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I love my kids. I don’t like all kids necessarily, but I love my kids. I shouldn’t say that. Kids are super fun, most of the time, and if they’re not mine I guess I can just give them back. But no matter what is going on in our busy lives, I love my kids. I have 4 kids, 2 are over 18, one is serving a mission for my Church and won’t be home for about 16 more months. The next oldest just graduated this spring, and really didn’t have a direction in life yet. There were a lot of things she didn’t want to do, but she wasn’t sure what she did want to do.

A job opportunity came up in late June and she was gone, just over 24 hours after the offer was made, to a remote, fly-in only, hunting lodge in the Talkeetna mountains. It was a whirlwind of excitement and nervousness as she prepared to go. But I was surprisingly calm. It was weird, because normally I would be thinking of everything that could and probably would go wrong, and how do I get there when it did. But this time it wasn’t that way. It was peace and calm. I knew she was going where she needed to be. I also know several pilots who could get me out there if need be!

Well, she has been gone for 2 months now, almost to the day, and she was able to fly home for a few days to spend some time with family, as well as to go to the Alaska State Fair. I don’t know if it was the Fair, or the family that was more driving in her desire to come home, but I like to think it was family. She let us know she would be coming home on Tuesday morning, but she didn’t know where she would be landing. This created a lot of nervous excitement in me, much more than I experienced when she left, and I spent the day asking her if she was leaving yet.

As the evening approached and the sky started to get dusky, I was beginning to wonder if she would make it out that night at all. But finally the message, she was heading out to the plane, and even better news, the pilot was more than happy to drop her at the Willow airport, less than 1 mile from home, instead of making us drive the 50 miles to the Palmer airport to pick her up. We watched as the plane landed and she got off with some of her gear. What a blessed sight that was. She has had, and will continue to have a grand adventure the rest of this summer. She has many stories to tell, and I’ve enjoyed listening as she does so. She works with great people out there, and she has had a lot of fun. She is only home for about 6-7 days, but I will soak up as much of her as I can while she is here.

This brings me back to all my kids. No matter where they go in life, I hope they know they can always come home. No matter where they land, I will be there to pick them up. No matter how long they get to stay, I will soak up as much of them as I can, and I hope that they will soak up as much love as their hearts need before they set off on their next adventure.

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