What a hoot! I can't decide if I hear banjos playing when I look at this "old school" picture, or Lynyrd Skynyrd's, "Free Bird." (Or "Goin' Courtin'," from Seven Brides For Seven Brothers!!) It's a great photo. And you know what? My dad is a great dad! I have learned a lot from him over the years, and fully respect his goodness, his selflessness, and his fun-loving, kind-hearted nature.
A Little Ol' List of Things I Have Learned From My Daddy-O
1.) When "Friend Bear" from the Care Bears is accidentally dropped into the swift-moving irrigation ditch, a good daddy will show his love for his little girl by sprinting after it and retrieving it.
2.) "Pink" Floyd is an English rock band known for their psychedelic rock music...NOT a Barbie doll, despite such a pretty first name.
3.) Dads can be best friends who take you to get your ears pierced and buy you cheddar popcorn at the mall.
4.) "Daddy Daughter Dates" are a really big deal when you are five or twenty-five.
5.) Dads have magic fingers that are able to pull a loose tooth so swiftly and so efficiently that NO pain is inflicted on the terrified seven-year-old!
6.) Orange sticks are a yummy treat...but can also serve as a peace offering.
7.) Play NICE with your siblings or you'll end up weeding the garden!
8.) Boys who drive fast, claim to be musicians, and have their tongues pierced are usually TROUBLE. Good girls should steer clear of bad boys, or be grounded for life.
9.) When you run out of gas while driving home from a party, and become stranded along the roadside late at night, a good dad will come to your rescue with a gas can. (A good dad will always come to your rescue.)
10.) Mustaches CAN be handsome.
11.) A father's blessing will calm your heart, heal your ailments, or give you the courage to face another school year.
12.) The power of the priesthood is real and magnificent.
13.) Love notes, hidden in scriptures, can prove to be an answer to prayers.
14.) Check the oil in your car often. Change it regularly. Otherwise, your car will explode.
15.) Good dads will forgive you when your car explodes.
16.) Trust in the Lord. Pray often. Heavenly Father hears you. He will help you.
17.) "Family prayer" time is a code name for "Roughhouse-With-Brothers" time.
18.) Many lovely emotions can be felt in a dad's embrace--warmth, peace, security, acceptance, love.
19.) A good man will honor his wife, protect his children, and share his "Aggie Dogs" at USU football games.
20.) Something extraordinary happens when a grown woman hugs and kisses her beloved dad. Her little girl self, tucked away deep down inside, resurfaces. She reminds the woman of all the "My Little Ponies" her dad brought her upon returning from out-of-town business trips. The little girl reminds the woman of the hours spent at the kitchen table working on math problems and biology assignments; of quality time spent together, lessons learned, and conversations shared.
It doesn't matter how old you are, when you hug and kiss your dad, you feel like his cherished little girl. Trials abate. The world ceases to be scary. All that matters is that he rescued your Care Bear.
And you love him more for that.
And you love him more for that.