Tag Archives: Father’s Day

Don’t rain on my Father’s Day

After a full day of running around town, I came home to a blissfully empty house. The kids were still at their dad’s, Mr. W and Frizz were off on some father-son adventure, and the house was totally silent.

Aaaah.

It gave me the much needed time to write out the Father’s Day cards to two of the best dads I know and put the flowers I bought for the occasion in a vase.

And then I had nothing to do.

I emptied the dishwasher and then checked my kombucha. Good thing I did because this heat has it on a three day brewing cycle. The tea was absolutely perfect this time so I enjoyed a healthy glass of it while I brewed a new batch.

Side note: if any of you local peeps want free kombucha or kombucha babies, I have plenty of both. Just let me know.

I was just about to take advantage of the time alone by heading to the pool when Mr. W and Frizz showed back up. I went outside to greet them when I noticed that the water on the front hose appeared to have been turned on. It was weird though, I couldn’t remember it being on when I came home. I tried to turn it off, but it was already off. But a leak in the tube was spraying a small but strong stream of water at the house.

The main had broke.

Mr. W got out his tools and set to work showing Frizz and I where to shut off the water and teaching Frizz how to replace the tube on the main water pipe. We took a field trip to the hardware store where Mr. W chatted up the sales gal on how to properly do this thing while Frizz and I tried out patio sets. When we got home, Mr. W set to work on the pipe, simultaneously making dinner since this was a relatively easy job. An hour later, the pipe was still not holding water and we were getting snippy because we were frustrated and hungry. Mr. W finally turned back off the water, we ate dinner, and he called in the professionals.

The plumber came around 10pm, which means his hourly rate was somewhere between obscene and utterly insane. At that same time, I had to go pick my kids up in Calistoga, the meeting point I’d set up with the kids’ grandpa after their weekend with their dad. I didn’t get back until midnight, and the plumber was still there. Luckily he was just finishing up. Good thing too. The dishes in the sink stunk to high heaven and the Taz smelled even worse from a weekend of hot sweaty play. I made Taz take a shower, and Frizz washed up the dishes when he was done. Mr. W and I, totally exhausted, set about getting ready for bed. We’d “showered” at the pool earlier in the evening when we had no water but were totally sticky gross, but it still felt good to know we had water if we needed it. We were just about to call it a night when we heard a loud POP and the sound of running water.

“What was that?” Mr. W asked. I didn’t want to believe it was the pipe. So I guessed it was someone flushing the toilet or doing a load of wash. You know, cuz everyone likes to do laundry at 1 in the morning. Mr. W went downstairs to check it out. I heard the water stop gushing. And Mr. W came upstairs with a serious look on his face. I thought he was teasing when he said it broke. He wasn’t. And now we have no water again.

As soon as Mr. W wakes up, we’ll call the plumber again. Luckily it’s covered under warranty. But it does put an extremely wet and rusty wrench in our Father’s Day plans for today. No worries though. I refuse to let a stubborn leaky main pipe rain on our parade.

Happy Father’s Day everyone!

When Father's Day isn't happy

A holiday that honors parents is supposed to be a happy occasion. But for many children whose parents are gone, it’s one of the worst. Father’s Day is just around the corner, and I have heard so many stories from grown children who take issue with the holiday because it just isn’t a day they want to celebrate. One person on my blog talked about how the death of her father in her infant years shaped the person she is now, how it grieves her that she has no real memories of her father. Both of my parents had strained relationships, at best, with their fathers when their parents divorced, and little to no relationship with them at all when they died years later. A father I know has teenage children who won’t speak to him any longer because of their parents’ divorce, even though he was a good dad when the marriage was intact. One mom I know must keep her daughter away from the kid’s father because he is not a good man. Another friend is anticipating the whole day being done with, as this will be her first Father’s Day since her dad passed away.  Another friend doesn’t think she’ll ever get over her dad’s untimely death, and Father’s Day only makes it hurt that much more. And then there are the dads whose children have died, the children who miss their dads while they’re away at war, the dads who have no access to their children due to tumultuous custody battles, and the children who have been physically or sexually abused by their fathers.

Yesterday I wrote a blog article on Father’s Day, celebrating the fathers who are making it a point to be in their children’s lives. And while I still celebrate that, I recognize that there are many who find no joy in this holiday for some very real reasons. I am so sorry.  I don’t know what it’s like to lose a father, or to not have my dad in my life. And that is something I dread ever experiencing. But being that I have never experienced this, I have no real advice or words of wisdom on how to handle this.

But I know plenty of you out there do.

What makes Father’s Day a hard day for you?  How do you cope?  Do you do anything for Father’s Day, or do you just lie low until the day has passed?

Why kids need fathers

When I was little, my dad worked a lot. Because his office was in our house, there were some nights when the work seemed to have no stopping hours. But my dad also knew he was missing out on us growing up, so he made it a point to fit time into his work schedule that included us kids. He’d set us up at the table so we could help him with some of the busy work. When he had appointments out of town, he’d drop my mom and us off at the park and then arrive back just in time for all of us to enjoy sandwiches together while playing on the swings. As we got older, Dad would take us for drives while he worked in the field, treating us to a hot chocolate by the fireplace in the lobby of his favorite hotel in Sonoma, slurp clam chowder with French bread in Bodega Bay, or just take a drive to check out the scenery in our beautiful county. My dad perfected the art of making work feel like a vacation as he sprinkled in fun stops along the way while we accompanied him. On the weekends there were tasks to be done around the house. Off we’d go for a trip to the hardware store with Dad, enjoying a hot dog from the stand outside the store. Or we’d take the long drive out to the dumps to throw junk away. Even a trip to the grocery store seemed a bit more magical with Dad because he always let us get the things Mom would never let us buy.

As kids, we thought we had to go with Dad so Mom could get a break now and again. And with three young girls, there’s probably some truth in that. But the bigger truth is that this was my dad’s way of spending time with us. I mean, it wasn’t always about work or errands. He’d take us to the car races some weekends. There were some great vacations my dad set up for the whole family. And the hills behind our house were perfect for a dad to take his kids for a hike. But when you’re a busy man like my father was, you fit in the quality time however you can. And my dad made sure we knew he loved us through time with us.

For daughters, their father is the very first man they fall in love with, thus setting the standards for any man that enters their life. In fact, how a father treats his daughter gives her the stereotype she will judge every man with thereafter. If a dad treats his daughter wonderfully, her standard for men when she is older will be that of someone who treats her just as wonderfully. But if a dad ignores his daughter or mistreats her, it’s likely that she will also choose a man later in life that treats her poorly. Girls need their dad to tell them they are beautiful, smart, and to show they are cherished through hugs and attention. If they don’t get it from dad, they’re liable to search for it elsewhere when they get older, lacking the confidence and security that comes from a healthy relationship with their father, and clouding their judgment in who is deserving of their love.

For sons, a father is the one they look up to as their role model. Want to know what a boy will be like when he grows up? Look to his father. A father is a boy’s first example of what it means to be a man. And actions speak louder than words. This is why it’s so important for fathers to not only be there to guide their sons, they must also have their actions match the lessons they wish to instill in their boys. The way a father is with his son molds the kind of man, husband, and father a boy will be. Boys need their dads to wrestle with them, encourage them, show emotion in front of them, and guide them. By their father’s example, they’ll learn how to respect those in authority, and even those in positions of service to them. They’ll also learn how to treat those they love, and even those they aren’t fond of. Boys need their dad to monitor their behavior, hold them accountable when they screw up, and draw a clear line between right and wrong until they can draw that line for themselves.

Dads, you are important. And many of you are making it a point to be present in your children’s lives. Know that you are making a difference. Happy Father’s Day to you this Sunday, and every other day you spend with your children!

Father's Day Gifts

Clumsy self portraits or lop-sided clay ashtrays may have been a sweet present to give to dad on Father’s Day when you were young. But let’s face it, your dad isn’t likely going to fawn over another amateur homemade present in your adult years. So how do we thank dad for all the times he’s made sure we checked our oil, slipped us a $20 when times were tight, or just plain let us know he loves us even if he doesn’t approve of our lifestyle?

Here’s a few ideas…

Give Dad some style
Over at Starstruck Boutique (123 Kentucky St, Petaluma), they’re boasting some swanky Fedoras that are sure to put some pep in Dad’s step. I mean, how could he not look like the dapper dude with one of these stylish hats on his head? Pair it with one of their plaid men’s shirts, and your dad is going to own the town.

Give Dad time to relax
No one works harder than your dad. I mean, the way he strategically kicks back on the couch while watching the big game…that caved in cushion isn’t going to mold itself. Seriously though, no one wields a lawn mower, fixes the leaky faucet, or deals with mom like your dad. And he deserves a break. Grab a gift certificate for him from Massage Envy, which is conveniently located all throughout Sonoma County, and watch Dad define the term “kickback”.

Give Dad a socially conscious gift
Who doesn’t love unwrapping a gift bought just for them? Even better when it’s of great quality. And it’s best if in buying it, you’re making a difference in this world. Over at One World Fair Trade (106 B Matheson Street, Healdsburg), the shelves are just teeming with lovely gifts dad will love to open – like the ceramic Pig Salsa bowl and spoon made in Pomaire, Chile. The gifts bought at this store support the makers around the world who create them, providing a fair trade for their craft. And One World’s products promote the community, as well as earth friendliness. That’s a quality even your dad would approve of.

Give Dad the great outdoors
Let the mighty hunter loose in your dad by giving him fishing or hunting gear. If your dad is an outdoor enthusiast, he’ll let loose the man howl with a gift certificate from Western Sport Shop where he can find all he needs for providing food for the family, or just letting loose his primal instincts. Or if you have more than inkling of what dad might want, come on inside where you can find firearms, knives, flashers, lures, tackle, rods, reels, and even daypacks, luggage, and books on hunting and fishing.  Their Santa Rosa shop closed several months ago, but they are still in business at 902 3rd Street in San Rafael.

Give something to the new dad
Who could be prouder than a dad celebrating his first Father’s Day? Your little cherub might be too young to make him a macaroni necklace, but you can reciprocate by giving dad a Diaper Dude – a cooler, hipper, more masculine diaper messenger bag for the devoted but manly dad, and available over at My Baby News at 3011A Santa Rosa Avenue, Santa Rosa and 921 Lakeville Street, Petaluma. Not only are Diaper Dudes perfect for carrying diapers for dad’s little dude or dudette, they’re great for holding a laptop or using as a travel bag. But when strictly on diaper duty, dad can access the formula, wipes, diapers, and all else Junior needs without having to lug around the more feminine versions. And just admit it ladies, a dad on diaper duty couldn’t be sexier.

Give Dad a game of golf
Hand your dad his golf clubs and tell him his next game is on you, I guarantee he’ll be happy as a clam. Offer him a fantastic lunch to go with it, and you are bound to be Dad’s favorite for the rest of the year. So where can you get him this stellar gift of golf? Bennett Valley Golf Course (3328 Yulupa Ave, Santa Rosa). Their grounds are amazing with the beautiful Bennett Valley hills in the background and easy to walk greens. And on the premises is the infamous Legends Restaurant with its revamped clubhouse and sports bar and grill, including a juicy half-pound burger to sink your teeth into and dribble down your chin… Mmmm…. Have room for one more?

Treat Dad to a concert
Specifically one at the Sonoma County Fair! This year’s headliners are Trace Adkins on August 11th, and Huey Lewis and the News on August 9th. Not only will your dad be treated to some really awesome music, by buying two tickets you’ll become kid of the year and also get to cash in on dad’s present. Score!

Give Dad a garden
Or at least the seeds to add to the one he’s already growing. If your dad loves to garden, shower him with growth by visiting the Petaluma Seed Bank at 199 Petaluma Blvd. N, Petaluma. With over 1400 non-GMO heirloom seed varieties, books on farming, and many nature-inspired crafts by local artisans, you’re bound to find something rare and meaningful for your green-thumbed pop. If anything, go to check out the location they’ve been inhabiting for the last two years. The historic building on the corner of Washington and Petaluma Blvd N is as gorgeous inside as it is out.

And while you’re finding the perfect gift for your dad, don’t forget the most important one – TIME. Dad will love to receive something that shows how much you care. But it won’t mean anything if you don’t also take time out of your own busy schedule to spend with him. Call Dad up on the phone for a chat. Take him out to lunch. Or make it a point to drop by the house and sit on the porch with him while the two of you catch up. If your dad isn’t around anymore (and I’m so sorry if this is the case) or you don’t really have someone that you call “Dad”, take this day to honor another father or even the person that best fit the Dad role in your life.

How will you be thanking Dad this Father’s Day?