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It was our second annual Justin Robert visit this past week!   Holly’s greetings for people are always exuberant but there was something additional with her welcoming of Justin.  There was a high-spirited hello that had an undertone of ‘I’m so glad you came back’ to it.  If Holly was not around, there was little wonder on where I would find her.  And when Justin was around, that meant Holly was nearby – gazing at Justin with a ball in her mouth.   In the mornings,  Holly would lie by Justin’s door with her nose scrunched under the bottom, sniffing and snorting with some whimpering thrown in – so hopeful he would open the door and join her for the start of the day. 

When we did start the day, both Holly & Helen were fully on board.  Justin now has his driving permit, which was a mind boggling thought for me.  I thought back to the days when I let Jason drive my car home from softball practice.  That all turned out ok.   Justin coyly shared with me his experience driving thus far with either his mother or father’s car.  He also corrected my driving a few times, in a nonjudgmental and casual manner.   I finally convinced myself that I had to show my trust and allow Justin to drive my Ruby red car.  The older I get, the tighter I hang on to my control.  This was a good exercise for both Justin and I!   During his stay here we figured he had about 8 hours of drive time to add to this Driving Log.  He did a fine job and as each mile went by, I did better as well.  Holly recognized I was sitting on the ‘wrong side’ and sent a few stares my way.  Eventually she let go of staring at me, and instead hung her head over Justin’s shoulder, serving as an extra set of eyes on the road.   When we met Jason for Justin’s ride home, I said to Justin that next year we don’t have to arrange rides – he will be able to drive himself to Duluth!   I know I saw a small smile on that stoic face!  Holly, Helen and I are hoping that means we will be going for a ride in a Justinmobile next summer!