Friday, October 28, 2011

Halloween Birthday Weekend

10-28-11 grateful brain
Ann is off on a 5 day trip, but she sent me this blog to post this weekend...... what a wonderful birthday gift-  Thank you crazy, wonderful, fascinating friend Ann! I'll cherish your words always! ~Judy

PS: OK the secret is out, I am the type of person who gets excited, and jumps with joy when I see a rainbow. One afternoon Ann caught me with her camera.

Hoot n’ Howl, Happy Happy Birthday Judy!

Where do I begin chatting about Ms. Independent … Judy.

The beginning: Drake University, January 2005. The big Drake Europe Trip, Dublin to Paris. I remember Judy coming to class with Greg, sitting attentively in the back row. I’m sure we exchanged a few words but that was the extent of it. This was the year that I also met my good buddies Lexi and Nat Clark (more about them later).

Then the trip: my third with Drake University. Having gone on eight trips, the 19 day journey is a study of not only public policy but of human nature. First, the make-up of the travelers are from all walks of life. Then where they sit on the bus may tell a little about them: the front passengers are normally to themselves with nose to grindstone with an occasional chatter. The back of the bus, party central travelers, singing and drinking their way through Europe, the middle of the bus, those who want to be serious while living vicariously through the chatter of the back. I like sitting in the middle, Greg and Judy sat in front of me most of the way. I can’t say we did anything memorable, but somehow, I kept running into Judy here and there. This is the beginning of a great friendship.

After the trip, we chatted every now and then and got started with the Drake Alum booth at the Art Fair. Then on occasion, we would do something together and then I got to share in Judy’s world.

There’s the Peace sisters, Sue and Carolyn. They are a hoot and when we are all together, we do our own hootin’ and howlin”. Then I met Molly, just as fun lovin’ as Judy, and might I say, a wonderful hostess, cook, wife and animal lover. I love going over to Molly’s, she a great in more ways than one.

Then the family, her dad John, mom Jean, sister Jan and her kids Sarah and Christopher. What a great family and something I’m a tad bit envious of. In 2009, Judy took me see her parents and I instantly fell in love with marine dude John and his lovely wife. I get a kick out of his home made “stampin’ cards” and for John calling me on my birthday. Here’s what he said … in the middle of my big party … he called and said “this is the Charles City police department, I have a report of noise at your house”. It took me a few seconds to realize it was him .. haha … funny funny.

It’s not all “whine and roses” with Judy. While we are like “peas and carrots” we look at social and political issues with two different lenses. At times, I shake my head and bite my tongue and on a rare occasion, I do let loose, respectfully of course.

So on Miss Judy’s birthday, I want to let her know that she has colored in the lines of my life more than she will ever know. Have a great birthday friend, hoot and howl it up this weekend. I love this picture of you!

Chat Later

That Girl, Ann Marie

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