About My Dad …

This is my dad walking me down the aisle (why am I being carried down the aisle on Cleopatra's couch? That's a story for another day ...)

Funny thing: my last post was about religion and my family, but it was especially about my dad who did not believe in organized religion and who, without knowing it and for better or worse, formed my relationship with religion, God and spirituality in general.  Sprite’s Keeper “assigned” this topic in Spin Cycle and without that assignment, believe me, I would have NEVER come to write about it and, thus, would not have  made the realization that I did while writing it … to wit: my dad is true to what he believes and he Does. Not. Waver.

Last Friday, my dad died very, very unexpectedly.  Shock, sadness, regret, longing and sorrow have been my constant companions since the moment that my brother called me and said, gently but succinctly, that dad was “gone.”   But, to my surprise, I have also walked hand in hand with feelings of love, happiness, gratitude and profound joy with the life that he helped me create, the really wonderful times we shared with him and the lessons about loyalty and love that he left behind.   I miss him very much.

My dad LOVED backpacking and went on long trips with his brothers and others until he had to get "that damn hip" replaced. Then, alas, it was no more.

He even loved it when he was this young ...

... and we were this little.

He loved to build things. This was his first "house," which he built for me and my sister. Later he built two real ones for my mom.

Another big love? Fishing ...

He's been doing that for a long time, too. I mentioned that he was consistent, didn't I?

He was an excellent brother ...

... and was especially fond of this little one who came along rather unexpectedly when my dad was 12.

And they've all stayed friends forever.

Even their wives like each other.

And speaking of wives, he picked this cutie up when she was just 17 and he was 19. He was in the Marine Corps and she was in high school. Odds of success? Very low ...

But somehow, it worked out well ...

They kept at it ...

57 years worth ... aren't they cute?

As a father, he provided love and support ...

Good times in exotic locales ...

Companionship in the simplest ways ...

And once a year, the most delicious smoked turkey ever.

But it was as a grandad that he really, really excelled. This is what the first few weeks of my son's life looked like. Crying baby + dad = sleeping baby.

Hand him a baby that looks like this?

And a few minutes later, the baby looks like this. Must have had something to do with that deep, broadcast quality voice.

He was always up for playing ...

Or reading ...

Or teaching ...

Or simply being there when something exciting was happening, like my son's nursery school graduation.

He was a beautiful boy ...

And a lovely, intelligent, thoughtful man ...

He will be missed by many. Love you, dad.

13 Comments »

  • I am So sorry for your loss, Julie. I am in tears reading through this loving tribute. The pictures and words tell so much about what a wonderful man he was. Keeping your family in my thoughts.

  • I have loved your stories of the trips you’d take when you were young. I am so sorry to read of your dad’s passing. This post left me teary eyed–what a beautiful tribute to him.

  • Gretchen says:

    I’m SO sorry for your loss, and for taking so long in telling you. This was an absolutely beautiful tribute, he would have been SO proud and flattered. I know that this time will be difficult, but please know that you will feel better with time. And the best of him will live on in you.

    And I LOVE the groovy A-frame playhouse he built you! No ordinary square frame here, this place had style! Says so much about him. And you!

  • I’m in tears too! Makes me want to savor the time I have left with my own dad.

  • Kelly Kelly Kelly says:

    Julie, that was a really nice tribute to your dad. He had some wonderful years and did so much in the time he was alloted. His life will live on in you and your family, that will never go away thank goodness. Love the pictures, they say a thousand words.

    XXOO Kel

  • Susan Lynne says:

    Your story warmed my heart. You were blessed to have such a wonderful father. My dad passed 10 years ago, but he is still alive in my heart like your dad is in yours.

  • Pip says:

    Hi Julie!
    Thanks for your comment. I actually didn’t do much thrift shopping when I lived in Sydney so I can’t really give you any names. Maybe if you go to Surry Hills and go to Crown Street, (it’s a very long street) there are alot of boutique vintage shops. But, they jack the price of clothing, but it hurt to look. Or try Newtown, King Sreet that’s another long street. Good luck!

  • I am sorry to read about the lose of your Father. I understand how this feels. I lost my mother 5 years ago and a never goes by that I don’t think about her.

    I am very new to blogging. I am have covered a number of similar topics on my blog at bcjet.blogspot.com. It is also about dealing with mid life. I have enjoyed reading your blog very much.

  • Kate says:

    Sorry to hear about your dad .

  • Amy says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss, Julie. Your Dad looked like such a fun, loving man.

  • Maria says:

    there’s nothing anyone can to say in moments like this, just I’m so sorry.

    xo

  • Hi Julie! I just wanted to let you know about the Theyskens Theory shoes. I have found the fit to be kind of accurate. I usually wear a 6. I got the blue velvet in a 6. They were very tight on my toes but still a tad big in the heel. I put in little heel pads, and that seems to be fine. I got the white canvas ones in a 6.5 (since they is what was on eBay) and I have found them to fit pretty much exactly the same as the 6’s. No matter what size you get, be prepared for your little toe to be pinched until you have worn them a lot!

  • Also, I’m so sorry to leave a comment about shoes on such a sad post. I feel totally inappropriate, but I couldn’t find your email anywhere on your blog.

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