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This frog was so old (how old was it?) that it almost qualified for Medicare.


Ten years ago I took over the family newsletter. It went out twice a year and helped keep the various branches in touch with news, photos, and annual Family Week dates at Wind Hill Farm. Up until last winter I did a pretty darn good job with it, if I say so myself.

Debo (oh, how she is missed!) sent out reminders to family to send in news for it and followed up with people she knew had extras to share/brag. She would distill Christmas letters and cull e-mails before sending the material on to me. I would research the web for additional info and photos on musician CDs, authors in print (hardcover books, magazines, and e-zines). If I heard of an award someone got, I made sure it was included. When the youngest went kite sailing over the pole, I made sure I captured details from their blog for the newsletter. Debos photos, and my few additions from Family Week events, were liberally salted into each newsletter. With the help of core family members, names were added to each photo to help us get to know each other even when we couldn’t get together. Whenever I had a question on whether to include something or not, or whether tactful editing was needed, Debo always handled it, providing guidance and insight.

Not having her nearby support in a time of extreme work overload totally crashed me. I was, and am, very proud of those newsletters. But I wasn’t keeping up.

I missed the winter edition. I missed the summer edition. I had copy. I had photos. I did not have time or a brain to work with.

The family did not criticize or harass me—they didn’t need to because I was doing a spectacular job kicking myself by myself! Instead, they thanked me for my years of work and asked if I wanted help or was I willing to let someone else take it over?

There is something to be said for stepping down and letting someone new contribute. I hope Peter enjoys his new role in the family. He accepted it in early August, but I only just today got the files burned to disk and got them off in the mail* to him with a sketchy overview of the process I had been following.

So… almost a nine-month-old frog for brunch today. I am looking forward to fresher frogs in the future.

*Yes, as a matter of fact the rest of today was marvelous! I took a lovely walk with the puppies, browsed the gazillion yard sales that today’s awesome weather spawned (only spent $20 total over all of them but we won’t talk about that), went to the Western Avenue Open Studios and saw lots of great art in all sorts of media (succumbed to the allure of another hank of delicious yarn), trimmed another large section of the wildly overgrown and neglected hedges, talked with BOTH my kids on the phone, and sorted out a foot-and-a-half tall pile of papers on a chair by my desk.

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