TitleTrakk has a wonderful tribute to fatherhood today. Pop over if you have a minute! Nineteen authors wrote up short memories of their dads. It was a wonderful assignment–I sent out an e-mail to my extended family and asked them what lessons they felt they learned from Dad.

Most of you know that my father is in late stages Alzheimer’s. Even though he’s still “with us,” I’ve realized that I think of him in past terms. Memories are all we have–and it is a delight to sift through happy scenes of Dad.

 There aren’t a lot of pix of Dad–he was always the one behind the camera. This is a rare pix of the two of us, taken in Hong Kong, when Mom and Dad came for a visit.

My nephew, Tim, remembered how Dad would take him out to the side yard, under the walnut tree, and complain about the squirrels tossing walnuts at him. As if they were winding up like a baseball pitch and aiming at him!

Dad was great with children–he had a “sense of the silly.”

There was a time when we tried our hand with raising chickens (that story is another blog post for another day!). The chickens would wander the yard and roost in the hen house at night. They were fun to watch, but wandering the yard created certain, ahem, problems. Dad tacked a sign on the grass: “Chickens, please stay off the grass.”

My daughter said that Poppy (the nickname dubbed on my dad by grandchildren) taught her the importance of bedtime stories. I remember his stories as a little girl, too!

Our favorite: the Buggily Bunny stories.

Dad had an imaginary family of bunnies–they were remarkably similar to our own family in age and gender. He would tell us what the Buggily Bunnies did that day. We loved those stories!

A few days ago, I was on the phone with my sister and reminded her of the Buggily Bunny stories. “It took me years to realize that Dad was just recapping our day. Pretty smart. A steady stream of material.”

There was a long pause on the phone.

Then my sister said, “I never knew that!”

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