Category: Family Matters

John and Becky – A Love Story

John grew up outside of St. Louis, Missouri in a country schoolhouse his parents converted into a rural home. Becky grew up in Ottawa, Kansas, a small farming community southwest of Kansas City. John and Becky met each other in the summer of 1969. He had just graduated high school, she had just finished her first year of college. They were in Wichita with summer jobs working for the same company selling encyclopedias door to door. While plying their wares over the course of the summer, their traveling band of book peddlers set up shop in motels throughout Kansas, Colorado and Wyoming. By summer’s end they were in love but went their separate ways, he to Lawrence and she to Emporia, in pursuit of higher education. Love, however, prevailed and they got married in the summer of 1971. Becky left college and went to work so John could finish college, but then he tricked her by going to law school and she had to work three more years. In 1976 Becky became pregnant, John graduated from law school and passed the bar, they moved to Iola, Kansas, Stephen was born, and John won a hard-fought election to become County Attorney. He launched his legal career battling crime as a prosecuting attorney while also building a private practice. In 1979 Kimberly was born. In 1982 they moved back to Lawrence, taking the children with them. John hung out his shingle and Becky went back to work. The children grew up and moved to California. Becky finally retired from work in 2015. John took his shingle down in 2022 but continues to work some. Throughout it all, they remained madly in love, a condition that persists to this day.

So It Goes

I was logged in on the Chappell Family Blog to take care of some WordPress updates. The administrative “Dashboard” has sections with information that might interest an administrator. One of them is “Site Health Status” and I was gratified to see “Great job! Your site currently passes all site health checks.” I don’t recall ever seeing that before. There are usually at least a couple of “fails”, although one is usually about the absence of a recommended PHP module — something beyond my control.

Moving on down the Dashboard I saw various site statistics, such as total number of posts in the blog (248 – is that all?) and total number of comments (271 – that many?). For a few moments I pondered the greater number of comments than posts. Moving on, there were dates and titles of “Recently Published” posts. It listed five, dated from 10/10/2023 to 09/14/2022. This was followed by “Recent Comments”, showing the first line or two of the most recent five comments. They were dated from 05/07/2023 to 09/15/2010. 2010? Yes, five comments in about 13 years. Well, it’s not a very big family, and I suppose the posts haven’t been what anybody would describe as earth-shaking.

So it goes.


Trying hard to become retired but neither clients nor judges nor fate is cooperating much. Days tick off relentlessly as the Feb. 28 deadline to vacate the office looms like a grizzly awakened from hibernation who has spied his first meal of spring. Deadlines imposed by indifferent authorities creep forward relentlessly, competing for time against financial challenges and puzzles that for years were content to lie dormant but have chosen this time to turn urgent and threaten dire consequences. Not to mention other obligations ranging from those spawned by dad’s demise to the grind of simply dealing with life’s mundane daily challenges. I take little breaks when possible to read books, a recent one of which took an analytical look at the saying, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”. The author noted that such things could leave you disabled or otherwise in a condition other than stronger, however much someone might argue about strength of character. So, I’d just as soon skip a third heart attack, thank you very much. Wish me luck. And, if anybody wants some impressive-looking law books to decorate their walls, I have quite a lot for the taking, as well as a few desks, chairs, etc.

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