Monday, May 25, 2009

Skeletons in my closet, err, I mean doll's head in my basement

We spent this weekend cleaning out our basement after too many years of putting it off. We rented a dumpster and filled it with several tons of worthless junk. Some of the junk was purchased with our own hard-earned money, while a bunch of it was left behind by the previous owners--my wife's parents. Regardless, there was a lot of junk. Mostly worthless except for the memories or guilt that it triggered. I am glad that it is gone.

No doubt basements everywhere are filled with just this sort of crap. Stuff that was once thought to be important, but was really just worthless junk that served no other purpose except to remind us how as a society we are largely superficial consumers of the latest crap. Perhaps the coolest thing I "found" was this creepy little doll's head, mocking me with a knowing, judgmental half smile.

Well, got to get to work refilling it with new crap.

Monday, May 18, 2009

My three daughters

All of my daughters were in town this weekend. That doesn't happen very often anymore. As we gathered to celebrate Kelsey's belated 20th birthday, I paused to consider just how great they are and how much I love all three of these remarkable ladies (and their Mom, too.)

When each one of them was born, I had male relatives ask me if I was disappointed that that particular child wasn't a boy. I was later asked if I regretted that I never had a son. I wasn't and told them so. A lot of guys said, well, I bet you wanted boys so they could be athletes and carry on the family name.

First, did you ever see how many Richardsons there are in the average phonebook? There is no shortage.

Second, I did everything with my girls that a Dad would do with their boys while they were growing up. I coached them. I played games and sports with them. I hung out with them. I didn't miss anything.

Aimee was a three-sport athlete in junior high and a dancer in high school. Mallory played basketball from the time she was five years old up through her freshman year of high school. She became one of the top distance runners in the state of Kansas, was all-state in cross country and ran at KU for a year where she competed in the NCAAs. Kelsey was a competitive gymnast, went to state as a diver in high school and ran cross country. She is a gymnastics coach today. But what's even better is their non-athletics resume:

Aimee: Phi Beta Kappa in English and Sociology from KU, 2005. JD from the KU School of Law in 2008. She's a practicing attorney. Her husband Ryan is an assistant district attorney.

Mallory: Phi Beta Kappa in Psychology from KU, 2007. She just finished her second year of medical school and will graduate from the KU School of Medicine in 2011. Her husband Alan will do the same in 2012.

Kelsey: She just finished her sophomore year at KU and will follow my footsteps and enter the KU School of Journalism in the fall.

Sorry for the bragging, but thinking about this past weekend just reminds me of how proud I am of my three daughters. And I now have great sons in Alan and Ryan.