S: An Ode to Alan and Rosemarie
BC: Dedicated to the man and woman who are truly my favorite people, to whom I was so lucky to have found my way. If I had the ability to special-order my own parents, I could not have chosen a more perfect fit. Thank you for being my friends and confidants as well as my parents; thank you for standing with me and supporting me through the good and the bad. I can only hope that I am able to return the favor. Here's to the closing of 2011, and the beginning of the milestone that is 2012, marking 45 years of marriage. I love you both very much! Beth
FC: An Ode to Alan and Rosemarie | Sentiments, well-wishes, and love from family and friends.
1: Although I may not call you Aunty Rosemarie and UncleAlan, that is how I see you. I am so pleased that Grandpa and Marie (your Mum) found each other and brought our two families together. I have wonderful memories of visits across the Ocean: staying in a cabin in the woods, watching films in the basement, chatting around the table as well as trips into theWindy City!! And also memories of your trip over to us, being a part of Caroline's special day and coming over to see us in Bath. Thank you for being you, you are both wonderful people whom I miss very much. Congratulations on your 45th wedding anniversary - what an amazing achievement. Lots of love , Jo Aldred xxx Oliver looks forward to meeting his Great Aunt and Uncle in the near future!
2: I knew the minute I met Beth that she and I would be best friends. What I didn't realize for a few weeks was that her parents would become second parents to me, and once my children were born, Rosemarie and Alan would be their surrogate grandparents. After meeting Rosemarie and Alan for the first time I remember thinking that they were so smart and energetic, but so warm and accepting at the same time! We've never had the opportunity to live in the same city as they did, but the times we've spent together have been some of my favorites - listening to Ro and Ken discussing politics, and savoring the moments that McKenna decided to charm "Grandpa Alan" by reading him stories. :-) We love you Rosemarie and Alan, and we can't wait to see you again! Love, The Reynolds Family
4: Of course I have many fond memories of Alan--we grew up together! Sunday night bar-b-ques (sloppy joes) in front of the tv in the "back room". Many holiday family dinners at your home or mine. Playing games in your bedroom. Visiting grandma on her front porch. You visiting me at Depauw and taking my wedding pictures. And more. But the nicest memory I have is the latest one, when my Alan and I had such a nice visit with you and Ro in your lovely Arizona home. So good to spend time as adults with my cuz and his very lovely wife. I wish you both many, many more happy anniversaries. Love, Katie Fox
5: They say a picture is worth a thousand words... Here are mine. ~Abby Kamelhair~
6: Mel and I were recalling when we first saw Alan and Rosemarie. We had lived in the house on West Lane only a short time when they started spending time at the vacant lot which was to become their new home. We would see this couple walking hand in hand with the lady in a long coat with a hood (couldn't see the pretty face that was hidden). Finally met them and decided they would be great neighbors and hopefully friends. Alan would ride his lawn mower during mosquito season and would attempt to "gas" the nasty little bugs while wearing some contraption on his head (a net perhaps) and Rosemarie would frequently check on him to determine if he had "gassed" himself.
7: We always envied the neat Thunderbird convertible auto and were sad to see it leave. I once left laundry hanging on the clothesline and we went for a "spin" in our little MG. While we were gone a rainstorm arose and upon returning home the laundry was gone. Thoughtful Alan had come next door, removed laundry, put on the back porch and left a note saying that I needed new underwear. Actually what he saw was not my undies but rather my cleaning rags!!! If I recall correctly they had a live-in chipmunk who watched Ro do her ironing. That challenged my sensitivities as I am not a rodent person and could not believe that elegant Rosemarie was not "freaked" out of her mind with that creature!! After living on West Lane a few years this lovely little person named Beth arrived and soon claimed the hearts of all around her. Her parents paid us the highest compliment when they allowed us to care for their most precious possession leaving her in our care for an hour or two at a time and for longer times while vacationing. Thank you - thank you - for sharing Beth with us. We feel blessed to have known Rosemarie and Alan for several years and look forward to us all "growing more mature - not OLD - but mature" and continuing to share parts of our lives. | Marilyn and Mel Franklin
8: Ode to Alan and Rosemarie: Part the XLVth | Christmas Tree. What characteristic thing or event pops into mind to recall and symbolize Alan and Rosemarie? – the Christmas tree in their living room, each year a perfect photocopy of itself from the year before, bearing lights of fine-tuned and specified lumens, each one located n microns from each of its neighbors, each one on the same wavelength. It was a marvel of replicated perfection – and, I suppose, still is, though I've not seen it in awhile (1)– undertaken and presented, as I know from the setting and the companionable gatherings there, not to display perfection, but to exercise attention: a Zen Tree, made not for show (or not solely for show), but (primarily) for the joy – better, the satisfaction – of making it so. So to the observer, perfect but approachable – a joy to behold, I thought and think, but more a joy to devise, like stained glass windows. As Zen as westerners can get. | (1)- should be “a while” – ed., see Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary (Springfield, MA). 1985. (2) - Based on a true experience
9: So that's Alan: capable with camera and computer and Christmas Tree. Also, he likes airplanes. And he's a darn good ophta... opta... eye-doctor. And they are steady friends, Alan and Rosemarie, bearers of care-ful light – shelters, we have found, for when we have to go there, or even when it's just a little more comfortable to go there. I find (this may seem remarkable) that my memories are all suffused with a sense of calm, a feeling and perception that not only is everything in place (within n microns), but everything is going to stay in place, or, if not, that's okay, too. My image of Rosemarie is Comfortable Hostess and stand-in sister; though less an Advice-Giver in that role than a Careful Observer from that vantage point. We have occasionally had lunch to Talk Things Over. She is not so much the One Who Frets that you might die from hiking, out-of-shape, in the Mountains of Western Illinois as she is the One Who Observes, fretfully, that somebody should be fretting about that (2). Perhaps the calm I associate with Rosemarie and Alan is that Alan is calm, and Rosemarie is calm about what is going on in my life, which is, of course, what I really care about anyway. Perhaps others have shared this feeling. Or maybe it's the steadiness of friendship that is source and substance of the aura of calm. I don't know if they are calm or not – they calm me. This may be related to their message – spoken and unspoken – that they wish me well, and they trust that what I'm doing is okay. That's a gift! I'm grateful for their friendship, their kindness, their hospitality, their many gifts. (Reader may insert examples here). Merry Christmas,and Happy Anniversary! Glenn Loafmann
10: As a late entrant into your long period of family friendship with the Loafmanns, I want to add my 2 worth to whatever Glenn writes for Beth's book, because I want to THANK YOU! for the grace with which you incorporated me into your longstanding relationship with Glenn. Most obviously that began with the six-years-ago Christmas when I came out to Barrington on December 25 and you invited us to your house for a holiday dinner. Your lively, warm hospitality then surely was a key ingredient in putting us comfortably on a track for our many further developments of two-couples friendship, including our stays at your house after Glenn moved to Oberlin and your welcome presence at our wedding. Oh yes, and your willingness to trust us with your snazzy convertible during visits to Tucson! | But there were other, behind-the-scenes ways you two endeared yourselves to me from early on. | Many merry Christmases and happy wedding anniversaries to you two! xox, Kathie
11: Alan, do you remember emailing to me in London in the fall of 2004 a very charming picture of Glenn with McKenna on his lap, taken at a Loafmann-Ruedi Thanksgiving get-together in Champaign-Urbana? I'd not even met you yet, so it came as a complete surprise. But I, missing Glenn and loving the photo, blessed you for your thoughtfulness in sending it. And Rosemarie, going back to an even earlier stage of things, do you remember Glenn's anxious consultations with you about what presents to send me by way of courtship before he'd really declared himself? From what he later told me, you guessed right about my bewildered, slightly creeped-out reaction. Next in that conversation, I eventually learned (you can imagine Glenn wouldn't easily fess up to this), you went on to give him the wisest, truest, most deeply affectionate advice any friend could have given him: “You are the present!” Can you imagine my delight in that splendid admonition to sweet-natured, self-effacing Glenn? I find I need to refresh his memory about it on occasions! It continues to fit him (surprise, surprise). It happens also nicely to fit the feelings that inspired your daughter to create this book for you, and your friends to welcome the chance to contribute to it.
12: Alan & Rosemarie Ruedi came to us as real estate clients when they came to Tucson to buy a house a few years ago and soon became very good friends. They have had us to Christmas dinner, hosted us when we came to visit after selling our home and buying a boat, stored a major part of our library for us, and been extremely supportive of my novel writing efforts. We always enjoy Rosemarie's enthusiasm, wit, and charm and Alan's twinkly humor and wise observations. How fortunate we are to have them in our lives. We love you, Alan and Rosemarie! Ann & Jim Henry | My first memory of hanging out with Rosemarie was back when we were both smokers. Remember we would hang out together in the woods while camping out with Beth and Brooke's, Girl Scout troop. (We were always the ones to start the campfire as we had the matches.) We were bad examples I'm sure. Many good times with you both in your home in Long Grove, and great visits to the lovely place out in Galena. Friday nights at the Village Tavern with the girls all running around dancing and singing! How many Cinco de Mayo dinners did we have together!!! A fun trip to St. Louis for the 4th of July one year, and then, as time has its way, we also have gotten to have some great visits in Arizona. So many wonderful times together and we look forward to many more. Sarah and Jim Yerkes
13: With Best Wishes and Much Love. Suzie Frasier | "I Remember . . . ." . . . watching my cousin Rosemarie get ready for a date in her bedroom (probably with my mouth wide open in awe), thinking she was the coolest teenager I had ever seen. . . . meeting Alan for the first time and thinking that Rosemarie had truly met a prince charming. . . seeing the miniseries "Rich Man, Poor Man" on television in 1975 and thinking that Alan was the spitting image of Peter Strauss (which he is) . . . asking Rosemarie and Alan if they would adopt me -- that was after I had visited their home in Long Grove, Illinois. Somehow, I just didn't want to leave! . . . their hospitality last December, knowing that I couldn't have asked for any lovlier relatives.
14: Although I remember getting together for Thanksgiving and X-mas on Lawndale Ave as a child (which in and of itself are WONDERFUL memories) - most of my memories of Alan and Ro come from my visits with them at their home in IL. I was fortunate enough to have a best friend that lived down the road from them (which ironically enough they meet all on their own at the pool - what are the chances of that?!?) which made it much easier to pop in now and then for a visit. I truly enjoyed getting to spend time with them as an adult and getting to know them better. They are both so gracious and loving and interesting! Great conversations - which I love :) Clearly a major factor in celebrating 45 years together - WOW! What an honor and example for all of us. I wish you much love and happiness for the next 45. Much love, Carolyn DeLuca and family
15: Thank you Rosemarie and Alan for being there as Beth and Lesley made their way through those years of elementary school and junior high. Rosemarie, thank you for your sense of humor so we could all laugh; especially during Brownies and Girl Scouts...need I say more? Alan, thank you for driving the girls EVERY morning to junior high in Arlington Heights after Lesley's foot surgery. (Brad thanks you too so I could wait with him for the bus!) It seems like yesterday as one doesn't forget those special moments, days, and years in our past. Thank you for being there! Pam Metcalf
16: I can honestly say that I knew Rosemarie before the rest of you! She was five years old when I was born. One good thing about that is that she insisted that I be named Roxanne. As the story goes, my parents wanted to name me Constance Earline Rhodes after my Dad's sisters. Ro wanted to know why they would do that to a tiny baby! She suggested they name me Roxanne, after a friend from kindergarten. Luckily, they agreed. Now I have always loved my Aunts, but somehow their names, put together, just didn't sound right. I don't think I look like a Connie....or an Earline. So, I thank my wonderful sister for saving me from this! We were fortunate to grow up in a neat family house in Winnetka, Il. There were three generations of us living there, including our Gram V. The house would grow to accommodate various other relatives, too. We had wonderful childhoods and great memories. Winnetka was a wonderful place to grow up. I enjoyed visiting Ro and Alan on the campus of Indiana University in Bloomington. I would go along every fall to take her back to school. They needed my help to unload the many, many boxes from the car and haul them to her dorm room. This would be repeated in the Spring, only in reverse. But, I loved being the little sister, visiting the dorm. The family would attend Parent's weekends, etc., too. And, we enjoyed driving to Nashville, In, to Brown County. The Nashville House had the best fried chicken and biscuits!
17: One time, my parents allowed me to venture forth on my own to take the Monoon Railroad to Bloomington. I went with a friend of mine who had relatives near there. Peg Cornell and I also made a couple of trips to IU when Ro had her apartment off campus. We would fly down for the weekend. It was a wonderful campus and we always had a fun time. Since Beth is an only child, Ro and Alan felt it would be more fun for her, if she had someone to share vacations with. My younger son, Jeff, is only four months younger than Beth, so he was the perfect choice. He went on many trips with them. The most remembered: spending his 9th birthday at Disney World with them. How lucky is that? They also had the fishing trip at the cabin in Minocqua and the trip to the lodge in Oconomowoc. They grew up more like brother and sister than cousins. Jeff was very lucky to be was included in these adventures. I want to wish my sister and brother-in-law a wonderful 45th Anniversary!! Love,Roxy
18: Both of them are wonderful people and I have been very blessed to know them over these many, many years. Alan has kept my eyeballs in good order so that I can see the world. Rosemarie has kept me laughing. I truly believe she would be even better writer than Janet Evanovich if Ro sat down and wrote a book. There are not enough words in good old Webster’s dictionary to describe the goodness in Alan and Ro. I am just happy I got to know Ro in our first year at New Trier! It has been grand and fun for me and will continue to be so. Peg Cornell
19: Dear Ro and Alan, Three qualities that you have to overflowing. Just three. I made myself choose only three to focus and condense and remember. These belong to you now and have all along the way: loving kindness, good humor, and just plain fun. One story occurs to me tonight and it goes well with those qualities. I had brought both both little girls to see the folks at Spruce Street and we were going to stay with you in Long Grove. We left later than was good, I took a wrong turn, and wound up in the fog in the dark in a grocery store parking lot in an off-planet place called Lincolnshire. "How nice for you," said Alan when we called from a pay phone. (Good thing I had a quarter--that's how long ago this was.) Alan gave me careful and easy-to-follow directions and soon we were in your cozy kitchen, fed, warmed up and laughing. Thank you for being great people. Much love from Karen Johnson. Norm sends all best wishes too. | Dear Alan and Rosemarie, Thank you for all the beautiful Christmas parties and birthday parties and lunches and transportation so we wouldn't miss the fun. Thank you for all the eye care. Thank you for transport to all those doctor visits, both strange and routine. Most of all, thank you both for making us part of your family and redeeming years that otherwise would have been much less fun and much more difficult. Love, Alice and John and Suzi
20: My fondest memory of Alan and Rosemarie is the wonderful, comforting escape they provided for me multiple times by inviting me to stay at their Barrington Bed and Breakfast. The amenities included a very comfy bed, great breakfasts, listening, counseling, lively conversation designed to make me laugh, and often a dinner out. During stressful times in my life, I was rejuvenated and ready to tackle life once again after a brief stay with Rosemarie and Alan. With love, Carolyn Murphy
21: Alan & I always comment on our age- like we know we have been there too long when we can't pass each other in the hall with our walkers. Patients sometimes make the comment that they think we are married to each other because we finish each others' sentences and kid each other. His comment is always "GOD NO" and he makes a face. I have worked with Alan for almost 20 years and I have only seen him really mad once or twice - thank goodness it was with the bank and not me. I will be in the same boat as everyone else when he retires - I have been a patient for almost 40 years. I hope he can retire SOON because I want to retire too! Sue Krempel
22: In our lifetime, we develop relationships in so many different ways. Some of these relationships last a short time and then disappear for various reasons. Others last a lifetime which is invaluable in our lives and which we prize so highly. How these valuable friendships develop are sometimes unusual and makes you ask how something so valuable can be so happenstance! To Catherine and I, our relationship with Ro and Alan falls in this strange "happenstance" category. We feel blessed that this took place and look forward to a lifetime relationship. Here is how it developed: Optometrist Visits: Catherine visited her favorite eye Doctor by the name of Alan Ruedi for over 20 years!! I followed later on and the patient/Doctor relationship developed. | Rosemarie and Alan: A Cherished Relationship
23: Real Estate Activities Catherine's 25 years with Baird and Warner came to the forefront as Real Estate needs surfaced with Ro and Alan. Introduction to Saddlebrooke From Ro and Alan's many trips to Paradise in Arizona, we became acquainted with this wonderful vacation spot culminating in our spending three outstanding visits there. To both of you, we are indeed thankful for showing us the way and appreciate your kindness. Ongoing Activities Dinners at Lindy's and other favorite restaurants; Alan's dinner visits to "Our Place" while Ro is in Arizona is always special and great fun.This granted us the luxury of enjoying the luxury of Catherine's excellent cooking! (This comment guarantees me ongoing great meals!) SO MAY OUR RELATIONSHIP CONTINUE TO GROW AND EXPAND! Catherine and Gerry
24: When Bob and I moved to Palatine, I needed an eye doctor and didn't know anyone. A neighbor had taken her daughter to Dr. Nason in Lake Zurich. I made an appointment with her and within a short time she told me she was moving and had sold her practice to a young doctor-- Alan. She also told me that he was very nice and she was sure I would like him. She was certainly right about that and I became his patient for many years. I saw Beth's picture in his exam room every time I visited. It was changed often, so I watched her grow over the years. Much later they bought a travel agency in Long Grove. Since I had been a travel agent for a while I had the pleasure of working with them. That was when I met Rosemarie, who I am very happy to have as a friend.
25: We began to socialize after that. Beth came with them to see our over-decorated Christmas house every year and as I write this we're looking forward to her visit this year. Since Rosemarie and Alan decided to move to Tucson I'm happy to say we are now neighbors in our wonderful SaddleBrooke community. Our wish for them now is to sell the Barrington house and become permanent Tucson residents. That will be a very happy day for them and just as much for us. They are the most wonderful friends to have! Bob and Jackie Drake