Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Treasures...

5-21 is National I Need A Patch For That Day! The only patch I don't really want (but hubby thinks I need) is a caffine patch.... COFFEE!!!!!!!!!!!! YAY!!!!

Ok, so back to your regularly scheduled blog...

I found a treasure the other day. The photo holder my dad carried in his wallet for YEARS! My stepmom had given it to me a while back, but I couldn't bring myself to go looking through the box I stored it in until yesterday. And inside.... my absolute most favorite picture of my sister and myself. (I think I might get introuble for this one.) And I found a picture of my dad outside his office on Ft Sam Houston. They are my POTD4M.. even though I didn't take the pictures I did put them in my computer today.




Yesterday, May 20th, would have been my dad's 59th birthday. I thought about him all day long, and thought about calling either Amber or LaNelle, but... well, I had some remembering I needed to do on my own first. I think I mourn him more than I do my mom. Even though my mom was my best friend I knew she was ready to go when she died. She told me so the night before she went into the hospital as I left the kitchen. She told me if she died tomorrow she was ready. My dad and I however, didn't relate very well and it got worse as I grew up. But I do have some favorite memories, as well as some hobbies and habits I learned from him. And this might end up being the longest blog post I ever do, but Amber once said she hated that she didn't remember these things. And well... I can still remember telling the Movers where to put my rocking chair when we moved into the house on Ft Sam at 771 Chaffee Road. (Blown away yet Boo? Give me a little bit & I might remember the phone number. I think it was REALLY easy like 330-3030... but don't quote me on that... it was over 20 years ago. BTW I'm getting old!) So I'm gonna share them.

Memories:

When he prayed, he referred to the Heavenly Father in King James. Thee's Thou's and Thy's. And he was good at it. I've been trying to write a dialouge for a book, and one of the charecters talks like my dad prayed... When I say it or write it, it sounds extremely stupid. When my Dad prayed that way... nothing more comforting than that sound.


Our station wagon Jessie... he drove that from like 80-89. Then it was the van... And they were both his favorite color blue and made by Chrysler. First time I saw him driving LaNelle's Mustang I seriously thought I was halusinating. I won't by a blue vehicle cause of those two cars... Ok, the Patriotic Blue Dodge Dakota Quad was GORGOUS but I still ended up with a silver one.


He would always call Amber and me: Mo and Jo... we still haven't figured out who was Mo and who was Jo. Or why we answered to it.


When we would drive long places and he was getting tired, instead of pulling over and getting some fresh air, he'd bust out his very loud rendition of Home On the Range. Daddy couldn't carry a tune in a bucket nailed shut to a barn door for his life. It was bad. He could make our dogs howl when he sang. (I am so keeping my mouth shut about the howling that happend when we practiced our instruments...)


One year in Santa's Workshop at school, one of us bought him a HUGE eraser for his desk that said something like *#1 Dad*. That stupid thing was still on his desk at least 10 years & 2.5 Army bases later when he retired, right next to the two very 70's style picture frames he kept with our yearly school pictures in.


He loved potatoes, cooked, mashed, raw, you name it. If he wasn't crunching on an apple, it was a raw peeled salted potato. AND, Mashed Potatoes was one of the ONLY 5 things (maybe it was 5... could have been less) he knew how to cook. That and goulash. As much as I hated that dish, I wish I had his recipe now.


One word.... LEMONADE. He never drank soda unless we were out to eat, and that was only if lemonade and then iced tea were not choices. He never drank coffee or hot tea. It was always Kool Aid Brand Sugar Free Lemonade. Believe me when I say you can have to much of a good thing. :P And that you end up with to much of a good thing when you drink out of huge cups. All day. Every day.


OOOO Another one word... ok maybe it's two... COMB-OVER. He was one of those guys with the crown of hair around his head and was totally bald on top, but he grew about 10 strands of hair and combed it over to cover his bald spot. He stopped taking naps on the couch when Amber and I learned how to braid hair. Then one day he came home from work, took of his cover and it was gone. HE said the barber got a little carried away when he told him to *Take a little off the top.* Is it a cowinky dink that the youth scavenger hunt was the weekend before and Amber & I were in different groups... and I think we both went to our house when the scavenger list said *Take a picture pointing at a bald man's head.*? You tell me.


My favorite memory is when we were young and we went camping. Like when Amber and I were 6-9. I know it was before 10 because we didn't camp after Mommy's health started to get bad. It was the camping trip we learned to doggie paddle. We were at this BEAUTIFUL river side camping ground, and it was really early in the morning. And Mommy wasn't feeling good. (She had Type I Diabetes.) Amber and I got up and it was cold and we wanted something warm to drink. Now when I say Daddy couldn't cook, I REALLY mean he couldn't cook. Mommy did it all, including the grilling whenever we camped. But this one morning, she wasn't feeling good and we were cold and thirsty and Daddy did his best. And when he ended up taking Mommy to the hospital, Daddy had to go for his hand cause he burnt it while making Amber and me some hot chocolate on the grill. He had a habit of forgetting the reason behind hotpads. But what makes this my favorite memory is that as much as he HATED cooking and didn't know how, and as certian as he surely was that he would somehow end up messing up and getting hurt, he still made the hot chocolate for us. And I think that's when my pretwenties hot cocoa obsession started... Now it's Vanillia Hazelnut Lattes, but back then.... MMMMMMMMMMM!!!! Hot Cocoa!

Hobbies & Habits:
When we lived in Germany, Daddy LOVED to go on 10 K Volksmarches (An extremely simple explination is a 10 kilometer trail walk.). We saw a lot of Germany that way. The walks were through wooded trails all over the country, not meant for a wheelchair, and although sometimes I went with them, it was usually Daddy and Amber walking and me and Mommy waiting. Well, one time in the middle of the week there was a volksmarch scheduled in Ider Oberstein and when Daddy was ready to go, Amber wasn't home. So I offered to go instead. That was the deepest conversation I have ever had with my dad, and although I won't ever tell what was said, I still remember every word. And to this day, when I need to clear my head and decide where God is leading me next, I find myself going for a walk.

I love baseball and I get that from him. His favorite teams were the L.A. Dodgers and the Seattle Mariners. Living in Seattle I try to go to at least one game a year. The first game I went to after moving here is one I will never forget. Mainly because of my dad's reaction after I told him I was going. He actually blew a raspberry into the phone. SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO not typical of my dad! Why did he do it? Cause I got to see his two favorite teams play each other, and it wasn't a World Series. My friend Laura and I went to see the Dodgers and Mariners play in an inter-league play game. That was the 1st and last time I went to the King Dome. I was pregnant with Eli when I went to my next game after they built Safeco Field... Between the Colorado Rockies and the Mariners (another inter-league game) I got Jay Buhner's autograph. WOW!

And Bowling! I LOVE TO BOWL!!! Geeky I know, but hey. It's fun. And I remember Friday nights were the nights that the adult mixed league bowled. Mom and Dad were on a team with Joyce and Billy Saddler until Mom couldn't hold a bowling ball anymore. But I remember all the way until my JR year, Amber and I bowled in YABA, and when normal kids were sleeping in or watching Saturday Morning Cartoons, Daddy was dragging our butts out of bed to be on the lanes by 9AM. Wanna know a secret? I wish we had never stopped. I missed it then, and I still do now. Mommy was seriously not an early riser, so that time was spent with Daddy. It was such a Daddy and his Daughters thing, that one year I made it to the Coca Cola Tournament in GA, and instead of making it a family trip, Daddy just took me.

I used to tell my mom I was NEVER going to marry a soldier, NEVER move to Washington State, and NEVER live anywhere near cows, and NEVER own a small dog. I didn't want my parents life, I was young and foolish, I didn't understand my dad, and figured if I married a man anything like him, I wouldn't be happy. I learned I was wrong. And I learned to NEVER say NEVER! My darling hubby was a soldier who is from Washington State, and we live there now... about 2 miles from a very active dairy farm whose cow smell permiates the vally on a nice hot day. And we own a very cute Tiny Toy Poodle named Oscar Copper Mugilicutty who weighs 8 lbs... on a bad hair day. I found truth in the statement *A woman marries a man like her Daddy.*
Even though I'm late saying this, I was really thinking it yesterday: Happy Birthday Daddy. We love and miss you heaps and tons.

2 comments:

Hilary said...

I see your Dad in Eli :)

Amber Vlangas said...

Charity,
I loved this post, it was a wonderful trip down memory lane for me-the things that you remember are amazing. A lot of the fond memories that you have are the same for me. I loved the camping, the volksmarching and the bowling. It is so true that some great conversations happened on those long walks through the woods. (with cocoa and rosie in tow) I have Daddy's volkmarching hat in my closet and when I read your post I took it out. Though I thought it was so embarrassing to have him wear the hat around my friends, I found myself running my hands over the fabric and almost being able to hear his voice once again. Gosh, I miss him and mom! Thank you so much for sharing the memories and putting them in such nice perspective.
xoxox,
Amber