Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day

Unfortunately my dad is no longer with us - but he was the best dad in the world. He was the most laid-back, kind, genuinely good person I've ever known. When I was a kid he worked 2nd shift and was home in the mornings. Before we started school and in the summers my sister and I went everywhere with him. I remember lots of trips to the lumber yard, garden center, the gas station, where we always got a cold drink from the cooler (remember the old ones where you raised up the top and scooted the bottle, which was in ice water, through the slots?) A group of men would be sitting in a circle on upturned bottle cases and I would just sit and listen. I always wanted to go so I must not have found it too boring! He was a supervisor in a coal mine and it was a very stressful job. When he wasn't at work the phone rang constantly with problems, so when he had a vacation we always went away somewhere so he could escape. He loved to travel and was a whiz with maps and directions. Often other aunts & uncles and cousins would go along on our vacations and my dad was always the leader, they just followed his directions and followed along in their cars. I remember once going through Atlanta on the way to Florida my uncle ran red lights in fear of losing our car! That was when there were no interstates and we went Hwy. 41 from Kentucky to Florida right through Nashville and Atlanta and it took forever (with no air conditioning!)

After I got married my dad and husband got along great and often my parents went with us on trips. When we traveled anywhere without them I knew as soon as we got home Dad would want to know everything we did, which route we took, what we saw, etc. He died in 1999 and every trip I have made since then, I've thought Daddy would love to hear about this! He loved his grandchildren too - and let them run all over him. We would tell the kids to leave Grandaddy alone, but they always wanted him to go to their rooms or outside, etc. so they could have him by themselves. My daughter called him "Gray" before she could say Grandaddy and my son had an imaginary friend "John Cates", which was Daddy's name. The ultimate compliment. Thank you Dad for everything!

My husband's father was a wonderful Dad too. He unfortunately was killed in an accident when my children were very small so they never got to know him as well, especially my son who was just a baby, and I'm so sorry they missed that chance. He was a wonderful man.

My husband is a teriffic father and grandfather. Our children always came first and I know he has sacrificed a lot for them, but nothing he didn't want to do. He coached little league, was a band dad, worked at many concession stands, went on many band trips, and enjoyed it all. With our two granddaughters he thinks they hung the moon and the feeling is mutual. We have always kept our oldest granddaughter a lot in the summers and he is her main babysitter as he has more days off during the week than I do. He has played many, many games of Candy Land and Barbie! Love & Happy Father's Day!

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