I get asked often how retirement is going. That’s an easy one—it’s going great! I was ready, which leaves me with zero regrets. As I write, it’s nearly three in the afternoon. Not so many weeks ago at three in the afternoon I was still at the office with a do list. Well, that last part hasn’t changed; I still have a do list. The difference is how imperative it is to accomplish my list every day.
This morning, being Wednesday, I decided to walk up the street to attend the Ambleside chapel service. Ambleside began leasing classroom space from Newberg Friends last fall while I was still employed there, so I got warmly acquainted with the school’s principal, Megan, and some of the teachers. This is one of those rare times I’d like to turn back the clock to the days my children were in school. I’m absolutely sure I would have prioritized our finances to give BQ&T an Ambleside education, kindergarten through high school!
But I’ve made peace with the clock and just enjoy attending chapel.
It’s a sacred time. We sing from the hymnal, individual classes recite scripture, an older student reads a passage, and a speaker is introduced. Everything is done with such remarkable order and respect, I usually have to swallow down a lump in my throat. It makes me so happy to see children taught such high values, a “living education” that empowers students to author lives that are full and free, rich in relationship to God, self, others, ideas, work, and creation. [from their website]
In the photo you see the speaker, Aaron Rauch, a local pastor, being greeted and thanked by each student. They shake his hand, look him in the eye, speak clearly, and smile as they walk on. In every instance I’ve observed since they came to NFC, the adults model the same respect they expect from every student.
An exceptional way to start my day!
An hour later I was over at Friendsview’s Springbrook Meadows for a photo shoot. Co-editor Susan met me to work through our vision for this particular two-page feature in the upcoming spring issue of The View. I know—I just finished bragging about being retired, but here I am working! I retired from my full-time job at NFC, but I kept my freelance work, affording me many opportunities to mix with people in the Friendsview community of retirees (just like me!)
Inside that building on the right I chatted with men and women at their weekly coffee and conversation. A couple of them are our cousins!
Back home to drink my replacement meal with Mauri and to watch another episode of Black Earth Rising and then to work on adding my new photos to the publication layout.
It’s January 30, you know.
This is what it looks like at Ben’s house in Michigan, which he hasn’t left since Sunday.
His loving and helpful siblings shared their sympathies with him on Facebook.
Me? I drowned my sorrow for him by putting on a light jacket and walking five blocks to the grocery.
Locals will know from this unfiltered photo where I bought hot dog buns for our gourmet dinner tonight.
People at the store were talking about something called the Super Bowl. I don’t know what that is. Maybe you do.
Once I publish this, I’ll check my list for what I can put off until tomorrow. After all, I have a book to read . . . Ah, the retired life!