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Another reason for the family trip to SW Florida was so we could present this shadowbox to my father-in-law for his birthday. He served 20-years in the US Air Force, but he didn’t have ANY reminders of his service, they being lost to the passage of time. All he had were some papers in a briefcase he kept in his closet. Fortunately, one of those papers was his DD214, which contained most of the of the information needed to construct the shadowbox, and short conversation provided the rest.

Happy Birthday, “Poppy”…and thanks for your service!


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Once again, the boys’ school held a Veteran’s Day celebration. This is always a fun experience. The kids are asked to invite family members that are veterans to participate. I retired from the Air Force before the boys’ first birthday and they’ve never seen me in my uniform (other than pictures, of course). So, I shaved my beard and pulled the old BDUs out of the box in the garage. To my surprise, it still fit (albeit a bit tighter)…I’m certainly a lot greyer, though!

The Old Airman

This year there was a presentation in the cafeteria by the older kids, then the vets went to the various “houses” (first grade area, section grade area, etc.) to participate their kid’s, grandkid’s activity. The boys took part in the group event with other members of their cub scout pack, lining-up on stage for the pledge of allegiance and the national anthem. Adam and Alex looked great!

There were several vets connected to first graders in the “Fire House”. All the kids classes lined up and sand several verses of “Yankee Doodle Dandy” for us, then there was a Q&A, which was a lot of fun!

Alex Adam

It was a very special day for this old Chief…

The Old Chief

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This week we’ve spent packing-out of our house, readying for our trip to our new home in Pennyslvania. The packers have done a great job so far, and will be loading the truck tomorrow. This evening we checked into billeting at Keesler AFB, where we’ll be spending the next two nights. We came in and set the boys down on the carpet, and after crawling around for less than 5-minutes, their knees, hands, and feet were filthy!! The carpets hadn’t been cleaned–shampooed–in who-knows-how-long!!!! The ambivalence of the lodging staff when I called to complain was a testament to the maintenance-level of this room. Think I’m exaggerating? Take a look at Adam’s knees and feet…

Dirty Billeting Room

Sad. So, sad.

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