Did you celebrate Father’s Day? We did. It was fun. I’m very fortunate to have been loved by a great dad, one who believed in me, and I’ve tried to do the same for my children and grandchildren. So, I’ve been wondering what it takes to be a father, other than, of course, the right plumbing and a partner.
It started in 2005 as my Christmas gift to our four grandchildren. I wrote each their own card announcing “Granddaddy Days.” They were to be special days when we would spend time together, one grandchild at a time, for the full day. The initial impressions that morning were not good, but quickly became a cherished tradition. Seeing the world through the eyes of my grandchildren is wonderful. I often think about where their curious minds will take them as they grow.
Family gatherings, especially around the holidays, can be packed with traditions. Some old, some newer, but it’s the traditions forgotten – then revived, that can be the most special. This past Christmas there was a dented silver cup on the table with slips of paper folded inside. It went overlooked among all the other offerings on our festive table until midway through the meal …
It was the 226th anniversary year of The Battle of McIntyre’s Farm, also known as the Battle of the Bees. Located seven miles out of Charlotte, this historic 1780 battle ended with 14 American Patriots routing 600 of British commander Lord Charles Cornwallis’ finest. I need to remember the powerful family stories. I need to remember how my relatives did #resist, fought with the colonists, built the underground railroad, worked in the mines, and were the Hornets running off Cornwallis.
Stories from the past can be great teaching tools for today. I’ve thought about the stories told in our old photographs – both what I see, and what I don’t see. Our family pictures show people wearing their best clothes and posing for the camera.
Grandpa had many adventures in his long life, but on that Saturday in 1953 he wasn’t sharing stories about any of that. Instead, we just exchanged a few simple words before he took my untested young grip with his weathered hand.
Summer is my favorite season. I have more cherished memories from these warm months than any other. Maybe I remember these times more fondly because summers seemed more relaxed, and my family spent more time together. The days were longer, for one thing, so we could go for ice cream after dinner. Whatever the reason – I love summer.
Mother lived in Charlotte for 20 years before passing away in 2004. She enjoyed spending time with us and celebrating life’s milestones, including weddings and the baptism of all four of her great-grandchildren. She was an important part of our life and we learned from her and her life stories. The world changed more in her lifetime, 1905 – 2004, than during any other time in history. Choices and changes were facts of her life. Some of her early story is told here.
March 19 is my dad’s birthday and this year it will be different for me. This year he will have been dead for 55 years; the same number of years he was alive before he died in 1961. My dad taught me a lot in the short time we were together, but the most valuable lesson was the hardest for me to understand …
A Grey Tsunami is fast approaching. The 55 and over age group will move into the lead spot and the focus will need to shift to making Charlotte not only friendly, but age-friendly. The good news is that my 55 and up group have needs that even the 25-34 year olds will appreciate.