09 August 2013


Due to a very busy travel schedule this past week, I've found myself far from the comfort of the sofa here in the Den, unable to put (virtual) pen to paper. Thanks to a respite in that schedule, I've got a few moments now.

While the details of the long trip are mostly work-related and not particularly inspiring, I did want to share the highlight of the beginning of the trip. Before starting a week of conferences on the West Coast, I was able to join the stunningly patient and mighty fine SML, CAL, and The Boy at the Awesomes in their new home, nestled comfortably in the confines of the Zion Curtain. It was a wonderful opportunity to see the Baby Awesome:
Benson with his Dad
We joined the Awesomes as well as other family to celebrate a milestone in young Benson's life - his blessing. Benson was taken before his Church family by his father and given a name and a blessing, held by his father, his grandfathers (yep, I was there), his great-grandfather, and an uncle. Young Benson has a strong name and an example of what it means to be a good man in his father. His father gave him a beautiful blessing and one thing he said in particular stood out. My son-in-law blessed his son to be "a friend to the friendless." What a tremendous gift to be given - the challenge to reach out to those who are alone, who feel there is no one who cares for them. There are far too many people in this world who don't have even one friend. That's not right. As I looked into my grandson's eyes after that blessing, I know that he will fulfill his father's prompting. He will be a friend to the friendless. It makes me want to do the same.

Spending the weekend with the Awesomes was bittersweet. Sweet because my whole family was together:
Could this be the 2014 Christmas card?
We really are grandparents
Sweet because we got this 'Four Generation' shot with my Mom:
The boys bookending their amazing mothers
And it was bitter because we live so far away and had to leave these guys:
The Awesomes
The good news is that we have CAL home for a few weeks and we are going to spend some time together in Chicago. Could not be more excited about that!

I am blessed. I have the photographic proof of it. I still struggle to understand why I've been so blessed. I'm flawed and I'm surrounded by amazing people who make me want to be better. I'll just keep trying to be better for them every day.

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