Sunday, October 31, 2010

Father and son

I am very blessed to have a son who is not only a great kid (man) but one who also enjoys the same things that I do (obviously it is possible to have a great relationship with your son even if you do not have similar interests). This weekend I took off Friday and left early with Jason to head to the Ouachita National Forest in southeastern Oklahoma. That's right, I said Oklahoma. You probably were like me and thought of Oklahoma only in terms of prairies and the dust bowl. Well there is a part that is truly beautiful with thick forests and real mountains and this time of year, fall foilage.

We loaded up all of our camping gear and headed out. The trail was really pretty and easy at first but then got tougher as we headed up Winding Stair mountain. As we headed back down we stopped and set up our tents, built a fire and ate. Then as wolves howled in the distance we gazed up at the pleathora of stars. The next day we hiked about 16-17 miles through pine and deciduous forests with lots of color, up and down mountains, across streams and ended at Cedar lake where we camped again. Jason kept the conversation going hitting me with questions from politics to religion and sports and to how I was treating my wife. I was more lighthearted with questions like what is the B in LBJ.

Finally we left Sunday morning and drove back along the Talihena Scenic drive, one of the most beautiful drives in the USA. See the pics.

Monday, October 25, 2010


EK in her cheerleading outfit
The Websters
Me and MB
The whole clan of migrating Forresters mixing with Sudans

EK and her doll. She would not put it down.

EK and her Mom

EK going down the otter slide. She loved it!

Jason, Jimmy, Cathy, Luana

Every year during Baylor Homecoming there is a migration of our good friends from Houston, the Forresters. This has been documented for over 20 years and National Geographic is planning on doing an article on this particular species. At first there was only the northern migration from the Houston area. Lately there have been reports of Forresters migrating down from Dallas.
It has been a fun tradition and every year we do the same things - fiesta dinner on Friday night, followed by the bonfire (though this year we opted for the Rangers game), then the parade Sat. morning, lunch at McAllisters (though we changed to Schmaltz's this year), then the football game and finally relaxing back at the house telling stories on each other. I love that our kids all get along so well and all love each other.
This year we missed Larry, and on our side Blake and Christy and Jordan and their family. An added benefit was that we got to see Luana's sister and husband who were here as their daughter, Anna Lee goes to Baylor. Amy and Mary Beth came early so we got to take in the zoo before it all started. The game was great as Baylor won and became bowl eligible. There was a big thunderstorm and we all got soaked, but those who endured to the end got to go on to the field to celebrate.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Family time

The weekend before last we went up to Dallas to see all of our kids and grandkids and for Jayden's soccer match (if you can call it that) as well as Campbell's dedication. It was a great time spent watching the above mentioned things as well as the Rangers and Baylor football. We also went to the dallas arboretum which was beautiful though crowded. We got some good pumpkin pics. I got to play tennis with Jason, run, do a lot of eating (Christy made a delicious meal of fajitas and as usual was decorated right out of Martha Stewart (though I am told it was mostly done by Mary Beth who may resent that comment). We are so blessed to be so close to our kids and that they still enjoy being with us.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


Last weekend Luana took advantage of the beautiful weather to finally complete my anniversary gift to Luana (May 21st)and travelled to Fredricksburg. It was the first time for us to get away by ourselves and it was great. We did some shopping down main street for several hours, but I was a little disappointed in her. I expected her to go all the way to the store closings. She just doesn't have it like she used to. Maybe she is getting a little old!!! Then we went to the wildseed farm which was a fun little side trip. Afterwards we went to Pedernales Falls state park and had a nice time in the river. The next day we went to climb up Enchanted Rock which was also nice. We topped it off by visiting Luana's sister and brother-in-law in Austin before heading home. The backroads of the Texas hill country is very pretty and well worth visiting. There are also some good local eating that we could share with you if you are interested. The only problem was that I forgot my camera and had to use my cell phone camera.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Rest in peace

It has been four months since my mother passed away, making her the third in our family (after my dad and older brother Clint. Since we had the other two cremated and had never done anything with the ashes, we decided to put them in the coffin with my mother so that they would all be buried together. This last week they finally got the memorial put in place and Luana and I got out to the cemetary to see it and got a picture.

Things were happening so fast at the time of her death (we were going to Uganda in a week)that I never really got a chance to reflect on her passing. Now that I have more time, there are a few things that jump out. The first is that with her death, a generation has passed. Not only because both of our parents have died but also because she was the only surviving child out of ten in her family. It is really sobering to think that we are now the oldest generation in our line.

Secondly it is interesting how fragile bloodlines can be (I'm sure Henry VIII can relate). Now Jason and Robin are the only two left who can carry on the Sudan name from our line. I am in no way trying to put any pressure on them but only making a point.

Thirdly it makes one wonder about your own life and what impact you will leave behind. Certainly money and possessions won't matter except for some squabbling. But how will people remember me or will they even remember me? Am I making any kind of lasting impact on the lives of my family and the people around me? This second half of our lives has most us us transitioning from success to significance. It is no longer worthwhile just being busy doing things, even things for the Kingdom. I want to make sure that my time is spent on things of lasting value.

Lastly I find that now I do not hold on so tightly to this world and find myself looking a little more longingly at the next life (especially after my surgery and Luana's condition). No I am not ready to check out and I am not depressed. I still have a host of grandkids that I need to make sure grow up well and learn how to pitch and shoot baskets.