Last December we took Carter and Grace to watch him in action, and we got to see him do what he's been doing for 32 years - listen to evidence, speak to the kids and caregivers involved, and make decisions that are hopefully in their best interest. I love how along with his judgments, he dispensed advice and encouragement to the kids and their parents or grandparents.
"Remember this one simple thing - keep your hands to yourself to school."
"Look at your mom. She loves you, and you need to respect her."
"Honesty isn't the best policy. It's the only policy." (Boy did I hear that one a lot over the years).
It's killing me that I can't be there for the retirement ceremony. My mom, my two brothers and their families, Dad's brother and sister, they all will be there. This is one of the really hard things about life overseas - missing out on family milestones. I've missed the births and infancies of numerous nieces and nephews, weddings, graduations, birthday parties, and the funerals of my beloved grandmothers. The funerals were probably the hardest to miss.
I know Dad understands, but I really, really wish I could be there.
I love the Vintage Beam picture from 1980 below - my dad, so uncharacteristically serious; my mom, so pretty and put together, as always; my grandparents; Jonathan sporting the Peter Pan color and knee socks; my older bro Ken, the lucky one who got to hold the Bible; and me, in the fluffy pink dress.
Happy Retirement, Dad! I love you!