Sister Carol gave the assignment this week:
"Look back over 2015 and write about one of the most memorable things that changed you, and write about the transformation." You can read Bill's about new experiences with his camera here. I will link sister Carol's when it is completed.
2015 was the year that had more changes wrapped up in twelve months than any other to date. Everett and I discussed this exact topic last night and between our two blended lives couldn't come up with another year so full of changes, excitement, work, stress, happiness, support of family, support of friends, and support of each other.
What changed me the most? My hometown of Kellogg, Idaho. It was a smart move as we transitioned into a retired life to move to Kellogg. When thinking about this post I was reminded of simple reasons why this town transformed me.
Kellogg reminded me once again of what it is like to live in a town where local businesses provide what you need, are hospitable, will deliver to your house, or drop everything to make sure things are working out. Mom lives next door and has a strong desire to shop local as much as she can . It has paid off for her and for us. When our new fence was being built Mr. Ace himself drove down to check on materials and questions Mom had, since we were putting them fence up between our two yards. When Mom needed a new chair to ease her pain, Mr. Furniture Exchange was there, brought a chair, let her try it out, and then set it up. Putting a new washer and dryer into our basement was a challenge, but Mr. Furniture Exchange had our neighbor and crew moving it in with speed and grace. They removed to old ones and all was done with and efficiency. We had the same experience when we purchased a car locally. Good service, hospitality, and follow-up. Everyone was helpful, friendly, and kind.
Although I don't really need a reminder, every day I marvel in the beauty of my hometown. Growing up under the fog of smelter smoke and brown hills, it is so different now to be greeted by the magnificent Kellogg Peak out my front window, incredible sunsets looking west, fall foliage covers the streets and hills with striking autumn colors, and tree lined streets heading uptown.
When we were making our plans to return I was excited to reconnect with friends. What a joy it has been to not only reconnect with friends, but also finding people I hadn't seen in many years. The people that surrounded me during my first twenty-five years of life here in Kellogg hold a collective set of memories that include me, my family, and a long stream of memories that now are being revisited over and over. I enjoy having the same neighbors as when I grew up. It was a good life growing up here, maturing, and beginning a teaching career. I look forward to more lunches, visits, and time spent with many, many lifelong friends.
This is the first time in thirty-five years that I have lived in the same place as my family. It makes it even better when my brother is able to be here for extended visits. Getting reacquainted with my mother as a next door neighbor has been a joy. Having my sister and her husband close by has been fun and I look forward to having more time together as we plan gardens and outside dinners in the spring and summer. When the nieces were home it was special to host everyone here for a dinner after Christmas. We can all help each other with pet care, borrowing food, giving someone a ride, lending the pick up, and supporting Mom.
I love the things that are familiar. I love to shop at Stein's because I know where everything is. I was filled with happiness the day I got my library card again at the same library I spent so many hours as a child. The HumDinger still has great burgers and fries. Stepping into Kellogg High School brought back a flood of memories. So did walking the area around KHS. It was the same at Sunnyside Drug and the Post Office. I love Teeter's Field
. "For if anything is capable of making a poet of a literary man, it is my hometown love of the human, the living and ordinary." Joseph Campbell
It is time to create some poetry.