The Holiday Season can be a difficult time for a lot of folks. A seemingly endless shopping list to conquer, a shrinking budget with which to do said shopping ~ and let’s face it: our businesses don’t run themselves while we’re visiting relatives.

For a lot of us, this is proving to be an especially challenging winter. All one needs to do is turn on any Major Media News Network to hear a chorus of Bah-Humbugs from pundits & politicos alike. It’s about this time that I really start thinking about what is most important to me ~ Family.

As in many households, my Grandfather was an important, central figure ~ truly the patriarch of our family. I spent a great deal of time with him as a young man; his ideals, philosophies & work ethic played a major role in my development, and I hope to pass those lessons on someday soon.

Recently, I visited my Grandfather in the hospital ~ he’s been battling an illness for some time now, and this last stint was a real struggle for him. It is always difficult to see a loved one suffer ~ we continue to want to see them the way we did as children: Strong, Resilient, maybe even Indestructible.

I wanted to do something for him this Christmas that would remind him of the strength and success that characterized his life. His father, Robert Keller Hasty played Professional Baseball from 1919-1924 for manager Connie Mack of the Philadelphia Athletics and was able to share the field with such legends as Ty Cobb and Babe Ruth.

On my last visit to see him, I was given a scrapbook kept of my Great-Grandfather’s illustrious career. I created this custom poster design, documenting an important part of my family’s history. Baseball is sacred in our family as it is in many American homes, and many of the values my Grandfather learned & passed on to me were taught through the game itself. Did you share a similar experience in your family? What games and activities were sacred to you and yours? Leave a comment and let us know!

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  1. Jason T. Ellis Says:

    Michael – The only thing that is better than the artwork is the Story! Great post!


  2. Dee Thompson Says:

    I love the poster, Michael! I’d love to have a copy of it. Nice writing, too.

    I need to point out a couple of things, though. Papa Hasty played from 1919-1924 for Connie Mack. He and Cobb were never teammates, but they were casual friends. Papa visited him in the hospital just before Cobb died – I’m sure you know that story.

    I wrote a screenplay based on Papa’s life and career, a few years ago. Your grandfather helped me with research. I couldn’t do anything with it without an agent, but I still hope someday I can find the time to turn it into a book or movie.

    Merry Christmas!

  3. Elva Hasty Thompson Says:

    Michael , I am just overwhelmed ! Have a great big lump in my throat and tears on my face as I try to type ! It is BEAUTIFUL !!!
    So many thanks — he will love it , as we all do !!!
    Love you, Elva

  4. Michael Says:

    Dee, thanks for the corrections. I couldn’t quite remember the details. I updated the post, let me know if anything else is incorrect. I remember that you did some writing on him and I thought some of it was on the web at one point but I couldn’t find it. Post it here if you have any other links to share. Thanks for the feedback.

    Merry Christmas!

  5. Don and Jane Says:

    What a wonderful gift! You do great work and we know Bobby will love it.
    Don and Jane

  6. Tim DeGroot Says:

    Proud of you Bro
    Didn’t know you could write as well, you got one up on me:)
    Merry Christmas to you and all your family
    Not Sure Im Gonna make it this year to the Beach.
    God Bless Brother.
    your boy TD~

  7. Benny Baldonado Says:

    In reading your story, it brings me back to focus on how the Holiday’s are the Essence of Family.

    Sometimes we forget that it’s not so much the presents that we give to people for Christmas. More importantly, it’s recognizing and telling the people that we Love, how much we Love them!!!

    Your story is a Great representation of what Family means to you!


  8. Michael Says:

    Jason, Elva, Don, Jane, & Tim,

    Thanks for the kind words! I will keep you updated on his thoughts and how the print turns out.


    This is so true, Thank you.

  9. Jake "Snake" Says:

    I am sorry to hear of your ailing grandfather. My grandfather is my best friend in the world and we have a bond that can never be broken or immulated. I can appreciate the importance of your relationship with him. I know we do not see each other much anymore, but I will never forget all the laughs and good times we had. You and your beautiful wife are two of the most intelligent, artistic, creative, and, as corny as this sounds, coolest people I have ever met. You have a gift given from God and this momento shows your amazing talents. I want to pray for your Grandfather. I also hear from a mutual friend you have some exciting things happening in your life. I wish you the best of everything and trust you have an excellent holiday season. If you have an opportunity, I would like to try and cross paths with you sometime. Until then, be easy my friend.

  10. Michael Says:


    So good to hear from you! I also heard from a friend that you have some exciting news as well, congratulations man. Thanks for your comments and kind words, I will be in touch.

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