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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Dear Ol' Dad

Well, since I've already written about my Mom and made my Dad cry, I might as well write about Dad and make Mom cry, right? Ya know...I'm finding this much harder than one would think. How do you pinpoint the exact qualities that make you love, admire, respect and have affection for one person and dislike or merely tolerate another? Some people that I adore, I've just never stopped to think about what exactly it is that I like about them so much...I just DO! Anywho, moving on to Dad..Larry Dog, Uncle Larry, Scooter, Papa, Mister Smith (which he does NOT answer to) Old Goat, Shuffle-upagus, Larry Boy, Big Daddy...anyway you look at it, it's still him. Larry Edward Smith, born in cold wet Oregon in April of '36, and by his 2nd birthday had lived also in Cali, Florida and had settled in cold and snowy Boston, Mass. He has 2 brothers (both deceased) and 3 sisters, all alive and still feisty. Joined the Navy at the ripe old age of 17 to escape the 'housing projects' (otherwise known as the ghetto) and to make a better life for himself. He learned a trade, stayed employed for 20 years and earned himself a retirement nest egg. He has been arrested for murder, blown up in an engine room, broken his arm and leg in the same year, been struck by lightening, won dance contests, and had many, MANY other adventures. Once a wild and woolly party animal, drinker, gambler and skirt chaser, he met the Lord not long after meeting my mom and did a 180 and never looked back. Ask him sometime to tell you what his life was like before that change and you may never look at him the same. The Lord has done some miraculous things in his life. Amen and Amen! I never knew that part of him, just the wonderful, loving man that he is now. Like most kids, I thought my Dad ran the world and could fix anything. He had all sorts of advice about this and that and ALWAYS a funny story that was behind the advice that made it stick. My Dad taught me that just because I was a girl, didn't mean that I couldn't do something. I was under the hood of the car, in sports, in the garage and generally in the way, all the time. LOL! He also taught me to respect people, to observe people and to love people. My dad LOVES people, in fact, Mom says he would talk to a rock if he got bored enough. He wanted boys when he had kids, but instead he got Karen, Debbie, Kelly, Kristy and Jodi. Poor guy! But after raising us and dealing with all the boyfriends we dragged home, he as decided that boys weren't so great after all...LOL! He is a great guy...just ask him, he'll tell you! Actually though, he IS a great guy. He's been a faithful, loving husband to my Mom for just over 40 years now, a (mostly) patient father to some of the most exasperating daughters ever born, and a super Papa to many, many grandkids! He has worked hard to provide for us, even two jobs sometimes, showed up for all of our sporting events, and spent time with us when I'm sure he would have rather been doing other things. He was the reigning racquetball champ for about 20 years, LOVED to ride motorcycles, and still plays on the church softball team...did I mention that he is 72?? He is a FUNNY, funny, funny guy, loves silliness, practical jokes, slapstick comedy and OLD John Wayne movies. He loves the Lord and many times when I would just pop over unannounced would find him poring over his Bible, even though he doesn't read well. He just loves to read it over and over. That is an amazing legacy and one I'm thankful for! He works at the church alongside my mother as the custodian and really enjoys the lining up of the pews...him and his silly broom stick measuring stick. Don't mess with the stick! Hee hee! Anyway...this is getting really long, I think I could probably go on and on, but that's enough for one day. Even I"m getting sentimental now...sniff, sniff! Gosh, Dad, I love you and miss you so much, thanks for always loving me so well!

From your loving daughter,

Precious~~ hahahahahahaha


Karen Balding said...

Oh My Gosh! You made me cry. He is ALL of that and more. I am so grateful for him and your mom. They "claim" me even though they didn't raise me. I feel SOOOO blessed by that. I didn't really get to know Father until I was about 30. I had seen him and knew him, but didn't really KNOW him. What I discovered was a very wise, loving, FUNNY, FUNNY man of the Lord. I love the way he shares his spirituality without shoving it down your throat. I am so glad that he met my Fairy Step Mother and the Lord. He wouldn't be who he is without either. He has brought me MUCH peace in my life and acceptance of myself (which I was in GREAT need of). He is a SERIOUS card shark and pool player. He loves all sorts of games. It's always fun with him. He is also a fabulous "Grandpa L" or "Papa" to all of the kiddos. They just adore him. I believe all who know him do, but those of us who are close to him realize how very blessed we are to have him in our lives. I respect, admire and love him SOOOO much, too, Sister-Girl.
Karen DiAnne

The Paper Handmaiden said...

What a wonderful tribute to your dad. Dads are special and I really miss mine, thanks for sharing yours.

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