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December 2016

Dear Family and Friends,

It is December and time to once again play the game of keep track of the Rosenbloom-Bennett-Lancaster gang.  Last year we left you in “suspense” about Leslie’s plans.  After lengthy consideration and much agonizing, she opted to decline the position she had been offered at Iowa State and remain at the University of Kansas.  It was not an easy choice, but the Theatre Department resources, facilities and people at ISU were just not comparable to those at Kansas; and because of other changes in the department, Leslie got the opportunity last year to take on a much bigger role in the musical theatre program.  As they say on Facebook “It’s complicated,” but we have been finding ways to make it work.  I’ve been coming back to Lawrence most weekends, and we’ve found this arrangement workable, although the transitions can sometimes be challenging. While this arrangement is at times personally stressful it has professionally rewarding for both of us.

As always we are in awe of our children, who continue to do amazing things and make it look easy (at least they rarely complain to us about the challenges they are confronting).  After graduating from KU in May, Lily moved, with her boyfriend, Clark, to Minneapolis this Fall.  They found a lovely apartment in short order and seem to have settled in comfortably.  Both have found employment and are making strides in pursuit of their artistic careers.   Meanwhile, Nathan has relocated (again), moving with his girlfriend, Savannah, to Bloomington, IN, where she is starting a Ph.D. program in Philosophy at Indiana University.  Nathan quickly found employment there doing contract programming work, and appears to be happy with what he is doing, though he does seem to miss the camaraderie of his last job.  Benjamin is still in Portland, ME, but left Baxter School. After navigating the bureaucratic maze of requirements he has gotten himself on the substitute teacher list in Portland.  Since doing so he has been working more or less steadily in different classrooms.  Meanwhile he completed the coursework he needs to be certified to teach, and is hoping to find a regular teaching job.  Timothy is getting close to the end of his studies at Northeastern; he just finished his third internship—this one with iRobot—and will return for one more semester of classes before graduating in May.

This last year has featured a number of other highlights.   Last Spring Leslie and Lily thrilled us with their performances in “Little Women.”  In May, we celebrated Lily’s graduation from KU.  (After 27 years in Lawrence, it was the first time I had attended the main KU Commencement ceremonies.)  We spent close to a full month on Cape Cod, visiting with family and adjusting to having taken over sole ownership of the property there that had previously been shared with my siblings.  In September, I traveled to Chengdu, China for five days to give a lecture and participate in a seminar at the University of Electronic Science and Technology of China.   While I was there I had the chance to visit a Panda research center as well as to see many other sites. 

As in the past, I am including a link to a gallery of photos from the last year.  I will not take this opportunity to editorialize on the state of the nation or the world, but will simply say that while we despair at the state of affairs in both, we take joy in your love and friendship, and send our best wishes for this season and the coming year in hopes that things get better rather than worse.

Joshua & Leslie