Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Please, do me a favor...

My mom is having surgery on her left carotid artery today. Altho I'm assured that she has the best doctor, and is going to have it done at the Fresno Heart Hospital, it's still surgery. So I'm asking all who read this to please take a moment and say a prayer for her. I love her so much.

Thanks, Jeff


Mom is out of surgery and in her room. Doctor says she did fine and will get to go home tomorrow. THANK YOU to everyone who sent prayers our way!!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Daddy Day

You may have thought I didn't see,
Or that I hadn't heard,
Life lessons that you taught to me,
But I got every word.

Perhaps you thought I missed it all,
And that we'd grow apart,
But Dad, I picked up everything,
It's written on my heart.

Without you, Dad, I wouldn't be
The man I am today;
You built a strong foundation
No one can take away.

I've grown up with your values,
And I'm very glad I did;
So here's to you, dear daddy,
From your forever grateful kid.

By Joanna Fuchs
To all dads everywhere, Happy Father's Day

Saturday, June 13, 2009

wow....just wow!

The Goldrush Gunslingers were the opening act for the Fresno Philharmonic and the Sons of the San Joaquin tonight...but just by the skin of our teeth! Activate the way back machine, and put it very slow mode!

Friday afternoon 5PM Fresno time. I arrive at home wondering where the Suburban was, we had to leave for the show! Archie had gone to pick up a friend, who was going to video the show for us. After waiting for a few , they showed up and we all headed for the car. Archie tells me that after picking up his friend, they got on the freeway and entered in front of a car that felt he was cut off! Well somehow Archie's friend had a airsoft gun and the other car saw it. yep.... you guested it. They called 911. Now, I'm not too happy now. As I said we all got in the car, Yvette, Archie, his friend, Josh, Cheyanne, and my nephew Wayne, and headed out. Guess who we ran into? Yeppers, Fresno Finest! The police car followed us, then there was another one. By the time we got on the freeway, there were three of them. By the time they pulled us over, there were eight of them AND big brother in the sky, the FPD helicopter!

Well, long story short(too late!!) We were all cuffed and Yvette, Josh and I were stuffed while the rest were made to sit on the sidewalk. Of course we are 1/2 mile from our destination so EVERYBODY going to the concert saw us! The po-po, picked up the people who called 911 and they identified Archie's friend as the bad guy and he was detained while we were finally released, but not before the local news showed up. Now you know ol Jeffy, always looking for the funny side. When asked if I wanted to give my side, I didn't hesitate! After finishing my interview we made it to the show in the nick of time! Thank Goodness the rest of the group had already got there and started without us.

All in all, it isn't something I would want to do again! Archie regrets that he didn't have his friend put the gun in the back like he was supposed to do. I'm not happy the coppers took all our guns we use in our shows, but at least they weren't real guns and we will get them back.

At least the Sons of the San Joaquin and the Fresno Phil really liked our show, but it sucked having sooooooooo many people whisper, "those were the ones the police had pulled over". But hey, it's been said. Any publicity is good publicity! I mean...look at Britney Spears!!

Friday, June 12, 2009


Been a really busy week. Received a e-mail from the Fresno Philharmonic on Monday, wanting to know if the Goldrush Gunslingers could step in and open their concert with the Sons of the San Joaquin tonight at the Rotary Amphitheatre at Woodward Park. It's the first in the "summer concerts in the park" series. There should be between 2 and 3 thousand (and maybe as much as four thousand) people there...no pressure! Our new group, the Goldrush Gunslingers, (http://www.goldrushgunslingers.com/)
is formed of key members (and all the talented members, IMHO! ) of the old group, the san joaquin gunslingers, that were fired by it's founder last month.
The Goldrush Gunslingers have been rehearsing all week and we're ready. At final rehearsal last night, we met the Sons. Very nice, down to earth guys!
Wish us luck!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Day

I got into the truck and drove him to his friends house. He got out as I waited. A few minutes later, he returned to say Carl was still in the shower. He got back in the truck and we waited. We had small talk of nothing important. Then I told him I was proud of him. Carl came out and got in the car apologizing for running late and we were off to the stadium. I dropped them off, watched them walk into the school, and went home to get the rest of the family.

I stood as he walked by, in his red gown with the white 2009 sash. My eyes welled. This tall kid was the same kid that I used to pick up from head-start in the Med-Mart van. The same little blond kid that would run up to me and hug my legs when I would come in the door after work every day saying "Daddy's home!" I felt the limp as he turned and entered the row to find his seat. When I heard his name called I felt an amazing amount of pride, sadness, and time lost.

I found him in the sea of people, everyone of them smiling and laughing, congratulating each other on the end of this long journey. Our eyes met. My tears started to flow. He reached for me as I reached for him. We held each other for a brief moment. My mind raced back to my first memory of hearing his heart beat at the first ultra sound. The joy of seeing him born. All the games of catch we played. The time we played hooky to go to the beach and surf. I missed his mother in that moment and wondered if she could see him now. Then the embrace ended. There were more people to hug, and accept congratulations from. The rest of his family and friends deserved that time too. I stepped back and watched.

He greeted his friends as if they all had just won the Super Bowl. Many were ROTC members, both past and present. Some were joining the military in just a few short months and I couldn't help but wonder if they would ever all be together again. I watched as he enjoyed his brief fame. Then it hit me. This isn't the little boy anymore. As I watched him, I realized he will be able to handle anything that he comes up against. At that moment, I realized that Archie Glenn Smith...was a man!

I hear from many people that I did a great job of raising him. I did my best, but it wasn't all me. His mother, Debbie, was a very good mother to him. She was there taking him to head-start, staying for class to help out, taking him to church most Sundays. Then after she got sick, my mother stepped in. She was, and still is, always there for him. Attending cub scouts, school shows, never missing a Christmas morning and always having a soda or candy ready when he came over. Suzie and Jay were also wonderful support, babysitting, always there at birthday parties and filling in blanks that Debbie's illness may have left. And then there is Yvette. I truly believe that God sent her into my life to make sure my children have the best mother they could have had after Debbie's death. She does an awesome job walking the line of being "mom" while never making them feel as if Debbie never existed. She is the reason that my children are as they are. Without her, I would have imploded. She truly is their "mom".

Then there is Archie himself. Ultimately he is responsible for what he accomplished. He did a wonderful job at growing up. That may sound silly, but he stayed away from the distractions and put himself in the position he is in now. This summer he begins the next chapter in his life. He starts college then he plans to serve this country in the United States Army. Where ever he goes, what ever he does,he will always be my son. My first born, my oldest boy, and I will always love my son