And so endeth another landmark year!

Dec 31, 2023 | 0 comments

Multigrade Classroom Ocean Park School – 1993

When we got to the part of the math text where we were beginning to struggle with serious “story problems,” I used to tell my third-graders that life is actually a series of problem-solving events — some harder than others, but all solvable with diligence and practice.  I still believe that to be true, but as I’ve grown older I prefer to think of life as a series of adventures rather than an endless string of problem-solving opportunities.  It seems a more positive attitude, somehow.

So, as I look back on’ 2023 — my 88th year on this ailing planet — I’m reviewing my “adventures” as I count my blessings.  Over-arching all other experiences, of course, were the challenges and opportunities during this first full year of being without Nyel.  Those included big decisions about (and investments in) this old house like the replacement of a failing 100-year-old chimney and, also, some big changes to the “infrastructure of my technology delivery” (does that even make sense?).  So far, I’m pleased with the outcome of that first challenge, but my adventures with internet and cyberspace continue.  Friends and relatives were wonderful about giving advice and offering support, but in the end, of course, I had to do it “My Way” as Frank Sinatra so famously sang.

ChimCare at Our Gate – March 2023

And beyond those “biggees” there were, of course, all the little challenges that are part and parcel of every adventure.  Maintenance — of everything.  The car, the ancient plumbing in the house, the garden upkeep, me and my aging parts.  So far so good.  Again, the support and suggestions by good friends, family members, and trusted advisers have been fabulous.  Bit by bit, meeting the challenge of each of those smaller “adventures ” without benefit of a full-time partner has been rewarding in its own peculiar way.

And then there has been the challenge of moving forward with my abiding interest in the history of our area.  I long ago committed myself to sharing what I know and finding what others can add to our ever-growing body of knowledge and understanding of our past.  And to spread the word lest it be forgotten or lost!  Along those lines, in September a group of us began a series of monthly History Forums at the Oysterville Schoolhouse and, so far, they have been a delight;  the interest and willing participation by so many community members has been a fabulous serendipity!

November 2023 History Forum

And in another aspect of my local history interest, the response by Chinook Observer readers to my “Saints or Sinners?” stories each week has warmed my heart and has provided encouragement to “keep on keeping on” with my research and writing.  And to think that a year ago I was considering “retiring” from that part of my life entirely.  I am happy to find that this year has given me a fresh perspective on that front.

So… all in all, I’d say the adventures of 2023 have had positive outcomes.  I’m looking forward to 2024 as a continuation of the same — and most especially a continuation of the shared love and laughter and support of so very many friends, far and near.  This year of my life could never have been as fulfilling without all of you!



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