I recently posted on Facebook about the 75th anniversary of It’s A Wonderful Life and got lots of responses. I’m not surprised.

Last night, Barb and I watched it along with Kelli and her boyfriend Justin. The ‘green light” to watch it is between December 20-24th, so we were in the sweet spot. Not that I’m fastidious about it or anything.

It doesn’t matter how many times I’ve seen it, my eyes get a little sweaty at the end. The older I get, the more the concept about friendship becomes important to me.

The process of writing the book has been humbling in this regard. I’ve received great support from family and friends. Most inspiring comes from friends who I haven’t seen or really corresponded with in a long time.

One of the first to purchase was an old high school basketball teammate. I’m not sure we’ve seen each other in person since 1982! It’s been good to reconnect on Facebook and I’m humbled by his support.

One other situation was heartening.

One of the very first people to purchase a signed copy was a former boss. Steve was my boss from 1989 to 1994. We have stayed connected over the years, but probably only seen  each other less than a handful of times since. He stayed on my newsletter and would occasionally share with me his thoughts on the Washington Huskies football team. He was a great boss and friend, once giving me his tickets for the 1993 Rose Bowl when he couldn’t attend at the last minute.

After all this time and distance, to see his name pop up with the purchase was a little emotional for me.

The past few years of uncertainty have heightened my sense of friendship. That includes those family members in my life whom I also view as dear friends. I’m trying now more than ever to express my gratitude for that friendship, even beyond the holiday season.

To that end, I wanted to share this missive with all of you here. If you are seeing this message – or perhaps I should say, still reading it – I want to thank you.

Somewhere along the way, we became connected. It might be from Oak Harbor, Rotary, business relationships, civic associations, coaching, or some other thing over the past nearly 57 years.

Thank you for your friendship.

Let’s all never forget the inscription that Clarence left George Bailey inside of Tom Sawyer…

Merry Christmas