© 2011 . All rights reserved. Congratulations

A big day.

Saturday May 21, 2011. A monumental day indeed. My nephew Colton’s high school graduation.

My sister Laurie, her two children and I made our way down to Collinsville, Illinois, where my sister Kim and family live. Collinsville is six and a half hours south of where I am located.

The drive time was well spent getting reacquainted with them. I do not get to see them nearly enough. Those beautiful little niece and nephew monkeys of mine, Gabe and Zoe, have grown so much. It is so amazing to see how their individual personalities have taken shape.

While Gabe and Zoe were watching their movies in the back seat, Laurie and I were able to catch up on what was going on in the other’s lives.

When conversation was not being exchanged I found myself looking out the window at the passing scenery. Many miles of farmland and small towns.

And yes, I had phone in hand. So pics happened.

I also saw many motorcycles taking to the roadways. I could not help but think about hopping on Bike X and starting this ride of mine. Gotta make this thing happen sooner than later. Anxious me.

We arrived at my sister Kim’s house fairly late. It was so good to see Kim, my niece Cassie, nephew Colton and Kim’s husband Rob. My mom and stepdad were at their hotel, so I would have to wait until Saturday at the graduation to see them.

After a morning of rushing to get ready, we found ourselves at the graduation ceremony. Laurie, her kiddos and I had to watch the ceremony on a large video screen in the school auditorium because the graduates were only were given six tickets for the actual ceremony location.

While waiting to see Colton receive his diploma, I was moved by the guest speaker’s speech. I hope that Colton and the rest of the graduates listened to his message.

As Colton’s name was being announced, I thought about the amazing young man he has grown to be. Compassionate, sensitive, honest, respectful, intelligent and loving. I’m so proud of him. Kim, good work bringing up such a wonderful young man.

Ceremony ends. Time for the post picture taking. Which Colton is a big fan of. Ha.

Then it was time to celebrate the big event at the park pavilion.

Decorations in place, food being grilled and smiles aplenty.

It was so enjoyable seeing all the kids playing and having a great time. I got caught up in it myself. I decided to throw the baseball around with Colton and his friend. I hadn’t done so in at least six years. I used to play a lot of baseball until I graduated from high school. It had always been my sport. I enjoyed it so much. Thank you Colton and Ryan for putting up with this old fart.

They also had a bat, so I found myself wanting to see how well I could still swing the big stick around. Actually, I ended up surprising myself. I was still able to hit the longish ball. The kids were continually having to back up for my hits. Sorry guys.

I ended up pushing it more than I should have. All of that swinging ended up giving me quite a bit of pain. The twisting of my torso aggravated the stent in my left ureter. It got me down a bit. It caused me to reflect on the reality that my physical being is compromised. Which affects physical activities I like to partake in.

I got past it in short order. This was a special day and I was not going to let my health issues affect it.

We all continued to have a wonderful day. The weather held out and we made the most of it.

Colton, you have a future full of happiness and contentment ahead of you. Find what makes you tick and run with it. No mercy.

Love you stud.

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