Exploring Ukraine

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Ukraine? In winter? I think I spent two months explaining to everyone who heard about it just why I was going to Ukraine on vacation over the holidays. But I had a good reason. My wife Kathleen is stationed there as a Peace Corps Response Volunteer. Peace Corps Response recruits experienced professionals with specific technical skills to provide short term (6mos – 1 year) support to a community in need. Kathleen left for Ukraine in early September last year and is completing a nine month project at the Ternopil Regional Center on Education and Rehabilitation, a school for children with disabilities.

Congress is on recess, and so are we!

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It’s been quite a long summer, but we’ve survived and Kathleen has returned home from her long sojourn in Detroit. We decided a short break was in order before the fall semester starts, so we booked a last-minute deal to Washington, DC. Kathleen did her master’s degree at Gallaudet in DC, and I’ve worked there a lot, but we’d never been there together, so this trip was a good chance to share stories and favorite places.

Spring Getaway

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This past weekend Kathleen and I headed up to Duluth, MN for a weekend getaway. It was a pretty low-key weekend, we just hung out in Duluth’s Canal Park neighborhood, wandered around a bit, caught an IMAX movie, ate out, walked along the lake. Check out some pics from the weekend. Click here for slideshow ![](http://img.zemanta.com/pixy.gif?x-id=63ea4e01-3cbc-8683-abff-dab609fcdca2)

Malta, baby!

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Well I guess I can admit it publicly - I celebrated my 40th birthday recently. Since this is supposed to be one of life’s big milestones (hasn’t felt like it!), we decided to celebrate in grand style. Kathleen planned a long-weekend trip to Malta for us. Kathleen had brought a group of students to Malta a couple of years ago, so had a good idea of where to go and what to see.

Thanksgiving in a Scottish Palace!

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Our good friend Kat Lui is spending the fall semester teaching at the Wisconsin in Scotland program in Dalkeith, Scotland. This gave us the perfect chance to not only spend a second Thanksgiving in a row with Kat, but also to spend a few days and have Thanskgiving dinner in a palace. We flew from Dublin to Edinburgh on Wednesday evening, arriving to a rainy Edinburgh. We caught the airport bus to downtown Edinburgh, and my first glimpse of rainy Edinburgh was picture-perfect.

Dublin Festival of Lights 2007

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Click here for slideshow

Floating Free in Space

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Check out NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day web site for a very cool photo of an astronaut floating free in his manned-maneuvering unit (jetpack). He’s a long way from home!

Head 'Em Up, Move 'Em Out!

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After nearly a year driving on Ireland’s roads, we’ve learned that you have to pay close attention all the time because you never know what you might see. It’s not at all unusual to see herds of various types of animals being herded down the middle of the road between fields. So, you plan extra time for any trip, and stop and wait when you have to. This past weekend Kathleen had a meeting in Portlaoise, so early Saturday morning we headed up the road.

Salvation's Just a Ferris Wheel Ride Away

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![Salvation's Just a Ferris Wheel Ride Away](http://www.dennisdeery.com/images/salvation.jpg) Tramore Beach - 9:45PM

Cobh and Fota Wildlife Park

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This past weekend we made a visit to County Cork to check out the little village of Cobh. Kathleen has a group of students visiting, so her helper on the trip, Dana, joined us for the day. We had been to Cobh for a brief visit shortly after we moved here, but decided it was worth checking out again. We’re glad we did, as we found much more to see on this visit than the last one.