I took the girls to The Jump Zone today, the same place where Norah celebrated her birthday party last year. It's been cold and raining for several days straight so we really needed to get out of the house and get some real exercise. Here are some photos I took with my cell phone while we took a break to drink some juices and waters.

Side note that I am sharing here so I will never forget it:

I called my dad a few moments ago. He and my mom had turned in for the night. He answered quickly (for him) and sounded worried because I was calling so late. (Actually, I just knew he would answer. He may not answer when I call at two in the afternoon and he's napping... but if I call at 1 a.m., I know he'll answer out of concern that something's wrong.) I told him about an old friend who I grew up with and how she may have to say goodbye to her dad tomorrow. I said all the things that were on my heart, all the things he really deserves to hear before it's too late. I also got to talk to my mom and tell her how much I love her, too.

Eventually, the conversation turned to more casual topics, naturally, and I heard my dad mumble, "Pictures..." in the background. (The fact that I don't post enough photos is a standard complaint with him... even if I am posting several dozen photos on the blog every single week. To him, there's never enough photos. But, that is really just what a grandpa ought to think, if you think about it.)

I told my mom to tell him I'd put some up before I went to bed tonight. That's why I wrote this post to begin with... But, when my dad heard that I was going to do this, I heard him say something like, "Oh no! You read your Bible... I don't want the devil on me! ...I don't want no hex on me!" My mom and I laughed so hard at this (mostly because we both realized that even though he was joking, from the tone of his voice, he may also have been half serious.)

I appreciate the fact that my dad doesn't want to get in between me and my vows to the Lord. But, I think God totally understands a father's love and a grandfather's pride and joy.

And to those of you reading this who haven't called your parents in a while:

You should call them, even if it is awkward and painful. And you should keep calling until it's less awkward and painful... You will be glad you did.

My parents would be the first to tell you that they weren't perfect. I have as much reason to be bitter with them as any child that I've ever heard of has to be bitter with their parents. (Very few of us have as much reason to be bitter as the bitterness in us leads us to believe we have.) But, I don't think God looks at a broken heart and a broken family and says, "Wow. I totally understand why you don't like them and why you never want to deal with them again... That's so broken, I can't fix it." I think He says something more along the lines of, "You are hurt. Let me fix that. And then let me restore you and your family to each other as well."

I love you, Dad and Mom. You did well with me. So, you can put your hearts to rest and stop worrying about what you didn't do... Take pride in me and your grand kids, too. I take pride in you.


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