For the first time in 15 years, the first day of school came and I did not drive one or more of my daughters to their campus. I was down to just one kid last year; Carley and I made the drive together to Bonham Middle School every day. But this morning, she got into Valerie’s truck and the two took off for Amarillo High without me.

Of course, I woke them up with my traditional rendition of “School Bells,” sung at the top of my lungs in an overly-annoying tone. I took all the normal first day of school pictures before they left. And I said to them in the garage what I have said to them every school day since they started Kindergarten: “Work hard, learn a lot, be sweet.” But as they walked to the truck, I heard Valerie say to Carley, “He’s following us.”

Yeah, Valerie’s a senior and Carley’s a freshman. Valerie’s already had her senior pictures made and Carley starts Drivers Ed this afternoon for the permit she’ll get in about two weeks.

Two beautiful little Sandies.