Friday, July 17, 2009

Happy Birthday Dad!

It was my dad’s 65th birthday yesterday! I should have posted something earlier, but honestly we are celebrating with a special dinner this Saturday and so I was stuck on that day not considering what actual day was his birthday! I know dad – I’m out of the will! :)

Last night I was thinking about how I would describe my dad and was able to think about the many things that make my dad special. When I was younger my dad used to come in my room and sing the “Good Morning” song to me to wake me up. “Good Morning, Good Morning you’ve slept the whole night through, Good Morning Good Morning to you”. There came a time – when I was an ungrateful teenager - that this song was a tad annoying. But it is something I won’t ever forget about him and thinking back it is something that I appreciate about him.

Several of us girls from our block carpooled together to middle school and when it was my dad’s turn to drive it became “joke central” in the car. The girls loved it – they all thought my dad was hilarious and although I acted embarrassed at times it was nice having a dad that the other girls liked so much.

We took vacations as a family every summer and would go camping. We went all over on these trips and both my parents would make the car rides fun by playing tapes we rented from the library or playing the license plate game. And on vacation, according to my dad, “Anything goes”. Within reason of course, but that meant that if Mark wanted a hamburger and milkshake for breakfast, well he could have it. Dad and mom tried hard to make those trips memorable for us and I appreciate that so much now.

If you know my dad you know that he seems to know everyone! If I need something my dad probably knows someone who either has it, or can get it. He is the one that we go to if the car breaks down – can we trust this mechanic? He is the one we call if we or the kids are sick – should we go see a doctor? He is the one that will help with home improvement questions – how do you build a deck? If dad doesn’t have the answer he knows how to help us find it.

My dad has a heart for missions and for people in need and has made multiple trips to Africa, Haiti and other countries for medical mission trips. It is such a testament to God’s work in his life and it makes me so proud. Recently he is getting a program started in SD called “Kids Against Hunger”. He is still working out the details and when it all comes together I will post more about it, but his need to be the hands and feet of Jesus continue even today.

But the thing that I probably appreciate most about my dad now is the relationship that he is building with my kids. He and Isaac especially have such a neat relationship. Isaac loves to spend time with him and beat him at mini golf and car racing at Thunder Valley! They spend time camping and fishing and just have a good time together. Even Gabriel now gets some of grandpa’s teasing when he tries to steal his ice cream by distracting him with elephant sightings! I always enjoyed visiting my grandparents when I was younger and I am so glad that my kids are getting the same opportunities.

My dad is loving, compassionate, forgiving, trustworthy and an example to me in so many ways. I am so blessed to be his daughter and so excited that we are able to celebrate his birthday with him. I love you dad!

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