A Big Send Off and Reconnections

We said goodbye to Wilson last Saturday with an early morning drop off at the SB airport.  It took him three flights and a full day of travel to get to Ft. Knox, KY for cadet training that he texted is “real boot camp-style stuff”.  He arrived on base at 9pm, had a 3 hour in-take process, got to bed at midnight and was up to report for duty at 3:30am!!  He said he was happy to get any sleep at all as some of the cadets arrived on base at midnight and didn’t get to the barracks before it was time to report for the day.  He was allowed to call home on Father’s Day and we’ve received only a couple of texts but he sounds good and upbeat…ending each communication with “don’t worry about me”!  Ha Ha  I guess I’m not doing a very good job of hiding my concern for him but I am so proud of his attitude and his willingness to be challenged in this way.

All packed and ready to go to KY!
5am airport selfie!

The Sherpa fire continued to rage all weekend but the strong winds cooperated by blowing away from the populated areas of Goleta.  Rolf and Rudy took some time to watch the helicopter water drop refills happening near our home all day on Saturday.  We are grateful for the fire’s containment and the BEAST firefighters who worked it in record heat this past week!!

A smokey sunset in Goleta!
Blood Sun
Rudy cheering on the firefighters!

We definitely felt Wilson’s absence on Sunday as we celebrated the big guy on Father’s Day.  Olivia and Max knocked it out of the park on Rolf’s traditional Father’s Day Tshirt and we had a nice celebration at church.  Although I love special days on the calendar set aside for celebrating, I don’t need Father’s Day to encourage me to appreciate Rolf as a dad more than I already do on a daily basis.  His commitment to his kids is evident in the many ways he chooses to connect with them and the countless ways he serves and provides for them.  He communicates his love directly and indirectly and demonstrates doing life with faith, humor and mad building skills!  🙂  GRATEFUL!!!

Happy Father’s Day!


Rudy started summer school bright and early on Monday.  He had a great first week getting to know a new teacher and reconnecting with a big group of special ed friends he knows from the different classes he has been in over the years.  Nurse Jessica is filling in for Nurse Sara this summer and Rudy’s transition has been seamless.

Summer school pick up with Nurse Jessica.
Bye, Bye Rudy!

Speaking of reconnections, this has been a fun week of reconnecting with dear friends for our family as well!  I find that life often happens in extremes…in a week where my heart has been deeply burdened and entrenched with thoughts of Rudy’s situation and Wilson’s journey, I’ve also experienced the great joy of being with friends who love our family dearly and are BIG Rudy fans…good for the soul and good for putting Rudy’s amazing progress over the years in perspective.

Our time with the Peters Family on their way through town was much too short but packed with encouragement nonetheless! Welcome back to the West dear friends!!
Rudy’s adopted family from Ghana made a stop in Goleta to visit us while on a big US tour. Fred and Evelyn are friends from Rolf’s Fuller days and we’ve enjoyed a friendship across many miles over the years. What a joy it was to watch our kids meet for the first time and YOU KNOW Rudy loved all the extra attention. Rudy’s Ghanian name is “Kweku” (which means male baby born on a Wednesday). After a little African lesson, we decided to add to it…”Nanakweku” which means little prince born on a Wednesday. He sure felt like a prince this week with all the extra love from the Dimados. 😉


We are still waiting on Rudy’s cath date…’hope to get it confirmed SOON so I can piece together other summer plans before the summer gets away from us.  I’m starting to get a little nervous and need to balance what I WANT to get done with what NEEDS to get done. ‘Praying for peace today.   Peace to you and yours dear friends!!!!

One thought on “A Big Send Off and Reconnections

  1. You are on a roll!! Summer is here! I pray that your summer will be productive, but more than that, that it would be RICH. Love you! Hugs to Rudy-kins!

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