The last couple weeks have been a little challenging. Different. Interesting in some ways, heartbreaking in others. First, my Grandpa Redick died a little over a week ago after a several-month fight with myelodysplastic syndrome. I was in Michigan exactly two weeks before that, and he was moving around (slowly), talking, watching football…and two weeks later, he was gone. Luckily he passed away peacefully in his bed, holding hands with my sister and my aunt, surrounded by family members. I think his death hasn’t fully sunk in for me yet, especially being so far away from it all while my family has been living it every day for a month. It’s hard. I hate the fact that he’s gone – although happy he’s not having to deal with the constant blood transfusions and pain anymore. It just sucks.
I’m definitely not at my best sitting around dwelling on sad stuff like this, so Jeff and I still try to keep busy. We participated in the Chevy Sonic Adventure, a one-day digital scavenger hunt around downtown Portland. (And no, we didn’t win the car, although we probably sprinted four miles in the process.) We visited the just-opened Nike Portland store, an amazing flagship with tons of bells and whistles. We watched the Michigan State/North Carolina Carrier Classic basketball game over some Deschutes Jubelale at Nike’s Boston Deli with some of Jeff’s coworkers. We found Cooper a place to stay over the Christmas holidays: Sniff Dog Hotel – a place with a bar/coffee shop and a 5-7 p.m. “happy hour” where dogs are free to use the facilities while owners sit back, sip some wine and get some doggy entertainment. We caught part of Occupy Portland’s standoff with police as the cops gently (in riot gear, nonetheless) pushed the protesters out of the public parks. Lots of random activities, leading up to an eagerly-anticipated trip to Cabo exactly one week from today. Words cannot express how excited I am to escape the dreary fall for some beach-time with Jeff’s family. And before we know it, it’ll be Christmas and we’ll be back in Michigan and Chicago for some much-needed friends and family time – plus Jeff and I will be hitting our one-year mark in Portland. Time sure flies.