Retirement Reflections (in reverse chronological order)

Most recent dates are here at the top.

Getting Ready for Big Trip

We basically had 2 weeks from the ICTM Conference to departing for Washington, DC. I fixed the chess board in the backyard. Long overdue. Eric and I made it (for 4H) many years ago. Planted some grass. Dug out the good compost and transferred the clippings to the south side of the compost bin. Preached Oct. 22.

Started Math Olympiad at MMS

On Oct. 16, 2023 we began Math Olympiad at Macomb Middle School. It is going very well. We have 2 teachers, myself, and a physics professor on the coaching team.

Family Gathering in Des Moines/Clive

We had a fun weekend in Des Moines/Clive. Got to Rachel’s for lunch Friday. We stayed 2 nights at Jordan and Eric’s and had lots of time to play with the three grandchildren. Diane, Luke, and Nora came down from MN (and stayed at Rachel’s). Saturday morning went to the (Big) Famer’s market.

ICTM Conference Oct. 14

Attended ICTM in Naperville, IL. First ICTM Conference attended since the pandemic. Presented with Cailey Platt on Hands-on Division with Fractions for Student Understanding. Excellent conference.


I continue to enjoy preaching once a month at Point Pleasant and New Philadelphia UMCs. On Sept. 17 I was asked to preach at Hamilton and Warsaw UMCs.

To Okoboji for the closing +


Walk to Emmaus August 24–27, 2023

Only about a week before the event, Ronald Pettigrew called and asked if I wanted to go on a Walk to Emmaus. I wanted to go on a Walk for many years, had heard credit bit about it, but never been able to fit it in before. Through God’s providence, the dates worked out. I had a great 72-hour experience and I feel it helped me grow in my Christian pilgrimage. I would consider my first walk to Emmaus as a Highwater mark in my retirement. I’m fortunate it occurred in the first eight weeks.

Preach August 20

I’ve been preaching regularly (about once a month) since March 2021. It was high time that I preached a full sermon on sin. Luckily, I had made up my mind to do this many weeks in advance, and I had lots of good material.

Preach at Wesley August 13

My sermon title for my Wesley church sermon, August 13, was What can we learn from Rodney Fink? In preparation, I met with Jim and Marti Dallmeyer. We also had Bertha Fink over for dinner on August 8. It was great, Bertha opened up, and I got a lot of good ideas for my sermon. After the services on the 13th we went out for a nice dinner with Bertha, her daughter, and Pastor Melly.

To NE July 31 – Aug. 7

Visited all the Owens in NE. Played with Tate, Sophie, and Wesley. Fun time cutting down a dead tree. Dilsaver reunion as usual. On the way home we met friends, Bill and Jane Brown for lunch in Grand Island.

To Okoboji July 21-30

We had a great week with the kids and grandchildren at Lake Okoboji.

To Pittsburgh 15-18

We flew to PA to play in Table Tennis National Senior Games. I made a quick exit from the tournament, but had fun. We then enjoyed site-seeing in Pittsburgh.

July 9-14 Mission Trip

Mission trip to the Twigs Community Complex in Granite Coty, IL was great. As usual, the mission trip is a highlight of the summer and the year.

July 1-8

Retirement officially started July 1, 2023. I am very appreciative of my wife, Marilyn, so I made 5 thank you notes to give on 5 consecutive days to her.

On Friday, June 30, I went to the Singh’s house for a nice dinner, visit, and to teach them how to play Cribbage.

On Sat., July 1, I went to Bushnell for the VFW Pancake Breakfast, with Ron Pettigrew. I met some friends and former students there.

I preached July 2.

Marilyn came home on July 3. It was fun to have Hayden, Lindsay, and Kate over for the fireworks.

June 2023

I still had assistant chair duties in June and I was training my replacement, Dr. Doug Lafountain. On June 29, I had a meeting with Doug and I was moving my office. I still have an office up on third floor of Morgan so that I can keep my books. On June 29 we had the derecho. Luckily, we had no damage and our power was out only for about 7 hours. Marilyn wasn’t home and it was crazy in Macomb with lots of power outages, many of the street lights not working, and downed trees.

My last semester at Western

Spring 2023 ended up being a great final semester for me. I got a chance to teach a mask teaching methods course (middle school methods, in fact). I got a chance to have Jordan Rouse as a student for the third time. I also got to teach Geometry, Math 310, for a second time. Both classes were very good.

Furthermore, I got a chance to do an undergraduate research project with two wonderful students.

After not having our math teachers conference for three years, we re-instituted the conference in April of 2023. I got a chance to be the closing speaker. He was extra special for me since my kids came and surprised me at the presentation.

My retirement date gets set early

In the summer of 2020 (#Pandemic) our department chair, Victoria Baramidze, asked me to be the assistant chair. I agreed. It is a three-year term and I knew I would only do one term. Up until that point, I had been dragging my feet about retirement. I really like teaching and didn’t know when I would retire. my term as assistant chair would end June 30, 2023, and I determine and decided that would be my retirement date. It was a blessing because I had made up my mind and had lots of time to prepare for retirement.

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