because yesterday was father’s day and today is his birthday….

ten random things about  my dad….

  1. favorite memory: when i was little we used to shop at a grocery store named sipes.  one day while shopping with my dad,  i noticed in their bakery display a cookie monster cupcake with a real chocolate chip cookie in his frosting mouth.   i coveted this cupcake – my love for cupcakes started very early.  for some reason, too close to dinner maybe?  we couldn’t get it at the time and i was crushed.  however, a few weeks later it was thanksgiving.  my dad has an annual tradition of cooking thanksgiving breakfast.  when i came out that morning to watch macy’s parade and have my breakfast, the cookie monster cupcake was on my plate.
  2. my dad always had time for us.  he came to every single school presentation and every single recital.  he tucked me in every  night with a bedtime story, sometimes read from the same book of 365 bedtime stories he had as a child. being the vintage freak that i am now, and the avid collector of children’s books i would give my right arm to know where that book is.*
  3. my dad was the one who introduced me to running.  for a few years in a row, he arranged for our family (of four at that time) to together run the 1 mi fun run; staged before the prestigious tulsa run.  we still have the official photos, t-shirts, and somewhere the numbers.
  4. i was not to really enjoy running until i became an adult; so during the hills of our practice runs my dad would come along beside me and literally pull me up the hill until the terrain was flat again.
  5. dad taught me how to ride a bike.  i don’t remember  a whole lot about it but i do know that dad was incredibly patient as it was a very very looooooong time before i was ready to rid myself of training wheels.  so long, that even the neighborhood kids were making comments.
  6. dad grew up in the michigan farm country where any temperature over 83 degrees is considered very hot.  he talked about getting up early in the morning to go pick peaches and how the peach fuzz would get on his arms and make him itch.  if i recall correctly, he still to this day doesn’t care for peach skin for that reason.  he doesn’t like sweetened ice tea either.  not that that has anything to do with peaches….
  7. when my dad was in jr. high his parents moved from the country to the “city”, a small resort town on lake michigan.  his birthday was always a beach party and it signaled the start of the summer.  as a child, we would vacation on this beach, sometimes watching the fourth of july fireworks laying  on a beach blanket.
  8. growing up, we always had a dog or a cat or both.  from time to time and for whatever the reason, they would die, as pets are often wont to do.  this is a very hard concept for a child to grasp.  my dad would always take the time to very gently explain to us what happened, often tearing up himself.  he would then shoulder the unpleasant task of burying the poor creature in the back  yard.
  9. when i was little, my nickname was “skipper”.  my dad didn’t travel for his job very often but when he did, he always brought a little something back.  after one trip, he brought back a pair of navy blue sneakers made by a brand called “skipper”.  i used these as my gym shoes.  sneakers were not the rage at the time, but i didn’t want to hurt his feelings so i wore them anyway.  in true sneaker fashion, they had long toes.  when i ran on the linoleum gym floor the toes would often hit last, making loud slapping noises as i trotted along.  later, when dad learned the truth, he cackled and we joked about it often.  as a preteen when colored sneakers *were* all the rage, i wished to heaven for those navy skippers.
  10. when i was 16 (or thereabouts) i was invited to my very first co-ed birthday party.  i was a shy kid, and very nervous about this party for two twin boys in my youth group.  i agonized about what i should wear, what gift i should take and who would be there.  my dad sensed my apprehension and took his lunch break to take me shopping for a gift.  banana republic had just come into town.  this was back in the day when they sold safari gear;  very different from the store they are now.  i wanted to buy those guys each a banana republic t-shirt.  dad drove me to the store, waited patiently while i picked out the shirts, and then paid for the gifts.   i took them home, wrapped them up in brown paper, and tied them with twine and a banana.  the gifts were a hit and the party was a blast.

happy birthday dad!  we love and appreciate you.

*edited to add: my husband and i did a google search last night and found an exact copy on etsy for $16.  we snatched it right up.

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