I turned 39 on the day I flew to Denver and reunited with my dog, Maggie, and my amazing friends, Katie and Darryl (thank you, thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for keeping her so well!!). And I got back together with my car, too, which Darryl had checked over and got the battery going again. My friends Jason and Laural gave me their frequent flyer miles, which is how I got to go to the funeral and then flew to Denver. Thank you! And thank you, Jared Belcher, for the buddy pass!

I feel so lazy! I haven't been walking and I've eaten all sorts of holiday food. There are several inches of snow on the ground and it's still snowing. I got sick the day after I arrived in Denver and then I lost my voice. I'm getting my voice back today, finally, and feeling much better, though still coughing and congested. I have struggled to finish my blog, perhaps not wanting my hike to be over for real. Also, not wanting to write about the funeral and all the sad, emotional stuff.

I made it back to my family for Christmas with no voice. I was overwhelmed with people and emotions and stuff. I'm not sure I'm handling this well. I spent the last few days recovering and relaxing. I couldn't afford to buy Christmas gifts for anybody, but I got some cash gifts that will pay gas money...thank you! I'm deciding what to do with my life and my future. Where to live? What kind of job? Career? I can't wait to see my hometown friends and my cats!