011, his classmates bemoaned that many had summer birthdays and that many don’t have birthday parties anymore. So, with his classmates turning 70 in 2013, it was a great excuse to have a party. Meanwhile, Bobby’s class celebrated its 50th reunion in July.
Reunions bring back memories of good times. Adults become childlike again with new memories being created while visiting museums with grandkids. Seeing expressions of the little ones when they viewed the Spruce Goose or a F-14 Tomcat, got close to an antique threshing machine where adults can stand inside the primary wheels, or stood next to a Hudson Hornet similar to “Doc Hudson” from movie “Cars” made museum trips very worthwhile.
A bit of untimely procrastination in creating this year’s Christmas card became a major hurdle. As the holidays neared thoughts of creating a new card were primary. A few sketches were drawn however time seemed to be spent more on household activities – mostly moving the vacuum from room to room. How were wasps finding way into the house, sluggish at first and then found to be venturing into more rooms. It all started with only one or two per day, then the numbers started to increase – an exterminator was called even though Jim ‘n Bobby couldn’t figure out where or how they were entering the house. Treatment couldn’t be scheduled until the following Tuesday – YES, it meant surviving the weekend!
Key words- SURVIVE the weekend – for four days nearly 100 wasps per day were vacuumed! The exterminator found the nest in the chimney flue where it was attached to all four walls and quite deep (visualize the size of two basketballs). (After this experience, Bobby requested a new vacuum!)
Treatment completed! Now for the removal, except the top of the nest couldn’t be reached. Next step, call for a chimney sweep to remove the balance of the nest. Sweeping is done and a new cap was added to finish off the old fireplace in time for the New Year.
UPDATES on the kids:
Engineer Tim continues to work for Underwriters Laboratories. Musician Tim plays trombone or trumpet for the Portland based Ska band, The Sentiments. Cathé is always busy with family, friends, and the national website, GeekMom, where she is a contributing writer and a Senior Editor. She also is an Art Discovery volunteer at Tori’s school and does a monthly project with each second grade class. Tori is a very busy second grader who has earned two-thirds of the belts required before testing for a black belt in Tae Kwon Do. In school she likes to be kept busy and will soon be tested for the gifted children’s Excel program. This seven year old is currently half done with book four of Harry Potter, has mastered multiplication thru 9×9, isn’t afraid of fractions, and can tell you about the U.S. national parks and volcanos. (This is the kid who had a discussion at aged four with YaYa [Bobby] about the purpose of windshields.) Oh, did I mention that voice lessons may be next as it appears she may have perfect pitch! And then there’s Matt, who’s all boy. He loves cars and planes along with building with wooden blocks, Duplos or Legos and having B-Pa (Jim) read to him.
BITS ‘n PIECES:
The view from the kitchen window improved during the summer. The yard guys dismantled and removed the old garden shed along with most of its contents. Then Jim and the kids were able to assemble a new structure. Matt continues to check if the “little house” is still in the back yard.
Jim ‘n Bobby took up target shooting again. It was nice to find an indoor range with rental equipment.
This was the year of several weddings of cousins (first cousins, twice removed) on Michels’ side of the family tree. Bobby’s younger first-cousin in California pasted last Easter; he was on the Zuber family tree.
The Forbes’ will start the year with finding a contractor as there seems to be a problem with the ceiling in the back bedroom (also known as Bobby’s closet). The good side of this is that it will force sorting and giving to the Salvation Army as the room will need to be emptied!
Last year, Bobby was part of an exhibit at New Seasons Market on 164th. We’ll see if she completes paintings for another exhibit this year. Also, her blogspot.com blog will move to WordPress.
The girls, Cathé, Tori, and Bobby, continued their holiday tradition of viewing Christmas lights. Cathé then turned the experience in a GeekMom article.
If you think of winter and ice, what visions come to mind? Not so for Bobby who after 36 years stopped having her hair colored. Well, guess it’s closer to being gunmetal gray with sections of shaded ice. Now there will have to be a new painting for use on business cards, Facebook icon, twitter, blogs, etc. (In case you hadn’t realized, Bobby doesn’t like to have her picture taken!)
The year ended with Jim ‘n Bobby’s traditional handshake.
That’s about it for the year – before starting this letter it was wondered what there was to say. One word about this new blog – if you “bookmark” it or even make it one of your “favorites,” you can check back during the year for more of the Forbes’ non-adventures. And using this blog also means a shorter Christmas letter next year!
May 2014 be blessed and safe for you all,
Jim ‘n Bobby