I am extremely blessed to be part of a loving family that I am very close to. I have been married for 3 years to my beautiful wife, Nicole (yeah, she gets her own page). My parents, Don and Cheryl, have been happily married for over 30 years and I have one brother, Brent, who is five years younger than me. I am also fortunate to have a close relationship with my grandparents, Toby and Helen, who I see quite often because they live nearby.
My dad works for Norfolk Southern (railroad company) and my mom is a teacher in the Franklin County Public School System. My brother is about to finish his first year in college at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. We have always been close as a family and my brother and I have developed a strong relationship as we have both matured.
I consider my dad to be a sort of jack-of-all-trades and someone I am constantly going to for advice. He enjoys building things and seems to be very interested in various modes of transportation. He recently finished the construction of a two-passenger, propeller airplane and is a licensed pilot. He is also interested in sailboats, cars, and works for a train company. Apparently he wakes up in the morning thinking planes, trains, and automobiles. He also seems to be interested in TONS of other things and won't have any problem keeping busy when he retires.
My mom is passionate about investing her time and energy into young people. She cares deeply about the students she has in school and is also very involved with the youth group at the church my parents attend. She has also served through numerous mission trips where she worked with children and young adults. She makes it a point to be present in the lives of teenagers to help mentor them as they enter in to what can be a very challenging time in life.
My brother, Brent, is probably the smartest and most driven person I know. He is a great athlete, incredibly intelligent, amazingly humble and willing to sacrifice, and completely committed to his faith and the standards in his life. Even though he is my younger brother, he is someone I look up to and I am extremely proud of him for everything he has already accomplished.
I am also fortunate to have a good relationship with my in-laws. Nicole's parents, Brian & Jerri, live just outside of Athens, Georgia in the small town of Watkinsville. Brian is a professor at UGA and Jerri travels the country helping plan conferences and events for forestry groups. Nicole also has a younger brother, Adam, who is currently a student at UGA and remains the best goal scorer I've ever seen in high school soccer.
We have also had a number of pets over the years. My family used to have two St. Bernards - Nicholas and Gretal. I remember them being big and pretty dogs but I was too young to remember much about them. Next, we had a chocolate lab named Buckwheat. Buckwheat was an awesome dog who was full of personality and one-of-a-kind. Then, because I guess my dad thought Buckwheat needed a friend, we eventually adopted a black lab named C.J. from some friends who could no longer take care of him. C.J. is the neediest dog I've ever seen and appears to be oblivious to people. And after we had to put Buckwheat down a few months ago because of Lyme Disease, it was time for another chocolate lab. Enter Maggie - our chocolate lab puppy and the newest member of the family. She jumps, barks, and EATS EVERYTHING IN SIGHT.
P.S. - We also have a hedgehog. He's mean and hates people. I try to play with him and he tries to bite me. He was originally supposed to be named Herschel but now I think he's just called a mistake.