TNSM Staff tell about their summer of 2021

Ann Baumgardner

My father-in-law moved from Florida to Lebanon’s Otterbein Senior Living Community, so we’ve been busy helping him get settled. My husband, Erich, and I took a number of camping trips to Ohio and Indiana parks with my sister and her husband and visited with Mom in NE Ohio several times. We bought a 10-year-old, heavily adorned, teardrop camper this spring. My husband is 6′ 3″, so we had to make some adjustments to get him to fit by extending the foot of the sleeping cabin into the kitchen in the back. It’s a bit like a “clown car” watching us unfold ourselves from the teardrop each morning. However, it’s an improvement over the homemade camping contraption we used previously in our Honda Element.



Emily Broderick

My whole family planned a visit to Kiawah in South Carolina which is close to Charleston. We each stayed in different houses and went as an entire family to the beach. We could always find our group as we took up half the beach with our string of 10 umbrellas all in a cluster.

Lauren Burke

We have a lot of change that started this summer. First, I took a girls’ trip to Park City UtahUtah. My husband started a new job and we started renovating our house. At first we lived with our parents for a bit, and then we moved to our basement as we have gutted the first floor.

Rob Clark

Lydian and Katie visited Washington D.C., so my younger son Elliott and I had a bachelor week at home where we went to the arcade and had fun on our own.

Audrey Cobb

We chose our spare bedroom as our re-do project, and we learned how to strip woodwork…lots of it! Doors, windows, trim, baseboards and floors! (We left the floors to the experts!) We also had a beautiful time in North Carolina’s Outer Banks with the kids, their spouses, grandkids and in-laws. Very nice! Spent lots of time in the garden and outside and ended the summer vacay with a camping trip in beautiful Kentucky. Doesn’t get much better!! I am looking forward to getting back to school and seeing parents and students again.

Ceara Comstock

It was a joy to travel a bit this summer after being so close to home for so long. We went to D.C. to visit my step-daughter where she lives for college. We also went to Florida to visit my mother-in-law. The Summer Program at TNSM was fun, too! I always enjoy the more flexible schedule of summer to be outside, cook, exercise, read, garden, and visit with people!

Mandy Crouch

This summer, I took classes to become an Orton-Gillingham Master Teacher. This means that I have completed enough coursework and hours to help teachers and trainees implement OG lessons with fidelity. I am excited about this new opportunity, and I look forward to once again using the OG approach in the classroom. My family and I also managed to have some fun this summer by spending some time in Venice, Florida and Hocking Hills. As my kids will tell you, the most exciting thing we did this summer was finally ride Orion, the new giga coaster, at Kings Island. Orion has a 300 foot drop and reaches speeds of 91 mph making it a thrilling (and terrifying!) experience. Overall, it was a great summer!

Caroline Davis

Went to Hawaii for our 5-year anniversary. I also vacationed with my parents and did most of the driving while they caught up on their rest. We had a great time.

Liz Ellis

A few of my good friends are starting families, so I spent a large portion of my summer spoiling my friend’s kids with hand-knit gifts. Over the summer I’ve made blankets, mittens, and hats. The picture is a blanket I made for two of my friends from college. The whales were knitted with each parent’s favorite color with the baby being a mix between the two. Once I finish a pair of mittens, I’m excited to start working on a sweater for myself!





Jean Eschenbach

I say this every year, but the highlight of my summer was getting to enjoy a nice, long visit to my family’s vacation home on Fripp Island, South Carolina. My daughter Noa and I experienced our first tropical storm, chased ghost crabs by flashlight, visited a local stable for a trail ride on the beach, and took a bone-chilling walking tour of Savannah, Georgia’s haunted history. Unfortunately, we were unable to catch any ghosts, orbs, or apparitions on camera, but here we are making our scared-est faces. 🙂



Ximena Flores

I taught during our (3-6) Summer Program and had a great time. It was so rewarding to be with the children. I sold a number of glass mosaic projects and backsplashes. I completed an original mosaic piece for someone’s fireplace using tiles from Rookwood pottery. I also enjoyed spending time with my grandchildren.

Judy Geringer

I enjoyed seeing Antioch, a nature preserve in Yellow Springs.  My daughters, granddaughter, and I visited Charleston, SC, where we enjoyed Botany Bay and Folly Beach.

Jeff Groh

We visited with Rafaela’s family in Germany for a few weeks this summer, and we took a 9-hour drive from there to Italy to visit Raphaela’s brother.  All of us were stuffed into a sports car with our knees to our ears and with luggage all around. Although the drive was difficult, the trip was amazing. It was good to visit with our families this summer.

Robin Hartmann

I enjoyed spending time with our granddaughter this summer and worked a number of weeks leading various art camps. My big project of the summer was to break down a wall between 2 bedrooms, opening up a huge space as a work room for me in our home. I have so many supplies to organize yet, but I’m enjoying the sunshine in my new art room. I went with a friend to Detroit to visit the Jim Henson exhibit. I used to work for Jim, making muppets, and so I enjoyed revisiting that important work, seeing the muppets and reading about Jim and all that went into it.


Ryonen Ignatius

Our summer started with a much-needed family getaway to Colorado. We saw my sister-in-law and her family for the first time in nearly two years, which was a true joy. We hiked the stunning Maroon Bell mountains, whitewater rafted, which is way out of my comfort zone but super fun, and had a few Wiffle ball tournaments. The rest of our break was mostly relaxing, spending time at the pool, a few visits with friends, and gearing up for the new school year. My older son Brando is a senior in high school this year, and Jesse is really looking forward to 8th grade. They are both at Walnut Hills, so big brother will be driving them to school. Brent and I are trying to remain calm about this.

Robby Lewis

My family spent a month in a new sleeping cabin I made with my dad.  We stayed at camp and cooked over the fire. Our daughter got to see people in person and can now say hi Dad-da and hi kitty. The 4 of us (with the kitty) enjoyed our extended time together in Michigan.

Holly Lottman

I went to Hilton Head with my sister’s husband’s family, and I highly recommend a last minute beach vacation!  My husband had back surgery and had extended time off but is back to work now.

Lydia Neiheisel

We took a beach vacation but mostly hung out a lot this summer at the community pool and spent some time tidying up the house.

Emily Olexsey

We spent a large part of our summer playing outside, riding bikes and seeing friends and family. The kids attended a peace camp from 9-3, and I had my own peace camp during that time! We took a trip to Lake Huron in Michigan and spent time paddle boarding, looking for rocks and swimming and playing on the beach.

Catherine Pray-Bollmann

The first half of the summer, the Bollmann family spent a lot of time watching the 3 kids play tennis and swim for our swim club, Clinton Hills Swim Club. The kids loved being able to go to the club every day. During the second half of the summer, we spent a couple of weeks at our cabin In Cornucopia, Wisconsin on Lake Superior. As a special treat, to celebrate Eric’s and my 13th wedding anniversary, the family learned how to sail and had a blast sailing around some of the Apostle islands of Lake Superior. We also rented a cabin down at Red River Gorge where we did some hiking, horse back riding and underground kayaking!

Casey Rodriguez

This summer was more low-key than usual. My husband and I enjoy traveling outside the country, but with COVID felt limited to go too far. Instead, I worked soccer camps around the city and saved up for an overseas trip in the future. Near the end of the summer we took a mini vacation to Key Largo and did some snorkeling and kayaking. Rock climbing and checked out some cool places

Gina Sabato

We went to Hilton Head with my parents and brother and his girls and took a trip of our own to Michigan and Florida. We moved to Covington in the spring and worked over the summer to unpack every box.

Maureen Simon

We took a trip to the Rocky Mountains, and took college trips for son Henry who is a senior. We took our son Max to his sophomore year at Ohio State.

Laura Slanker
I spent my mom’s 89th birthday with her in Pittsburgh. It was great! I am terrible at sleeping in and wake up most days at 4:30 or 5:00. So I had a lot of early morning time to read, walk my dog and swim.

Amy Ramberg 

I finished all of my coursework this summer. Mika is getting acclimated at her new school and has been playing volleyball. This summer we went to NYC and went to museums and walked in the city. We also went to a yoga convention that we go to most years and really enjoyed it.

Sarah Strietmann

This summer I spent time with my family! After being socially distant from my parents this past school year, I spent my days hanging out with my Mom and Dad ( being tech support for all devices). We were able to escape to Northern Michigan and spent our days on the lake. In addition, I visited many farmers markets and picked all the seasonal fruit I could! The blueberries this summer were huge and delicious!

Phil Swenson

I took a monthlong road trip and eloped with my girlfriend in Vegas, and now we have a baby puppy!

Mykayla Wilkerson

I just graduated from UC this April and this was my most productive summer. I got back into reading and got my certification to teach children yoga.

Johnnyé White
My summer was busy. For a long time I have been involved in providing a place for people in need to get a meal and find what they need. I have a new place called the Oasis at Grace. It’s a coffee shop, thrift store, and much more. We replaced a boiler this summer and are looking forward to a good year.

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