Pop Pop Epistle # 154 – Our 40th Anniversary


Dear Grandkids,

If you read my last epistle you will note that at the end I said, “Perhaps next year I’ll be blogging about the memories we created on our 40th anniversary.” But I thought that I might go ahead and do it since it is fresh on my mind.

We had an awesome day.

It started with church. We spent the morning with our faith family at Ridgecrest. Many of our friends knew that we were celebrating our anniversary and we got lots of congratulations.

We left church. Ran home and ate a quick lunch and then headed to Raleigh. Our first stop was Umstead Park where we spend an hour and a half doing some hiking We explored the Sycamore and Graylyn Loop Trail. Here are a few pictures.

Then we headed to The Umstead Hotel. It is a very upscale hotel  and not something we usually spend that much money on. But it was our 40th and we decided to treat ourselves and create a memory.

We went to supper at The Bonefish Grill and reminisced about our 40 years together and tried to envision what our next 40 years together will look like. I have a history of writing poems to recount our memories. I wrote one that I shared at our rehearsal dinner on July 31, 1981 called Memories of Love that talked about our courtship. I wrote one for our 25th anniversary called More Memories of Love.  And then at supper I shared one called Still More Memories of Love that recounted our last 15 years of memories. It went like this…

Still More Memories of Love

A lot of things have happened in the 15 years since last
I wrote a poem of memories about our storied past.

Christy was at App and Scott at UNC
Tucker was at Northern still at home with you and me.

‘06 would come and go and then our daughter got engaged
At a castle in Slovakia while everyone hurrayed.

The next year she got married on the day I turned 5-0
And thus began a decade that would see our family grow.

In ‘09 we went to Israel then moved to another home;
Both of these would help us learn a lot about shalom.

The next year we would travel to the country of Peru
And see the mighty Amazon unlike most people do.

The accident in India in two thousand eleven
Taught us much about our faith (since we almost went to Heaven).

We were very very grateful to still be upon this earth
Because the following November we were there for Grayson’s birth.

In the nine years that would follow 8 more grandkids would be born;
Bowen, Keller, Miller, Asher were the first next four.

Audrey, Ezra, and then Haddon all came with a hallelujah
The 9th one just arrived last week – his name is baby Judah.

Scott and Tucker both of course betrothed their wifely dreams;
Mary and Danielle joined Chad to flesh out our family tree.

In two thousand and fourteen and 20 years at RBC
We were given a sabbatical and went to Italy.

Rome, Sorrento, Florence and some time in Tuscany,
Pisa, Cinque Terre and then Venice by the sea.

Some time up by the lakes and then on to Switzerland;
Zermatt and then Lucerne the Alpine beauty never ends.

Lausanne and then Geneva where our trip came to an end;
I think we’d both agree that we would do it all again.

In ‘15 it was Poland and our travels with the Hicks
‘17 was Poland and our cruise to the Baltics.

You retired one year later, now we work at Chick-fil-A
They let us eat free food and not only that – get paid.

In ‘19 we went cruising to the great state of Alaska;
The beauty there I have no doubt is better than Nebraska.

So here we are at 63 and growing old together
With lots and lots of memories life couldn’t get much better.


Monday morning we hung around the hotel as long as possible ( getting the most bang for our buck) – we hiked around the pond on the hotel property and spent an hour or so by the pool. After we checked out we took another hike (gotta get our steps in) at Umstead Park – which is just across the interstate from The Umstead Hotel – and hiked the Reedy Creek and Loblolly Trail Loop. Then headed home. A quick but very memorable 24 hours.

Nona and I have fun creating memories together. But we are really looking forward to creating lots of memories with you.

Never forget that you  are very loved,

Pop Pop

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