Few events in our lives are really final, but the last day, the last hour, the last minute of a year we have just lived is one of those events that have a finite end. Year ends are fraught with memories, some sad, some happy, some neutral, but a juxtaposition of life's moments that will always remain with us. Feeling sorry for ourselves becomes all too easy, and guilty feelings over things we should have done, fences we should have mended, goals we should have achieved, help we should have given, or weaknesses we should have overcome are all too often the heavy loads we carry from the last day of the Old Year to the first day of the New Year. Yet, we should all take some comfort in feeling that, for so much of the year just passed, we did the best we could with what we had. We let some things slide, some problems left unresolved, that we did not know how to handle no matter how long or how much we felt weighed down with them. And still, we made it through the year.
We made it through 365 days of house cleaning, dishwashing, meal preparation, trips to Costco and the grocery store, trips to a dozen medical specialists, daily trips to the mailbox. We survived Downton Abbey and Lark Rise to Candleford and Foyle's War and a dozen other television dramas. We endured football and basketball games when our teams won and lost. We welcomed friends who phoned regularly and who came by with plates of cookies and a moment of cheer. We were happy to see men and women from our church who knew we were having difficulty attending meetings. My sisters and brother kept in close touch and Velna's sisters came regularly while we were in Salt Lake. I took several thousand more photos and posted hundreds of them on this blog. I began reading books again, and read several dozen during the year. My wife worked on crosswords, needlepoint, put puzzles together, and read countless books. I converted her from paper books to a Kindle Paperwhite and haven't been able to separate her from it since. We suffered through heat in Salt Lake and an unprecedented snowstorm in St. George.
But on this, the last day of 2013, we give thanks. My wife and I give thanks for each other and for the fact that we are still here to take care of each other. We give thanks to our family, our children, our grandchildren, and our great grandchildren. We are grateful for friends who have not forgotten us and who express their love and concern for us. We are thankful that we were able to celebrate our 61st wedding anniversary two weeks ago. We are thankful for help freely offered and given. We may not think we accomplished much in 2013, but we rejoice in the fact that we made it through the year. And now we have another year to live. We welcome 2014 and wish you all a Happy New Year.