"Happy trails to you...Leah and Andy, Jackson, Trevor and Sylvia"
Today our oldest daughter, Leah, and her family departed Grand Rapids for their new season of life in Haslet, TX. Andy's division of the company is shutting down its Grand Rapids' operations and moving south.
We hosted them for their final days here and it was quite an active house again for the time. Today was eeriely quiet. Of course, Julie and I missed hugging and kissing little Sylvia. And I missed horsing around with Jackson and Trevor--two of the most energetic, 100% boys I know...and love. Leah is a great conversationalist and Andy is my MSU Spartans' buddy.
Andy spent the last days in Michigan cleaning, painting, tearing out old carpet so new carpet could be laid, and generally getting their house here ready to sell.
They left this morning from Gerald R. Ford airport at 7:15 a.m. The picture was taken just after they checked their bags in.
We will miss them, as we miss our daughter Elisha and her family and our daughter Lori---they all live in California. Shamar, our youngest daughter, moved out on her own in mid-August, but she still lives in the Grand Rapids area.
Leah was born my last year in Seminary in Dallas. In some ways, she is going back to her roots. Julie has relatives in the Dallas-Ft Worth metroplex. Julie also was born in Dallas.
So, Julie and I have reason to visit San Diego, Sacramento, and Haslet. If Shamar should ever leave Michigan, hopefully she'll move to the Bahamas or the island of St. Martin. Hey, it's fun to dream.
We have great girls; tremendous young ladies. We are very proud of each of them. But, dang!, that getting married and leaving father and mother bit is hard to adjust to. Yet, Julie and I did it, carting off our little girls from Julie's folks and my folks when we were young...er. It's that "circle of life" thing, I guess.
Remember that scene in "Father of the Bride" where Annie Banks is sitting at the dinner table excitedly telling her father and mother about the wedding and suddenly George Banks sees Annie as his 5 or 6 year old little girl? That's comedy on the one hand, yet very real in the minds of parents on the other. Younger minds have imaginative pictures about the future; older minds have actual memory-pictures of the past, accessible in a nano-second. Our children can be 31 and 3 almost instantaneously; two and twenty-seven in a breath; four and then living on their own in the wink of an eye.
May the LORD bless you and keep you and make his face shine upon you and give you peace.