Life's Little Moments

By dbifulco

Year's End

I joined my 4 birder friends this morning at the Refuge for a 3 mile walk along a wooded trail.  We scored 30 species including some late season Yellow Rumped Warblers (here) and a Gray Catbird who should have been gone 2 months ago.  Still lots of berries in the woods so food is plentiful.  Temps today were in the 40's, unseasonably warm and it made for a really pleasant walk.

I am going to include my recap of this year below.  This is actually the bones of the holiday letter I never quite got in the mail.  Now planning to make it a New Year Letter...if I get around to it.  

As we prepare to ring out 2021 and ring in 2022, I’ve been spending some time reflecting on a year that has been something of a rollercoaster.  I will refrain from endless details and just bullet point the big stuff…
January - Willie and I both got our Covid jabs, to our complete delight; Willie’s mom also got hers.  At the end of the month, Willie’s sister moved out of our home into her own place after nearly 4 years with us. And on the 30th, I turned 65 and officially became a senior citizen with a Medicare card in my wallet.  Lots of excitement all around!
February - Amidst the Hunger Games of trying to score vaccine appointments my parents were able to get their jabs, much to everyone’s relief.  And all of our friends started getting vaxxed, too.  NJ dropped their mask mandate and we ventured into the world bare-faced.  Again, much to celebrate. 
March - the Delta variant began to rear its ugly head.  Hubs and I started masking up again in public places. I got an “irregular” mammogram and had to have more images
April - all hell broke loose.  I found out I had breast cancer and proceeded to surgery before the end of the month.  And Delta was cutting a wide swath around the world.
May - Willie started a new job with a wonderful company so much to celebrate.  In late May I started radiation therapy for cancer. 
June - finished up radiation, tired and rashy, but still cause to celebrate. 
Most of the summer was uneventful.  We continued to wear masks in public but were able to enjoy time with friends as well as biking (Willie) and kayaking (me).  On Sept 2 we celebrated our 21st anniversary, And in mid September we both got “boosted”.  Willie rode 250 miles in the Great Cycle Challenge raising almost $2,000 for Kids with Cancer.
October - I finally made it to Colombia for 11 days of photography, mostly birds and mostly in the Andes.  It was beyond fabulous!  And we made the decision to adopt a sweet mixed breed puppy who officially joined out household on the 31st
November - Willie turned 60 and Jax the Puppy turned our lives upside down.
December - Jax turned 5 months and tried to chew up almost everything he could fit in his mouth.  We fell in love even while prying inappropriate  items from his jaws.  Meanwhile, we watched as Omicron cut a wide path across the world, infecting millions more people.  

More ups than downs this year, even in spite of cancer and a pandemic that won't seem to end.  Our family and friends remain healthy and we remain grateful.  

Debbi, Willie, Jax, Charlie and Phoebe

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