There are always many people to thank...

   This particular journey has been shorter than you might expect, and admittedly very selfish. It began nearly without warning, my family just discovered I would not leave the keyboard one evening. But I have been open about the joy this experience brings me, and the shelter it has provided from other grown-up worries. Surely some were offended, but most have been supportive. A few have even given in to my pleadings they read the material.

   My wife and boys deserve the most credit. Andrea, Miles and Colin have patted me on the head, and let me play. They will enjoy any reward this brings, I pray it is huge; they deserve comfort and fun in return for their patience.
  
   Mikela Valdez deserves tremendous thanks, for reading my words, and witholding laughter. She has devoured my scattered desktop prints, (the worst possible way to read a new work) and has insisted the stories were fun to read.
   A few friends in town have taken copies, and offered their time or advice; Joe at Maria's is a blessing of support, he applauds anyone who tries to write and promote their work. Brandon, Jill, I thank you both for taking copies with a smile.
   Newer friends, across the globe, have a page dedicated to their kindness.
  
   Two other family members deserve my thanks in particular. My brother, Kevin, for telling me nearly fifteen years ago that he wanted to write; and my mother, Vee. She has written from her heart for her entire life, and loved every word enough to share them. My childhood, and my brothers', have been described many times in verse, and that gift can never be repaid.
  
   To thank all these precious people, is simply not enough. So I honor them as well.
   I write for myself, but I share with those whom I love.
   
   Joel  

                                The Kirkpatricks

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