Dear friends and family,
As Christmas approaches and 2018 draws to a close, I thought I'd write this post to share some brief updates about what our family's been doing in the past year.
Jonathan turned 16 in September and is in Grade 11 at KCVI (Kingston Collegiate & Vocational Institute). He is so happy to be a part of the School-to-Community class there. He has a new teacher this year but the same Educational Assistant (Dylan) as last year, so that continuity has helped. He has enjoyed many outings with his class: they took a day trip by train to Brockville (an hour away) to visit an aquarium; they attended a hockey game and the "Grinch" movie; they participated in Special Olympics basketball and bocce tournaments; and they take regular walks to the grocery store and parks for exercise. (Jonathan is known among his classmates for being a very fast, enthusiastic walker!) Otherwise his favourite activities are going to the library to pick out DVDs and hogging the couch as he watches YouTube videos on the iPad he got for his birthday.
Allison is 20 now and is continuing her online studies at Queen's. This past year she's taken courses in children's literature, cognitive and social psychology, and world religions. She has adjusted well to the online course environment and seems to enjoy what she's taking, particularly psychology.
Richard is still working as a nurse at Kingston General (recently renamed Kingston Health Sciences Centre, fyi) and as a clinical instructor for a Queen's nursing course. He's still volunteering every week with Circle of Friends and Run & Read, and staying active by running and playing squash, softball, and soccer.
I (Jeannie) am still teaching an online course at Queen's, participating in music and a women's study group at Bethel Church, and doing a lot of writing. I was gratified to have several publications this year: I'll post the links here in case you're interested in checking them out, but if not, feel free to scroll on by!
- I had a poem published in a print journal for the first time: Relief published my poem "Lakeside, with Jonathan" in its Spring 2018 issue.
- My poem "Coyotes" appeared in Issue 2 of Barren Magazine. Link here.
- My short poem "Seen" was one of the winners of Fathom Mag's 40-word poem contest. Link here.
- My very short story "Glimpse" was one of the winners of Fathom Mag's tweet-sized stories contest (entries had to be 280 characters maximum). Link here.
- My poem "Daylight saving" appeared in The Bangor Literary Journal's "Spring's Bride" publication. Link (to download pdf) here.
As a family we travelled to PEI in August to visit Dad and other relatives for two weeks. We stayed at an AirBnB rental near Dad's (and my brother Lincoln's) apartment in Cornwall, which worked really well; we could walk back and forth to have coffee or supper with Dad and Lincoln, and we had lots of space of our own to relax in. It was one of our best trips in a while and we hope we can make a similar arrangement next time we visit.
We also had a family wedding this year: our nephew Josh Prinsen got married to Jess Davies in July, and we enjoyed celebrating with them and other friends and relatives.
To all our family and friends, we truly hope you enjoy times of celebration and reflection over the Christmas season. All the best in 2019 -- and please keep in touch!
Photo at top of post taken by Carolyn Prinsen at Josh and Jess's wedding, July 2018.