Greetings friends! Wishing you the peace, love, and joy of this holiday season!
As this year comes to a close, it provides a time for reflection about what this year has held for us. And it’s been a doozy. There are been times of great joy and excitement, but there have also been times of great heartbreak and sadness. I guess let’s start with the bad first...
As some of you know, the world lost a beautiful, kind, gracious woman in February: my mom Felice McLane. If you knew my mom, you know what a huge loss this was not just for me personally, but also for the rest of her family and friends, and indeed the world. As much as my mom always looked for the silver lining in every situation, there is no silver lining on this one. It’s just been tough. But my mom also instilled in us a “pick yourself up off the floor and get going because there is so much great stuff out there to do and to enjoy” mentality. So that’s what I and my siblings have done because we are our mother’s children. And we try to honor her memory every day in how we treat each other and those around us, continuing the love and kindness she put out into the world. We sure do miss her though.
So in true Felice McLane style, here’s a recap of some of this year’s “great stuff”...
Mark and I bought our dream house in the beautiful hills of Dundee, Oregon, planted rows and rows of lavender (and laid rows and rows of weed cloth and irrigation), reconnected with old friends, made some wonderful new friends, and got to know our great neighbors, read lots books to our sweet neighbor children (and got lots of hugs in return!), started new jobs (DW Fritz for Mark and Portland Community College for me), celebrated Mark’s mom’s successful battle against cancer and his father’s successful bypass surgery, got to know our goats Laverne and Shirley, hiked Silver Falls 4 times because it’s awesome, went wine-tasting or explored our new community with anyone who visited, learned a little about permaculture and food forests, watched our children learn and grow as they explore the world, and were thrilled when our daughter Lauren decided to move to Dundee.
Though this year gave me whiplash with all of the extreme highs and lows, in the end, I have learned to be grateful for every experience in life, both good and bad, because there are always lessons to be had:
So thank you friends for being in our lives and for the love and encouragement that you have shown us over the years. Our hope is that we will see you sometime in the next year and that you will experience lots of the “great stuff” in the days and months to come.
With much love,
Pam and Mark (and family)
Hello! My name is Pam Reynolds Baker and I am a mom/wife /English teacher and lavender farmer located in Dundee, Oregon.