Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Happy Birthday, Dad!

God rest his soul... Dad would have been 85 today... In his memory, I would like to share with you now what I was graced with the opportunity to share with those who came to his funeral 5 + years ago.... Tho it makes me cry, still, it brings a smile to my face as well... Dad knew not to take life too seriously... well... except during baseball season! : ) I love and miss you, Dad! Thank you for all the "Life Lessons" : )

Life Lessons from Dad...

Dad taught me sign language:

If he wanted you to fetch something for him, with a whisk of his finger and a few “tst! tst! tst!” We could run and get what he wanted.

Dad taught me caution:

When teaching me to drive, he knew that was NOT the time to raise his voice....

Dad taught me service:

If someone asked for help, anywhere, anytime, anyway, he was there, almost before you finished asking.

Dad taught me “promptness”:

As we ran through the house trying to finish getting ready for Church, knowing dad had already gone out the back door, and was sitting in the car, waiting...

Dad taught me “choices”:

As you sat at his breakfast table waiting for waffles that may have gotten slightly “overcooked” on one side, he would just ask you “light or dark?”

Dad taught me “seniority”:

When he answered the phone and I would say “hello” he would pause for a moment before he’d say “who is this?” “It’s ME, your favorite!” “Richard?.....here, I’ll let you talk to your mother.” then with his mouth away from the phone “Honey! Richard’s on the phone!”

Dad taught me “ingenuity”:

From machines to motors, gadgets to gizmos, if something quit working, Dad NEVER threw ANYTHING away, before trying to “fix it” first.

Dad taught me “resourcefulness”:

I don’t believe there was anything he couldn’t fix with his power drill, a few bolts, some wood glue or duct tape.

Dad taught me to “appreciate the small things”:

In all our travels back and forth across this country, he made sure to stop, often, so we could “experience” the beauty of the land.

Dad taught me how to be “worry free”:

Whenever he would call to check on us he’d say “well, you need to call and let us know how you’re doing.... you know how your mother worries.....”

Dad taught me his love for music:

With speakers wired in every room of the house, including his garage, it was the first thing he “fixed” in every camper, motor home, or trailer he owned. And contrary to his “gruff” exterior, there were still a few songs that could easily bring a tear to his eye....

Dad taught me unconditional love:

More than once I had to call him with the dreaded news that I had been in a car accident. “Are you okay? Were you hurt?” “No, dad” I would choke through tears. “Where you at? I’ll be right there....” When he saw me he greeted my sobs with a big bear hug and tell me “It’s all right, Emily. Cars can be fixed..... You’re okay. That’s all that matters.....”

Dad taught me “team spirit”:

From my sporting events in grade school, to drill team in highschool, and from swim lessons to sporting events of all his kids and grandkids... dad was ALWAYS there to be our “number one fan”.

Dad taught me “family first”:

No matter the cost to him, dad made sure that we had a good education, going to Church was NOT an option, and family vacations every year. After we were grown, when we came by the house dad would stop what he was doing to visit for awhile, but more often, you would have him stopping by to check on you. Many times, leaving with a grandkid or two..... The kids always loved “grandpa day”. And nothing made dad more happy than to see a house full of “family” that he could make breakfast for.

Dad taught me true love and loyalty:

I don’t think there was EVER a time that dad came home or left that he didn’t greet mom with a kiss. His main concern was to make sure that SHE was happy. There was NEVER a doubt about how much he loved her.

Dad taught me devotion:

He loved a silent retreat or a quiet Church. As loud as he could be, dad had a quiet spirit that he took very seriously. I think, in the quiet, dad felt closest to God......

Dad taught me that a good laugh could last so much longer and feel so much better than crying.

This is a tough one dad..... But I know you are with us still, living in our hearts and our minds, until we meet again. We love you very much, and will miss you, dearly. Thank’s, dad, for all the lessons. When I grow up, I want to be a teacher, just like you.....


Tammy said...

What sweet post Emily. Just what a dad should be. You were very lucky, and blessed. I'm sure he's still watching over you now.

Occultus Matris said...

I really wish I could've met Grandpa T. :)

Lee said...

yeah, it makes me sad to think of my kids that won't ever know him in this life... but I know that he is watching over them... My oldest son looks very much like my dad's younger pictures...

Occultus Matris said...

who is the baby in the picture?

Lee said...

That would be my oldest son. Looks like Sam, no?... We have a picture with the OTHER grandpa sitting in HIS recliner holding him, also... I've always wanted to have those two pictures framed together... He is the only one that really got to know BOTH of his grandpas before they passed...

You guys are coming to town this weekend? would love to see you! give us a call!!

Linda said...

Thank you for sharing. Sounds like you were truly blessed.

My youngest do not have a grandfather (or grandmother) either. The older ones share memories with the younger ones, and all think they must have known them.