Things About My Dad (an abbreviated list):
1. He was the youngest son in his family.
2. He was born during the Great Depression.
3. As a kid, he earned money by plowing gardens with his horse (this was in town, mind you).
4. He quit school after the 8th grade so that he could work and help out his family.
5. He got his driver's license at 14...all he had to do was take a cop out driving and get the yes or no answer.
6. He worked as a logger with his father and older brothers for a number of years. They used old-fashioned crosscut saws and frequently got the logs off the truck by standing on top of the stack and kicking them. S-T-U-P-I-D.
7. After logging, he started driving semi-trucks, hauling construction equipment for a local company.
8. When I was young, he would be gone 3-4 days out of each week. I would get up at 3 or 4 in the morning just to eat breakfast with him and say goodbye.
9. I could not be unglued from his side when he got home. He taught me how to play checkers and a mean game of War, and we would play either/or in the evenings.
10. He had his first child at the age of 22 and his last at the age of 42 (that would be me).
11. He has been married to my mother for 56 1/2 years.
12. He is not really a sports lover. Doesn't watch football or baseball, unless a grandchild is participating in the game.
13. He claims to have scored sort of high on some musical assessment he took in elementary school. The band director at the time wanted him to play French Horn. I ended up playing it instead.
14. He had open heart surgery at the age of 51. That one bypass lasted him a good 26 years.
15. One of his pet peeves is people who don't know how to make change without a cash register or calculator. I learned very early how to manually make change. I will also make sure my daughter knows how someday.
16. He loves watching Westerns (bleah).
17. He farts a lot, then blames it on thunder, an elephant, or my mother.
18. He has false teeth.
19. He is CHEAP (except when it comes to tipping). He claims this is because he is Dutch.
20. He still works, even though he's been officially retired for 13 years.
21. He has never smoked, and rarely drinks alcohol (see #19).
22. Last November, he was diagnosed with Esophageal Cancer. We would not have known he had it if it hadn't been for a GI bleed, caused by new blood thinner meds he was on following placement of 3 stents.
23. He has been on chemo since December, and his PET scans are all showing good things so far.
24. I am hoping and praying for a miracle.
25. I love my dad more than I can possibly say.
Happy Father's Day, daddy.