Saturday, February 21, 2009

I'M BACK!!!!!!!!

I has been a long time since I had words to write. Just after we got back from Canada last year in October, we found out my sister-in-law, Penny (Duane's wife) was diagnosed with AML or leukemia. She spent the 5 weeks before Christmas in the hospital having radiation treatments. When she was released, she was in remission and she remains that way today. Within the next month, Penny will go into the hospital and get a bone marrow transplant from a generous unknown man (Bones). He will go in at the same time she does and for a week they will kill Penny's marrow and boast Bone's marrow. The doctor said Penny won't be as sick this time since she is still in remission, but it will take a time for her to recover and see if there is a reaction to the transplant. Right now everyday is a day that we are thankful for having Penny and Duane with us. This wasn't in the script and everyone is having to play it by ear.

Penny's diagnosis was made after we spent 5 of the most exhausting days on a train across Canada. We started in Vancouver and ended up in Calgary. It was wonderful weather and we got to see the golden leaves turning as we traveled from Vancouver to Banff and the first snow of the season in Banff. It was weird being in a 'foreign country' but feeling like we were in the USA. The only time we were reminded we were outside the country was when we purchased anything. For the first time the Canadian dollar was almost equal with the US dollar so that was the easy part, but the change always had to be in Canadian coinage. At the airport coming home, everyone was buying anything they could find for less than $3.00 Canadian.

As we entered into the new year, it became apparent that the retail market was not coming back quickly. As layoffs ensued, Bill was asked to consider retiring. He had been considering it everyday for the last 5 to 7 years, but this time he embraced the opportunity and bit the bullet. He has been retired since January 30th and is just now starting to settle in and feeling like it's really his time to do things he has always wanted to do. Of course, we didn't think this thing out too well. I will not get to retire voluntarily for another 7 years. If the retail industry continues to decline, it might happen sooner than later.

Bill had a retirement party with all of his closest teammates. He got a clock with only the days of the week on it so he will know what day of the week to take out the trash and pick up the paper. All the other days, he tries to play golf if it is warm and it's not windy. The definition of warm and windy will remain a mystery to me forever. I guess it's something that I am destine to never understand. This can be compared to girls going to the bathroom together and/or wanting to go see chick flicks knowing you are going to cry. Bill accepts those facts but he will never understand.

In March, we have been able so far been able to celebrate Ryan's birthday. He is Bill's great-nephew. He is such a big boy. He got to have his second birthday party at the senior Motes in Sulphur Springs, Tx. He got into opening those packages and couldn't wait to get to the next bag or box. He is a cutie and is growing like a weed. He is starting to ride his trike and loves all balls.

We gave him a golf bag with two irons and 5 balls he can hit into the bag. He is going to be a golfer like his Dad, granddad, Johnny, and Uncle Billy. Ryan gets to split his time with his two grandparents as well as Dad. Suzie and Tommy usually have him during the week while Dad works and then Marsha and Johnny get him for long weekends.

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