Jun 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day!

I am so grateful for the 'dads' in my life and today, I dedicate my post to you. On this day, I hope you feel honored, cherished, special and loved.....

To my Dad, Jerry Altig:

Do you know how blessed I feel to have you as my Dad? How many times your love, support and encouragement have been my 'rock'.....the constant, steadfast, dependable, presence in my life? You are an amazing father, a terrifically handsome guy, and a wonderful person. You have always made me feel so precious to you. One of my favorite memories of you was when I was about 13 and I was throwing a huge, unreasonable tantrum about my back brace (imagine that....?). Mom finally sent you in to try and deal with me.... and ultimately, I ended up getting a (much deserved)  swat on the behind by you. I think it surprised us both, as you weren't much of a spanker...especially with your sweet little girl! The next day, I had all but forgotten about it, but clearly, you had not. When you got home from work that night, you came in and presented me with a big bouquet of flowers and wrapped your arms around me in a tearful embrace. I have never forgotten that moment. Not because of the swat, but because of your kindness, gentleness and love. It was such an amazing display of your tender hearted nature which is one of the things I love best about you. I'm sure you had a million other things going on in your life at that time.....running a business, making a living, etc. but you still always managed, in spite of everything, to make us kids feel important and cherished. Thank you so very much for being such a shining example of compassion, kindness, affection, honesty and love. You have also managed to give us lots of laughter....sometimes intentional, sometimes not! Dressing up in costume to sing or do a skit, the Louis Armstrong impersonation and the always funny "louie-louie" song and dance (do you really even know the words?). I think we all also get a real kick out of the un-intentional 'funnies' like you answering the door in your underwear when one of the boys brought a girl home from college or (much to Mom's horror) you blowing  your nose in a cloth napkin at a restaurant. They are the endearing things that make you YOU.....and I wouldn't trade you for the world. I love you Dad....Happy Father's day!
To my Father-in-law, Bill Flanigan:
Last summer, we unexpectedly had to say goodbye to Bill, who was Tom's dad. So many times over this past 12 months, I have wished that we could have had just one more chance to hang out with you. To share a meal (prime rib with a glass of ice cold milk?), or watch one of the hundreds of videos you shot, or hear of your latest adventure.....
You are missed. The kids still speak often of "papa Bill" and I know that Tom feels such a void in his life with you now gone. He has told me how whenever he was down or troubled, you had a way of bringing light into the darkness and making him smile.  You, with all of your silly quirks, brought us much laughter and joy. I personally will always remember the time you dyed your hair black. 18 years later I am still laughing about it! It's also been difficult to get used to having a family dinner without a video camera set up on the corner....:)!
Not much doubt in my mind that heaven has now opened a comedy club with you as the entertainment.....
Happy Father's Day! We love you and miss you so much.....
To "Papa Barry", Barry Buth:
Ahh.....the 'bonus dad' who joined our family 10 years ago. Barry, you are such a kind and loving man. I am so thankful to have you in my life and in the lives of my kids. You have one of the gentlest souls I have ever come across and the way you love the people in your life is inspirational and beautiful. You have abundant patience, even when surrounded by any or all of the 14 grandkids! I love how you take the time to know each of them on such a personal level. You take such care to understand them and all of their hobbies, likes and dislikes. 

It has also been so wonderful to watch you and Jo together and the happiness you have brought to her and continue to bring to her each day. I know that it really touches many of us to see the two of you together.....you're like a couple of teenagers in love! Thank you for being such an awesome example of integrity and kindness.
I hope you have a wonderful father's day. We love you!


To Tom:
Wow....where do I begin? When I look at you, especially in the moments when you are interacting with our kids, I am overwhelmed with love and thankfulness for your presence in their lives and mine. I so admire the way you are playful and silly with them, yet can also handle the tough 'teaching moments' with such wisdom and grace. You were tender with them when they were newborn babies and continue to be that way, even as they grow....taking time to make them feel special and loved and do it in a way that meets them where they are at. You consistently work your tail off  to provide a life for us that is worry free and wonderful....a life where I am lucky enough to stay home and be fully invested in the kids.....a life where we have been able to take our family on vacation, to the lake, to the ski mountain......I am so grateful. 
I know I don't tell you often enough how much I appreciate, admire and love you. I was so inspired by the way you took the role in "Annie", simply as a way to grow closer to Kelli and participate in her passion. I love how you will drag yourself outside after dinner to shoot hoops, jump on the trampoline, referee a boxing match or start up the 4-wheeler. I love the way you cuddle with Keaton on the couch, get up at midnight to check windows and doors with Kelli and how you smile when Kellen wants to get into bed with us....even at 5 in the morning! I love seeing your personality coming through in different ways in each of them and I am so thankful that you are their daddy!
I hope your day is relaxing and fun honey. You deserve it. 
I love you very much.....
C

6 comments:

Joey_Veltkamp said...

oh...you're so lucky to have so many great dads in your life. :)

McMurrays said...

I loved reading this post. . and seeing a window into your life past and present.
The last pic of tom with baby peas is a classic!
Darcy

Heidi Ann said...

Cricket, What a wonderful tribute to all the "fathers" in your life!... They are all certainly well-loved!!...We'll chat again soon!...Heidi :)P.S. Great photos!

hautemommy said...

What a nice post to all the dads!!! :) Hope you guys had a great Father's Day! xo!

Ariana Kelly said...

Thank you so much for the post! This blessed me so much this morning and I cried and I read such a beautiful tribute to each of these men in your life.

Ariana Kelly said...

What a beautiful post this am! I am so blessed and overwhelmed with emotion to read this today. I love you friend and am thankful for you