Oh, You Know, These Photos Are Only A Month Late…

 

Happy Memorial Day Ya’ll!

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In late April, my sister drove up from Texas with her five children to visit for my birthday.

First thing upon arrival - lunch.
First thing upon arrival – lunch. Baby brother trying to snag some “sannich”.

Not only did she drive up from south Texas…but the day after she arrived, we all caravanned over to the St Louis Zoo to celebrate some birthdays together (it’s only another hour and forty-five minutes…).

Six kids under the age of eight - three adults.
Six kids under the age of eight – three adults.

Thanks to the tax-payers of St Louis, the zoo has free admission. We did pay a fortune for parking though.

Birthday boy numero Uno - my nephew Peter turned 5!
Birthday boy numero Uno – my nephew Peter turned 5!

Three birthdays in one weeks time. I had my 32nd, my nephew had a 5th and my little Wiley had his 2nd.

Birthday boy number 2!
Birthday boy number 2!

I have so many fond memories of going to the zoo – I still love going to the zoo – I love that even though I can’t make a plane ride over to Africa, or India or You name it – we can still observe and appreciate animals from around the world.

Sea Lions are a huge hit - although I have seen these animals in the wild - off the California coast.
Sea Lions are a huge hit – although I have seen these animals in the wild – off the California coast.

I just hope that the zoo keepers treat these animals with compassion. Because that is how I like to be treated, animals are not any different.

Dan making sure Wiley can see the Sea Lions...
Dan making sure Wiley can see the Sea Lions…

Kind of interesting that Compassion has been a key phrase that keeps coming back to me these days.

Alan, Alan, Alan, Alan, Alan, Alan, Alan...no, wait, that's Steve. Steve, Steve, Steve...
Alan, Alan, Alan, Alan, Alan, Alan, Alan…no, wait, that’s Steve. Steve, Steve, Steve…

Yesterday was my last day teaching the Sunbeams (3 to 4 year old children – I had ten of them) and there was a new girl there named Simaya. The Primary chorister was teaching a song about compassion and asked it the children knew what that world meant.

Lunch time for the Primates.
Lunch time for the Primates.

This four year old girl pointed over to a picture of a Lion laying down with the Lamb hanging on the wall and said, “That’s compassion.”

I told her she was right.

DSC_0706Children are very bright and they understand so much more than us adults realize.

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Someday the Lion will lay down with the Lamb and there will be no more wars.

Today is Memorial Day, the day we honor our veterans. We don’t live in a time of continual peace yet…

My favorite animal
My favorite animal

My grandfathers, My father, My Aunt, My cousins, and My friends have served this country under the banner of the U.S. Armed Forces.

One of my sweet sisters.
One of my sweet sisters.

I am grateful for their service and for the other men and women who serve and have served.

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Although I am grateful for their service – and in some cases the sacrifice of their lives or limbs or minds – I would like to see all these men and women be able to come home and serve in some other capacity.

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I don’t want more funerals and broken families.

I want more picnics with whole families.

I want to continue to celebrate the heros of the past.

I don’t want to create more heros, out of loss.

Happy Memorial Day

My nephew Samwise!
My nephew Samwise!

and God Bless.

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