January 31, 2020

January 2020

We made it to 2020!

January 2020

Genetic testing, lots of productive work, play, and Mr. Rogers. It's been a good month.  We've both felt so good!  It's amazing how much we appreciate feeling normal...... after experiencing the predictable reoccurance of physical and mental grief caused aliments.

Genetic Testing: For Christmas Jeff and Shelby gave us each a 23 and me genetic testing kit.  What a cool gift!  We filled the vile with spit and sent it off.  A few weeks later the results were in.

Pretty cool to be married to a 99.6% Ashkenazi Jew!  When Damon got his results we were sitting in Church.  He winked at me and said, "Looks like the Star of David at the top of our Christmas tree is legit." :)

I enjoyed learning about Neanderthal Ancestry, Health Predispositions, and the "Asparagus Odor Detection"..... so funny.  If you even knew how bad I hate this smell!  What a great gift!

Basil Books: Last spring Damon wrote an accounting program to help us with our realestate business.  It pulls in transactions from our bank accounts and credit card purchases and then provides a way for easy tax catagorization. It's a beautiful program that has drastically cut down on time and frustrations.  

In November he launched it to LU members.  In January he taught his first class.  There were a record number of attendees!  Spencer, Taylor, and I were among the 200+.  He did such a great job!  It is so fun to watch his success ❤

PODIUM: In November LU approached Damon about building a platform for multifamily lead and passive investors.  It's a huge project.  Damon frequently says he has never built anything so complex.  

He took off running in November, limped along with grief in December, and then picked back up like a bullet train in January.  Lots of 4 am mornings, and 10+ hour days.  Programming, Drawing, Brainstorming, Collaborating.  I love, respect, and appreciate the creative process so much!  It is facinating to watch Damon create!

Sewing: I finally found my sewing groove mid way through 2019.   After our wonderful experience at ARV, I came up with an ambitious idea to make a quilt for all of the artists who are building our Malanah. There are 32 of them.

With my girls help..... this is totally possible.  Let's just say quilt production has amped up over here.  There seems to be a constant flow of packages between Missouri, Salt Lake, and St. George.  Sydney even made sure I had custom labels ❤❤❤

Skiing:  We continue to escape up to Brian Head about once a week for some "Slope Therapy."  It is peaceful, beyond beautiful, and always makes me so thankful to have Damon Janis in my life.

Teaching: I love teaching.  I always have.  But it requires a lot of preparation and creative thought to incubate a positive connective learning experience.  

After Brandon died...... I did not have the energy for extensive preparation or creative thought...... and I could have cared less about connecting with anyone.  

I haven't really taught "well" since he died, in fact, I finally walked away tired and frustrated in 2018.

A neighbor friend texted me this month and asked if she brought over some brand new young women.....Would I cook something with them?  ...... Well, I just had the best time!  

We made homemade pizza and learned all about dough!  They were mostly 11 -12 year olds.  One of the best ages to teach... in my opinion ;)

It was also fun to do this in front of Damon.  He's never seen this side of me in action.  He kept asking me all day..... "Can I do something to help you?"  He was so kind and took pictures and rotated their creations in the oven.  

After opting for a much needed retirement in 2018.....  I think I still have what it takes..... but I don't want to go back to public education;)  

Planting:  Some people would categorize gardening as torture, but I've always been a planter. Especially a bulb planter.  It's such a magical thing.... the promise of a bulb.  One of my favorite evidences of a Divine Creation. This year I planted several hundred.  I can hardly wait for their awakening!

Mr. Rogers:  Have you seen the movie "A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood?"

As children we both liked the pbs show "Mr. Rogers."  As an adult and a student of Human Development I admired Mr. Rogers all the more.  

We anticipated the movie launch and viewed it opening weekend in November.  The theater errupted in applause at the conclusion.  It was wonderful!

So, on the last day of January when we were driving by the discount theater and saw it on the marque, we asked Lizzie on a date and went back for a second time.  

I think if Mr. Rogers and Damon would have met in life, they would have been friends.  I see many commonalities...... No, Damon doesn't have any cool puppets ;), but they both have extra interesting perceptions with routines, numbers, words, feelings, and above all, Relationships.  "I'm invested in who you are and who you will be, and I just can't help it." ~ Fred Rogers.   "Relationships are the most important thing!" ~ Damon Janis