Tuesday, March 27, 2012

#74

Happy Birthday Dad!
To the hardest working man I know.
And anyone else who knows him will vouch for that statement!
You know that line in Napoleon Dynamite where some kid on the bus asks, "What are you going to do today Napoleon?"  And Napoleon answers, "Whatever I want to, GOSH!"

My Dad has been retired a couple of years (not sure exactly-has it been that long?) but if you asked him that question he would have answers like this, every single day:
"Bailing hay for 8 hours."
"Tapping trees and hauling 300 buckets of maple syrup."
"Chopping and stacking wood."
"Re-landscaping the front yard."
"Pruning an orchard of apple trees."
"Putting up 40 jars of strawberry jam."

Last week I called him-my mom was out of town for a week or two and I was checking up on him.  It was about 8 o'clock at night. He said he just got in from chopping wood and was in the middle of making an apple pie.  I was ready for bed and exhausted.  He is 74!  (By the way, my mom flew to Indonesia by herself for 2 weeks because she was asked to train Montessori teachers. See what I'm up against?)

I am happier than heck I have the example of my parents- they taught me and continue to teach me what it means to serve others, to live a full and happy life, to work hard.  No sitting around and griping about illness (and let me tell you-my Dad has been through alot health-wise but you would never know it) and the weather and all that old people talk.  I laugh to think of my parents on a cruise ship buying gold and sipping fancy drinks and hot tubbing during "retirement".  Ha!  That will never happen, I'll bet my last dollar on it.  And I love it.  I'm so proud of both of them.


33 comments :

  1. What a great tribute to your father; it's wonderful to have parents be examples to be examples to us and our children about what's the most important in life--and you're right, it's not sipping fancy drinks on a cruise.

    Love Napoleon too.

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  2. Your dad sounds amazing. There's no question where your strong values come from. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree!

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  3. Happy birthday to a great guy!

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  4. What a beautiful example! I love the picture, he looks like such a nice man :)

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  5. LOVE your parents and I don't even know them!!! I couldn't agree more that the key to happiness is hard work and rising above life's challenges...

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  6. Many Happy Returns to your dad. What a wonderful attitude to life he and you mother have. Really inspiring.

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  7. YOur parents sound awesome! Happy Birthday to your dad, my Mom just turned 74 yesterday. What a blessing good healthy parents are!!

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  8. What a great example! I love your posts about your parents!

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  9. Today is my dad's birthday too! You'll never find him baking a pie though. When mom is gone for supper occasionally, it's all he can do to open a can and microwave it...I think sometimes he even skips the microwave part. Best wishes to your dad.

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  10. A girlfriend and I were just talking about retirement the other day. Both of us agreed that we wouldn't be jet setting around the world, instead we'd be busy serving our family and others. When I read about your father, who sounds so much like mine, I realize how much my plan sounds so perfect. Your dad is such a great role model to your family and all of us. I sure hope he has a wonderful day today!

    Helen

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  11. He looks fighting fit! They say hard work never hurt anyone. A good work ethic is such a great example to set. Happy Birthday to him.

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  12. My parents are like that, always working on something, and it is not something like paperwork, although they do that too, it is always something physical--yard work, cleaning, scrubbing, painting, repairing, all good things that teach me and the next generations to come that you take care of things that you have, and you don't waste time. My dad lost his battle with pancreatic cancer almost 3 years ago, but up to the end he was still working, helping people. My mom carries on. They, like your parents, are amazing! Cheers to them!!

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  13. YOur Dad's picture just makes me smile. Happy Birthday to such a wonderful man :-)

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  14. He looks like a man I'd love to sit down with and listen to stories of the past! :-) Happy birthday to your papa!

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  15. You and your dad planted a big grin on my face this morning. Happy celebrating to all!

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  16. Your Mom is involved with Montessori? Could you tell us more about that in the future? We've been very impressed with maria montessori's philosophies for Catholic education, and I'm sure you have some interesting perspectives!

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  17. I love him!!!!!

    I would love to hear more stories from your childhood and how they dealth with certain child raising situations....

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  18. My dad is 74 as well. Don't you just love that generation! Kindest people and some of the best stories of the good ol' days.

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  19. Any 74 yr. old man that still makes apple pie is a gem. I love to hear about your dad. That generation (my parents too) frustrates me. A sense of entitlement to be lazy, indulge, live self-absorbed, ME lives as they jet around or drive around in massive RV's. Yes, they worked hard but they were well rewarded. That isn't the case anymore. There isn't the same financial or job security that they had. Which is fine but they seem to think our generation just needs to work harder and we can live how they did/are. No way. It's different economic times and I don't need all that they "deserve" anyhow. If I get a chance to live into my 70's I plan to live my days like your parents--making a difference and contributing.

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  20. I love your Dad and I don't even know him!

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  21. I absolutely adore reading posts about the people in your life. Your dad sounds like an amazing person. Happy Birthday to this hardworking example of a man! (and my mouth is watering thinking about homemade apple pie!)

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  22. i want to be just like them when i'm that age!! thanks for sharing.

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  23. I totally see a resemblance between you and your dad! Love it! My father, too, always has a million things going. An average Saturday morning might include pulling out half the shrubs in the landscaping or scraping snow off the roof. And like you, I am so, so proud to call this hardworking man my dad! :-)

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  24. What a wonderful example! I hope to be the same way at 74. That is incredible. Okay, Maybe I'll want to sip a few drinks on a cruise but otherwise. ;)

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  25. Love your Dad! He sounds just like mine :-) Always a project and always willing to help. Love it! Hope he has a wonderful birthday!

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  26. Wish your dad a happy day! I turn 70 next month and have found that the busier you keep, the better you feel! My folks didn't do that althought they lived to 91 and 92, but I know if I don't keep busy, I'll just waste away. Off in two weeks with my two girls to watch the younger one run the Boston Marathon for the second year in a row...girl's trip.

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  27. Aren't great dads the best!?!

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  28. Your dad has such a beautiful kind face :-)... How nice for you to have such wonderful parents..happy birthday to your dad all the way from Australia
    Kelly

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  29. So very sweet- he's a looker with that hat of his. He reminds me of my own grandfather who was on the roof fixing shingles in his eighties. Hope he had a wonderful birthday- he's earned it.

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  30. Happy birthday to your cute dad! What a great example for us all. AND, he shares my birthday!

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  31. What a darling father you have. You and your kids are very lucky to have a dad like that. He reminds me of my dad, always working, always thinking of others. He passed away at 58. What a blessing that your dad is feeling good and baking pies at 74! His example will carry on for generations!

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  32. What a gift it is to have a good dad who is STILL teaching you so much, STILL setting the bar high. The volumes of his life are still being written for his posterity.

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