Four years ago to the day I made my first posting on the Reformed Angler. I started off with the intention of giving it a whirl and seeing how I liked it. It wasn't long before I got into it and tried for a daily posting. That did not last long, and I settled into a respectable number each month, but definitely not a frequency that would make the blog a journal.
Now I am breaking a silence that has lasted over 30 days which, no doubt, has made any loyal readers who remain wonder if the Reformed Angler is going out with a whimper.
Well, not quite. There have been a number of factors that have interfered with regular posting -- not feeling I had much to say; some persistent health issues; discovering Facebook; working a day job -- and I'm sure I could come up with other excuses.
Summer 2009 has been one of ups and downs -- Susan and I celebrated our 28th wedding anniversary; Liam did well at summer camp, earning 7 merit badges, which is unusual for a sixth year camper; Liam also was inducted into the Oorder of the Arrow, the Boy Scout honor camping society; work has been satisfying and enjoyable for both Susan and me.
Our son deserves a paragraph of his own. Following summer camp, we picked him up and instead of driving home, we headed west towards Dodge City, Kansas, where he worked for a month on his cousin's farm. Portions of their land have been in the family since the 1880's, when Liam's great-great-grandfather homesteaded in Ford County. He learned a great deal and had a great time. The last week of his stay he helped out behind the scenes at the Dodge City Roundup (one of the premier rodeos) as well as getting to see the rodeo over five nights. He participated in the local church youth group and made many new friends. This was a maturing experience and one that he hopes can be repeated.
On July 17th, though, my mother died at the age of 78 and after a marriage that lasted 58 years. While this was not unexpected, it was still a big shock. She had been in declining health for years with breathing issues. The funeral was held July 28th and Mom's three sons and three grandsons served as the pall bearers. We were asked just prior to the beginning of the funeral but we were all honored to be able to perform this act of service. My Dad is doing OK, and is adapting to the change in his life. He had been a caregiver for several years, and my sister reports that he has gotten out of the apartment a few times for walks and just doing normal things. I'm sure he will found something fulfilling to occupy his time.
Susan was in the midst of the busiest time of the corn season, so I drove out to Dodge City, rested a day, and then left with Liam for Houston. We stayed for the funeral and drove back to Dodge so he could finish out his month with his cousin and help out at the rodeo. It was a grueling drive, but necessary. Fortunately, I was able to take a few vacation days and relax before we drove back to Columbia.
So that's pretty much how the summer has been going, and it has a couple weeks yet to come. And they will be busy....
I hope to post a little more regularly and look forward to hearing from all of you.