Today at 1 PM, Rand left (that's him on the left, roasting marshmallows with the boy in pink goggles). He was here for a short visit... about twice per year he schedules meetings in New York and we usually get him for dinner, and if we're lucky, an overnight stay. We've done some pretty fun things together in NY; we were laughing about some of them last night. Such as our ultra-deluxe accommodations when we went to the Jersey Shore and the Circle Line boat tour we took in the driving rain. I also recall a few years ago he was staying in midtown and had a morning break, so I left the kids and met him up at his hotel to run at Central Park and then have breakfast together. It's one of my best memories... running with Rand. We started running together the summer before he married Leslie, and it's something we really enjoy doing together. I especially used to enjoy it after it had rained. Rand would run ahead of me and pull the tree branches down behind him, so I would get showered. Luckily he didn't do that to me today (and he could have, since it rained last night) but he opted not to. So I'm thankful for that... and that he's my brother.
He's such a great big brother, uncle, and father. He's completely loyal and devoted to us all, and expends great amount of energy on family vacations as the director of activities. Our first vacation with my family, Travis was exhausted and said, "You didn't tell me I would need to TRAIN to go on vacation!" Most of the activity is driven by Rand, who has energy in excess and doesn't like to see anyone sitting around when we could be out having fun.
While I'm at it, I'll go ahead and mention how thankful I am for his whole family. I have the best nephews and sweetest little niece in the whole world. Here they are, all enjoying Dora with Oz. Everyone can be a Dora fan. They are excellent cousins to my kids; always up for playing and sharing and going to various rec centers.
I'm also so thankful for Leslie... that's her in the BYU sweatshirt. I had to swipe it off her Facebook page... she used to have the biggest hair you've ever seen! Now she's one of the hottest moms in Colorado... and so fun and easy to be with. She always makes awesome food and mentors me in Ebay shopping, jewelry making, and candle accumulation.
I love you guys... so glad we are related.