10 lessons Dad has taught me (so far)

There is something very special about a girl and her Dad. My Mom is my role model and best friend but Dad? He’s my hero and always has been my constant. My rock. It’s fun to think back on how our relationship has grown and evolved, from Dad battling his fear of flying to take me on my first mission trip to Panama in high school to him saying the prayer before Annie safely arrived in the delivery room.

One of my first and funniest memories of us was when Mom sent us both out for the evening while she hosted a shower of some sort at the house. I was five years old and Beauty and the Beast was playing in theaters so OF COURSE, Dad decided we would go, much to my excitement. He let me get all the candy I wanted (!!!) and allowed me to choose where we would sit (FRONT ROW!). All was right with the world until the movie was over and suddenly all the candy and up-close-and-personal-to-the-animation made me feel not so good. I had to go to the bathroom fast. Dad slightly panicked but he had no choice other than to take me to the men’s restroom and stand outside the door. I distinctly remember screaming from the bathroom to Dad, just outside, “I want my Mommy!” and he replied “I do too!” Lesson learned at an early age – less is more with candy and never, ever sit on the front row at the movie theater.

But for real, through his words and example Dad has taught me countless life lessons in my 30 years and I feel like every time we’re together I learn something new. Here are ten lessons Dad has taught me, so far:

  1. If you put God first, He’ll take care of the rest
  2. You are the company you keep
  3. You can’t go wrong with The Eagles or The Beatles
  4. With hard work and determination anything is possible
  5. The truth will find you out
  6. Mom knows what she’s talking about
  7. The two most important decisions you make in your life: to become a Christian and who you will marry
  8. Always be kind and love people
  9. Beware of: a waitress who seats you in the corner and a house built in a hole
  10. You can always come back home

What life lessons has your Dad taught you? I want to hear! If you’re fortunate enough to still have your dad with you on this earth give him a call. Thank him and tell him how much you love him because a good father is such a gift.

Motherhood Update: Annie at 9 months

The other day we were driving home from Franklin and Annie decided she had had enough of her carseat. She started to fuss and threatened actual tears real fast if something wasn’t done. Taylor started singing “Old Mac Donald had a farm” and she instantly stopped crying and watched us oh so seriously from her little mirror. After we got done with all your basic farm animals (cow, chicken, dog) we stopped singing because what animals were left? Then we heard an “ugh” from Annie as if to say, again. More. Encore. Next thing I knew Taylor was singing Old Mac Donald had a giraffe, e-i-e-i-o! I would sing the song and he would make the most hilarious, and terribly accurate, animal sounds to match each one, including a fish, llama, frog and butterfly. Taylor was beaming and Annie was giggling and on that ordinary afternoon drive home I was reminded what a special season we’re in as a family.

Motherhood Update: Annie at 9 months

Eating: Milk is still her #1 but she is super interested in anything we’re eating and wants to try everything – unless it’s peas. Her favorites include avocado, black beans, any and all pureed fruit and strawberry yogurt, which leaves her smelling like Fruity Pebbles.

Sleeping: She’s been a champion sleeper, typically out from 7:30am-7:00pm, but teething has got her sometimes waking up for a snack around 3:00am. I may be half asleep but I have tried to find the joy in the extra time spent with my girl when the rest of the world is sleeping.

Doing: Annie spends most of her waking hours smiling at whoever she’s with and looking through her books – she loves to pat each page. She also has started waving at anyone and everyone, which is especially hilarious when we’re out and she waves at every car and person we pass. Our pediatrician joked that she could be a Wal-Mart greeter for the baby aisle. Oh, and she loves to give wet, slobberific kisses and press her cheek against your’s to show love.

Saying: Hiiiii, Dada, and a whole bunch of gibberish that does not include Mama yet.

Favorite songs: Jesus Loves Me, Old MacDonald and Good Day Sunshine (The Beatles).

Latest biggest milestone: She has been army crawling for a couple of weeks now. She started at a snail’s pace but now she is able to get wherever she wants to go in record time.

Sweetest thing she does: When she’s sleepy or needs to calm herself down from a fussy spell she rubs her neck with her chubby, little hands.

Hardest part of this age: The more food she eats, the smellier the poops.

Favorite part of this age: I love our morning routine and how thrilled she is to see us in the morning. She talks to herself until I go in to get her. She’s usually on all fours, looking at the door, waiting for us to come pick her up to start the day. Once she sees us, she grins the biggest grin and squeals with joy. After a quick diaper change we head to the kitchen where she helps me make the coffee and then she gets squeals as I feed her strawberry yogurt.

Annie at 9 months, is, in one word: JOYFUL