I’m not thinking of this as goodbye, just as a change of venue. Still, it’s a strange feeling to be writing my final column for the Chanhassen Villager. This weekend is when my husband and I pack up for good and leave for our new home in Georgia. I plan to continue writing even after we move, I’m just not sure what that’s going to look or feel like in the days and weeks to come.

It’s been exactly 16 years since my first Villager column appeared, on March 1, 2001. When I think of all that’s happened in the world and in myself since then, a mixture of feelings bubbles up to the surface. One of the main ones, of course, is gratitude.

I am grateful to the Chanhassen Villager for allowing me to share my thoughts and discoveries each week, as well as the lessons I learned from them. I’m grateful to everyone who was a regular or occasional reader of my column, especially those who took the time every so often to let me know when something in particular touched them or had a special meaning for them in some way. And I’m grateful for how my eyes have been opened to the treasures that really are all around us every day. Robert Frost once said, “No surprise for the writer, no surprise for the reader,” and I know that to be true. For me, writing my column wasn’t as much a matter of sharing what I already knew, but discovering things I didn’t know, and sharing those discoveries with you.

I’m guessing that – for a while, anyway – I’ll suffer from “withdrawal symptoms” on the day I usually write my column. I can imagine myself pacing around the house with that nagging feeling that there’s something I’m supposed to be doing, but I can’t quite figure out what it is.

Since we’ll be driving to our new home, and making several stops along the way, it’s going to take a while for us to get there and get settled in. Once we do, we’ll gradually establish new routines. Writing will certainly remain an important one of mine, whether it ends up being for publication, for relaxation, or simply for exploring and processing our new life and everything that’s going on around us. Please email me at betty@findyourburiedtreasure.com if you’d like to hear from me with any new writing that I do.

As we prepare to leave, I’ve had the honor and pleasure of hearing from many people who have said that my column has been an uplifting and inspiring part of their lives. At my book launch and bon voyage open house last week, I had the joy of spending time with family, friends, neighbors, and others who have been a part of my life during our time here in Chanhassen. I know I’m going to miss that – and them – very much.

No matter what the future holds for any of us, I hope you’ll always look for – and find – the treasures that are all around us in our everyday lives. Thank you for being a part of mine.

The column “Find Your Buried Treasure” appears weekly in the Chanhassen (MN) Villager. This column was published on March 2, 2017.
©Betty Liedtke, 2017

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