On Thursday August 10,th , CDAA members met for our annual picnic and shared a delicious buffet meal at Churchill Woods Forest Preserve in Lombard. We were in a pavilion overlooking a pond with herons, ducks and water plants on a warm, sunny summer afternoon. As usual, it was a special time to reunite with friends and former co-workers and catch up on activities and events. Many thanks to Kim Pack for bringing it all together.
Here are some items sent in for this edition of Chatterbox:
Mike Bell: (retired 2004, Athletic Trainer)
Nice to see that the Chatterbox is back. Wife Verda had lumbar spinal fusion in February and is doing great. I‘m taking care of her just like I had to do to the injured C/D Athletes. Retirement here in Sun City West, AZ is the best place ever. This place is the Taj Mahal of
Retirement, I mean, Active Adult Communities. Over 105 clubs and activities that you can join. We are the first Adult Community to have an Auto Restoration Club and moved into a new building last Spring. We bought a 1934 American Austin Bantam Roadster in December 2015. It’s an “itty bitty” car that’s only 10 feet bumper to bumper. (A Mini Cooper is about 1 foot longer). It’s estimated that there are only 100 left. It’s a challenge to get this 6’1” body into it. Have to double clutch to shift gears, so I hope the left knee can hold up for a few more years. Beautiful weather this past winter. To those back north, we had to shovel about 12” of sunshine almost everyday (Ha!).
To celebrate Verda’s recovery we are going on a cruise the end of August thru beginning of September. We fly to London and go to Southampton, UK. The cruise will go to Sweden, Denmark, and Belgium. Then back to UK to ship out to the Shetland Islands, Iceland, cross the Arctic Circle and then cross the Atlantic Ocean, to St. John's, Newfoundland, NYC and then home. We'll be gone for about 23 days. Take care. I'm looking forward to the next Chatterbox letter.
I left the cold days of winter in Illinois and moved to Charleston SC in 2011 when my daughter’s husband accepted a job here. I was delighted to move as I have lots of friends in Charleston and had wanted to move back after I retired. So now my daughter, her husband and her three children are about 10 minutes away. I live 10 minutes from a beautiful beach and from downtown Charleston and have been delighted to renew a number of friendships with people I met when I lived here in the 70s and 80s. I don’t miss my friends from DuPage as I see them on a regular basis as they visit Charleston or we meet in other US locations on a regular basis. I’ve thrown out my winter coats, snow boots and ski caps and love it here!
My husband and I moved to Lillian, AL in October, 2016. We are about 20 minutes from the Gulf and are really enjoying retirement. If anyone is in this area, please feel free to visit us.
From Bob Sobie:
Ron Jerak – Music Man:
Most of us know Ron Jerak as a great teacher, counselor, volunteer, and humanitarian. But, Martha and I had the wonderful opportunity to hear Ron Jerak the musician. At one of the many CDAA social events, Ron said he plays music at the Claddagh Irish Pub in Geneva, just over two miles from our home. So, we invited some new neighbors to go with us to hear Ron's music and enjoy an appetizer or two and a Guinness or two. Ron played percussion and sang while his musical partner played guitar. We had a wonderful evening listening to music and catching up with Ron during his break between sets. If you get a chance to hear Ron play, do not miss the opportunity.
Val Follmann is still volunteering at the Almost Home Foundation (AHF) pet rescue and is currently fostering three tabby kittens. These kittens were born on April 25, 2017 and are still looking for their forever homes. Piggy, Pebbles and Mittens were rescued from a high-kill shelter in southern Illinois a couple of days before they were scheduled to be euthanized. When they arrived at the rescue, they were barely surviving due to starvation. Two of the kittens were extremely tiny and one did not make it. Piggy and Pebbles are identical and it is difficult to tell them apart. Mittens has white feet. They are all extremely friendly and love to be picked up and cuddled while they purr loudly.
Kittens under six months old have to be adopted in pairs so they are less destructive in your house and have each other to play with. Piggy and Pebbles would be a good pair as they have bonded. Mittens has also bonded with them, but she would probably get along with any kitten from another litter. For more information about these kittens, please contact Val or email: cats@PROTECTED
For the last few years I have been doing research in family genealogy… my great grandfathers (and mothers) on both sides emigrated here from Ireland in the late 19th century and were factory workers in the mills, living in crowded tenements in Fall River Massachusetts…I took Ancestry DNA test and it indicated 93% Irish, 5 percent British, and traces of Finland (of all places!)…The DNA test also linked me to a second cousin twice removed in Connecticut…a descendent of our black sheep great Uncle James who had disappeared decades ago in a family scandal…very much enjoy discovering the family stories and the unraveling of family mysteries.
Barb Hall (hired 1970, retired 2001):
In August 2016 we drove to New Jersey to celebrate our son’s new mother-in-law’s significant birthday and meet all her relatives who came from all over the country. John got to try out his new digital camera which uses all our old Pentax lenses; they had no idea those pictures would capture then so well as it just looked like he was checking out how everything worked!
Fall 2016 saw Barb’s 50th high school reunion held at the Village Links on Glen Ellyn, in the very same room we have had our CDAA spring luncheon and meeting!
June 2017 saw our oldest grandson’s high school graduation.
We have been in the big family home in Wheaton since 1973 on and off and are still there. We get down to our resort rental property in the Panhandle of Florida on occasion and have experienced four seasons there over the years but relocating is not yet the plan. We are so fortunate to have had our years at COD and see so many former colleagues now. It is finally friends, family and personal time to cherish.
Remember the old Heinz commercial where you watch catsup very slowly pouring out the bottle while a song called “Anticipation” plays in the background? Well, that what is it like to watch a total solar eclipse. My wife Angela and I joined Bob and Martha Sobie in beautiful DeSoto, Missouri on August 21 to watch this amazing astronomical event. Where is DeSoto you ask; it is 45 minutes south of St. Louis in the middle of nowhere which is a perfect place for viewing. We were lucky that the few clouds overhead dissipated as the eclipse began. For the next hour we watched the slow progression of the moon’s shadow by checking every few minutes through our special viewing glasses.
Finally. After an of an hour of anticipation..the big event began which lasted all of 2 minutes. Now we could take off the glasses and gaze directly at the eclipse. The aura around the sun..red , yellow and other colors..was indeed spectacular. The sky was a weird twilight color (not really dark) and you could see some stars while the horizon looked a little like the end of the day. With anticipation now over, we didn’t spend too much time watching the sun get back to normal. It was a terrific event and I recommend you consider making your reservations for the next eclipse in 2024 to better yet, the one in 2045. I will be 100 years old in 2045 and I invite all of you to join me then. Save the date!
Note: At the Churchill Woods CDAA gathering Joan DiPiero and Ami Chambers from the College shared information about the COD speakers bureau and the COD Cares community service initiative. An upcoming event for COD Cares will be a Food Truck Rally and other family activities on Saturday Sept 23, 2017 on Main Campus from 2 to 7:30 PM. For more information, go to www.cod.edu/CODCares. COD retirees can share with the community their many and varied areas of expertise through the COD Speakers Bureau. For more information contact Ami Chambers at 630 942-3823 or chambersa@PROTECTED.
Thanks for the many positive comments about the return of Chatterbox. We rely on our CDAA members for content, so please do submit any updates you want to share (family, travel, recent moves, projects and other interests) to chatterbox@PROTECTED. or mail to Kathryn Golden, 56 Michael Rd, Bridgewater MA 02324.
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