Wednesday, June 23, 2010

S'more stuff...

Last night I was transported to my childhood and a state of sugared bliss via graham crackers, chocolate, and roasted marshmallows. On Sunday, my friend Jen received a bag of oversized marshmallows. Not just the big ones, friends. No, they were three times the size of normal roasting mallows. Yesterday, she invited us over to share. Jen, Saundra, Cristi, and I spent our time laughing, roasting, and posing in celebration of the s'more. (Whoever thought of them is a genius)! We had a great time!

This may not seem blog worthy, but I think it is moments like these, small seemingly insignificant at the time moments, that make up a life. Where friends, laughter, and chocolate make the world seem right. Graham crackers and marshmallows help too.

P.S. Gas grills are no substitute for a real fire, but if you're in a pinch, the stove works wonderfully!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A random elevator incident...

Amber and I were riding the elevator to the employee picnic today, as were a lot of other people. We entered the elevator, and made our way to the back, I said to her "Two, please." She responded by saying "Four, please." The lady in front of the elevator kindly pushed both. Now this would have been a normal day in elevator etiquette, except that Amber and I were quoting a movie. We were neither going to floor two or floor four. We were going to one. After we didn't get off on four or two, there was an awkward silence pervading the elevator where everyone kept looking at us and wondering why we had requested floors we did not want.

Amber and I, of course, thought we were hilarious!

Monday, June 7, 2010

A list for the fourth year...

Yesterday marked the fourth anniversary of my dad's death. Four years. So little time. So much space between now and our last conversation. I miss talking to him: his perspective on the world, his perspective on my life, the soft rise and fall of his voice. I miss feeling that close to someone. I miss feeling safe. I've been thinking about my dad a lot over the last few weeks, more than usual. Time has taught me to think about him without being sad. He crosses my mind daily, but they are mostly happy memories. Lately though, his absence from my life has seemed more present, the void more real, the pain more punctuated. Four years are passed now, but somedays it feels like he was just here yesterday. He feels that close and the pain feels new.

So, this year instead of thinking about his passing, I am choosing to think about his life. I wrote a list of all the things I loved about him. They are, consequently, all the things I miss the most.

He called my Princess and somehow is never seemed condescending, just wonderful.

He always carried Skittles in his pocket; little colored candies that made him magic to kids.

He shined his shoes on Saturday. Sometimes on Saturday nights, I have the overwhelming desire to buy shoe polish just for the smell.

He loved to laugh and had a great wheezy laugh. He always thought he was funnier than he was. Truthfully though, he was funny. I have inherited this trait and it is something I love about myself. I also inherited his laugh.

He was honest and a realist. These were sometimes hard traits for people to handle, but I am grateful he never lied.

He was generous and gave everything he had for his family. He worked long hours and sacrificed so we could have more.

He loved irises.

He loved red ties.

He took us camping every year: taught us how to tie knots, swim and ski. He was up first and down last. He was the master of open campfire bacon and sleeping bag claustrophobia.

He loved to learn.

He couldn't cook, but was a creative master in the kitchen. Thankfully, eggs a la Catalina went with him to the grave. Unfortunately, I have never had a chocolate chip cookie that can rival his. Nor have I met anyone who can successfully make and 1/8 of a batch of cookie dough just for eating.

He ate cake batter and brownie batter and muffin batter and cookie dough. He said they were even better than the baked products.

He ate chocolate chocolate doughnuts because he thought they made the milk taste better.

He was addicted to milk.

He hid fudge stripe cookies in his closet.

He always carried a white hankerchief.

He know how to love and listen. He was a good teacher, counselor, and friend.

He knew and loved the gospel.

He knew how to pray.

He liked to hear books read out loud.

He cried when certain hymns were sung.

He sat behind me while I played the piano, just sitting and listening.

And, he loved me.

There is more I could say. Volumes about who he was and how he lived. Books of pictures and memories. Laughter and jokes and conversations. Quiet moments and books and songs. A whole life bigger than any list, but for today this enough. His memory is enough. His presence is enough.

I love you , Dad. I can't wait for our next conversation.