Wednesday, February 15, 2017

My End of 2016 Letter

December 15, 2016
Winamac, Indiana
Dear family, relatives, and friends,
            The end of 2016 is fast approaching so let’s see if I can get an end of the year letter together. 
            I hope everyone is having or had a Happy Halloween, Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and Happy Holidays.  
            As usual, it seems, 2016 was a pretty big year. 
            The biggest family event was the Anspach every 4 years, 1 week, reunion at Bielava campground/resort on the Northeast corner of Bass Lake in July.  It was the 1st time there, and as is usual with a 1st time, how will it work out?   I think it turned out very well.  People managed to make it from all over the country, and spend a week of visiting, playing horse euchre and other methods of triviality.  There are many stories of course, one that comes to mind is the after reunion travels of the Lost Hat on the wet, pondy soccer field.   And the big surprise of Doug, Jasmine, Abby, and Grace from eastern MA rolling in beside the big tent pavilion one evening.

            As usual after much laziness, other things to do, and pure procrastination it is now:
January 14th 2017                      So it goes
            The biggest change in our family this year is Jeff and Linda and their kids are finally, after several years in their small trailers, in their new house.  Now I can’t wait to get out there in Oregon and check it out. 
            I didn’t do as much traveling this year as I like to do.  But did make it to Buzzard Bottom (4 wheels) in North Carolina and camped out at the High Country Motorcycle Camp for about 5 days or so.  It was great seeing all my old motorcycle friends again.  Then a quick stop at Tom & Susan’s in Canton NC on the way home.  I should have stayed longer but I was in a hurry to get home for some reason.  Am I now just an old home body?
            Patty is still very heavily involved in her Puli Club of America and her Pulik.
            I am still working on the Panhandle Pathway.  Now more with the paperwork, particularly trying to keep track of the website, facebook, membership and volunteer contributions, rather than heavy manual labor work.   During a heavy volunteer activity late 2015 fall and early 2016, as a result of spraying tordon on the stumps cut by the Pulaski Cass Community Corrections Center (PCCC), I hurt my lower back.  After a visit to the chiro, they and my doctor agreed that most of the pain was due to arthritis.  After doing the suggested Yoga pretty constant for the remainder of 2016 most of the pain is under control.  I plan on continuing it. I even took a yoga class at the VFW for a spell.  After all ‘if its free its for me’. 
            I did, unfortunately, become a member of the Big C club in 2016.  As a result of my colonoscopy in September they found a malignant polyp at the ileocecal valve between my large and small intestine.  They cut out about a ½ foot upstream and a foot down stream, including the valve.  Cancer was confirmed, Stage IIA.  After much cogitation on information gleaned from many sources including my local Oncologist and a 2nd opinion at a distant major cancer treatment center I decided to take 1 chemo treatment, pills.  I completed it Jan 8th.  116 pills over 14 days.  At my Oncologist visit on Friday the 1/13th, a lucky day?, we decided that I would not take any more chemo and try to keep track for future cancer.  Looking at the positive side there is a very good chance that cancer will not reoccur.  Time will tell.
            My 2017 To Do List consists of the following, not necessarily in priority order although the 1st ones are HIGH.  –visit my kids AK, OR, MN, NC; -MC rally NC or FL or both; -walk the big bridge on Labor Day, - get some goats, -Climb the local State Park Fire Tower on my birthday and find out how many steps they have added,  -clean out & organize: the garage, my ‘office’, the basement, - stay out of the hospital.  Please don’t hold me to all of these.
            That’s it, I hope everyone has a great 2017 and on.  And I hope that the massive confusion and concern on the 2017 political environment turns out positive.
Tom Anspach  (, 574 946 4267, Facebook)

Below I am including my major 2016 bucket list item:  For my Oregon granddaughter, Eden to braid my year long, no trimming or cutting hair/beard  into a pony tail.  Accomplished at our 2016 family reunion.  Then on the last night about midnight, my MN daughter in law Ruth, trimmed my hair and beard with plenty of kibitzing from the crowd.   


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