A Fine Feathered Friend


Our 9-year old has a friend.  She is kind and helpful and talkative and always, I mean always, smiling.  We took them to dinner with us over the weekend and just marveled at their natural companionship, just how comfortable they are in each other’s presence.  We went for a walk after dinner and the girls were very excited to find a peacock feather, the very one you see in the picture above.  Though her friend found it and took it home that evening, when our daughter saw her the next day she received this pen as a “just because” gift.

This little present stands out in my mind for one reason – my wife and I saw how special this find was in the eyes of both little girls.  They were mesmerized by its brilliant color and fascinating, stylish design.  They were intrigued at how such an exotic bird might have wandered into the area that we were walking through that evening – the Bricktown RiverWalk in our city.  The girls spoke of little else once they discovered this single feather.  It became a wonderful token of a happy evening among friends and family.

But to have it returned and recreated in a new way especially for our daughter by her closest friend, well, you should have been there.  It meant so much more to her and was received with such surprise that her friend was as happy and surprised at its giving.

It all makes me stop and think about how a “just because” kind of gift can make all the difference in the world.  It is the stuff of a great friendship, no matter how old you are.


A Walk in the Park

Our daughters joined me for a walk in the park last evening. Oklahoma summers are really warm this time of year so we wait until the hour before sunset and set off on the trail of one of our favorite parks in town.

It’s a simple thing to do and it costs absolutely nothing, but the gains seem at this moment in my life to be immeasurable. There are certainly the health benefits that are important and I know that, but the conversation and lack of distractions and unplugging of technology while we are on the trail together are exceptional.

We don’t always share deep thoughts or even talk, but the point is we can and we do. We have each other’s undivided attention in a way that I cannot find in most every other area of our lives.

Over the years, a walk in the park has helped us mend some fences, share some funny stories, laugh, sing, talk and listen to each other and the world around us. It reconnects us and it gives our little group a shared path to take and a finish line to help each other reach.

It is truly a walk in the park.