family


Today when I wasn’t looking, Beth got into some of my things.

A Spitting Image

A Spitting Image


It started when she found a name tag that I had a while back. She’s wearing it in the photo, but I don’t think you can read it (flash photography is not my forte). That inspired her to get my hat, jacket, and boots. I completed her guise with my camera bag.

Now if only she could grow a beard…

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Today was my firstborn’s last day at work, and my lastborn’s first day of sixth grade. We’ll start with Beth, because that happened in the morning.

Beth's First Day of Sixth Grade

Beth’s First Day of Sixth Grade

And then we’ll move along to Jonathan’s going-away lunch at work today.

Jonathan

Jonathan

These two events happening on the same day caused some logistical difficulties. Jonathan now has an apartment near UNH, and is ready to move in. The apartment was originally a dormitory, but UNH sold it to a commercial interest some time ago, and now they call it an “apartment.” But it is a dorm as far as I’m concerned. Apartments don’t have common bathrooms for everyone on the floor – dorms do.

It was not furnished though, so in that regard it is a bit more apartment-like than I’d like it to be. We’ve been scrambling trying to get stuff together for him. He needs a bed for the next two years. I had been intending to build a bed for Beth, so when she outgrew her crib, we got her a cheapo particle board and contact paper bed until I’d have time to make a nice one. But I never found the time. Rather than buy a bed intended to last only two years, we decided to have Jonathan use her old cheap one. It’s not a girly bed or anything like that – just not a very high quality one.

So we bought Beth a nicer new one, and I put that together a couple of nights ago. We wanted to load it into my car (it fits if the back seat is folded down), but since it was the first day of school for Beth, we needed the back seat for her.

We ended up stuffing it in Va’s trunk. She came to Concord after lunch (Jonathan’s going away lunch), and we moved it to my car. We could have just had him drive her car to UNH, but… he can’t drive a manual transmission. I have failed my fatherly duty. 😦

He and David went to UNH to wait for the cable guy to come and install his new Internets and to shuffle stuff from the car to his room. They were not able to get the furniture together (the bed plus a desk). I will go there tomorrow evening and make that happen. Second failure.

It has been over a week since I have posted anything, and that’s because I have been utterly exhausted every night for the week and a half. Work has been mentally draining, and on top of that, we had our annual Honors Week last week.

Honors Week is how I kick off the Pathfinder year. We teach one honor per evening for five days. That way people can come and check out the club to see if it’s the kind of thing they think they might enjoy, and new members get the chance to earn five patches for their otherwise blank sashes.

This year we taught backpacking, chess, candle making, wool and spinning, and Bible marking. Chess and spinning are new honors that have not yet been submitted to the national organization. Honors have to be piloted by three clubs before they are submitted, so we piloted two of them. Unfortunately, that means any new kids could earn only three patches for their sashes this year. Oh well – them’s the breaks.

On Sunday I ran a backpacking stove building clinic. We made a dozen penny alcohol stoves. I’ve been using one of these for about five years, and I love mine. I used to use denatured alcohol for fuel, but it burns with a nearly invisible flame, especially in full daylight. We found that 91% isopropyl rubbing alcohol works just as well (70% does not though), but it burns with a yellow flame that is easy to see even in full sunlight. That should be a lot more safe.

Penny Alcohol Stove with Isopropyl Alcohol for Fuel

Penny Alcohol Stove with Isopropyl Alcohol for Fuel

What I love about backpacking is that it is one of the few times when I can eat whatever I want without having to think about what other people like. Everyone will pack their own food. I will pack food for no one except myself. And I am going to have penne pasta with garlic, mushrooms, and broccoli cooked in olive oil. Mmmmm. I can’t wait.

Actually, I won’t wait either. I intend to make some at home before I go to try it out under low-risk conditions. If it fails, I can work out the problems or choose something else. Maybe tomorrow.

When astronomers assemble a new telescope and aim it at the sky for the first time, they call that “first light.” Well, my new Canon SX150IS came in today to replace my broken SX110IS. I must confess that “first light” for it was a bottle cap lying on a table. And so was second light. I deleted those before downloading them, but I’ll share third-fifth light with you.

Chickens on the loose!

Chickens on the loose!


This one came about after my Mom was talking about how she needed her chicken coop moved to a new spot. The temperature is supposed to hit 107 here tomorrow, so getting them into a shadier spot was kind of important. I offered to do the deed with David’s help.

Well, her chicken coop was a lot heavier than it seemed. We lifted it up on one side and started dragging it across the grass, and that’s when all 12 chickens flew the coop so to speak. We spent the next 15 or 20 minutes herding them back into the coop. Penny – a herding dog – was absolutely worthless at this. But of course, she had never even seen a chicken before yesterday, and she has exactly zero training when it comes to herding actual animals. Still.

Before it was all said and done, I watched Dad try to catch one of the roosters. It got away, but I could see how he was trying to do it. I emulated his technique and that was met with some success. Basically, Dad was moving in low and slow, and then snatched at the hen’s legs. When I tried it, I caught one leg, but with the chicken thusly restrained, getting hold of the second leg was somewhat trivial. I popped her into the coop. The rest of them were lured in with bread.

Sorry for wrecking havoc on your chickens, Mom. 😦

After that we had some supper and then went back to the hotel. I took Penny out for some stick throwing (I would have taken her out for some herding lessons, but alas! Penny knows more about that than I do). Also, I wanted to take some macros with the new gear. Here’s fourth light:

Unidentified, cultivated flower/bush

Unidentified, cultivated flower/bush


I have no idea what this is, but it did make for a nice macro. But I do know what fifth light is: Daisy fleabane (Erigeron annuus)
Daisy fleabane (Erigeron annuus)

Daisy fleabane (Erigeron annuus)

This lens isn’t quite as fast as the SX110’s, but I guess that’s OK. It has more zoom power and lots more pixels to make up for that. It goes down to an f-stop of 3.4 vs 2.8 for the SX110. So far, I am very pleased with it.

OK, more on the fishing trip to the Red River Trout Dock. The first time I finished paddling my canoe, I hauled it up on the dock and then dragged it up to the ramp leading to the shore. I was getting ready to carry it back up the hill to my car when the owner of the dock stopped me and suggested I just leave it down at the dock. I was not going to argue! He is a fantastic guy, and I very much appreciated his gesture.

He also stopped me before I went out the first time because I didn’t have a “throwie” cushion in the boat. I did not know this, but Arkansas law requires one of those, even if everyone in the boat is wearing a PFD. He loaned me one while we were there, and that is another reason I think he was a pretty swell fellow.

The order of the rest of the events is still something of a blur to me now. I guess getting up every morning at 5:00am will do that to a person. So I will just put up a few photos and comment on them. We’ll start with some black vultures (Coragyps atratus).

Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus)

Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus)

These are not exactly easy to see in the photo. These early morning paddling excursions were not the greatest for photography because there was always so much fog. But there are three individuals in this shot. They were feeding on something – maybe fish – but I couldn’t get a good look at that.

The river was always so foggy in the morning because the water is always about 46 degrees. The water is fed through the spillway from the bottom of the lake. I don’t remember how deep the intake is, but I seem to think it was 165 feet. Maybe more, or maybe less. I do remember that it was between 100 and 200 feet though.

That is the reason they can even have trout in Arkansas. Trout like cold water, and Arkansas is not reknown for that. But when they built the dam they created a cold water river, and that killed all the native fish. So now they stock it with trout.

The fog wasn’t always horrible for photography though. Here’s a shot I liked because of the fog.

Two fishermen on the Red River

Two fishermen on the Red River


I think these were the first people I saw on the river that morning. I heard them long before I saw them though.

And now I will embarrass myself by posting some eagle pictures. I know these are not all that good, but I can make plenty of excuses for that. First, I am not much of a bird photographer. Second, I was using my brother’s camera (which was unfamiliar to me), since mine won’t turn on any more. Third, there was lots of fog between me and the bird. But I don’t have many eagle photos, so I will post this one anyway.

Juvenile bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)

Juvenile bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)


I think this one is about a year old. At this age, they are even larger than their parents, which is something I learned while I was down there. They don’t get a lot of exercise as their parents feed them, and they eat a lot. Here’s one of the parents.

Adult bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)

Adult bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)

Their nest is on an island in the river, and there is a bluff on the other side. When the youngsters were born, people could go to the top of the bluff and look down into the nest. That’s pretty cool. My uncle told me how to find the nest, and I did go out and see it. Talk was that they had another brood in the nest, but I couldn’t tell. But I also didn’t go to the top of the bluff either.

Here’s a shot of the trout dock.

Red River Trout Dock

Red River Trout Dock


I took this one in the afternoon (or late morning, or maybe in the evening). This was after the fog had burned off.

I took this one on Friday morning.

Rachel, Beth, and Dad

Rachel, Beth, and Dad


I was paddling up to their boat when Rachel took the photo of me that I am now using in my banner. Her shot is better than any I took myself during the whole trip.

On Friday afternoon, Beth and I set out for Conway to see Beth’s friend and our former next door neighbor, Haylee. We got to spend four or five hours with her, her siblings, and her mother, and then we drove back to the trout dock.

On Friday evening, I took my memory card out of my brother’s camera and gave it back to him. I was sure glad he loaned it to me. Then on Saturday morning we went down to the dock at the crack of dawn and he helped me get my canoe in the water. Unfortunately, when he did this, he leaned forward and is camera slipped out of his shirt pocket and landed plop in the water. We fished it out with a long-handled fish net, but his camera is now toast. I felt really bad for him, as I kinda know what it’s like to have a broken camera! His might eventually come back, but that seems pretty unlikely to me.

It was on Saturday morning that I saw the most wildlife. I saw the eagles again, as well as two deer, a Canada goose, and a beaver. That was a lot of fun just watching them. I took out around 9:00am and started packing. Jonathan and Beth got back from fishing shortly after that, and we put on our church clothes and found the Heber Springs Adventist Church. It was pretty small! Including the three of us, attendance was 16 that morning. But it was a very nice service, and the people were quite friendly. I was glad we got to spend some time with them.

After the service we changed clothes in their bathroom, and then headed back to Dawson Springs, KY. Beth and I found a geocache in Missouri on the way, which is our first and so far only MO cache. We also collected an Arkansas geocache near the dock on Friday when we drove down to Conway.

The drive back to Dawson was long and uneventful, but I think that’s a good thing in a road trip!

Tonight I ordered a Canon SX150IS. That is pretty similar to my broken and well-used SX110IS, so I think I’ll like it fairly well. I went ahead and had it shipped to my parent’s house, so maybe I’ll get to post some photos again in a couple of days.

This is the first time in a week I’ve had time, energy, and an adequate Internet connection to post. I’m a tad low on the energy, but I’ll do what I can to at least give an initial report.

We’ll start with this photo my niece Rachel Gogel took of me on the Red River at dawn on Friday. I think it was Friday anyhow.

Me on the Red River in Heber Springs, AR

Me on the Red River in Heber Springs, AR


I liked it so much I made it my new header photo, but you have probably already noticed.

Beth, Jonathan, and I arrived in Dawson Springs Tuesday evening. We stayed at my parents house, and got up pretty early Wednesday morning so we could drive to the fishing hole in Heber Springs, AR with my parents, my brother Mike, my niece Rachel and her fiance, and my Dad’s brother Dallas. It was a long drive, but it was also pleasant!

When we got there, I went to the store with Dad to buy some groceries. The generators were running at the dam, so the river was up. Dad doesn’t like to fish when the river is up (it’s a lot harder to catch fish then), so he opted to not go out the first evening. Beth was disappointed, because she was going to go out with him. I unloaded the canoe and carried it down to the dock, and the two of us went out.

Everyone seemed alarmed about me going out on the river with it up like it was, but it was pretty trivial compared to the rivers I have run in the past. It really didn’t present much of a challenge at all, actually, and I was able to paddle upstream without too much effort. It was a nice paddle, and we came in before it got dark and had some supper.

In the morning we got up at 5:00am and had a quick breakfast. Then everyone was on the water by 5:30. Here’s Beth and Jonathan with Dad getting ready to go out.

Jonathan, Beth, and Dad

Jonathan, Beth, and Dad


This was Beth’s first fishing trip. Everyone was pretty well convinced that she would be bored with it pretty quickly – if not in ten minutes, then certainly within an hour. But that did not happen. She went out and started catching fish – and she was hooked.

I do not like to fish, so I got in my canoe and had a nice paddle. I went almost all the way up to the dam (which was about three miles). I turned around when I ran into a bunch of fishermen at a little riffle. I could have attained the riffle, but then there were several guys with lines cast across the river, and I didn’t want to cross them (the lines, or the fishermen). Also, I don’t like to have an audience when I attempt to attain a riffle.

Fishermen below the dam

Fishermen below the dam

I turned around and headed back downstream. It was a magnificent paddle! Over the course of the stay there, I saw a pair of otters (a first for me), a muskrat, two deer, a pair of bald eagles and their two chicks (which were larger than the parents), a couple of hawks, several great blue herons, countless swallows (exact species unknown), and trout.

Unfortunately, my camera has finally given up the ghost. It will no longer turn on. My brother very generously offered me the use of his though, and I gladly accepted. So I will be sharing some photos as the week progresses.

But right now, I should probably get to bed!

Yesterday after church I loaded my canoe on top of my car in preparation for a road trip (more on that later). But since it was up there, I figured I ought to go paddling. At first I was thinking I’d do something easy, like Sandogardy Pond. But as the idea germinated, it morphed into a Merrimack River trip. Still easy, because I was planning to put in, paddle upstream, turn around, and take out where I had put in. That neatly solves the problem of getting the car to the take out – but at the expense of having to paddle upstream.

So with the plan all formulated, Beth and I executed. There’s a river access point about five minutes from my house (by car). So off we went. I brought my camera and the GPS, because the closest geocaches to my house that I have not found are all along the river. Why not pick off a few? For good measure, I put the GPS in the camera bag, and put the camera bag in a gallon ziplock (just in case).

The first one was on an island. Beth managed to find it before I had the coordinates entered into the GPS.

Beth signs "Eyes to the Island"

Beth signs “Eyes to the Island”

Beth wanted to learn how to steer the canoe, and since that is mostly done from the stern, we traded seats. I waited until we were finished paddling upstream to do this, as it’s a lot easier to steer when going downstream vs upstream. She was pretty happy that I let her try that.

Beth in the Stern

Beth in the Stern


We had passed two geocache locations, but decided we’d hunt for them on the way back vs on the way up. There were two more on the agenda besides the one on the island. One was in a little cove, and we paddled into it (I did do some of the steering from the bow). We looked and we looked, but we couldn’t find it. So I started trying to get us turned around. There wasn’t quite enough room in the cove to do a 180, and in my attempts to force the boat around, I lost my balance and fell backwards into the gunwales. I don’t know how it even happened, but the next thing I knew, the gunwales were under water, and shortly after that, we were both standing in the river with the canoe next to us.

How embarrassing! I thought I knew how to handle a canoe! The first thing I did was grab my zip-locked camera bag. Whew! The zipper was closed, and the camera bag was dry. I clambered out of the river and put the camera on the bank. Meanwhile Beth was not very happy, and asking me why I had done that. If only I knew sweetie!

I hauled the canoe out of the water and dumped out most of the water. But there was still too much in there, so I waded back into the water and lifted the stern up over my head while the water poured through the scuppers. In short order, the boat was dryer than we were. We reloaded, and set off again to look for cache number three.

Before we got there, Beth had forgotten how upset she was with me. The third cache was located in a tree on a very steep bank, and there was really no place to pull the boat out of the water. So Beth climbed the bank, and I stayed in the canoe to keep it in position.

She searched everywhere, but that cache was nowhere to be seen. She got back in the boat (but had given up on steering by then – and let me have the stern again). We paddled back towards the put-in/take-out.

We passed some irises.

Wild Iris

Wild Iris


She picked a few and pressed them when we got home.

It took me a while to get my wet clothes off. I did that in the kitchen rather than traipsing through the house, mud and all. Then I took a shower. After I was all cleaned up, I looked at poor, poor Penny who did not get to go paddling with us (I’ve tried that before, and it doesn’t work very well – she does not like to stay in the boat).

So I invited David to hike with us to Sandogardy Pond, and he accepted. Penny chased sticks, and David and I talked. At one point he said something like “Your mad botany skills are going to be your undoing.” Maybe he had forgotten about my mad canoeing skills earlier in the day (Beth told everyone!)

I explained to him that I was a “mad botantist” rather than a “mad zoologist” because plants don’t run away when you approach them with a camera. They are a lot easier to work with as subjects!

So here are some of the results of my “mad botany” from the hike.

Dogbane (Apocynum spp)

Dogbane (Apocynum spp)


I don’t remember if this is plain old dogbane (Apocynum cannabinum) or intermediate dogbane (A. medium). I know one of them has reflexed petals (as this one does), but now I don’t remember which one of them that is. And I don’t have my books with me right now, so I can’t look it up. Wikipedia isn’t helping me out here any either.

When we got to the pond I found some grass-leaved arrowhead (Sagittaria graminea).

Grass-leaved arrowhead (Sagittaria graminea)

Grass-leaved arrowhead (Sagittaria graminea)


There’s not a lot of this growing at the pond, but a few always seem to bloom right near the dock.

I was also surprised to find this one:

Pale St. Johnswort (Hypericum ellipticum)

Pale St. Johnswort (Hypericum ellipticum)


The Connecticut Botanical Society says this blooms from July to August. I looked in my records to find the earliest I had seen it in bloom, but couldn’t find any entries. Hmmm. Maybe this is one I learned after I quit being so conscientious about logging.

So all told, it was a good day, even though I dumped my daughter (and my pride) in the drink.

On to today!

Beth, Jonathan, and I set out for our road trip. We are on the way to Kentucky to visit my family, and to go fishing with them in Arkansas. I haven’t been to Dad’s favorite fishing hole in about 19 years. That’s because I don’t really like to fish. Which is why I am bringing the canoe.

Canoe on top, and road beneath

Canoe on top, and road beneath


I do not intend to fish. Instead, I will paddle up and down the Red River and try not to capsize. I used to be pretty good in a canoe, and have run class III rapids in this one on many occasions! So let’s hope that was just a fluke, and not a harbinger of things to come.

Anyhow… we are in a hotel in Waynesboro, VA right now after a pretty long day of driving. When the whole family comes along we don’t usually get this far. We will stay here for two nights, and the NAD will pay for our room. I am meeting my friend Mark O’Ffill, the webmaster for Pathfinders Online, and we are going to work on getting the Pathfinder Honors Wikibook onto a NAD-hosted server so that we can expand it. The plan is to create a new Instructor’s Manual for the new Investiture Achievement curricula, which is more overtly religious than the Honors Answer Book. As such, it cannot adhere to Wikibook’s “Neutral Point of View” (NPOV) policies. The material will still be licensed under the Creative Commons – otherwise we could not do this at all. This project has been in the works for almost a year now, and tomorrow we intend to make some real headway on it.

Meanwhile, what is the rest of the family up to? Va does not want to go fishing OR canoeing. I like to say that “she likes nature, she just doesn’t want to get any of it on her.” 😉 Therefore, she and David (and Penny) will meet us in KY next week after the fishing and paddling is all said and done. But before they arrive, Jonathan will have to head back home. He has an orientation session at UNH to attend (and less vacation at work than I do). So he will drive back before Va and David arrive. As you can imagine, the logistics for this trip have been a challenge!

More bulletins as events warrant!

I would have to say that Music Clinic was an unqualified success.

Beth during a performance

Beth during a performance


This photo was taken during the morning church service on Saturday, but I don’t remember which song they were playing – maybe Vivaldi’s “Winter” from The Four Seasons. I do remember that all the songs sounded pretty good though.

The pianos were all on stage, with the band to the left, the kid’s choir in front of the stage, and the full choir to the right. The strings were down on the floor in front of the kid’s choir. There were a lot of musicians. This photo shows only about a quarter of the full choir.

Some of the musicians

Some of the musicians

After one performance, we sat at some tables located behind the choir where it was less crowded (but where we could still hear). Beth didn’t want me to take her picture, but I did anyhow.

She didn't want me to take her picture.

She didn't want me to take her picture.


It’s what Dad’s do.

After the morning service we had lunch, and then I had to help clean the kitchen again (which was great). Then we were free for the afternoon. I wanted to go for a hike, but couldn’t talk Beth into it. Yes, I could have made her hike with me, but it’s a lot less pleasant to hike with an unwilling companion. We went back to the hotel and she swam in the pool for an hour. Then we went to the room and I took a 20 minute nap. Not very exciting, I know.

Then it was time to head back to the school for supper and then a few more practice sessions (during which I helped clean the kitchen again). Beth went to her seat, and I went to the kitchen.

Pre-show excitement

Pre-show excitement


While I was in the kitchen, Va showed up. She found a seat, while I finished my assignment. By then the gym was packed and I had a hard time finding her. When I did, she was along the back wall and I had to climb over four elderly people to get to the seat she had saved for me.

I didn’t want to sit back there during Beth’s performances, so just before she went on, I clambered over the elderly again and got up to the stage for photo ops. I didn’t have the heart to climb over them again though, so I stood somewhere else with an even worse view, and waited for the Grand Finale (A Mighty Fortress, by Martin Luther). She had a piano part in that, and I took photos, but they don’t look much different from the ones I already posted.

After the performance, the three of us headed back to the hotel. I made a dessert run while the girls kicked back and relaxed. When I got back we shared the treat and then went to bed. I slept until 8:00. Va wanted to eat breakfast in Portland at the “Old Country Buffet” except it has some other name that I can’t remember up here. Hometown Buffet? I dunno. They used to have one in Manassas when we lived there, and they put out a pretty decent breakfast spread. Much better than your typical hotel continental breakfast. So we stopped there on the way home.

After breakfast we set out in a homeward direction. That’s when Beth had a bit of a meltdown. She was upset about something pretty minor and was crying as if someone had cut off her foot. I tried to give her some perspective and told her to think about the good things that happened to her this week instead of the bad things. I told her that’s what I was doing. Bad things happened to me while we were away (mop bucket), but I was choosing to think about the good things instead. She regained her composure, and I felt like I had done something right. I didn’t know how right until later.

The plan was to have another cardboard boat building session at the church at 1:00pm. We were running too late to go home and then come back to the church, but early enough that Beth and I were able to stop along route 4 and look for some geocaches. Va went on home.

At the first place we stopped to look for a cache, we saw someone at “ground zero” poking around some fallen logs. There was car parked there with e geocaching bumper sticker. I correctly assumed it was a geocacher. We introduced ourselves and then looked for the cache. Beth and I were not able to find it, and I don’t think the other cacher was able to either. But I did find something better:

My first skunk cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus)

My first skunk cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus)

I have been looking for skunk cabbage for a couple of years now, and this was the first time I had ever seen it. I recognized it immediately and called Beth over. “What is it?” she asked, so I told her “Take a whiff!” “Ewww!” It does smell rather like a skunk, but not nearly as strong. Peterson says it’s edible, but since I didn’t know what part was edible (or when) we left it alone. That’s a good thing too. When I got home I looked it up, and you’re supposed to let it dry out first, or its calcium oxalate crystals will cause some significant mouth pain. Maybe someday I’ll try it after properly drying it out first.

We stopped for two other caches, but only found one out of the three. Oh well. We got to the church right at 1:00 and found some Pathfinders already there waiting. So we did some boat construction. Both of the boats are coming along “swimmingly” as I like to say. That sounds like it might involve swimming, but it means “pretty good.”

I was too busy with the cardboard kayak to take any pictures. Which means I was doing too much of the work myself. 😦

The rest of the plan for the day was for Beth and I to go to our first Geocaching event, which was about a mile from the church. We met Bandyrooster there – a cacher that I have been corresponding with for a little while. She is a very friendly person, and it was great to meet her face-to-face. The three of us went caching for about two hours (I think – I was starting to tire by that point), and we found something like ten caches. Beth found one more than me, because we stopped at one I had found previously without her. Here’s a shot of Beth with Bandyrooster (aka, Marge).

Beth and Bandyrooster fishing out a geocache.

Beth and Bandyrooster fishing out a geocache.

Penny was over the moon when we got home.

Beth took a bath and went to bed shortly after that, and I stayed up as long as I could keep my eyelids propped open. Then I headed up too, and found this two-page note on my pillow.

Dear Daddy,
Thank you for bringing me to Music Clinic. I really had a fun time. Thank you for letting me swim at the hotel. Thanks for buying me Twistables. I love my new hair ties. Thank you for paying the Music Clinic fee, the hotel fee, and other payments for me. Also Thank you, for letting me have some free time in the hallways. I really enjoyed it. I really don’t have anything to offer you except for a really big hug and a kiss. Plus, of course this note.

Thank you for taking me Geocaching afterwards with you. That was so much fun. Please accept my full apologies about how I reacted in the car.

Love,
Beth

PS: THANK YOU!

That’s what I call payoff. I don’t think she’ll know just how fully this paid for all that money, time, and effort, until she has kids of her own.. It brings tears to my eyes to even type this. I count it as one of the best “fatherhood” events I have ever experienced. Sweetheart, you have repaid me in full.

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