Monday, May 16, 2011

Happy Birthday Old Raisin

Today is May 16th, 2011 which means my dad turns the big 50. In our family, if you're getting up there in years, we like to call you an old raisin. Well, Dad, you have now lived half a century...and I think that means you have officially obtained the old-raisin status.

You're hair is graying, your knees are hurting, and you can't remember anyone's name. Your kids have all grown and gone...oh wait...nope can't say that one...and you're putting on weight...but're actually losing weight! You've worked hard at the same job for years and are about you actually just started a new job! You tease and taunt and crack immature jokes and still love to laugh as you take care of your home, yard, and calling.  Jeez...It sounds to me like you are a spry young hopper still. An old raisin wouldn't be losing weight and working so hard while raising young kids.

So, you may be old-raisin status in years, but in years alone.

Sure, you may not look like this anymore, but honestly, I think the permed hair is better left in the past anyways.
So as my gift to my old-raisin dad on his 50th birthday, here are just a few of the reasons why I love him:

My dad is a dang good cook. His rolls CANNOT be beaten. I always feel like I'm missing something when I don't get to eat my dad's rolls on major holidays. His Chinese food is spectacular as well.

Look at how big, tall, and strong my dad is. I think his size represents strength--strength in size and in character. People say about him, "Wow your dad is big!" and when they do I feel my chest well up with pride and I say, "Yeah, that's him."

My dad is mischievous. And when he is, he gets a certain look in his eyes and you can just tell he's up to no good. I love that look. He is the biggest tease and yes he drove me crazy growing up, (especially during the teenage years, if you can imagine) and sometimes still drives me crazy, but I wouldn't change it for the world. 

Each Christmas my dad hands out the presents one by one so we can all see what everyone is opening. It is such a great example to have my father take charge and lead the family in one of our Christmas traditions. I will always treasure this part of Christmas with my dad.

This picture to me represents a soft side in my dad that I love. He isn't really into holidays, but he can usually be coerced into participating because he realizes what it means to us kids. I mean, look at him dressed up as Santa holding our dogs :) That is the best. He did and does so much for the family that I am just learning to appreciate. Participating in holiday festivities, taking us out on vacations when he doesn't love traveling, driving the kids around and picking them up, etc... he doesn't do it because he loves to, he does it because he loves us.  

And here are my two most favorite things about my dad:

First, his testimony and knowledge of the gospel. I can always feel the spirit when my dad bears his testimony and there are many distinct times that I can remember his testimony making a personal impact on my life.

And dad is a teacher by profession, and he's good at it. And while I have been able to experience his prepared given lessons, he has taught me, in a far greater way, on the ins-and-outs of life. Almost everything I do, now that I am on my own, I can trace back to my dad teaching me how to do it. He taught me manners, respect, and honesty, cleaning, working, and how to have a good time. 

One of my most treasured memories is when my brother and I went for a walk with my dad. I was trying to match my dad's pace and walk just like him, and my brother started making fun of me saying how silly I looked. I told him I didn't care, I liked trying to walk like my dad. My dad stopped us both right there and turned to me and said that he was proud that I had the confidence to walk the way I wanted, and that it is a great thing to be able to do things without caring what other people think. And then, he just resumed walking.

It was such a small moment, but what he said and the value he placed in me has stuck with me throughout the years. In that one lesson I was taught the value of confidence and I felt loved.

Not all times were like that. Often, his teaching moments were more of an impatient outburst at how I should be doing something differently. And even though it seemed as if I didn't really care and wasn't listening, those moments sunk in and have stuck with me, guiding my life now. 

I like to tease my husband (quite unfairly because for many years he didn't have a dad around) and I often say things like, "Didn't your dad teach you....

...not to talk with your mouth open or to put your elbows on the table?" to switch lanes correctly?" to iron a shirt?" to talk nice to your siblings?" to clean a bathroom?" to dress nice before leaving the house?"

And it's because I have memories of my dad teaching me about each of these things.

So dad, you are the voice in my head that still reminds me of the right way to live my life, and I'm so grateful that you took the time to teach me what you have. 

You're the best old-raisin of a father a girl could ask for and I love you. Happy Birthday!

1 comment:

  1. Your dad sounds like a very awesome man!! Happy Birthday to him!!