Still Time To Celebrate

I took three weeks off of work and go back tomorrow. I had plans, oh did I ever, and today I was feeling some remorse at not accomplishing “anything” during my break. With a little retrospection, though, I realize that I had a lovely time, very low-key, very different from my regular busy schedule.

I spent three days driving to and from St. Louis to help my daughter pack up her dorm room and move out. She’s off to Spain in a few days for a semester. What I feared would be a grueling trip, turned out to be way less stressful than I had feared and allowed me time to enjoy my daughter’s company uninterrupted for hours at a time. It also allowed me time to visit my sister in Chicago, where I crashed both nights of the trip.

I’ve spent a lot of time the rest of my break driving my younger daughter to and from basketball…school stops for a while, but basketball never does. Rather than drive home between drop-off and pick-up, I stuck around. Twice I did grocery shopping, for our Christmas dinner and then for New Year’s Day, when we have a special family meal to kick things off right. Then, I went to the local sub shop and ate a sandwich while reading a book. Not a bad way to spend my time at all.

Christmas was filled with traditions, old and new. I went to Carols and Lessons with friends and we all met back at my place afterward where we talked and laughed and really enjoyed the time with one another that we so rarely get. My daughters and I went to Mass on Christmas Eve, put out cookies for Santa, wrapped gifts, filled stockings, and slept-in on Christmas morning. We opened gifts and cooked all of our favorite holiday foods, then ate the fruits of our labors.

My son came home a few days later, and then my mom arrived. We had a mini-Christmas with them, then on to New Years Eve when we stayed in and drank our bubbly apple cider or champagne and toasted one another. New Years Day brought the pork and sauerkraut recipe, repeated every year that I can remember.

Tomorrow, I go back to work and back to crazy. There will be carpool for school and basketball, and hopefully a class or two for me at night. Work will start-up at a fever pitch and I may be traveling as well.

Tonight, however, we have one more celebration to go. We’re celebrating a milestone birthday, belatedly, with my mom. Dressed up, ready to go. Snow has finally shown up, and we’ll have a lovely dinner out before settling down in a house full of family and love before the chaos hits in the morning.

Find the Joy in the Journey…celebrate the moment, and don’t worry about the To Do List for a change!

 

To Each Their Own Celebration–My Son Turns 21

It seems that the older I get, the more milestones there are to measure. As a child the milestones were momentous to me, but so small in the grand order of things. Walking up the street to a friend’s house, riding a bike without training wheels, going off on the big bus to Kindergarten, moving across town and going to first grade with all new classmates, going to middle school where both elementary schools combined…these were the milestones of my early childhood. After that came milestones of young adulthood: getting my braces off, getting contact lenses, starting high school, that first kiss, applying for college, and ultimately leaving home.

I’ve gone through many adult milestones too, including college graduation,  marriage, graduate school, first job, home ownership, parenthood, and even divorce. But as a mom, I find it sometimes amazing and sometimes terribly bitter-sweet to witness the milestones of my own children. They are born and then they rocket towards adulthood at an ever increasing pace. As a mom, I tried to both document their growth and live in the moment. Apparently I did more of the latter than the former, so there is little physical evidence to share. What there is, lies in my heart.

Today is my oldest child’s 21st birthday, and a  reminder to me about how each of us celebrates in their own way. He wanted to be home for his birthday and he wanted to go out to eat. Given that my younger daughter had a softball playoff game until after 8, dinner would be quite late. While my older daughter and I were at work, my younger daughter baked a cake. It’s now her signature dish, a Guinness cake. She’s made several and this took the last can from the pack I bought at the beginning of the year when she started making them. Her brother had apparently had the penultimate one on the ultimate evening of being technically too young to drink it.

At the restaurant, the waiter asked us what we’d all like to drink and he eschewed having a beer because that was what was expected and he’s all about being an individual who decides for himself whether it matters or not if he has a beer on his birthday and then says no to spite what was expected. Other aspects of a typical birthday celebration were too ingrained in tradition. The cake was duly adorned with a “2” and a “1” candles and lit. We sang him the Birthday Song, and he made a wish and blew out the candles. He happily ate cake and opened presents to round out the event.

More milestones await, as early as next week when my younger daughter gets her braces off.

Find the Joy in the Journey…and the Joy in seeing your children grow up to the beat of their own drum!

 

 

Celebrating The Good News With My Kids

As my children get older, I treasure all the more having them home for holidays. I know the day will come when first one, and then another will find themselves having to split holidays between their own family and their partner’s family. When they start having kids of their own, likely they’ll expect family to come to them.

My older daughter came home on Wednesday night and we three girls stopped for sushi and girl talk. I just love how the girls get along even with a big gap in age. They got me to take them out shopping later in the week (OMG—I’m A Maxinista!) where the prospect of mom paying for new clothes created a kind of carnival atmosphere (ok, ok, I enjoyed it too!).

My son arrived on Saturday, just in time for the Easter festivities. We dyed eggs first. I’d purchased the Star Wars version just for him. My older daughter, an art student, worked with care. The rest of us were more slapdash. I was into layering the colors to get newer, prettier hues. After egg dying, the kids ran up to the attic to find their Easter baskets. Once we were all asleep, the bunny came and hid eggs throughout the house, filled the baskets and hid those too.

Fortunately for my beauty sleep, the kids no longer wake before dawn and beg to be allowed to get up. We all gathered in the kitchen, where I was putting cinnamon rolls in the oven. They asked for a shot-gun-style start, so I gave them the old One! Two! Three! Go! And off they ran. My older daughter always gets the most eggs and usually finds all of the baskets in the process. This year was no different. My son always ends up with the fewest eggs, and often only with a hint or two from me. Fortunately, my older daughter redistributed her eggs to make it all come out even. image

As my children were hunting Easter eggs and Easter baskets, I encountered a basket of my own. Intrigued, I looked around to my children. They feigned innocence, but with sly glances and smirks. Inside I found: organic, dark chocolate peanut butter cups, a Chapstick, three nail polishes (each in its own Easter egg), and a poster of RJ Mitte, signed for me: “Thanks for watching”.  Mitte, for the uninitiated, starred in Breaking Bad as Walter’s son. He has cerebral palsy and spoke at my daughter’s school about overcoming adversity.

Then we dressed up, me in a new dress thanks to the shopping trip, and walked over to church. Baptismal vows renewed, blessed, and uplifted by the Good News, we headed out to brunch afterward. I really should not go to buffets as I can barely resist temptation. I try to edit out things that I can get any other time and things that I can do without. Even so, I managed to try many delicious dishes and eat an entire lemon meringue pie…well, it was only an inch and a half across, but by then I felt as if I’d eaten a full-sized version.

I asked my older daughter to snap a picture of me, since I was all dressed up, so that I could put it on a dating website. I think the result requires an entire post of its own. The bottom line was lots of attention and not a single match.

My older daughter asked to drive home, all of a half mile, so I gave her the valet ticket and money for a tip and watched her navigate the latest new situation. What can I say, I love my kids and love seeing them succeed.

Find the Joy in the Journey…may it be a Blessed Journey, indeed!

Saying Yes To the Confirmation Dress

In less than a week, my youngest child will celebrate the sacrament of Confirmation. This is the Catholic equivalent of a coming of age celebration. It means that she is an adult in the eyes of the church and she is ready to declare her faith in her own voice, confirming the vows her Godparents made on her behalf at her Baptism.

Although Confirmation preparatory classes started 9 months ago, we waited to get a dress until the last minute. I didn’t want to get a dress too early, because at 13, my daughter could well have grown in the last 9  months…and indeed she did…getting a bit taller and thinner. Also, you don’t want last year’s dress, so waiting for the spring dresses meant she could be more up-to-date. I didn’t really mean to wait until just 6 days in advance, but I did.

What with basketball, religion class, Confirmation class, Girl Scouts, drama, and, well…school, my daughter has been a bit busy. Not to mention that I work full time, am training for a half-marathon, and am her personal chauffeur to boot. So, we finally went dress shopping. In the “old days” we would have gone to Hudson’s, but alas, it is no more. It became a Marshall Fields, which was at least a Midwestern department store that tried to cater to the Southeast Michigan demographic, but now it’s a ubiquitous Macy’s. Even so, for an inexpensive, but stylish dress, it’s the first place to start.Confirmation Dress

Shockingly, we found a dress in just a few minutes. At first, my daughter insisted that she needed a white dress. She, being incredibly stubborn and a girl who “knows it all”, was convinced that she was required to wear a white dress. She reminded me that Baptism and First Communion required white, so why not Confirmation? At first, nothing I said dissuaded her, including reminding her that her sister wore a black dress five yeas previously. I told her the rules…nothing strapless or with spaghetti straps (when my older daughter was confirmed, the girls wore “shrugs” to cover-up their dress’ sins!).

The first dress that appealed to her was a black lace dress. I pointed out the royal blue version, but she wanted the black. I told her it would be nice to celebrate the coming spring with a bright color. Luckily, the black dress wasn’t available in her size, but the blue one was. She tried it on and…oh, the heartbreak. My tomboy-girl who chooses to live in basketball shorts and a logo-ed T-shirt year-round was wearing a dress that showed off her beautiful figure. She complained that it made her hips “stick out”. The photo of this dress doesn’t do it justice. It is a fit-and-flare (hence the “hips”) with a built in slip, leaving the shoulders and arms all lace.

Miraculously, we found that the first dress was the best, and my daughter said “yes to the dress”.

Find the Joy in the Journey…take the easy wins with grace, for they just may be a sign of Grace!

At The Heart of The Stay-Cation

Half-way through my long stay-cation, I am finally getting to the point of enjoyment. The first half has been taken up by Christmas preparations fitted in between my reading/writing/running (and shall I mention, sleeping?) goals. Christmas Eve was a joy…I got little “done” but spent time with my children decorating the tree and going to church. When Christmas day dawned, I turned over and slept some more (ah, the joys of older kids!).

I embraced the traditions of Christmas day with the kids. We opened stockings, ate orange and cinnamon rolls, then had our oh-so-orderly opening of gifts. It soon became apparent that the youngest reaped most of the presents! My extended family has a complicated set of gift-giving rules that include “aging out” of gifts when you go off to college. It doesn’t hurt that a thirteen year old girl gets ga ga over rainbow loom rubber bands, and the older kids are more excited about gift cards…everyone was feeling blessed by the time the gifts were all opened.

Although I’d gotten up before the kids did and made the stuffing and gotten the turkey (breast) into the oven, there were more dishes to prepare. At the last minute, I remembered the Brussels sprouts. I’d had an idea to roast them and had also purchased pre-cooked bacon. With a quick internet search, I came up with a recipe. They were the second best Brussels sprouts I’ve ever eaten (the best were flash-fried and served with a remoulade sauce). Roasted Brussels Sprouts

We ate our Christmas dinner, full of all of our traditional dishes…heavy on the starches, I admit. No one seemed to notice that there were no desserts…we were too full for them anyway. After a bit of time to digest and talk to friends and family on the phone, we took in a movie…We saw Frozen, which we thoroughly enjoyed. Later, we ate some appetizers in lieu of dinner and watched Les Mis on DVD. A full, family day.

Today, I had some ill-defined plans to meet up with cousins we rarely see. The plans firmed up and the kids and I enjoyed their company immensely. One lives in Scandinavia and we all got stars in our eyes envisioning a visit. Back home again, we started doing our own thing. My older daughter asked if she could go shopping with a friend. My son and younger daughter, in a rare moment of amity (I think the whole “you will one day realize the importance of siblings” thing may be coming true…fingers crossed), watched The Little Mermaid  together. I got a text from a friend about meeting up for some appetizers and then a movie.

Back home again, I look forward to ten more days of stay-cation, and finally tackling some things on my to-do list (in addition to the reading, writing, and running). Then, just moments ago, I got a Facebook message from a friend about writing, about procrastination being the enemy…and yes, writing (not this blog, but working on my novel) really must be part of the next 10 days, and many days beyond.

Find the Joy in the Journey…enjoy each day, cherish time spent with friends and family, dream big dreams…and don’t procrastinate!

Christmas Eve Present

Walking to church, the sky was finally clear. Stars shone above and luminaries lit our way. The Nativity was set up out in the snow and the baby was smiling sweetly in the manger as the Magi approached. I paused to take a picture and then we continued into the church. We arrived early, as planned, but apparently a lot earlier than necessary.Nativity 2013

This was our first time at the 9 p.m. vigil service and we arrived at 8:10 in anticipation of crowds and a musical interlude at 8:30. In the past, we always attended the earlier service, set up especially for families. In years past there was a nativity play, replete with an Eeyore-style donkey, a blue-robed Mary, and a swaddled doll. The children’s choir sang sweetly and the children’s hand bells rang out with clarity and precision.  It is always a crowded, standing-room-only service with lots of young children and a share of bewildered young parents who arrive less than five minutes before the start and find no where to sit. This year, however, my youngest insisted we attend the later service, and it was the right time to make the transition.

I love Christmas Eve. I love the Christmas service and the music. This year’s cantor had the voice of an angel, singing the the sweet, difficult pieces with ease. I love the luminaries, the walk in the dark with my children. I love getting out the stockings, setting out the milk and cookies, and just gazing at the lit tree. I forget that we only got the tree decorated this afternoon, just in time. I also try not to think of the tasks ahead, left as well until the last minute. There are presents to wrap before Santa can go to bed…softened a bit by the cookies and egg nog (forget milk!).

Tomorrow will be a morning of squealing fun, opening presents, some much anticipated. Then, since I left it until the last minute, will be the dinner preparations. As I wrap presents late into the evening, I wish I’d made the side dishes ahead of time. Then I think again. No, there will be plenty of time for cooking tomorrow while the turkey roasts. I’m glad I’ve spent much of my week off reading, writing, and running. As a wise friend told me a week ago, “Christmas always gets done somehow”, and indeed it did. The last-minute preparations even inspired my children to pitch in.

As I put the last few gifts under the tree and anticipate the bells ringing in Christmas at midnight, I gaze out the window at the luminaries and praise the Lord. I am so grateful to have my children snuggled all safe in their beds…who knows how many more Christmases like these I will have now that two are adults. This is the beginning of yet another transition…but held off by at least this one last year of togetherness.

Find the Joy in the Journey…cherish each year without regret and with faith that the year to come will be blessed.

Milking It For All It’s Worth

I didn’t spend so many months preparing for my 50th birthday just to have it over in a day. I spent two and a half years writing this blog, exploring my inner and outer self. I’ve learned a lot about myself and made some progress in moving to the place/self I want to be. I’m not done yet, and my 50th birthday isn’t the be-all or end-all for me. No, I’m going to milk this milestone birthday for all it’s worth and then I’m going to keep on enjoying it even after I have to keep it to myself to keep from losing all my friends.

The first thing I did this morning was drive my older kids to the airport. Thanksgiving break is over and I kept the older two until the last possible second, but eventually they had to leave…the oldest to catch a bus that makes the rounds of a few colleges and would deliver him back to his new neighborhood. My older daughter had to catch a flight back to St. Louis where she intended to climb right into her dorm bed for a nap. Before she got out of the car, however, she handed me a custom CD labeled “50 Years Young”. A lovely surprise, and a welcome addition to my mix-tape collection (the only other being one she made me for Mother’s Day).

I dreaded going back to work after almost a week off, so it was a lovely surprise to get to work and find this:

Birthday Queen Tiara

In addition to the Birthday Queen tiara, they had hung banners, filled my office with colorful balloons, and strung streamers from the ceiling with Mylar “50’s”  from ceiling to floor. It was very festive! Then the women I work with appeared at my cubicle and handed me a card…inside was a paid registration to a half-marathon in April that I’ve talked about running. Now I have no excuses and my running will have to be a priority…they know me so well! They also brought Baskin-Robbins “cake bites” which were tiny ice cream cakes which we later cut up and shared.

I’m dreaming up ways to make my celebration last. So far I have gift cards to spend and even a gift lost in the mail to anticipate. Some of my friends, who hit this milestone before me, are taking a few of us “newbies” out to celebrate in mid-December. I think I can milk this for some time to come! When the goodwill runs out, I will just have to plan some special things on my own.

So far I’ve come up with a massage (never had one…makes me nervous so definitely something to push myself into), weekend getaways (just need a dog sitter), girls nights out, reuniting with my college roommates, reuniting with my high school friends, celebrating every family moment I can (including my niece’s wedding).

I also want to celebrate by giving back, by celebrating stewardship. I want to celebrate by reveling in the company of my children. I want to celebrate by reading, by listening to music, by losing myself in art. Basically, I want to continue my 50 by 50 and see celebration in every step of my journey.

Find the Joy in the Journey…find the Joy in YOUR journey!

 

Hit The Ground Running

Well, I’m 50. I made it! I am excited to start this new phase of my life, leaving behind my forties which started out fine, but quickly descended into a constant state of stress over one shock after another. From gut-wrenching to uncomfortable, to life shattering, they never ceased. I started my 50 by 50 project to move beyond all of the stress…and I was quite successful. It’s behind me now and I am thrilled to be moving on.

One of my new passions is running. I have carefully cultivated it over the last year and a half, and it’s still pretty fragile. I trained for a half-marathon throughout the summer and ran not one, but three, in the fall…then I ran a chocolate run 10k  two weeks ago…then nothing. I started to think that my running days were over…I’d let too much time elapse since my last run. I did mean to run, but the lack of time, the darkness, all worked against me. In the end, the bitter-coldness got me when all else failed.

I thought to run the day before Thanksgiving, but it was 18 degrees out and a dusting of snow covered the sidewalks…small puddles had become slipways. On Thanksgiving, the cooking responsibilities and family time took precedence. I awoke after a good night’s sleep at 7, realizing that if I’d run the 10k Turkey Trot I’d have had to have gotten up two hours earlier. I was thankful for the sleep, but still regret missing out on the cool running shirt.

Then it was my birthday, and watching my daughter play basketball and taking my kids out for a celebration dinner left no time to think about running. We had a lovely dinner, reminiscing about other family moments at fancy restaurants. The funniest was remembering the moment when my youngest accidentally smacked her butter knife on the edge of the table and it flew up into the air and “buttered” my black jacket. Then my older daughter deadpanned…”we are not fancy people”…we broke out in laughter at the memory!

So today, I kept checking the weather while I enjoyed my time off by playing Words With Friends. I had another tournament basketball game to attend for my daughter, so that limited my procrastination time.  Finally, I put my cold-weather gear on and got out the door. Ah, it felt so nice to be out in the cool weather, to be walking down to the park with my iPod turned on blasting eighties music in my ears. It felt great to run, to move my muscles and feel my body respond to the familiar exercise…I hadn’t lost it. My muscles remembered and rejoiced that I’d engaged them in the run again.

And so, I hit the ground running…running into my fifties! Fifties are the new thirties. I don’t know if I believe that, but I love it anyway! Wherever you are in your life, believe in yourself…strive to do your best, don’t listen to the naysayers in your life, rise above your adversities, do it, just do it!

Find the Joy in the Journey…and Journey on!

 

Pre-Thanksgiving: Not The Vacation Day I Planned

So I woke unexpectedly, at 5 a.m. on my vacation day, to a wrong number. Try convincing someone that they called the wrong number and you only get an argument. At 5 in the morning! This is not fun. I didn’t have my glasses on, but apparently my phone was giving me a message that superseded the ability to hang up on the inconsiderate jerk who called me from a diner at 5 a.m. on my vacation day. I literally had to get my glasses on and read the iPhone notification and deal with that before I could hang up on the man who was chanting something…I presume the name of the person he was intending to call.

I closed my eyes and tried to sleep with little luck. Eventually I got up and took my daughter to school and promised I’d be back at 11:20 for the family gathering. Later, she texted me to come at 11:30, apparently “early” wasn’t ok. When I went, I brought with me her contribution to the meal…a Guinness  cake. All the children were required to bring a dish representing their heritage, my daughter’s had to be a dessert. Now, we basically call ourselves mutts…not of any one heritage, and yet our Irish heritage always weighs in the strongest.

So, in researching Irish desserts, my daughter came up with primarily desserts soaked in Irish Whiskey or Bailey’s Irish Cream. I assured her that this was an American aberration of our heritage and encouraged her to contact our dear friend in Belfast. To my surprise, the response that came back indicated that indeed, all Irish desserts are saturated in booze. Hmm. So, we chose the Guinness cake because the low-alcohol stout would burn out in the baking, leaving only an enriched flavor to the chocolate cake. My daughter baked it herself and it did indeed resemble the top of a pint of Guinness with a fluffy, frosting head.

I am terrible at buffets…I like to try everything. I tried to be smart and so I skipped the breads and I skipped the ethnic foods that I can easily get and I selected a little bit of several dishes. I don’t know what I ate that I was allergic to, and at first I thought it was a mild allergy. Back home, I fell asleep…my reaction to a particularly strong allergen, usually potato, barley, or oats. That’s what I get for eating delicious, homemade food in a buffet!

So, by choice or by accident, I spent my vacation day eating and sleeping…not bad after all. When I woke up, I was lethargic and decided to make myself move to try to wake up. I dragged the second bookcase for my daughter’s clothes out of the garage and into the unheated mudroom. The cold air helped a lot, but I did realize that getting out and running would have been a healthier solution. I had learned how to repair the bookcase by repairing the first, so it was easy to fix the more broken second. Unfortunately, the damage from stain and shellac spills was worse and not as fixable.

I ended the day by taking my younger daughter to basketball practice, picking up my older daughter at the airport, then swinging by church to nab my basketball gal. On home, where I was engaged in an oddly slow conversation with my son. He was not responding via text or phone (full voicemail) leading me to believe his phone was out of action. Meanwhile, we were left with only e-mail to communicate…but he was only on e-mail between 12 and 1 a.m. and then maybe once in the afternoon. This was worse than trying to have a conference call with my colleagues in China (or worse…Australia).

I’m not sure I’ll be able to get my son home for Thanksgiving. I think back to my time at the family gathering…we passed a heart-shaped steel weight hand-to-hand sharing our thanks. For most it was family-friends-health…and many mentions of the school. When it came to me, I simply said, I’m thankful to have all my children home for Thanksgiving…and so it must be.

Find the Joy in the Journey…sometimes it is not a very clear path…but I trust in the outcome.

Rounding Out My Month of Mixing and Mingling with Ghosts and A History Lesson

I finished-up my month of mixing and mingling last night with a party at the Ford Piquette Plant. This was the plant where the first Model T’s were produced…in bright red, later in green. Eventually they were available in green, red, blue, grey, and for an additional charge, black. Even though the black paint had a surcharge, 17% of the cars were ordered in black. When Henry Ford realized that it took an hour (and a loss of production of 120 vehicles) to change over from one color to another, he decided to cut back to a single color and that if 17% of customers were willing to pay extra for black, all of his customers would be happy to have it at no extra charge.

imageThat is just one of the things I learned at this U.S. National Historic Landmark and museum. When I first arrived, I ascended to the second floor via the original freight elevator with it’s wooden floor and safety doors. Walking into the second floor, I met up with friends from work. Looking to the left, I was greeted by this scene…our dinner tables laid out for later. After a bit of mingling and a few appetizers, we were split into three groups. My group started where we were and a docent led us around the second floor of the plant. The building was largely as it had been when it was built, and the place is a historic landmark as much for the innovations in fire safety designed into the architecture as for it’s place in history as the birthplace of the Model T.

We learned many things on our tour of the second floor, including how to spot a car built there…the Ford logo has wings. At one point, someone pointed out that the cars were all right-hand drive. The docent explained that the convention to put the steering wheel on the right was due to the roads being so bad and the sight lines being better from the right side of the vehicle. Clara Ford, Henry’s wife, asked him to move the steering wheel to the other side of the vehicle so that she could get in and out on the “clean” side of the road. Henry complied and with half the global marketshare, this soon became the norm and the other manufacturers followed suit.

After learning about all the cars on the second floor, we moved to the front to see a replica of Henry Ford’s office and to see the place where the first women factory workers wound copper for Magneto ignition coils. They were segregated from the male workers with their own office and a bathroom. All three floors of the building had offices in the front, with all of the factory work done in the back, hence the term “front office”!image

Up on the third floor, we had a new docent. He told us more of the history of the factory and the industry. On this floor is the first all-enclosed vehicle. When the designers saw the first prototype, they thought the fully enclosed vehicle resembled a sedan chair, so they dubbed it a sedan.

We learned how Henry’s confidence in the Model-T almost drove him out of business and how he shut down production for 9 months after he’d lost too much marketshare to continue. A third of the Ford dealers went out of business before Edsel came out with his first Ford, his own Model-A. His designs were more luxurious, like the cars he had been designing for Lincoln, where his dad had let him work to keep him away from the “perfect” Model-T.

Our last stop was seeing a documentary of what it was like to drive in the days when the plant was producing Model-T’s. It was an eye-opening look at just how bad roads were! You can catch a part of this internationally award winning video here on YouTube.

After the movie, it was time for dinner. We were entertained by the ghosts of Henry Ford and two of his closest friends, Harvey Firestone and Thomas Alva Edison. They took us back to the first part of the 20th century and answered our questions about life back then. Too soon, it seemed, it was time to leave.

Find the Joy in the Journey…and the wonder of the history all around us!