This is a long post because I have posted one dozen of my favorite memories about my Dad!
I thought that this year for Father's Day I would post a bunch of random memories that I have with my Dad. When I was in elementary school, I was very much a momma's girl. My Dad worked pretty far away so his commute was a long one. To top that off, he was a band director so that meant during marching season he was gone more than not. However when I started middle school, he became my band director. I also got to spend a lot of time with him traveling. I think this is when things turned around and I became very much a Daddy's girl.
1. I'd like to start this post off with random "snow" memories that I have with my Dad. When I was little, it snowed. Most Dad's make snowmen and help their little girls make snow angels. Not my Dad- my Dad made me a snow elephant. It was and still is the coolest thing I've ever seen. It was absolutely awesome.
2. My parents bought me a small car the Christmas before my 2nd semester of college. My Dad drove in his car and I drove in my car to make sure that I was safe and sound (because it was a 300 plus mile trip to college). Well we got into our cars and started to drive away from my grandparent's house and it began to snow. We thought it shouldn't be that bad because we hadn't heard anything about a snow system coming through. So we continued to drive. We got to the interstate and the further we got up the mountains the worse the snow got. I was getting very nervous. This was well before we had cell phones too. I nearly peed my pants on that drive up the mountain. So Dad pulled over on the side of the interstate (this was after we had seen numerous cars slide off the mountain --- yes I may be exaggerating, but I honestly remember cars slipping and sliding off the mountain!) and I slid over. He drove us to the nearest exit and we stopped at a motel thinking that the snow would ease off at some point. We were in the same town as my college band director so eventually Dad made a call to "Bob" and we left the hotel to spend the night with "Bob" and a college crew of students that had also gotten stuck nearby. Now while it was scary, that was one of the funnest times of my life. The next day we shoveled off the car and made onto college. My college didn't actually start on time because people couldn't get there. I got to spend 3 or so days on campus with some of my best college friends just hanging out. It was a blast! Don't ask me how Dad got back to his car because I don't remember!
3. Another ice storm: This had to have been December of 1997. I had just started dating my husband and he had come to see me at my parent's home. He was on his way back home when something happened to his car so he drove it back to my parent's home. He picked up whatever part it was and started working on the car in my parent's driveway. My Dad stood there amazed at all he could do. Then, it started sleeting. Rob kept on working under a tarp. My Dad continued to stand there watching Rob work. It was in that moment that I realized I finally was dating a man that my Dad really liked! :} It sleeted really bad that day and Rob had to spend the night. It just happened to be Christmas Eve! So Rob got to witness my Dad's "Samta" impression early in the morning. I was so excited it was like Christmas -- oh wait, it was. Back story: I don't know what year it started --- but every Christmas morning Dad would walk down the hall way doing his best Ho Ho Ho to "wake" everyone up. (as if we were really asleep!)
Riding with my Dad:
4 When I was in middle & high school, I had to ride with my Dad to go to school. As previously mentioned, my Dad was the band director. I went to school with him because the school was 20 minutes from our house. It wasn't my district school, but because he taught there --- I was able to attend. I felt lucky because who else got to spend 40 minutes of uninterrupted time with their Dad as a teen? So I was learning how to play the flute (my Dad taught me!) and I would practice any chance I would get. After all, he was my teacher and he knew how long I practiced. I couldn't lie on the how long did you practice sheets! Well one of the ways I'd get my time in was on the drive to and from school. I'd roll down the window, stick my flute out the window and play. The first year I learned Rocky Top, the 2nd worst song ever. I played it a lot because I was worried I would mess it up for the fireman's day parade. If I could have figured out later how to spin a flag or rifle in the car, I would have done that too!
5. On most trips when I wasn't practicing, he would plug in a tape. This wasn't just any tape, but a musical arrangement tape by Hal Leonard. He must have had dozens and dozens of these tapes and listen we did on the way home.
6. Another thing that happened on our way home was that we would stop by a store and pick up goodies. I typically picked up a nu-grape in a glass bottle so I could tear off the paper and some sort of pastry item such as a honey-bun. We did this almost every day.
Wedding related memories:
7. So when I was in elementary school, I fell off my bike. I bit through my tongue and it bled a lot. I cried a lot. There was a terrible scar, but my parent's promised that it would get better before I got married. Fast forward to March 27, 1999. Rob proposed. We went to my parent's house, but they weren't there! I called my grandparents and found out Dad was on the golf course. I told Granny I needed to talk to them and if they could send them home to sign my FAFSA paperwork that would be great. Of course Granny knew that something else was up and that I wouldn't call in such a hurry if it was just FAFSA paperwork. So she got it out of me. My Granny was the first person I told that I was getting married. She sent them on their way later. I told them I was disappointed because my tongue scar didn't heal and I was getting married!
8. Every wedding my family would attend - my Dad would sit nearest to me and sometime during the ceremony whisper, "Elope." At some point when I was a little older and actually knew what eloping meant, I'd whisper back, "Can't elope." Honestly, I can't remember how many weddings this happened. Well, my Granny called me a few days before the rehearsal and asked if there was anything special I needed that I had not picked up yet. I told her that I needed her to go to the grocery store and pick up a very special fruit. So at the rehearsal, I presented Dad with a cantaloupe. :) On the back of the wedding programs themselves, I had typed up Cantaloupe at the bottom of it.
*** a lot of Elementary school memories ***
9. My Dad put up a basketball goal. Well, I spent a LONG time out at the basketball goal chunking basket after basket. Missing goal after goal. Dad came out and stood approximately where the three point line would be if there had been one and said, "If you make this goal, I'll give you ---" I *think* it was 20 bucks. Wouldn't you know it, I shot and made that goal. Easiest 20 bucks I ever made!
10. When I was in 5th or 6th grade, I was granted permission to choose a paint color for my room. I chose Carolina blue! My Dad didn't try to talk me into a more girly or neutral color.
11. Now, what is one thing a Dad DREADS when he finds out he's going to be the Dad of a daughter? (other than when said daughter starts to date) --- Well, I can tell you what it would be in my house --- SLEEPOVER PARTIES! I think it was when I turned 12 I invited 10 or so girls over to the house for a slumber party! Dad made the best of a bad situation, "DON'T EMBARRASS ME DAD!" He bought us plenty of food and pretty much stayed out of our way. He came out when we needed more food or if we needed him to check outside for the pesky boys that showed up to try to scare us, but we were wise to their ways!
12. Perhaps one of my favorite stories of all time involve me, my little brother, a video store and a car. Dad ran into the video store to either return a movie or get a new rental. While my lil bro & I were in the tiny car, he began to get figity. I was fussing at him (of course) to get back in his seat when all the sudden the car started rolling backwards onto the huge busy street. I remember screaming, lil bro was oblivious that anything was wrong and Dad came running out of the video store. He grabbed the bumper of the car and single-handedly stopped the car from rolling.
Happy Father's Day to my favorite Dad of all times!