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Saturday, January 12, 2013

The Holiday Season

I've been neglecting my blog for a while with the whirlwind of activities that have been encompassing my life over the past couple of months! 
One of my 'resolutions' for 2013 is to be a little more consistent with my blog, so here's the first installment (on the 12th of January, of course!).
This past Christmas season saw us in Baltimore MD for our oldest son's graduation from college (University of Maryland Baltimore County- an Honors University)  with his bachelor's degree in computer science. We figured it was so close to Christmas that we just...stayed. The flights to Baltimore were quite an adventure all in themselves (two of my flights out of Klamath Falls were cancelled due to stupid airline stuff by United Airlines) so 3000 extra miles later as compensation, I finally arrived. The rest of the family arrived a day or two ahead of me...including our younger son and my husband!!
We immediately donned our t-shirts (it's a family thing) and everyone headed out to Fells Point for a 'Pub Crawl'. Yes, we hit every single bar on our t-shirt plus a couple of extra bars. Only one on our list was closed on a Wednesday night. And, yes, we had a shot and a cocktail at every bar. Yes, we took a cab both ways...duh!!! 

Graduation on FRIDAY (yes, we had a day between!) was awesome! We are so proud of our oldest! Now, both of our sons are college is our daughter in law! (well, she has her Master's Degree...but she is ahead of the curve ) ha ha! 
Since we had several days to kill before Christmas, we decided to go to Gettysburg. I didn't realize how close it was to Maryland- it was a little less than an hour's drive. 

It's one of the things on my 'bucket list'. I know quite a bit about Gettysburg (our little stand of aspens-Gettysburg- in the backyard are named after the 'little clump of trees' from the battle) and I have always wanted to be commune with the ghosts of the valiant Americans on both sides who bravely gave so much of themselves. Oh, it was better than I dreamed. I'm not so much into the markers and statues, but the guide that Chris hired to take us through Gettysburg was the best storyteller and took us to the places we needed to see. It was incredibly moving and I still am trying to process this whole experience. It was the the best place I've ever been to in my life. I've been to a lot of amazing places, but I think Gettysburg is right on top.
If you are an American History buff, you MUST GO. 
So, more for the next blog...I am a little emotional after thinking about this place. Even though he was wrong about how little the world would note what happened here...I think Abraham Lincoln said it best:
"Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

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