Category Archives: Hope

Ump

It was a coach pitch All-Star tournament for 7 and 8 year old players. One of the grandsons was playing, so it was double fun!

But between mamas letting their little boys loose, daddies holding their tongues, and coaches reliving their Little League glory days, drama and emotion can quickly ooze into the games.  

It’s usually from the coaches and parents more than the kids.  Boys like the competition, but at that age, the biggest concern for most of them is what flavor of snow cone to get after the game. 

And the poor umpires? They often get blasted from both sides! This day was different though. This game had a short, stocky, 40-year veteran umpire.  

In the first inning, I heard him tell someone while rubbing his head that every gray hair he had was from umpiring.  He winked adding, “I was 6 feet 7 inches tall when I started umpiring, but I’ve been chewed on so much over the years, I’m only 5’ 7” now! “

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A Graceful Dance

It was a Daddy Daughter Dance.  Unfortunately for my son, he had to work out of town.  Fortunately for me, I was the second-string back up for Grace, who is 6 years old, and in first grade.

The school dance was for elementary girls, grades one through six, at our local university Grand Ballroom. My only concern was that it was from 6 to 9 PM.  Having two left feet and the coordination of a one-legged giraffe, how in the world could I fake dancing that long?!  In the end, it didn’t matter.

What did matter was that my granddaughter had a good time. She was dressed in a light blue dress covered with tulle. (For the ladies, aren’t you impressed I know what “tulle” is, and for us guys, it’s said “tool”, but not spelled that way, so it’s not a skirt covered in crescent wrenches like I thought.)

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Reprise

It’s tedious.  Removing calcium deposits from pool tile at the water line.

Our pool’s never been cleaned, so three tiles at the water line had to be scraped and scrubbed.

Doing a 20 by 40 foot pool with a hand scraper is like an ant sized dental hygienist cleaning your teeth.

A pumice stone polishes off the remnants, but that hard crusty stuff, it only comes off with scrapes, scratches and scrubs.

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Clear Skies

Alone.

Yet, not.

Large families.

There are 33 people on the wall. Kids, kids-of-heart, grandkids, Janet, myself.

There’s always something going on in a big family. Someone’s always around, nearby, or on the way.

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Junkyard Explosion

Once upon a time there was an explosion in a junkyard. 

It all started with increasing nitrogen gases expelled from overheating debris in the hot summer sun. 

It was epic! One of a kind! Never to be duplicated!

I can’t prove it, so just trust me, it was the PERFECT storm to create such a powerful explosion!

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Forty Years Ago

Someone posted our high school class picture from 40 years ago!

Forty. Years. Ago!

That’s how long Moses and the Israelites wandered in the wilderness!

A little over 300 of us, all in purple gowns, grabbed a diploma, walked across the stage, and waltzed into life. 

When we graduated 40 years ago — Ronald Reagan was fresh on the job, the space shuttle had just made its maiden voyage, a new disease called AIDS would be announced two weeks after graduation, and two months after that, IBM would introduce something called a “personal computer”.  

With the unbridled power of technology and social media, it’s been fun to “reconnect” with some I haven’t seen since graduation day.

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Jill’s Diner

As I write this, we’re on the plane home from a week of adventures. 

It was late this past Sunday morning, traveling, Columbus, Indiana.  

Janet and I were on our way to the Creation Science Museum in Kentucky, and then the Ark Encounter forty-five miles past that. 

It was brunch time and we drove through downtown Columbus. We decided to grab something fast before heading on to Kentucky.  

We like the “local flavor” of places, especially in rural areas, so when we spotted a hole in the wall diner near the town square, it seemed perfect.

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May 20, 1985

I found an old journal I wrote in college, one I haven’t read in years. Page by page, I re-introduced me to myself from things penciled years ago.

Below is a story that flooded back to memory. It was in a college town two days after graduation, 36 years ago today. I was staying the summer to work two jobs in town while almost every other college student moved back home.

Here’s my journal entry from Monday, May 20, 1985:

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Dear Addie K,

Dear Addie K,

You burst into life a year and half ago!  At first, we loved you solely on whose you were, but now we love you because of who you are.  Your first 1 1/2 years of life have gone by way too fast!

Life is like that. Before you know it, you’ll be looking back and remembering in sepia toned colors.

Seek wisdom, Addie.  When you look back, you’ll smile at the vibrant, bright memories that wisdom can bring!

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A New Life Chapter

His solid white beard was perfectly trimmed.  Occasionally, when he was trying to describe something, he’d take off his company cap and run his fingers through his full, thick head of equally white hair.  It was a stark contrast to his deep black, wire-rim glasses.

Today’s his last day on the job.  He’s been preparing a long time for retirement, and now, it’s here. 

As we all went through the day, I’d stop by and say things to acknowledge him.

“You know, this is the last 9:15 AM at work in your career”.

He stayed busy, in thanks partly to a number of phone calls from folks he’d worked with.  He said, “I’ve just been really surprised by how many nice things folks have said to me.”

I nodded my head.

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