Last week I took my annual trip to St. Charles, IL for the Religious Book Trade Exhibit. It is one of my favorite shows because we get to meet authors and editors and marketing directors and sales managers from most of the publishers. It is fun and exciting. We buy and we talk and we laugh and we learn for 3 1/2 days. We meet with stores just like ourselves who love the ministry and continually try to learn new ways of not just surviving but of thriving. My mother used to go with me on this trip but last year I brought my oldest daughter and this year my four daughters. They could not all go in the exhibit hall at the same time but the oldest 2 came for the first 3 days with the younger 2 finishing up Friday with me during the last hour. They met plenty of wonderful booksellers and were able to see and understand a little more about what I do for the week while I am away from home. I think they had fun. They also got to enjoy St. Charles and each night at dinner told stories of what they had done during the day. They swam every day but they also went to a Japanese Garden, the History Museum and played putt putt. Evidently at putt putt, in true Cragon fashion, a scene occurred with one of my oldest having to chase a shoe through water along with some other crazy happenings. I'm told that upon entering Panera for lunch, my oldest saw that several of the people from the exhibit were there and immediately turned to the other 3 and said, "Act right! People mom works with are in here!" Just like mom! We never really care what happens inside the house or hotel, well to a point, but once they step outside in public, they need to act nice and treat each other with a little respect. And, for the most part they do. It was good to see that I've passed on a little of that understanding and it was great to see them enjoy the rows of books and people who work in the book and gift industry. What a wonderful week! May all our children at some point learn to love the gift of books, the gift of the story, the fresh smell of the paper and the feel of the cover and the wonder of all that lies within those pages.