September is winding down. It seemed to fly by! Fall will soon be here and summer will be a memory.
We started out the month with a fun weekend trip to Kansas City where we attended the Irish Fest. Dennis and I stayed right at Crown Center at the Westin and had a wonderful time. It was the first time in a long time that just the two of us escaped for the weekend. The festival was wonderful with lots of good Irish music. The streets at the Crown Center were closed off and stages were set up in the festival area. The Boulevard Stage was on the east side of the festival and the State Street stage was on the northwest corner. Another stage called the Atrium Stage was inside the Crown Center. A couple other areas called the Heritage Workshop Stage and the Children’s Stage featured activities like Irish Ghost Stories and Tracing Your Irish Heritage as well as puppet shows for the kids. There was something for everyone! Of course, there was beer. Dennis and I were a little disappointed that there wasn’t any Irish beer like Smithwick’s or Guiness. It was all Boulevard and common domestic beers like Miller and Coors. Inside the Crown Center, a pub had Guiness but the booths outdoors were all domestic beers. Of course, Boulevard was a big sponsor of the festival so I’m sure that was a factor.
All around there were booths selling Irish t-shirts, souveniers and clothing like beautiful wool shawls and Irish scarves. Lots of interesting items. I bought a couple t-shirts and an interesting item for the baby called “Grandma’s Handkerchief Doll.” It is a doll made out of a linen handkerchief and tradition says that Grandmas would tie their hankies into dolls to help entertain the baby during Mass. When the baby grew up and got married, the grandma gave the handkerchief to the girl which was used at the wedding. If she were the grandmother to a boy, it was given to his bride.
There were food booths at the festival, too, but we ate inside the Crown Center because we didn’t think we wanted meat pies or haggis (which is actually Scottish) or bangers and mash (which is English!) The Irish (and Scots and English) aren’t known for their fine cuisine! The Crown Center has a huge food court inside so we ate barbecue, Chinese and American food! It was a fun couple of days over Labor Day weekend.
Deb G had her surgery last Monday and is doing well. It was a very involved surgery, so she has had lots of pain, but she is a trooper and hanging in there. She also has great support from her men. Frank, Clay and Logan have been with her the entire time. Logan’s new wife, Becky, has also been very supportive. The day of her surgery, I sat in the Clarkson surgery waiting room with Frank, the boys, Becky and Frank’s brother, Bruce (who is also my dentist). It was a long day for them, but, hopefully, I helped them pass the time. The surgery lasted 6 hours, then they had to wait for her to get out of recovery and into her room. I visited a couple other days and plan to head up to the hospital today. Deb will likely be sent home on Wednesday. Her sister is here from California and plans to help her out at home for a couple weeks. Clay will be at home through the holidays. His job allows him to work off-site. Logan and Becky have moved into a house where they will live while Logan helps Frank with the farm. It has been a great pleasure getting to know Deb and Frank’s family. Their boys are great guys. On Wednesday last week, I took Frank and Clay to Gorat’s for lunch. (Gorat’s is a favorite of Warren Buffet’s. Warren wasn’t there Wednesday. Darn! Actually, he doesn’t seem to be in Omaha much anymore. He is too busy out making money and playing bridge with Bill Gates.) After lunch, I drove them over to the Elmwood Park area where Warren’s house is. The weather was nice and it was good for them to be out of the hospital for awhile. They are staying at the Lied Center, a housing area for families at the Nebraska Medical Center. Logan and Becky have been staying with Bruce and his wife. Anyway, Deb is pretty spunky and doing well. She doesn’t always feel like she is, but whenever I’ve seen her, she looks good. She is eating Jello now. (I told her we starve patients until they are so hungry, anything tastes good! Then we send them home before they can complain about the hospital food!) She has a lot of flowers! Her room looks like a florist’s. I think she could tag the flowers and open a little shop in there! She appreciates all the support she has gotten from everyone. Hundreds of messages have been left on the Caring Bridge site for her. You can send her a message by clicking on the website I have listed in the last blog below.
Shelley sent me some gorgeous pictures of the Grand Canyon! I love it there! The colors change throughout the day, depending on the sun and weather. Just beautiful! She has some pictures of a deer that was so close she could’ve touched it. She and Dave took a helicopter ride over the canyon and got some great shots of the Colorado River. Here is just a sampling of what she sent. (I swear I have a picture just like the one she took of the canyon with the dead tree on the side! They must leave that tree there just so it can be photographed! And it has been over 20 years since I’ve been to the Grand Canyon!)
Yes, September is almost over. It holds many memories for me, including my dad’s birthday, Sept 19th and the anniversary of my best friend’s death in the Mexico City earthquake in 1985 also on Sept 19. It is a time of past football games, marching band, parades, and end of the season rodeos. September seems to be a month of joy and trials. It is like summer is fighting to stay around, but fall is moving in. I love the nip in the air, but I miss the warm summer sun. Once in awhile, we get a taste of summer days in September but then are reminded that winter is coming. The leaves begin to turn and the mums are in full golden bloom. It is a beautiful time of year, but very fleeting. Wishing you many more Septembers to come.