Craft Brewers Conference News

by Renee on January 12, 2021

Brewers AssociationNews from the Brewers Association out of Colorado: the 2021 Craft Brewers Conference has been rescheduled for for Denver for September 9-12th. I’m hoping that we have had a significant improvement in COVID-19 vaccine rollout and coverage by then, I’d love to attend. I’ve been to several CBCs, and the Great American Beer Festival in Denver (celebrating its 40th year–I’m awaiting dates), and it’s always a great trip. Denver is a great beer town, and the Rocky Mountains are always a favorite travel destination. Cheers to future travel!




2021: Something to Celebrate Ahead

by Renee on December 31, 2020

2021As we say “see ya!” to 2020, there is hope ahead for 2021. The change of the calendar will be like a coat of fresh snow–blowing in to cover up all the muddy ugliness underneath. (Snow is pretty, I’ll take its cosmetic beauty.) But don’t let magical thinking have you believe at the stroke of midnight, everything we’ve had to endure in this crazy COVID year will disappear: it’s a long road ahead until everyone who needs it has the vaccine, and we achieve herd immunity. And of course, our economy has a long way to go to recover.

But like always, I’m going to be optimistic, and look forward to the day we can celebrate Ali and Josephtogether again, whether it’s a birthday, or a new job, or an engagement. And speaking of, my daughter is now engaged to her longtime love, and we have a wedding to plan! So I’m going to end this year on that happy note.

Wishing you and yours a VERY HAPPY new year, in all the ways that matter most. Cheers~


Grateful in 2020: All the Little Things

by Renee on November 26, 2020

This Thanksgiving I’m grateful for all the little things that have carried me through 2020.

Let’s be clear: it has been a shitty year. I’ve spent most of 2020 unemployed. I’ve been apart from my children, Mom, extended family and friends more often than not. I’ve spent the past couple of weeks quarantined because I’ve tested positive for COVID-19. (I’ve had mostly mild symptoms, thank goodness. And I can’t thank our teachers and healthcare workers and other front line employees enough for the sacrifices they’ve made along the way during this crisis.)

It’s true, I’ve spent some days in bed, sad and lonely —well, as much as I could with a dog who needed to go out. Porter was my lifeline.

But I have to confess: it was a beautiful summer and fall to be off. I spent a lot of time in the Metroparks with my pup—we had some great hikes. Some of you came along with us! And that was wonderful.

I’ve done some writing. I’ve made some new friends. I’ve strengthened ties with longtime friends. I’ve had Zoom happy hours, calls with Jack, and a daily email correspondence with my Aunt Cathy. I’ve watched some Browns games with my cousin Anna.

There were some lovely evenings at restaurant patios around town, even my own patio and porch! I squeezed in a few pool days as a guest at Tall Pines, had a few nights of grilling and bonfires here at home, even a couple of road trips—time with family and friends at safe social distances when we got to pretend things were somewhat normal. Those brief respites were a relief, and saved my mental health. Truly, that is no exaggeration.

We made it through another presidential election and I’m heartened by the change ahead—looking at political appointees who better reflect our diverse nation, and policies that care for the least advantaged among us. Yes, some ties were weakened and even lost along the way, but as I get older I have a lower tolerance for BS in every area, and that is a good thing. With age comes wisdom, and since other things fall away, I’ll take it.

Yes, I’m sad I won’t see my Mom and kids this week, this Thanksgiving—and of course I’m always mindful of those who can’t join us by FaceTime or Zoom because they’re forever missing from our table—but how lucky am I that I have you, dear Reader? Look ahead. There will be concerts and parties and celebrations. Have some turkey and stuffing, a piece of pie, or even a hamburger if you choose—and raise a glass. Take care of yourself and those you love. We will be together again for some big things. I’m here for it.


Farewells, and the Road to Freedom

November 5, 2020

October got away from me without a blog post– it was a beautiful month as far as fall weather goes. But it was an emotionally tough one– somehow the fifth anniversary of my husband Paul’s passing was upon us–I get swept up so easily in those memories–and we finally gave my sister Diana her proper […]

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