Thursday, June 12, 2008

Happy Father's Day!!

I have contemplated for a long time what to do for my dad for Father's Day. I could just go and buy impersonal object to relieve my guilt. It is hard to know what to get someone that lives so far away, and have this object express your most sincere love. I already blew Mother's Day because we had been on our vacation and getting back into the swing with seven people to care for took weeks. So I wanted to do better this time. I decided to share how I won the lottery. The Dad lottery. I decided to ponder the ways he influenced the person I am today.
1. I loved when I would be feeling not so special, he would hold me on his lap and rub my foot while he sang "The Sweetheart of Sigma Chi(sp?)" or sing such beloved folk songs as "Where have all the Flowers gone?, "Lemon Tree", Ol' Stu ball was a race horse", and "Hangman". No, it wasn't a Primary song but I felt the love.
2. I loved when we would drive through the night to Utah and I could switch seats with Mom and listen to Tchaikovsky's 1810 Overature, or Neil Diamond and he would share his sacred Ritz crackers or Fig Newtons with me. Soul Food moments!
3. My Dad always had these phrases that became family jokes that have wormed their way into my home. Our kitchen table was the train and we couldn't get down until the train stopped. Mom always put raspberries in jello and I guess it wasn't a favorite so Dad told us that raspberries made our muscles grow. After gulping down our jello we ran to have dad check our growing muscles. Whenever we argued dad told us to argue about snow. That lasted about 5 seconds until we gave up. I guess it worked. Snow wasn't very fun to argue about.
4. I loved daddy daughter dates, but my favorite was a Dodger game. To this day pro baseball is my favorite to watch.
5. A big reason I loved to be feminine was because of my dad. On business trips to San Francisco he always stopped at the Gunne Sax outlet to buy us a new church dress. He helped teach me the importance of being a virtuous young woman. I remember being upset because I had no figure and no boyfriends and I was sure I was the most awkward girl on the planet. Dad told me that I was like a spring flower who was just beginning to blossom. All of my friends that I referred to already had blossomed. When it was time for boys to call on me I would be a new flower among old ones. I often thought of that analogy when boys ignored me "Just you wait" I thought, " I am going to be a beautiful flower and you'll be sorry!" It may seem silly but it made me feel less pathetic...thanks dad!!
6. I remember being in track. I enjoyed the practices but I hated the meets because I knew I was going to lose every time. I used to tell my parents not to come because I did not want them to see me be such a loser. Before each local race I could see my dad out of the corner of my eye. His presence quietly cheering me on. I wanted so bad not to come in last place. A few times I did not, and I am glad he was there to see it.
7. At 17 I got in a car accident. It was the fault of both parties. She was speeding but I could have avoided it. I was ashamed and frightened. I knew I was so very busted. I could not face my Mom at this time. I had them call Dad at work. He came and passed no judgement. I think he knew I was already beating myself up inside. He offered quiet wisdom even though I am sure he wanted to wring my neck. He took the path less traveled and ignored the feelings of the flesh...anger, disappointment. I felt none of it and learned everything from it.
8. I learned ways a man can appreciate his wife. My dad truly loved my mom's cooking. It may have not been that way from day one, but that is how I remember it. My mom is an amazing cook...I am not kidding...amazing. I saw my dad appreciate all of it. I knew I wanted my marriage that way. If only he appreciated it a bit more and did the dishes more often than Christmas and Easter!
9. My dad honored his priesthood responsibilities. He was a faithful home teacher to those who were difficult to home teach. He served his callings with diligence. He truly had a love for others.
10. My dad has an appreciation for the finer things. We were brought up to appreciate classical music. I remember when he brought home something called a compact disc player. He played us a C.D. called Round up. It has music for all the great western movies. It began with cows mooing and the sound of cowboys trying to round them up when all of a sudden our home was filled with William Tell's Overature (Lone Ranger music). We thought for sure our cows got out it sounded so clear. I loved it when my dad came home from work because he would turn on Bach, Mozart, or Rachmoninoff. I loved that music. He also made sure our summer vacations were well rounded. Yes we would make our yearly trek to Utah to see Grandma's and Grandpa but we would make a huge detour and see the Grand Canyon, Canada and Glacier National Park, we would see Yellowstone and Yosemite, Mesa Verde and Jackson Hole. Those trips could not have been easy...ask Mom, but what country we have seen.

The biggest most influential thing my dad did was to marry my mother. None of the above things would have been possible without her love and support. Dad, you are so many miles away but by being in my heart makes you so close. Thank you!!!!!

Love Cricket

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