As many of you know, we have been largely out of the office for the last week due the loss of my dear grandfather. I’d like to thank each of our clients for their warm responses and understanding about moved deadlines.

We had much time over the last week to learn about my grandfather’s incredible life. One story that touched me deeply took place during his 20+ years at IBM. My grandpa believed wholeheartedly that businesses should be a place of camaraderie and joy (one fellow worker talked about how my grandfather took him under his wing and acted like a father to him at IBM, even though they were roughly the same age). So, he began the first annual IBM employee picnic, which grew in numbers throughout the years. My grandmother recalls one year where my grandpa rented out a huge tent and bought steak dinners for hundreds of co-workers, causing panic in my poor grandmother who fussed diligently about their budget. Grandpa wouldn’t hear of charging folks before the picnic – he was confident the everyone would show up and make their donation; he just wanted everyone together to celebrate the hard work they had done over the past year and expected that the rest would work out. And, he was right. The picnic was a huge success!

If there is anything we can take away from this last week, it is the desire to be able to say, at the end of one’s life (as my grandfather said to me): I’ve had the best life ever, kid. I’m ready for whatever is next. What I worry about is the rest of you.

Here’s to an incredibly witty and intelligent man who sparked my own passion for reading, traveling, cooking and learning.