Thursday, September 03, 2009

Lots of good things in the summer!

Sorry! I've got one more summer update post before I get back to finding good things here in Lagos. I really had a busy summer, but it was jam packed with some really fun stuff. I went back to Houston at the end of May so I could rehearse with the Houston Symphony Chorus for their summer performances in Mexico City. I'm so glad that they are willing to have me return and sing with them -- my music making in the chorus is one of the things I miss most when I am away from Houston.

But before our trip with them, I met Brent in San Francisco in June where he had a business conference. Good things there: going along on a business trip means that the company pays for a very nice hotel, and Jordan was working in Palo Alto and was able to get away for a weekend to spend some time with us. We had some beautiful weather for our trip to Alcatraz Island and we enjoyed comparing that prison island to Robben Island, which we had visited the month before. FYI, there are no penguins on Alcatraz, but the prisoners there had toilets, while Mandela had a bucket in his Robben Island cell. I had some time on my own to enjoy some city tours of San Francisco highlights and spent lots of quality time in the art museums there. San Francisco is such a beautiful city!

I was home for less than a week before leaving for Mexico City. I've been there a number of times to perform with the chorus, but Brent has never gone with me. I was glad he was able to come along this time and do some touring during my free time. I did have some disappointment after I ate something bad and got sick enough that I had to walk off the stage early at two of the concerts. But we had a good time there despite that, and I enjoyed returning to some old favorites with Brent, like the pyramids at Teotihuacan.

Back in Houston for less than a week and we enjoyed a visit from Lindsay and her boys from Boston. Our son Daniel and his wife Erin and their children came down from Austin, TX for a visit. They were getting ready for a move to Houston in August. We enjoyed some quality pool time. I have the most darling grandchildren around!

Daughter Lindsay with her boys Austin and Spencer

Daughter-in-law Erin with Elise, Owen and Magdalyn

Brent had to go back to Lagos shortly after Lindsay and her boys came to Houston, but I got to stay longer, so I was able to attend my niece's wedding in Omaha later in July. It was a mini family reunion and we all had such a fun time gathering for this special celebration. This picture is of Megan Carolee (yes she shares my name) and her new husband Chris, with Megan's sisters, who are also my nieces!

That brings us into August, when we were able to celebrate our oldest son, Daniel, being awarded his PhD from University of Texas in Chemical Engineering. We now have our own Dr. Dan in the family! We are really proud of Daniel and his achievement!
The day after Daniel defended his dissertation, he came down to Houston to close on the house they were purchasing (although they weren't actually able to close till a few days later due to someone's error). After the closing, we had a very busy few days painting the entire house (5 bedroom, 3800 sq. feet -- not a small task!). They had some busy times with the move, but they are now settled in a beautiful, freshly painted house only about 15 minutes drive from our house in Houston. We are very excited to be able to visit with them more easily and often when we are in town.
Daniel, Erin and children in their new home
After they got settled I had my own whirlwind of activity getting my final shopping and house projects and packing done before I made my own move back to Lagos. I got here just in time, because I was really ready for a slower pace for a while!

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