Saturday, June 15, 2013

Happy Father's Day!

To the best dad in the world:  I love you and miss you every day of my life!  Even though you've been gone for 24 years, you--along with mom--made the biggest impact of anyone on my life! 
I can still hear you sing those country western songs you loved so much.  Whenever I hear one of your favorites, I can just picture you strumming your guitar and singing along! 
I remember, too, how much we liked to talk about what we were reading.  Mom taught me to love to read, but you reinforced that love with your own.  We didn't read the same things, but that never stopped us from talking to each other about what we read.
In my mind, I see you dressed two ways--in a well-fitting suit, or in your jeans and cowboy hat.  Each were just as much "you" as the other.  You fit into both worlds so effortlessly, but I think you were always a country boy at heart. 
I'm glad that you were able to enjoy the good life that your profession afforded you, especially considering how difficult your early years were.  You worked extremely hard for everything that you had--and you were so generous in sharing what you had with those you met.  I still have the afghan that was crocheted as a thank you from an older lady whose surgery you did for free because she needed it and couldn't afford to pay.  I remember that it was always displayed proudly on the back of your office chair.  Now it is also proudly displayed in my living room. 
One of the best things you ever told me?  "If that's the worst that ever happens to you, you're doing pretty good."  I think of that a lot--and it helps keep things in perspective, although it was more comforting when you were here to say it to me!
Daddy, you were, and are, an inspiration to me and to others that were fortunate enough to cross your path.  You came from very little, but made yourself great.  Not because of your job, or the money you made, but because of how you lived and how you treated others.  You didn't go to church on a regular basis, but you lived as the Bible taught us to, without being "religious."  You were generous, loving, and kind--oh, you had your faults too, but I don't remember those, not like I remember your good qualities. 
I hope that you and mom are having a ball up in heaven--strumming your guitar and singing those songs you loved.  No angel could sing a song any sweeter!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Back to the grind--part one

Well, the company is all gone--Martha left this afternoon to visit her brother and his family in Indiana.  I did have to check her bag to make sure she left Poquito behind, though!  We are all sad to see her go--the puppies love her just as much as I do.

I just realized that this was the longest vacation that I've had since I began working full-time in 1987!  If I hadn't had to have those dratted tests right in the middle, I would have enjoyed it so much more.  But you have to do what you have to do, right? 

Not only was this the longest vacation I've had in forever--it was very busy and eventful.  The first week of the break, my cousin Kris visited.  Kris is from Oklahoma and is the only one of my Oklahoma relatives who is brave enough to battle the Dallas traffic to visit me.  If you aren't used to it, Dallas traffic can be quite intimidating.  We did some shopping, in which she actually talked me into buying some new clothes (I abhor shopping for myself!).  We went to a party where she was definitely out of her element, but she fit in like she'd been in the same situation a million times.  We visited some antique stores, ate a lot, and just generally hung out and talked.  Unfortunately, she had to cut her visit short due to some impending bad weather in Oklahoma.  The day before she left, I slipped in my kitchen and fell; I managed to badly wrench both of my knees when I landed quite awkwardly.  I've been hobbling ever since!

On the 31st, I picked up Martha from the airport.  We had one day of fun, and then I had to get ready for those dang tests.  Let me just tell you, I was a complete and utter cranky-pants!  Not being able to eat was bad enough, but then having to drink that salty, grape-flavored stuff was just awful.  Not only that, after drinking 16 ounces of that (two CUPS!), I had to drink four more cups of water over the next hour.  So I was slightly nauseous, bloated, and dashing to the bathroom every two seconds!  I give Martha credit, she's a real trooper, and was so patient! 

The tests themselves were no big deal because I was sound asleep before I even realized that I was about to be put to sleep!  I woke up and felt like I'd had the best nap ever! 

Stay tuned for part 2...