I’m thankful to have had a father for the first 27 years of my life. But 27 years are not enough to pack in all the things a father and daughter can and should do together. Here are nine things I’d love to do with Dad if I could. Feel free to steal any of these ideas or come up with a list of your own to do with your dad (or with your kid if you’re a father) not just this Father’s Day weekend, but throughout the year. Most of them cost little or nothing.
|Beautiful Crescent Lake in Portage la Prairie|
#1. Go for a walk.
My dad left us before the beautiful walking path around our Crescent Lake was created. I sure would love to show it to him.
#2. Cook something.
Dad had his specialty creations from the kitchen: apple kuchen, potato pancakes made from hand-grated potatoes, and venison roasted with lemon slices. I’d get Dad to teach me his secrets for these delicious dishes.
#3. Go shopping.
I don’t recall ever shopping with Dad, but I think it would be fun to pick out something for him (probably a tool) and something for me (probably an outfit). This could be followed by…
#4. Go for ice cream.
Dad loved soft ice cream, while I prefer hard. We could go somewhere that offers both. He’d chuckle when it melted on my chin and I’d say, “Before you laugh too hard, better check your mustache.”
#5. Help with a Do It Yourself project.
Dad was a bit of a MacGyver when it came to jerry-rigging solutions. I could have learned a lot if I’d paid closer attention to some of the things Dad fixed or created. I like to think I’d take advantage of the opportunity if I had it now.
#6. Plant a Tree.
The baby evergreens Dad planted in his backyard in 1981 now tower above my sister’s house. I could have been out there helping him, but I wasn’t. How much more precious those trees would be now if I had. If he were here, I’d get him to help me plant a tree in my yard, and cherish the memory every time I looked at it.
#7. Interview him about his childhood.
It’s ironic that the books I’m writing now take place during the WWII era, when my dad served in the Canadian Army. I could sure use his memory if I had access to it! I’d also love to ask him things like: Is there anything you regret not having asked your parents? What was the happiest moment of your life? What are you most proud of? How did your experience in the military mold you as a person? What is your earliest memory? Who were your friends when you were growing up? What was your favorite thing to do for fun? What was school like for you as a child? What were your best and worst subjects? You get the idea.
#8. Play a Duet.
Dad couldn’t read a note, but he played the accordion in his early days and the piano when I knew him, all by ear. Decades after taking piano lessons myself, I picked up the E-flat alto saxophone. A piano/saxophone duet only works if you have music written in two different keys… or if the pianist plays by ear. Dad would have been able to pick up by ear whatever I was playing on my sax and make it work. Or at least, we’d sure have fun trying!
One thing I seem to have inherited from my father is the inability to rein in the tears while praying. Dad knew something truly powerful occurs when we pray, because we are approaching the throne of our Creator and the King of kings. If I could hear my father praying for me, my children, and my grandchildren by name, I would be reduced to a puddle on the floor. The best kind.
I hope some of these spark ideas for you. Happy Father’s Day!