AT A TIME WHEN you hear of people wanting to get out of Austin, my brother-in-law and his family are moving to the capital city.

They are a family of five (7 if you count the pets): Dad, Mom, 2 little girls, 1 Little boy, a large German Shepard, and a cat. All parties and their belongings will reside in this 3 bedroom apartment on the second floor.

While I’ve come to loathe moving (because my job keeps me nomadic), I’m extremely happy for the bunch, maybe a little envious for their big adventure to Austin. After all, that’s exactly what it is: a wonderful adventure their little ones will always remember.

The young members of family have lived less than 20 miles from at least one set of grandparents their entire lives, grandparents who have become quite close to them. They’ve been their caretakers after-school and on some weekends, their second set of parentals.

I remember well how close I was to my own grandparents in the hometown. There were some weeks where I would spend up to 3 nights a week at their house and catch the school bus in the mornings. I remember being grateful for their care and love and how fortunate I was to have them so close, geographically and emotionally.

My own children don’t have that. That’s my fault too, thanks to living far away. Grandparents are people they see a few times a year. While they receive all the love and support they can, the distance brings a subtle difference that I can’t describe. You just notice it. It may not matter much to most, but when you have the perspective I grew up with, there’s a little sadness that sticks in your heart. You want these young people to have that connection with your past, to know and feel the love you felt.

I hope the grandparents that belong to the Little bunch who just moved to Austin will make frequent trips. Go out of their way to make sure these children don’t feel the distance in miles or memories.

After all, it’s a wonderful adventure. They’d hate for you to miss out.