My family winged their way to parts west ten days ago. It’s part of their annual pilgrimage to New Mexico and west Texas. Some years I go; some years I don’t. It usually hinges on the activity level of August. This August has shaped up to be phenomenally phrenetic.

The week before they left, we enjoyed having Carolyn’s mom and our twin nephews and 5 year-old niece. With Sam and Adelyn and those three kiddoes in the house, I’m confident that one can contract ADHD if you had never had it. It was a fun, crazy, wild week. Caro and her mom were amazing as they towed the five cousins all over Virginia. We guys went mini-golfing one afternoon together. We happened to pick the hottest day of the year, and so I dripped while they putted. Funny how young’uns don’t care how hot it is.

This past weekend was Blackburg’s annual Steppin Out festival. It’s an excuse to rope off downtown and enjoy the company of your neighbors. It was packed. Our church had a booth and handed out almost 1500 Pop-Ices for free. That went over extremely well. It was fun to meet, greet and extend a smile and a cold treat as we attempted to show God’s love in a practical way.

Whenever my family leaves on trips like these, the first couple of days are nice. Quiet. It’s almost like a retreat. Then the quietness turns on you, and you realize the vacuum. I filled the void with three boxes: Redbox, Xbox and the cereal box.

Carolyn was horrified when I told her proudly on the phone the other night, “I’ve only eaten something besides cereal for dinner twice since you’ve been gone.” (I LOVE cereal.) It’s amazing how fast one person can go through a gallon of milk when all you’re eating is cereal.

Today is the day they fly in, and I’m excited to have my family reunited. There’s only two more weeks before school, and we’re hoping to sneak away to the beach before it starts – in between church activities and outreach.

Note: I’m in Roanoke as I write this, and I’m back at Panera. I came by earlier today to read, but now the fam’s flight is delayed for two hours, so it’s a Pick 2 and blogging. (They didn’t have Frosted Flakes on the menu.)

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