I know you're not supposed to "apologize" for being away from blogging, but since in the span of time I've been gone Germany could have conquered France a time or two, I feel my absence was long enough to merit an explanation.
Last summer, my paternal grandfather had a stroke. I am quite fortunate compared to many in my peer group, because I was out of college before I lost a single grandparent on either side of the family.
We returned home to help out the family, and things seems to be improving slowly but surely by the time we returned to Temple.
During our month long trip, I set up a timer to keep the garden watered. As anyone who was in Central Texas this last summer knows, it was HOT and DRY. My drip was not sufficient, and we returned to a rather withered garden. I started 2 new jobs shortly after returning from the panhandle, and with a dead garden, blogging just didn't get done.
My grandfather was improving, until he suffered a fall in the rehab center he was staying, and hit his head on the corner of a nightstand. He passed away peacefully in his sleep in no pain on Christmas morning.
He is an incredibly hard man to summarize. The son of a poor tenant farmer, he went on to attend Texas A&M before finishing a degree at Howard College. Married to the same woman for 60 years, he survived polio, a broken neck, and many hard years of farming. He spent money prudently when it was for his own benefit, gave generously and anonymously to others in need, and into his 70s was saying "I'll retire next year" for at least 5 or 6 years in a row, and left his family and everyone else around him better off than before they knew him.
In our modern society, many families are so scattered over the country that its hard to truly consider an extended family as close. Our family, with my grandfather and grandmother as patriarch and matriarch, can almost more accurately be described as a clan than an extended family, primarily due to our wonderful grandparents who kept us all close in each others hearts and minds, if not geographically.
So I am back and ready to resume blogging. Though I will be sticking primarily with my 3 Gs of guns, gardening and grilling, I will occasionally be adding random posts with my thoughts on gaming, politics, news, and any thing else that I feel like writing about.
In closing, I leave you with 2 pictures of my grandfather. One as a freshman cadet at Texas A&M in 1946, and one of him with his favorite rifle, a Savage model 99 in .300savage.