Thursday, March 17, 2011


I have a very vivid memory of sitting in school one day, early in my elementary career, the Friday before Father's day.
"Today," our teacher said, "we are going to make cards to tell our Daddies the things we love about them."
I rose my hand- "What if you don't have a Daddy?"
"Everyone has a father somewhere."
"I don't know where he lives." (I could feel the tears starting to well up)
"I'm sure your mom can mail the card to where he is..."
"But I don't know what I love about my Dad." (now my voice was cracking)
"Do you have an uncle?"
"A grandfather?"
"Do you know what you love about him?"
"Then I suppose you can make your card for him."
And thus began the realization for me that I wasn't the girl who didn't have a father on Father's day... I was the girl who had a GRANDfather to celebrate!

My grandfather, known as Bud to one and all, was one of those rare men who was able to step in and be a hero without expecting anything in return.  Listing the things I love about him is easy as could be...

When I was young, the best thing in the world was to sit in the 'cuddle rocker' with my Grandpa and listen to him read.  He didn't read like an ordinary person. No, that would never do.  He would read books like 'Rootie Kazootie' and 'Uncle Remus' and 'Grandpa Bunny Bunny' using voices and inflections that I can still hear in my heart when I close my eyes. When he'd finish reading he'd say in his distinctly gravelly voice- 'Okay, Amber Dawn... time to climb up the wooden hill' (for those of you who are unfamiliar with the phrase, that means it's bedtime)

This would be my cue to instantly fall asleep.  If I could fake it well enough, he'd gather me in his strong arms and carry me up to bed.  I can right now smell his sweater, feel the stubble of his 5 o'clock shadow, hear the shuffle of his shoes as he walked up the yellow shag carpet-covered stairway, carrying me in his strong arms. I can honestly say I have no memory of my childhood when I felt safer than I did in those moments.  Into my bed he'd gently put me, the bed that used to be my mom's, and pull the covers up to my chin.  I'd feel the whiskers again as he kissed my forehead, said goodnight, clicked off the light, and went back down the stairs to finish reading his paper, watch the end of a Dodger game, or whatever heroes do after their granddaughters fall asleep.

G'night Grandpa....
I love you

Sing praises to God and to his name!
      Sing loud praises to him who rides the clouds.
His name is the Lord
rejoice in his presence! 
Father to the fatherless, defender of widows—
this is God, whose dwelling is holy.
God places the lonely in families;
      he sets the prisoners free and gives them joy.
Psalm 68:4-6



Becky said...

**sniff, sniff** That was BEAUTIFUL, friend. Absolutely beautiful. Also, adorable. Loved the photo.

Revival said...

Aww, nothin' like a fresh set of tears to start the morning. How beautifully written. What you have been going through these past few weeks has reminded me to love on my hero of a dad. And it's reminded me that our Heavenly Father always provides for us. Even when we don't recognize the provision right away. He's always there. Thank you for sharing your memories and journey with all of us. It's truly touching my heart.

Kerin said...

Oops, that was me Kerin.....I was logged into the Revival MOPS gmail acct ....hee hee.

Jennifer said...

That was beautiful. So poignant and I could feel your emotion. Still praying for you and your family.

Diana said...

PRECIOUS! I'm sending you hugs from my heart... I hope you can feel them in yours. xoxox

Sandy said...

What a heart-warming tribute to your grandpa! I have the privilege of watching my DH making sweet memories with our grandchildren & I love it!

Earen said...

Thank you for your kind words on my blog. It's nice to be writing again too!

Brandy said...

I loved that. I never knew that story or that part of who you are, and I have known you for an extremely long time. You tell a good story, and you are a good story.