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Showing posts from December, 2007

Merry Christmas 2007

Dearest Friends and Beloved Family,

The year has sped by at an astonishing pace. There hardly seems to have been enough time to fit in all that appears to have happened: the fear, the loss, the joy and the hope.

It was not long after last year's letter went out that Russell resolved to look into the increasingly troubling spells he was experiencing. It was the last day of a major January ice storm here in Austin when he learned that scans had found a tumor on the top left side of his brain. It causes an occasional electrical disruption, sometimes accompanying a strange, brief, daydream-like experience, which is followed by a headache. The growth is benign, though, and a daily regime of medication has the symptoms under control. An annual scan for changes awaits in future summers.

The beginning of the year also saw the passing of Christina's grandmother, and our return to Plano for the services. G'ma Streeter will be sorely missed, especially during the holiday season. This …

Speechifyin'

I've been a public speaker for a long time now. While I've become perhaps a bit more reserved in my casual speech over the past dozen or fifteen years, I'm still apt to ham it up given an audience. I had gone many a year without a regular outlet for speaking until I joined Toastmasters here at First American. I'm an odd duck there, not attending to curry any favor, learn any leadership skills or gain confidence. I just needed an audience, and they all seem quite happy to listen. My only qualms are that there is so much "meeting" nonsense surrounding the "speaking" and that the types of speaking feel limited. I don't often fancy the spur-of-the-moment Table Topics, and the prepared speeches have so many conditions on them. The first ten follow a manual, and coming up with a speech that meets the requirements of each objective is bothersome. I'd much rather get a topic than a template. Such is my annoyance with this system that I've only g…

Missing: One November

Has anyone seen November? I could have sworn it was just here. It was an hour longer than it used to be, with all sorts of digging and yardwork, and even a new speech at the start, a big lull in the middle, with guests and baking and eating toward the end. It got a bit of Christmas on it, but that's not unusual these days. If seen, please return ASAP. Thanks!