Archive for the 'Greetings' Category

This One’s For You, MF!

Tuesday, August 15th, 2006

Mary Frances Towers, originally uploaded by Koog Family.

I came across this lovely apartment building after temporarily disembarking from the criuseship and walking around in Ketchikan, Alaska.

I had to take a picture. Hope you like it!

Happy Birthday, Emma!!!

Tuesday, August 15th, 2006

Birthday Suit

Originally uploaded by Koog Family.

It was a happy reunion this morning as we picked up a sleepy¬†Emma at Oma’s house.

This evening, the Birthday Girl had a bath just exactly one year after the photo at this link was taken. We’re proud parents, of course, of all she has accomplished (and taught us)¬†during that year. We’re so very grateful to have her and her fun, feisty, sweet¬†spirit in our lives.

Looking forward to her birthday party this weekend.

Farewell, Alaska

Monday, August 14th, 2006

Actually, we’re in (or near – in International waters?) Canadian territory now. We’ll leave the ship and fly home tomorrow out of Vancouver, British Columbia.

It’s been quite a week.

I’ve had a lot of experiences (and taken a lot of pictures), which I look forward to processing and sharing, eventually, here, after I get through the upcoming work-week and the much-anticipated reunion and catch-up hugs and play-time with our little cutie-pie daughter, whom we miss terribly.

I’ve checked work e-mail just enough to know that on my first day back in the office, I’m already booked for a four-hour client meeting.

But nothing can rob me of the mind-expanding experience that has been this cruise vacation.

The next time I get stressed over a deadline or a client demand at work, I’ll just imagine that I’m attending the Princess Pop-Idol finals. (Think American Idol – three judges included – except that the finalists are singing karoake and I’m drinking a margharita). Steve, you look like a tall Bill Murray, and the pseudo Simon Cowell judge was correct when he said that if he closed his eyes, you sound like the brother from “Everybody Loves Raymond.” But whoever you really are and whereover you hail from, I’ll always remember that winning and show-stopping baritone rendition of Sweet Caroline. You had my vote, and you deserved to win!

Or maybe I’ll just remember sipping a different alcoholic beverage and eyeing my bingo cards, surrounded by dozens of crazed bingo players, all salivating over the $2250 grand snowball bingo jackpot. (I didn’t win. But a woman from Milwaukee, sitting next to me, won $125.)

Or I could call to mind the sight of breaching humpback whales, the fins of Orcas (killer whales), the sight of spawning salmon that actually jump up waterfalls (!), the black bear that we saw from the air (he was very tiny, from our vantage point, but no matter), the opportunity to see and hear glaciers as they calved and fell into the sea. The seals, the bald eagles.

And David. Our tour guide in Juneau. David, you don’t know it, but you’ve already earned an entire post on this blog, as soon as I have time to try to capture you in words. You were the worst tour guide by whom Paul or I have ever had the pleasure of being led. And yet, somehow, you did bad so good.

So the vacation is ending, but the memories will live on.

And the blog will thrive under the weight of it all. From the serious to the trite . . .

Greetings from Alaska!

Tuesday, August 8th, 2006

We’re on a Princess cruise ship in College Fjord, Prince William Sound, Alaska – which means that I should really go take in the scenery instead of sitting at the computer. It’s 42 degrees outside where we are right now. I’ll be posting more descriptions of this adventure later. But now (we’re three hours earlier here than home), it’s time for breakfast!

Happy Anniversary to Us!

Monday, August 7th, 2006

The Happy Couple

Originally uploaded by Koog Family.


By the time anyone reads this, we’ll have left for the 49th State – Alaska – to do a little celebratin’ of our wedded state, which began seven years ago today!

New Sister-In-Law!!

Sunday, August 6th, 2006


Originally uploaded by Koog Family.

Paul’s brother, Mark, finally abandoned his bachelor ways at, at the age of 33, has settled down with a wonderful woman, Fran.

We attended their elegant and lovely wedding in quintessentially middle-America Fond du Lac, Wisconsin over the weekend.

The new Mr. and Mrs.!

Originally uploaded by Koog Family.

We couldn’t be happier for the newest Koog Family.

Congratulations, Mark and Fran!

Remembering Frank Zeidler

Monday, July 10th, 2006
Frank Zeidler

So long to a true gentleman who is being much remembered in the local and national news today – Frank Zeidler. He was the last of his kind – Milwaukee’s last “sewer socialist” mayor (the first was in 1910), and the last socialist mayor of a major American city. (He served from 1948 – 1960), and ran for president in 1976.

I’ve heard him interviewed on the radio and found him to be¬†a lovely, thoughtful fellow.¬† I’ve also seen him at local¬†German-American gatherings.

Under his watch, the parks system in our city, including the park that surrounds our neighborhood, flourished.  He also oversaw the annexation of land to be used for industrial development, which gave Milwaukee the tax and business base it needed to prosper.

We could use more politicians like him today. He focused on basic city services and infrastructure Рnot partisanship or currying lobbyist favor. 

Sadly, things aren’t run with as much integrity and cooperation these¬†days.¬†

And we were disappointed to learn recently that the public swimming pool in the park near our house is one of 43 [out of 47] park pools slated to permanently close next summer as part of the city’s solution to its pension-scandal-fuled budget woes.

I’m pretty sure that¬†Frank Zeidler would have been ticked-off about that.

Happy 4th of July, Everyone!

Sunday, July 2nd, 2006

First Time At The Swimming Pool!, originally uploaded by Koog Family.

Emma is heading into her first 4th of July in grand style in this elegant red & white striped and blue-with-white-stars little bathing number (and a swim diaper). 

Happy Birthday, Mr. B!

Friday, June 30th, 2006

You may have seen the novelty mug/t-shirt epithet, “Old lawyers never die, they just lose their appeal.”

To be more accurate, the saying should read, “For some d#%$ reason, old lawyers never retire!”

I don’t expect to be one of them – I have lots of traveling and other things to do in retirement -¬†but there is a large and sizable segment of the elderly (mostly male) attorney population – in my office and in many others – who officially retire from the firm, but who never really, well, . . . leave.¬†¬†¬†

Oh sure, they get in a lot more vacation time than they used to.¬† Sometimes they’ll be away for weeks or months at a time.¬†

But larger firms have a quaint custom of keeping an office around for these elder statesmen.¬† The oldest of the old are relegated to desks distributed throughout a common work room.¬† (One retired fellow with a sense of humor, whom I met for the first time after a year and a half at the firm, informed me that his desk was in this room, which he dubbed ‘the elephants’ graveyard’).¬† They may even continue to do some client work (although I hear this is closely reviewed by more active practitioners before it goes out).¬†

At my firm, one gentleman in particular embodies this fine tradition.  He comes in most every day (at least during the morning), and walks slowly around in his suit, going from office to office to chat with his buddies.    


My Office
by Koog Family.

He has impeccable manners. 

Everyone is fond of him, and you see a smile of both bemusement and protection on people’s faces when his name comes up.¬† He was a powerhouse lawyer in his day, establishing much of the current client base of the firm.¬†¬†

This is the only firm at which he’s ever worked.¬† He joined in 1952, fresh out of law school.¬† He became a partner in 1959.¬†

Those were the days (which lasted into the mid- to late-70s, as best I can tell) during which secretaries did not refer to Attorneys by their first names.  And so he is still known as Mr. [his last name] and also, because everyone knows everyone so well by now, just as Mr. B. 

He so resembles the gentlemen in the cartoon on my office wall that when I first hung it up, I hoped that he’d never see it.¬†

I’m not at all concerned that he’ll ever read this blog.¬† I’m pretty sure that he doesn’t know what a blog is.

But he turned 80 yesterday.¬† And the firm provided him a cake and a little party in a conference room.¬† I heard his secretary (whom he hired on here in 1968) ask him if he’d like to¬†take some cake home for Mrs. B.

I already told him in person, but it certainly bears repeating – not only for him, but also for all the others like him out there:

Happy Birthday, Mr. B!  

Happy Birthday, Bono!

Wednesday, May 10th, 2006

Bono's Birthday Cake


             Happy Birthday, Bono!  From Me РKelly! 


I’m sending you these birthday greetings in my blog because I know¬†you’ll stop by soon to read it.¬† It¬†was great to see you last year.¬† It was on Paul’s birthday as a matter of fact.¬† You performed in the Bradley Center in Milwaukee.¬† I was in the crowd of thousands.¬† You know, up on the left-hand side?¬† I’m the one that really felt sorry for you when that drunk blonde woman who got up on stage hugged you and wouldn’t let go the whole time¬†you were trying to sing ‘With or Without You.’¬† I’m sure you remember.¬† And as you told us when we saw you,¬†that night was the 30th anniversary of the forming of U2.¬† Is it a coincidence that your real name is Paul David and that I married a man named Paul David with that birthday?¬† I don’t think so!

You are 46 today.¬† And I don’t care how old you are, Bono.¬† I paid good money and trudged through the rain last year in hopes of getting to see you crawl around on the stage.¬† I don’t think there was actually as much slithering as I had anticipated,¬†but not to worry.¬† I got my voyueristic gal’s money’s worth.¬† You’re such a great performer, and the¬†stage design and effects were great.¬† You know I’ve had a thing for you, Bon, since I’ve been 17.¬† I’ll still probably think you’re cute when you’re 80.¬† (But tell the Edge I’ve figured out that he wears those caps because he’s lost all his hair).¬† Paul thought the political exhortations at the concert were a little heavy handed, but come on! It¬†just wouldn’t be a U2 concert without those.¬† Mark and Fran were there with us, too.¬† And Grandma and Grandpa K. were at our house on their first serious baby-sitting mission with 6-week old Emma.¬†¬†No one else could have pulled me away for so many hours from such a tiny daughter but you.¬† Anyway, all the best to you for a great¬†day and year!¬†