SEAN: Hi Vince… There are three connections I knew I needed to make soon after returning home: (1) Visit you and Marie at your home, (2) Travel to Idaho to reconnect with Ellen and to meet her folks, and (3) Create an opportunity for you and Marie to meet Ellen, my father, Aaron, and my sisters.
Down-to-Earth and Lifted-Up. This is how I felt when I recently came to your home and met Marie: down-to-earth and lifted-up. A true friend helps me to feel grounded and simultaneously inspired about my future. Thank you. I know I have a life-long friend in you. Now that I have met Marie, I would like to adopt her as my third grandmother. I hope she’ll be okay with that. The friends who have most helped me to be grounded and lifted-up are my parents and grandparents. I know Marie has this effect with your own children. I look forward to getting to know them. Vince, I want you to meet my family and Ellen in the very near future. Do you have any suggestions?
VINCE: Sean, Marie and I appreciate your kind words of friendship. We loved your visit. Marie is honored by the title “Grandmother” and would be happy to be an honorary grandma to you. Thanks for asking me for suggestions about expanding our connections with your family and Ellen. I have one. Let’s start with the “being grounded” part.
The Table. When we met high atop the Manti-La Sal mountains near the Skyline Drive, I was cutting sections of a large White Fir tree that had fallen, which I did with a permit from the forest service. You helped me lift these logs into my truck. That was the beginning of our friendship. The 11-inch diameter, three-foot long logs have become the ten pedestals and seat posts of a unique family picnic table set firmly in the ground at our small property in Sanpete County, our beloved “Owl’s Nest.” Here’s a photo of the table that Marie and I built together where our family can dine and converse in the juniper, pine, and piñon grove we love.
A Plan to Connect. Dear Sean, perhaps you, your family, Ellen, Marie, and I could gather at your home in Juniper. I also know you and Ellen look forward to experiencing the Utah outdoors together. We invite you to visit our Owl’s Nest. We’ll give you a tour of our small barn and the grandkids’ treehouse and outdoor toys. We’ll have a picnic lunch in our juniper grove on that well-grounded picnic able. If you stay the afternoon, we can also have supper and a campfire conversation. Let me know what you think. Looking forward… –Vince & Marie