Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Dad's Day Book Giveaway

I'm doing a drawing on June 1st, just in time for Father's Day... so share a comment with your own Dad story and I'll put YOUR name in the hat for a chance to win a copy of Brothers of the Outlaw Trail.

Dad never had sons, so being the oldest child, I learned a lot of "guy" stuff. How bait a hook and cast a line, and reel in a fish. How to scale and fillet what I caught. Then when I got my first car, Dad took me out to the driveway. "The life of your car is in the oil. You need to know how to change the oil and filter." So he taught me how to drain the old oil, change the filter, and put in new oil. Change the air filter in the car. How to check the tires and fluids. Mom made sure I knew the "girl" stuff. How to mend, how to cook.

Dad is the oldest of five boys, so once my sisters and I came along, living in a female-dominated household was probably a bit overwhelming for him at times. But Dad didn't let on if he ever had no clue. (One of my friends was a host parent for a teenage foreign exchange student. She has no children of her own, and commented about feeling inadequate. I told her that was normal, in some respects. But I digress.) Not flawless, not perfect, but Dad did his best. Despite any inadequacy I never sensed from him.

Some Saturdays he would work on Wallops Island, Virginia in one of the weather observatories. This was back in the glorious 70's, when our country's enemy was a far-off threat called the Soviet Union and we had no idea what "war on terror" meant. On those Saturdays, Dad would tote me along to the base. We'd be waved past the guard booth and would head to the narrow strip of research buildings. I never knew what he did there, but I sure had fun running from one end of the building to the other. The teletype machine fascinated me as data came in from other parts of the country.

Dad inspired me with a sense of adventure, of wanting to know more, to explore the back roads and seeing what we found. He had magazines like National Geographic around, and got me a whole set of books by Jacques Cousteau. Like my Heavenly Father, he opened up a giant world to me. No matter that I wasn't a son. I was his child, and he wanted to pass on to me what he held important. Don't forget. Share a Dad story! :) If your Dad isn't here anymore, honor him with a short memory. Or maybe you never knew your dad, or the memories aren't quite as positive. God fathers the fatherless. He sends us people for fathering moments. He's not bound by genetics. And neither are we. :)

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