Saturday, December 18, 2004

Thanks for your patience ...

... and your persistence in checking back here for new stuff, even when I couldn't deliver!

Today, I'm sitting here in my son's home in Highland, IL -- the town where Kelly and I raised our two kids (yeah, they are really my stepkids -- but they've been in my life long enough for me to address them this way) until they entered college and we left the nest (moving to TX in 2000, just in time for the bursting of the dot-com bubble).

We are here for one of those momentous occasions in life ... my son is getting his Bachelor's in Business from Southern Illinois University today!

Actually the celebration started a little over a month ago -- with the writing of the LAST TUITION CHECK!! We paid for the college education of both our son and our daughter (she graduated in 2000 from SIU with her Bachelor's in Psychology), so we have been writing tuition checks since 1997. While finances are not my strong suit (especially when you have to deal with a wife who suffers from an addiction to HGTV!), we were able to get both kids through school with NO student loans ... an example of the grace of God, applied with a little wisdom.

As good as that feels, today feels even better -- but not because of my direct actions.

My son has shown a steadily-increasing level of maturity over the last few years that not only has culminated in this day, but has much to make me proud of my limited influence in his life. He has taken the opportunities set before him, and squeezed every last drop of good from them.

He learned the value of study -- learning the hard way, at first, that college study wasn't the easy ride that high school was for this intellectual "gazelle". I was concerned that he had not picked up the concept that study was something one had to work at -- but he quickly learned and adopted that concept, resulting in his steady school performance.

He and his wife (of six-and-one-half months) are self-sufficient ... something that seems to be quite notable for a 23-year-old these days.

In his last year of high school, my son took a co-op job with a local construction company (as an IT geek), and his diligence, hard work, and smarts turned it into a very-well-paying, full-time, salaried position that he still holds today. (His wife shares these qualities ... she works as a CNA while she studies for her nursing degree.) One side effect is hearing him complain about his taxes ... the boy is learning conservative principles, as well!

Does it show that I'm proud of him?

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After my long ride on the "PCB Trace" over the last few weeks, I plan on playing catch-up over the next week, as I am out of the office. Watch this space for more ... and thanks again for doing so!


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