It's been a full time, and, as with everyone else, a lot goes on.
Jack and I have settled into our new home easily. Everything fits, and right now I love driving to work, and I love driving home. Work is going well for me. It seems that every year gets better in some way. This year, the teachers have returned in pairs, and we seem to have in place working partnerships. They got rolling in September, and have kept up the momentum.
Suddenly, we only three classes out from Christmas break. Wow!
We took a weekend trip in early October to western Wisconsin. We love it up there! Stayed in LaCrosse, and stopped in to Jack's hometown, Sparta, and drove the ridges. Bought fresh, squeaky cheese curds at the dairy in Westby. Such a beautiful area. We also spent part of Saturday exploring Decorah, Iowa, together, before swinging up into Minnesota and over to Wisconsin.
Grady and his momma (Sarah) and his aunt (also Sarah) came over for a few days in October, too. He's great fun, and was very well behaved. We ended up at the pumpkin farm in Cumming, where they also had a petting zoo and other features worth exploring. It turned out to be one of those perfect, sunny, crisp-air, fall days and the drive was lovely.
So, it's time for Thanksgiving--that family season of gratitude. Jack and I plan a quiet day alone, and on Friday I want to drive over and see Daniel before I pick up Lilia in the Quad Cities. Daniel is still in county jail, and will remain there until his sentencing in the spring. It's sad, and it's hard on all of us. Especially on him. We wait. We endure.
Lilia is planning to stay until Sunday, and we will play!
Catching Fire is a video series by Fr. Albert Haase, an engaging retreat leader and speaker, with lots of group discussion and activity thrown in. We've come to refer to this class, fondly, as "Shooting Flames." We always begin with a decent period of silence together. Last week we played a game where we had to keep balloons in the air and then stomp on them till they popped. We followed this with a new rendition of the game "Gossip"--all in the name of Play as Spiritual Practice. Not sure that they are buying that play is a form of prayer, but they will come to that in time, surely.
I also took myself away for an overnight retreat on Thursday. The rules: bring nothing to read or study, and nothing to plug into. I have been working too much, and I know it. I work too much because I like it. But I also need rest and play in big doses. I've also been craving solitude.
So I drove off, and got an efficiency at Creighton Retreat Center for one night. I slept a lot, finger painted, drew mandalas, and walked a country road in the snow. It was heaven. When I felt completely rejuvenated, I got in the car and came home. Best $39 I could have spent!
My hope is that I can keep blogging, keep novel-ing. I do love to write, and I do miss being here!