Friday, November 24, 2023

Speaking of family fun

This October was, shall we say, a little suboptimal in the fun and frivolity side of life.  I didn't mention it on the blog since I'm not inclined to visit such things on the readers, because I imagine others have their own problems.  I will when it comes to health or similar urgent concerns.  But this was what I call 'problems to deal with.'

That problem was my wife having her position cut in late September.  She spent years getting things running, solving the problems that were stacked to the ceiling, and generally fixing the mess that had been handed her years ago.  In keeping with the modern corporate mindset, that could only lead to one response from the higher-ups:  Cut her position.  She got things working, that's less money we have to spend by getting rid of the position!  Sometimes I can't figure why youngsters have no feeling of loyalty to the companies they work for today.   I'll have to think on it. 

Anyhoo, that was a cloud that hung over us throughout our usually festive time of October and Fall.  I'm happy to say that my wonderful wife was able to find another, better position, owing to her reputation and contacts and just general awesomeness.  It came with a title step up and pay bump and the whole nine yards.  That was finalized in the first week of November.  So you might say the whole of October, while still October, saw other things on our minds. 

Nonetheless, despite that and just the changes that go with life, we still managed to drag - albeit at times kicking and screaming - a few old fun traditions out to enjoy.  The sons joined us when they could, and when all were available it was great.  It was also our oldest's birthday, as it is every year.  Heh.  Again, it wasn't easy, and it was on top of what was already a whirlwind year of wonderful blessings and some pretty hefty challenges.  

But we managed to pull out some old fun times, a couple new fun times, and always improved by the fact that when they could, my son and our daughter-in-law came along as well.  So a few pics from a bumpy October and surrounding autumn, and hopefully smoother sailing ahead. 

No OSU game this year, as I said earlier.  But we took our youngest
to his first game at the local university.  He liked it and wants to go
back next year.  Mission accomplished!

The Ohio Historical Center has nifty things, including
an annual Sleepy Hollow fest at its 19th Century town set up. 
Featured was storytelling, which is a lost art, but a great one.

The youngest and oldest at Sleepy Hollow. The others having 
other obligations.  We're learning to make do.

By nighttime it did start to take on a spooky atmosphere.

Owing to his crippling allergies, our oldest can't eat out
at many places, including old faves like Olive Garden. So to
the best of our abilities, we brought Olive Garden to him for his B'Day

For his birthday week, he wanted to trek up to my old stomping grounds
and get some fresh squeezed apple cider at the orchard that marked 
my first field trip ever in kindergarten.  Three bros present this time.
We don't do a lot of the things we used to, but on our way home,
they asked to swing by the old cemetery we used to include in our 
annual 'ghost runs.'  That's the old mausoleum that looks it.

He, the strongest, is best helping my mom about.  That's a right 
sincere pumpkin patch, if I may say so. 

My son and daughter-in-law managed to come by
with us as we picked out our pumpkins.  The costume 
was a nice (and homemade) touch.

He would pick the biggest pumpkin he could find.

For some reason, my wife asked to let the leaves stay in the yard
until after Halloween.  I admit, I sort of like the natural look. 

The whole gang was present for carving pumpkins.  We used to
get one for each, and I had to do the carving.  Talk about tired hands.
Now they do their own (my mom draws her design now and we leave it 
at that)

Old decorations of the type my mom and dad had when I was young.
I like those better than the big, gaudy stuff today.

Mom showcases her holiday work of art.

She hadn't carved a pumpkin before!  New experience and 
possibly one of the most postcard deserving designs.

The three boys' pumpkins on Halloween night (our second
took theirs with them). 

Smaller than in times past, but still a bit of a spread for snacking
while handing candy out to the tricks or treaters.

The weekend after, we all took a drive through Amish country. First
up a railroad museum including a working roundhouse.

You forget how big those beasts were.  My dad was happy to see
the steam era go the way of the butte churn - noisy, cold, hot, dangerous.

I loved that they looked back at the same moment - I wonder why.

Not sure what our oldest is looking at, but he seems interested.

I don't know, but it may have caught his attention, too

In front of our house - photos don't do it justice.

Our son and daughter-in-law came by Thanksgiving evening for dessert,
including the annual 'eating of the pie crust' (started by our oldest when he was 
little).  The A Charlie Brown Christmas.  And that was a wrap.


  1. I'm so glad to hear your wife's job situation resolved! How stressful! I'm glad it all worked out for the better. And it looks like you were still able to make a fair amount of good memories amid the uncertainty.
    Our Thanksgivings are starting to look different too. Over 20 years ago when I joined my husband's family, there were 3 of his grandparents alive. My older kids have memories of these dinners, but my youngest kids only know his last living grandmother who will be 95 early next year. Thanks be to God she is still with us, but she no longer comes to Thanksgiving dinners as it's too hard for her to get around currently. So our table, on that side, (my family lives too far away to celebrate holidays with) has become full of our children, my SIL, BIL and their kids. It is nice as our older kids are adults now and can converse as such, but we do miss the older generation and some of the traditions we used to do, like go to a lights park after dinner, because the lights park no longer exists. But we continue to meet and give thanks for our blessings and my 4 year old, who probably is having her first real memories of Thanksgiving this year, expressed how much she loved it! Her memories might be different than my adult kids, but I hope they will still be good ones overall!

    1. Yeah, this year was the first time our son wasn't with us for dinner. They came for dessert, having gone to her family for dinner. Next year the plan is for them to flip it around, which is fine. But it was different. Such is life. As I've said many times, Lucy is right about traditions.

  2. keeping you all in mind.


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