It's strange to me...some of my earliest memories of my father involve super early in the morning and it's still dark out but Dad is up. Light on in the kitchen and the smell of coffee percolating in our Corning Ware coffee maker. That white coffee pot with the blue flower on the front. Ironic how I always have coffee and sweets involved as vivid memories in my life (wink wink smiley face).
I know many of you have the same great feelings about your Dad. My dad was something special. A man's man....tough as nails with a "John Wayne" style about him. I know I tortured that man being the youngest of three AND the only girl. Mom would say I had him wrapped around my little finger. He was my hero and the man I was going to marry. (I was five)
Many of my traditions and loves come from my parents...the absolute L❤️VE of Christmas, grilling outdoors (low & slow), following my faith, being kind to others and most importantly, giving generously.
I remember my father saying to me..."I may not always like you, but I will always love you." This referred to when I was in trouble for something and he didn't like what I did, but I knew, he would always love me no matter what. I knew I could call him, knowing I might be in trouble for being out late etc, I could call him and he would be there and wouldn't yell or anything like that...he wanted me to be able to count on him. And yes...there were consequences...but I knew I could count on him.
My Dad was a quiet man regarding his time in WWII. He had his father (immigrant from Ireland) and mother (1st generation american) sign off so he could go to war at the age of 17. He joked that he went to war to be on a ship because he was one of 9 children and it was way too cramped n the house. When Johnny (hubby) asked him about his time at war, he would joke that he was on a sea life vacation. Only to find out upon his death that Tom fought in one of the biggest battles at sea during that time.
Yes..he was a very quiet man and one full of giving. He had been very successful at a young age and made great wealth, however, he shared it with many never asking for anything in return or to get any sort of recognition. He always wished to remain anonymous.
When he passed away and word got out....we were amazed at the cards and letters from friends and strangers that expressed their sadness for our loss but the tremendous acts of kindness he bestowed on them. Many instances that my mom knew nothing about. He purchased kitchen equipment for one family. He put a new roof on another family's house. He was quite the carpenter and helped build rooms and extensions on houses in need. We even had one of his employees stay with us (hide out) while my dad helped him become a US citizen so he wouldn't have to worry anymore. So much more...but too much to count.
It's funny...he loved the water and loved boating and yet he headed to the desert and remained. He would tell Johnny and I how he wanted to live coastal. No... not a beach house...even better he said. On a small boat docked in a marina. Maybe thats where my love of tiny living comes from.(wink wink smiley face)
I know many of you have great Dads and can share many wonderful things about them. I appreciate you letting me tell you about my dad and what he meant to me and my brothers. I've embedded a small video I created years ago...shortly after he died. Technology wasn't as good and I had copied videos from a VHS tape that originally were 8mm films. Its a little blurry but you will see my father's love of the ocean. I am planning to take all our original 8mm films and videos to a company that can put them on a dvd. Hopefully better clarity,
Happy Fathers Day to my Dad and to those who are blessed to be with their father this weekend, enjoy! To those fathers who are not with us....go and do something they would love or enjoy a tradition you all loved to do together. Maybe I will go look at tiny houses and tiny boats to retire and live on.
Lolita (aka Daddy's little girl)