Sunday, September 21, 2014

Wish They Knew You.

Hey Dad...
A little Happy Birthday's late...sorry.
As we were driving by the cemetery the other day, Addison noticed all the pretty flowers. We decided to stop and see where you're buried. I hadn't been there since your funeral. I know you aren't really there, so it doesn't necessarily make me feel near to you, but did make me think about the way you were.

I love that you read the Bible and that you talked about Jesus with me. I also love that you tried to honor the Lord in everything that you did. You showed me that being a part of His church is an important part of my walk with Jesus. 
Jesus is, obviously, the best thing I learned from you...and the most valuable thing of my life.

I still remember watching the parades with you on the back of Papa's truck. I can still here the drums and remember eating pickles and salt, while you pointed the different floats out.

Dad, I love that you were affectionate. You hugged us and kissed our cheeks and foreheads often, since your lips were only for Mom. I'm thankful that you never held back on those things. We knew that we were loved by you.

You were THE handiest of handymen. I LOVED how you could fix almost anything. If anything broke, forget the store. We took it to Dad. I definitely got my handy-girl quality from you. Josh even learned so much in the years he had with you as well! You had an engineer's mind and I miss it. Even now, if I hear a noise with the car, I wanna call you, imitate the noise to you and let you tell me what's wrong with it. I'm thankful Josh can do some of that now, because you taught him so much about cars. He has even told me how much he cherished your many evenings outside working on the '79 CJ-5 Jeep he had. This has been a valuable quality that you passed down and I'm thankful.'re not the shopping kinda dad. I'll never forget you falling asleep in the window of The Gap in Tennessee. Crazy guy.

The time you answered the door with a gun to welcome in my homecoming date. Sheesh. I was embarrassed, but now, I miss that embarrassingly goofy humor...except that I totally have it. I heart goofiness. I guess that's why I married Josh, Dad, because he can laugh at himself, like you:)

This trip is one I am sooooo glad we got to go on!! I got quality time with just you and Mom on a Northeast/New England tour and it was the best. This is one of you and me on the subway in NYC. I miss how you were always up for an adventure. You kind of seemed to love the unknown. Finding weird things was fun to you. Stopping at every "hysterical" marker was fun to you. Getting lost aka "taking the scenic route" was always fun to you. 

Camping with you was the best. You made your girls be a little tougher and stronger for taking us camping and I am so glad you did. You taught me so many things about being self-sufficient this way and about working for everything we did. You know...cutting a stick off a tree, cutting the bark away, smoothing it out and making our own walking sticks...and that we clean up around where we stayed. We left it better than it was when we got there, because it is respectful of the land and of the people who were going to be there next, etc. You were social and loved camping with other people, as well. You welcomed others so kindly:)
These are things I can't wait to teach my kids.

I'm so thankful that you were here to walk me down the aisle and give me away at my wedding. You looked so handsome in your tux, Dad! 
I know the weddings of your daughters were bittersweet (probably for every father) since you have to give your daughters to another man. Now, that I have kids, this is hard to imagine, but I do want that for them. I knew you weren't looking forward to that day when you cried during "Father of the Bride" when we were really young, because you knew that one day, you too, would feel like George Banks. 

One of the weekends I cherish most is the week that Addison was born. We were able to leave immediately after getting home from the hospital to go spend the week with you in Victoria and it was one of the best weeks of my life. I got to introduce you to my precious, first newborn baby and got to spend sweet quality time with you doing hardly anything. It was difficult seeing you like that, but I was also thankful to be spending time with you while you were doing okay enough to hold Addison a little bit and have some good talks.
Every moment that week was a blessing and I will remember it forever. 

You died one month later. 
I got 27 years with you and I can't wait to see you again, which I know I will, because you loved Jesus. I know you're with Him. 
I wish my kids could know you, because you loved Jesus, you were a great husband to mom, an amazing dad, and a wonderful Poppa to the older grand-kids.
I wish they knew how silly you were and that they could learn all these things from you, but you taught me and now I can teach them. Plus, God has put some pretty legit people in our lives to love them in the meantime. God takes care of us. You know that better than me...being there with Him and all:)
I'm hoping that they will get to know you in Heaven/the New Earth...more than that, that they'll know Jesus one day. 

Love you, Dad

Happy Belated Birthday