Sunday, October 23, 2011

     Ah, back in Tonganoxie.  Traveling to a city like Chicago always reinforces how glad I am that I live in the middle of nowhere.  Surrounded by miles of concrete and buildings and millions of people makes me claustrophobic.  It also makes me feel small.  I get the sense that I am just one small ant in a massive ant hill.  I know some people live for the bustle and movement of the big city.  Me, I'll take the less hectic route through life.  I enjoy knowing the woman at the check out counter at the grocery store.  I like meeting friends every few feet when I walk through the city park.  There is a comfort in the smallness of this corner of the world.  I can breath here.  Maybe I am not made for greatness, but I am content with what I have here; my life, my family, my home.

    I did enjoy watching my kids experience the city.  They adapted very quickly.  I looked at Caleb and could almost see him like some street-wise character from a movie.  Of course, he wasn't all that street wise as several times he attempted to place himself directly in the path of oncoming vehicles.

    The kids loved the Shedd aquarium and the Museum of Science and Industry.  I realize that you don't get stuff like that in the small town.  I suppose that's why we occasionally venture into the big city. 

    I just wonder sometimes if we aren't somehow spoiling our children by taking them too many places.  It seems like the more we go, the less they appreciate what they are getting to do.  I was in awe when I first went to Chicago as a teenager.  I don't think they experienced even the slightest twinge of real excitement.  Sure, they had fun, but for them, it was just another trip. 

     The  again, maybe things will not always be so easy to do.  Maybe the economy will come crashing down even worse than it already has and traveling with 5 kids will become next to impossible.  I guess I should be thankful or the ability to do these things as a family while time and money permit. 

     In the end though, I realize how blessed I am with a wonderful wife who makes me take fie great kids on trips that I would never be willing to take without her prodding.  I come back from them all a little tired but very aware of the great riches I have in this little troupe we call a family.  You can take all the fame and wealth the world offers you.  You can live in your up-scale hi-rise department on Lake Shore Drive.  We're good just the way we are in our little town in Kansas.