Category Archives: Event

Ames Jaycees Sandbox Fill

Saturday was the big annual Ames Jaycees Sandbox Fill. I’m going to try to combine a couple of different things together to describe the event and I’m not sure it is going to come together exactly right.

So like I was saying, Saturday was the big annual Ames Jaycees Sandbox Fill. We met up at the Salvation Army at about 8:30 in the morning. We were split up into two teams: Team 1 and Team 2. I was assigned to Team 2. I felt that our team name was not indicative of our dominance in the realm of sandbox filling and was an attempt by Team 1 to claim a superiority that they hadn’t earned at the handles of a wheelbarrow. I suggested that we change our team name to Team Kicks Team 1’s Ass. I’m not sure we ever really made a decision on our team name.

Regardless of the fact that our team name did not indicate such, we were filled with powerhouses:

  • Shannon (Team Leader)
  • Melissa
  • Jamie
  • Adam
  • Jason
  • Keith

We ended up dominating the morning and early afternoon by any meaningful criteria. We filled two more sandboxes than they did, including 1 that wasn’t even on our list of assigned sandboxes and 1 that was on Team 1’s list. We also finished up well before they did, despite a couple of hiccups that were not the fault of anybody on our team.

On a downer note, I was also told that I seemed like a Computer Guy. I don’t think that I’ve ever been so insulted in many a year.

Monday morning came around and I started exchanging e-mails with my chums from The Principal Group. I let it slip out that I had stood around the Salvation Army parking lot for about 25 minutes on Saturday morning.

Russell jumped onto this little tidbit:

You appear to be loitering or are involved in some sort of drug trafficking scheme. Am I the only one who felt this needed explaining?

I wrote back:

It was actually public service. Saturday was the Jaycees Sandbox Fill. We met at the Salvation Army. Look below to see a not very good picture of me from Saturday.

Ames Jaycees Sandbox Fill - 2008

The Me Not Looking So Good Picture

To which Russell replied:

You still appear to be committing some sort of criminal activity. The other person has a do rag, and when the do rag comes out, it’s never above board. How long have you worked for the mafia, Chris?

And Andree added:

I believe that Chris was indeed working. He’s a photographer, thus knows when to stop working and how to pose when a photo-op arrives to make himself as photogenic as possible given the circumstances.

And Baier added:

Doesn’t anyone else think that Chris looks added to this picture; to make it seem like he did a public service? Really; what kind of person who is actually working with a wheelbarrow smiles?

Then Russell added this:

Why the hell is she doing the digging and you’re holding a wheelbarrow? Be a man and get your hands dirty!

To which I was forced to respond:

I don’t know what is more manly, but moving a wheelbarrow full of sand is not work for the faint of heart. It is a manly and strenuous job. But if you must know, I did my fair share of raking. See picture below:

Ames Jaycees Sandbox Fill - 2008

Look! My hands are dirty and now it is more difficult to eat donuts.

Now I’m going to step back from The Principal Group for a moment. There was one moment that kind of soured the day. There was a moment of prejudice and bigotry that made the day a little bit sad. The type of prejudice and bigotry that I thought that this great nation of ours had moved beyond, but I’m going to regale you with the tale because at least one member of Team Kicks Team 1’s Ass found it to be a hoot.

A customer of ours saw Jamie pushing a wheelbarrow.

Ames Jaycees Sandbox Fill - 2008
Jamie and her Wheelbarrow

The customer approached Shannon and asked her this bigoted question:

What do you call a woman doing a man’s job?

I don’t know.


Let us put that sad story of prejudice and move back to the e-mails of The Principal Group.

After I sent out the picture of my raking, I figured I would be inundated with apologies, but that didn’t happen.

Russell responded thusly:

And in this picture you’re face is enshrouded in darkness. And how cruel is it to be burying merchandise and stolen goods underneath children’s playground equipment? Have you mafia types no shame?

I responded:

Perhaps you would like to sign on and help for next year? Stolen merchandise just won’t bury its self.

For the record, I now have a prejudice against sandboxes that are underneath play equipment, where the slide doesn’t move out of the way.

Russell’s reply:

I will volunteer if there aren’t a lot of kids running around. The Big Hu-Hot has never been an patient man. And the Big Hu-Hot will also not work in inclement conditions, but is not opposed to some muscle work if it’s for a good cause or a percentage of any profits. My do rag is black, though, not lily white, so I’d be naturally worried that would cause a conflict.

So perhaps next year I might be able to get Russell out there to move some sand around.

I do have more pictures of the event. You can click on the picture below, or the link below the picture and it will take you to my Snapshots Gallery. After that all you have to do is click on the Ames Jaycees Album and get to perusing.

Ames Jaycees’ Sandbox Fill


A few things for you to consider about the Snapshots Gallery. You can now register to use the Snapshots Gallery. The only thing that is required is a valid e-mail address.

In the upper right hand corner, there is a link that says “Register”. Just click on that, agree to my terms and conditions and then fill out some information. An e-mail will arrive in your inbox that tells you how to complete the registration process. Here is a hint: It involves clicking on a link in the e-mail.

Once you have registered, you can Login. Here are the benefits of registering:

  • Unlock Private Albums
  • Edit Personal Profile Information
  • Leave Comments on Pictures
  • Rate Pictures
  • Favorite Pictures

This Gallery is still under construction (meaning new pictures are added daily), but it is fully functioning.

If for some reason you don’t get an e-mail to activate your account, then just e-mail me and I’ll activate your account.

Also, if you have an account for the Artistic Photo Gallery, that doesn’t mean you have an account for the Snapshots Gallery. The galleries are controlled by separate databases (in actuality separate tables) and therefore you need to create separate accounts for both. However, you can still use all the same information for both.

Any way, that is enough computer garbage. You’ll figure it out, I’m starting to sound like a Computer Guy, but that is a bit of unpleasantness to discuss in the future.


VEISHEA was cold. A little bit miserable. However, there were some highlights. It took me awhile to see them because I was pretty upset that the good fried cheese curd stand was not there, but I eventually got over it. Who am I kidding? I’m still fuming about it.

I did take some pictures after I ran into Jeff and Yin.

Smokey, Jeff, and Yin

Me, Jeff, Smokey, and Woodsie


My friend Willy would call these people nerds, but he is a nerd. Who is he to judge?

Jeff took this picture of me.

Jeff and the Astronaut




The highlight of VEISHEA for me was seeing the crane in Lake Laverne. I’ve been told that it is a little bit weird that the crane was a highlight for me.

Oscar Pictures from Jen

I was sitting at work today minding my own business when an e-mail fluttered across cyberspace and into my inbox. Technically it was two e-mails. I now share with you what was contained in those e-mails, namely pictures from Jen’s camera of the Oscar Party.

Oscar Party - 2008
Jen in her Fur Coat

Oscar Party - 2008

Oscar Party - 2008
I am Mine

Oscar Party - 2008
With the Guitar God

Oscar Party - 2008
Jen and Derrick

Oscar Party - 2008
Sans Beanie

Oscar Party - 2008
That Tie Deserves Better

I think for the 2009 Oscar Party I might switch to a fedora and bring a cane. Although with the beanie Jen says I look “very Mohammad”. I dig that.

I might as well throw up a few pictures I took on that night. I didn’t take a camera to the party. I’ve been considering buying a small camera that I can fit in a pocket for this type of event, but I haven’t done it as of yet.

Derrick Waiting


I know it is derivative, but everybody loves the bass picture so why not post this one?



If you are wondering, I will be buying a Sony. Carl Zeiss Lens! That is all I need to say!

Oscar Party Pictures

I got some pictures e-mailed to me from Brenda of the 2008 Oscar Party. These are a little bit small, but I think you will get an idea of the glamor of the event. This event is also doubles as a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.

Oscar Party - 2008

Oscar Party - 2008
Jen & Derrick

Oscar Party - 2008
Brenda with her Beau

Oscar Party - 2008
Jen in her Fur Coat

Oscar Party - 2008
With Jen and Derrick

I’m still waiting to get some more pictures from Jen, so there may be more pictures posted in the future.

The Church of the Inebriated Saints

Shorty often refers to going to church twice on the same day as building up credit. On Friday night I went to The Venue to attend the Church of the Inebriated Saints. I think by Shorty’s logic, I get credit for that and can skip church some time in the future.

I took several pictures of Inebriated Saints and I’m going to unload a large collection of them right here. I left shortly after their show concluded, but based on then names of the other bands, they sounded like yelling-screaming-angry-white-male-feel-sorry-for-me music, I’m just going to assume that they were the victors.

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

Inebriated Saints

It is a fact that many of these pictures aren’t really your standard picture and might be kind of artistically pretentious, but I felt the need to get a bit creative because bar photography is not my forte. There is limited light, so you are really kind of limited in your options. You can crank up the ISO, but that results in digital noise. You can crack out the blinding flash and my Top Photo Assistant can tell you, I don’t really like flash photography. The only other option is to get a little creative. Admittedly you will find examples of all of these in the photos above.

On a more personal note. This trip out to The Venue was my first trip to a Boone bar in almost 2 years. I saw some people that I hadn’t seen in several years. Anybody that has ever seen me knows that I’m not a big personal appearance person. (Although I have really gotten into color coordinating my beanies lately.) If I know somebody, I know them and don’t even really think about what their personal appearance might be saying to the rest of the world.

A couple different people came up to me and asked me: “You are Christopher Bennett, correct?”

One of these people was a muscular looking gent with a shaved head and a goatee. I had a brief conversation with him and then he returned to his job duties. I never thought of him as being scary looking. Although I might not ever be muscular looking, the clock is ticking on when I will be a bald dude with a goatee. The only thing to be determined is whether or not I will have the guts to keep the sideburns.

Shannon said that guy was really scary looking.

I thought, really? I mean maybe a guy that looks like that can be intimidating, but I only see Larry Sprecher. One of the kids (along with his brother Mike and Kelly Wilson) that I played G.I. Joe with.

Becky came to the concert with Shannon. This resulted in a bonus photo session that I call “The Get Your Picture Taken with Shannon Session”. Check out these bonus photos:

Inebriated Saints Concert

Inebriated Saints Concert

One other person that talked to me at the bar was Jamie’s friend Bonnie. She wanted to know if I had a “little, short, blonde guy with me”. She was referring to Jay. When I relayed that story to Jay on Saturday morning, he became distraught. It turns out Jay doesn’t like to be referred to as both little and short.

Minutia – Chapter 6: An Adequate Birthday

Chapter 6: An Adequate Birthday

I woke up on a Friday morning. It had been 32 years since I was born. If I know the story correctly, my parents had to leave the Hillbilly Auction for my birth. That sentence didn’t sound correct. Let me try again. If I know the tale, my Ma and Pa had to leave the Hillbilly Auction for my birthin’.

Perhaps it is tales like this that prompted my cousin Allan to once give my kin (sisters) the backhanded compliment that he was impressed with how well we turned out considering the White Trash we came from. I’ve always considered this to be a bold and clueless statement considering that we are related by blood. If I came from White Trash, he came from the same white trash bin. Believe me, I don’t want to compare sides of the family, but he comes from the side of my family that is considerably less sophisticated.

I had realized long ago that family is family and it doesn’t matter so much where you came from as where you are going. But where you came from always remains part of who you are. I embrace that fact.

Yet, where I was 32 years ago on this day mattered little for where I was going on this day. I got out of bed, showered, and went to work.

The drive for me to work is almost always the same. On this day though I was going to add the complication of trying to change my voice mail message. This really goes against my core belief that people shouldn’t talk on the cell phone while they are driving, but I really didn’t want to be bothered with a ton of phone calls wishing me a happy birthday. It was my birthday, but I didn’t want that to control my entire day. I was going to change my voicemail to say something to the effect that I “wasn’t taking calls on this day, but if you leave a message I’ll return your call tomorrow.”

It turned out that I pushed a wrong button along the way and changed my message to that message that just tells people what number they have just dialed. Then the battery on my phone died. I considered this to be good enough.

Work was more or less uneventful. More than half of our employees were in Seattle for the big convention. To placate (the people who care that they weren’t in Seattle, which doesn’t include me) the people left behind, the Company grilled out. This meant some kind of pork. It was tasty and prevented me from having to leave to find food.

The only other eventful thing to happen during the workday was a call from Jesse. Apparently he wasn’t to be denied. He actually called my work phone. This is a good thing, because if you take out him calling my work phone, it has rang on only a handful of other occasions. If it wasn’t for Jesse, my phone could break and I would never know it.

When he called I was not at my desk. I was talking to a co-worker about 70s science fiction movies. The Shipping Manager approached me and said, “I have Jesse parked in 4.”

“I don’t know what to do about that.”

She explained what to do and I was successful. I had Jesse on the line.

“You not answering your phone?” It was both an accusation and a question at the same time.

“The battery is dead.” It didn’t dawn on me that he was talking about my work phone because nobody ever calls it.

“I mean your work phone.”

“It hasn’t rang all day.”

“I just called you.”

“I didn’t hear it ring, but I was over talking to Co-Worker X about ‘Zardoz’.”

“Well, I just wanted to talk to you on your birthday.”


“You got anything big planned?”

“Just going over to Colleen’s for supper.” I had enough of this birthday talk. I changed the subject. “How is Seattle?”

“It is awesome. It is the greatest and cleanest big city ever.”

“Are you going to do anything cool?” This was a legitimate question. I’m always disappointed when I here stories about people that travel to exotic and interesting locales and all they can tell me when they got back was how drunk they got. I’ve never been much of a drinker, which people tell me clouds my judgment on such issues, but I’ve never been to Seattle or Hawaii or Los Angeles. I wouldn’t want to go some place that has so much to offer and only come back with a basket full of “I got so wasted” memories. I can make those memories in Boone for a quarter of the price.

The other side of this question was because I worry about Jesse. Our big convention is just like every other convention. It involves lots of drinking. Jesse is not supposed to mix alcohol with his medication. This is exacerbated by his well documented lightweight status. It only takes a few drinks to get him going, but there are theories that it isn’t possible for human to get drunk on as little alcohol as it takes to get him loopy.

A friend of ours by the name of Corey is a leader in the field of alcohol research. He is a man that is so passionate about the field that he has even suffered broken bones in the pursuit of new knowledge. He has purported the theory that none of us have ever actually seen Jesse drunk. We have only seen him pretend to be drunk.

That might be the case, but I do know that despite his doctors warning and being surrounded by alleged friends at the convention in Las Vegas last year, he had too much to drink. As I have stated, due to his medication, too much to drink is anything to drink.

I say this because while a few of them were walking down a Las Vegas sidewalk, Jesse decided to drop trou and have a whiz. This actually is not a completely rare sight. It is not uncommon for a group of men out and about to stop short and take care of business out in public. Men don’t even have to be drunk to engage in such an activity.

You don’t have to be drunk to take a leak facing a building. You have to be drunk to do it facing the street. I was hoping not to hear a repeat of the Las Vegas story come back from Seattle.

“We are going on an underground city tour and we are going to a Mariners game.”

I was jealous of these two activities. The Mariners were playing the Padres on this evening. The Padres have been my favorite team for over twenty years now. I have never seen them play. In fact I have never seen a real baseball game. I have been to the Metrodome and to Kauffman Stadium on numerous occasions, but that doesn’t count as real baseball. They use the Designated Hitter. Then I reminded myself that an interleague game at an American League stadium did not qualify as real baseball either. They would be using the great abomination as well. Still, I would like to see the Padres play some time, even if it is under such conditions.

The underground tour would be fascinating as well. If I ever do make it to Seattle, it is the one thing I would have to do. Seattle has a fascinating history in this respect. I’m a sucker for almost all kinds of history.

“Chris Young is pitching tonight. You’ll have to watch his control early in the game. If he throws strikes early in the game he will dominate. If he his is going deep in the count in the early innings, he will have a short night. There is no middle ground for him. He either has control or he doesn’t.”

“I’ll have to watch for that.”

“The underground tour, that would be the number one thing that I would want to see if I went to Seattle.”

“Why is that?”

“Seattle has a unique history and their underground is unlike any other in the world. Their city started to sink, so they just changed what was considered ground level and what was ground level is still there, but now it is underground.”

“That does sound pretty cool.”

“It sounds fascinating. You’ll have to let me know how it was.”

“I’ll let you get back to work.”


I left work at about 6 pm. I was supposed to be at Colleen’s for supper around 7 pm. We were having a giant birthday supper for all of the May birthdays. Rebecca, Nate, Colleen, and I all had the great pleasure of being born in May. Nate and Bethany were coming back from Minnesota for Rebecca’s graduation and this was really the only time that we would all be available to sup together.

It was my birthday, but it was really just like any other day. There were times in the past when I would take my birthday off and do whatever I wanted. I would make my birthday my own 24 hours of hedonism. I would only do the things that I enjoyed. I would even have grand birthday bashes where I would send out birthday invitations that glorified me. Those days were behind me now. I was perfectly content to let my birthday pass by just like it was any other day on the calendar. I didn’t want or need birthday presents. Today was an adequate birthday. It was a day like any other. That was all I wanted.

(Secretly though I did covet a couple of birthday presents and I have gotten one of those presents and I have an IOU for the other.) I have found though that whether or not you want presents or not, people some times insist on giving them to you. Which is alright, I guess.

I arrived at Colleen’s at about 7:15. She greeted me at the door. Rebecca and Kirk were there, but Bethany and Nate were not there. For the tenth straight time that I have been to Colleen’s, Kirk was watching some form of auto racing. It seemed like a waste of such a nice television.

“Where are Nate and Bethany?” I asked. It had been a while since I had seen either of them. I don’t think I had seen Bethany since we went to the Sculpture Garden and I don’t think I had seen Nate since the Jordis Unga concert.

“They are still on the road.” Colleen answered. “Apparently they had to stop somewhere because Bethany wanted to buy a camera.”

I took a seat and waited. I looked at the television. There were trucks driving around in a circle. I don’t know much about racing, but I hope this wasn’t the big race of the week for truck racers. There must have been maybe 100-200 people in the stands. I did not make any comments deriding auto racing though. I have quietly come to accept the fact that auto racing has invaded all of my families on some levels. Although I have accepted the fact with a defeated dignity, I figured that I would take a few jabs at the “sport” when Nate was present. He had the ability to do it in a good natured way where feelings were only bruised and not injured. If I started in with Rebecca as my backup, things might get personal.

So I turned to Rebecca. “Are your hands clean?”


“I got that book that is going into Kelly’s Salon, if you would like to check it out.”


I handed the box in the book with it over to her.

“Good news,” I said, “Your picture came yesterday, so I just need to get it matted and then it will be ready for Sunday. Are you going to be around tomorrow?”

“I will be in the morning. I’m going to a Slaughterhouse 6 show at Vaudeville Mews tomorrow night and I have some graduation parties to go to.”

“What time are you getting up in the morning?”

“Pretty early. Probably about 9.”

I knew that meant 11.

“Did you like that Van Gogh book that I got you?”

“Yeah. It is pretty neat. I think it will come in real useful when I go to college.”

“I hope it does.”

It was then that the door opened and Nate walked in with Bethany. Nate looked at the television and saw that racing was on the television. Nate had been admiring the television for quite some time. He held his tongue, but the look on his face clearly indicated that he thought that this was a waste of a perfectly good television.

Bethany looked at me and said, “Hey Chris!”

Whenever Bethany is going to ask me for a favor or for my help she always starts the request with these two words and an identical inflection. This is the type of inflection that makes the two word “hey” and “Chris” a question more than a declarative statement.

I already knew that a request was about to be made and I already knew that the request was going to be granted. What I didn’t know was what the request was going to be.

“Yes Bethany.”

“What are you doing tomorrow?”

“I don’t have anything scheduled per se.” I still didn’t have much information. “Except that I’m going to be delivering Rebecca’s picture signature board thing.”

“Can you help me buy a camera?”

Wow! This was something I was actually, sort of qualified to do. In fact, people had sought my advice about buying a camera quite frequently lately. Only every single time I had given my advice and backed it up with reasons, the advisees had bought something completely different.

“Yeah, I can do that. I’m actually pretty excited about it. Perhaps you might listen to my advice.” I said and thought “rather than completely wasting my time”. Why don’t people listen to me? They come to me for a reason, but then they just wander off into the wilderness. Fools and knaves! All of them!

I stroked my goatee knowingly and then I asked, “What time were you thinking?”

Bethany sat there for a second.

Nate chimed in, “Why don’t you ask her what time she is going to get up.” Brothers are always there to help.

I acted on Nate’s advice, “What time are you going to get up?”

“I can get up and be ready by noon.”

“Then we’ll go at noon.”

Racing trucks roared in the background.

Moments later we were sitting around the kitchen table eating supper. Colleen had fixed a wondrous spread. It included turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, and asparagus. There were also various salads but I’m not going to try to describe them. I’m sure they were varying forms of pasta salad, but that is all I can say about them for sure, besides that they were delicious. This is a gap in my schooling that I have looked to close in recent weeks. I have yet to be successful.

After dinner I sat down in the chair where I couldn’t get a clear look at the screen. Trucks were still driving around in a circle. It boggles my mind that at this point they had been doing this for over 2 hours.

Nate, Bethany, and Rebecca all sat down around the television. We were all miserable from eating too much food. It was a good kind of miserable though.

In the kitchen Colleen and Kirk did the dishes and cut up the birthday cake. Even though it seemed that I couldn’t eat any more food, I managed to eat a piece of cake. It was a good cake, but it wasn’t the caliber of cake made by Nate. I think I would have added a third thing to my secret birthday list, but in retrospect what Nate did give me was almost as good as a Nate cake. Besides, he certainly didn’t have the time to make a cake while he was down this weekend. Nate makes such good cakes. Perhaps if he asks me for a birthday list next year, I’ll just point to my belly and tell him to make if full and happy. Happy with cake.

Even though I did not desire anything, I was given a couple of birthday presents afterwards. It not being just my birthday, I was not the only one. Rebecca had brought bag purses for Bethany and Colleen from the Senior Trip to New York City. One was a “Prada” and the other was a “Coach”. I received a pretty sweet stocking cap that says New York City on it. It makes me look even tougher than I normally do. When I wear it I will no doubt scare small children.

From Colleen and Kirk I got a copy of the first season of “The Office”. Always an excellent choice.

Shortly after the cake had been eaten, Sara H. showed. Sara had just graduated from college. She told me how she was going to work for Habitat for Humanity for a year in North Carolina to be near her boyfriend who goes to Davidson.

The thought crossed my mind about her working on a construction crew. It might be possible that her mastery over profanity could be taken to the next level. Habitat might be a non-profit organization, but I refuse to believe that anybody can frame a house and put up dry wall with out the occasional f bomb flying out of their mouth. Well, perhaps the Amish.

She ruined this dream. She is going to be doing office work. How boring.

After a few more minutes of polite conversation, Bethany and Sara H. left for a bar in the west end of town.

A little after they left, Colleen and Kirk left for the bar. That left the television remote unguarded and up for grabs. Rebecca and Nate both made a move for the remote, but Rebecca is younger and was quicker.

She turned the television to TBS and just like that truck racing was replaced by “Sex and the City”. Nate grumbled at this development.

“This is only marginally better than watching auto racing.” Nate declared.

I moved to the couch so that I could actually see the television screen. Nate grumbled some more. Then he watched in silence for about five minutes.

“Well, I’ve seen all of this I can take.” Then Nate got up off the couch and left to go to the bar.

This left just me and Rebecca. Watching “Sex and the City” reruns on a Friday night.

“Do you hate ‘Sex and the City’?” Rebecca asked.

“I’ve been more or less conditioned to watch this show.”

Then we more or less sat in silence watching the remainder of the episode where one character hooked up with the guy from “Office Space”, one character decided that she really did love her baby’s father, one character realized her relationship could only go so far because her boyfriend was Jewish, and I can’t remember the problems of the fourth character. The show ended and we watched another episode. Same problems.

“Sex and the City” was followed by an episode of “Scrubs”. About half way through this show I got up and said, “Well, I better call it a night. I have to get up early tomorrow to do some matting.”

Rebecca wished me a good night. As I walked down the stairs, through the door, and out to my car I had one thought cross my mind:

“This was a perfectly adequate birthday and there was nothing wrong with that.”

Bennett's Run
Former Birthday Party Invitation – Parody of “Logan’s Run”

Present from Rebecca – Photo by Corey Schmidt

One of my “secret birthday wishes” – Stained Glass Made by Jen