Hello friends, I write to you this morning with many things on my mind. This time last Monday I was in New York City after almost missing my early morning train! I had the good fortune to be able to visit with a dear old friend while she was on the East coast. We also made my maiden voyage to Lady Liberty and Ellis Island. I cannot say how moving that it was, even as an adult to see these things in person. After the events of Friday night, it means even more to me that I so recently got to celebrate the importance of having France as an ally in this world and having the French as fellow supporters of liberty.
1. I confess that I did not know the Statue of Liberty is only as thick as two copper pennies. She looks like such a solid form but she is indeed hollow. I also confess that I did not know that Gustave Eiffel played such a big role in the creation of the statue.
2. Going through Ellis Island was also a moving experience. It was touching to think of people carrying all they had on their backs or in trunks to begin a new life in an uncertain world. I had the chance to chat with my 87 year old grandma on Friday and she was telling me how her grandparents came through Ellis Island as children from Germany. Each generation we are removed from that type of history and so it's important to have these conversations.
3. I confess that yesterday afternoon the hubby, brothers in law, and I went to the shooting range. When you have four kids, you take what you can get in the form of a 'date." I haven't been trap shooting in a while and it sounded like fun. Putting some ammo down range is actually a great time and the weather was perfect for the outdoor range. It's always good to have a little friendly competition among family too ;)
4. Also, at the aforementioned gun range, I got to chatting with a Vietnam Veteran. I thanked him and asked him a bit about his time of service (which can be a touchy thing but I think it's important to recognize such a pivotal time in a man's life). I was pleasantly surprised that he actually remembered those years fondly. Of course war is never fun, but he reminisced about being a paratrooper in the special forces and jumping from planes. He said, "I don't want this to come out wrong but I was truly glad to serve that time." He spent 18 months in Vietnam. Especially with Veteran's day last week, if you haven't taken a moment to thank a veteran, don't miss out! You might be blessed to hear their story.
5. I am praying for Paris along with the world. Something you might not know is that my parents are quite fond of Paris and spend time there at least a couple times a year. It scares me to think that they could've easily been in a place where they were in danger. The reality is though, the world in which we live is unstable and bad things happen all over the place. I am thankful though for a very stable faith and unchanging God.
I didn't necessarily start out to write a patriot post, but I believe in these times in which we are living, we need more people to believe in the greatness of America. We are essentially a country made entirely from immigrants, hard work and a vision of what could be with a democratic, free market society. I will leave you with this thought from Mark Twain, "In the beginning of a change, the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot."