The weekly Friend update

Some time for reflection

Some time for reflection

January 2 – Our Thursday “town day” was on Wednesday this week because we usually don’t go shopping on holidays. Since yesterday was New Year’s Day, we were just be a couple of stay-at-home folks, not doing much of anything except enjoying the peace and quiet of our warm home. Good thing it is warm inside, as it was only 3 above this morning, and that is cold! I no longer would enjoy sledding and snow ball fights as I did 75 years ago when the seven of us kids did such things even when the thermometer registered ten below! It also allows me to reflect on the good friends that we visit (and write about) each week.

We were so happy to have a good report from our friend whose son has been living with cancer for many months. They met with the doctors at KU Med Center to find out what could be done about the removal of the mass. With a smile and a lift in his voice, our friend told us that the prognosis was good; that after surgery, the son would be under observation for two years, and then all would be well. How much that father loves his son and would do anything for him that he could.

So glad to see a big smile from our friend Sheila whose eyes sparkled as she told us that her younger sister was out of the hospital and had been transferred to another building for some treatment before going home! Sheila’s family is large and very closely-knit, so will be happy to celebrate in a couple months the big Christmas party they postponed because of the sister being confined to the hospital.

Pleasant Hill - the scene of many of our weekly ramblings

Pleasant Hill – the scene of many of our weekly ramblings

At the same check-out stood our young friend Will who we learned to love a couple years ago. So clean cut, with a beautiful smile, helpful, and courteous, he could melt the heart of anyone. He is enjoying his first year in college and earning good grades. His parents must be proud of him!  That morning as we were talking about where to go shopping, I said to Dale, “Bet we get to see Will today because I know he works Wednesdays now since he is in college. We never see him on Thursdays.” I was glad it turned out that way.

Barney and Betty gave us a royal welcome as usual. It’s always so good to visit with them and to see that Betty is holding her own. Sitting there in her chair, she smiles and carries on a conversation that has nothing to do with any pain she is having. Instead, she and her husband Barnie tell of what’s happened since our last visit.

Right in the middle of one story, Barney gets up from his chair and shouts, “Just look out there! Look out the window!” Must be something unusual, so we jump up to see what he sees. Robins! Must have been 50 of them, flying in and out of the hackberry tree, pulling off a berry, then dropping to the lawn to feast. Dozens of those birds were flying up and down and around that tree, harvesting what’s left of the berries. The males with their bright orange breasts are so colorful and demand attention. The female flips around here and there too, but is content to be a little less colorful. We laughed when Barney told us his truck was parked out by the garage instead of its usual place by the house. No wonder! As he said, “Those birds are eating so much that they have to get rid of the seeds somewhere!” And that “somewhere” was the roof of the truck. No wonder he moved it! We were happy to see several cedar waxwings in that group of harvesting birds. We haven’t seen many of those around for awhile.

But back to our conversation with Barney and Betty. We also talked about their son Kent who does a great job with the Quality Hill Playhouse in Kansas City. They are so proud of him and his work, and I don’t blame them. Our son David and wife Darlene gave us good reports of Kent when David saw the mention of him in one of our earlier blogs. Barney also explained why a van was now parked in their driveway. His other son works in Garden City and had arranged to fix up a van that had bashed into a curb and was abandoned. He then gave it to Barney so it will be much easier to take Betty and her wheel chair to doctor’s appointments, etc. – yes, much easier than having Betty climb up into their pick up truck and Barney lifting up the wheelchair into the back!

Off now to make some banana bread. I do like to watch Jeopardy though, so I may leave till later. Happy New Year to all of you, and a great 2015! – CHRIS

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