This. Is my dad.
He's pretty much the coolest guy you've ever seen, right?
And today is his birthday!!
I know I told you how wonderful my mother is just a little bit ago. So now you have to picture someone who is amazing enough to hang with a lady like that.
It's hard. I know. Let me paint you a little picture, just so you have something to go off of...
My dad is a hard worker. In fact, after years as a cameraman for a TV station, he decided that he wasn't contributing enough to others. So he went back to school. To become a teacher. For the past couple of decades he has changed and influenced thousands of kids with his incredible sense of humor and love for them. And now he is back in school getting his Masters Degree. While teaching. And serving in our home stake. And being the dad of five kids. Grandpa to three. And the husband to my crazy-busy mom. Seriously.
[The only picture of ALL of us. Yikes.]
Oh, and speaking of his sense of humor, my dad is the funniest man alive.
I mean, the guy tells better jokes than they do on the Disney Jungle Cruise. Which he knows by heart. [Pictured below in January 2010 with Avery on said Jungle Cruise]
He likes to say that I'm the only one who laughs at his jokes, but that's not true! He usually gets a pretty big kick out of himself, too.
My dad runs and/or works out six days a week. He is faster than me on foot, too. Not that that's hard. But he competed in his first 5K this year and I am so proud of him! He's even promised to do a 10K with me soon! He is a total inspiration to me.
My dad is an awesome grandpa. Here he is sleeping with four-pound Av on his chest. And hanging with bald-Carter last Christmas. And dressing up as the Man from the North Pole just so Av could sit on his knee and gush about all of the things she wanted and how she was going to set out cookies for him later.
He has these kids wrapped around his little finger. Wait, maybe it's the other way around.
My dad is the biggest music fan there ever was. Remember that show on VH1- Rock and Roll Jeopardy? I used to sit on the floor in my dad's room while it was on and listen to him answer just about every single question correctly long before any of the contestants buzzed in. His music collection encompasses one HUGE floor-to-ceiling cabinet in the family room. Well, it used to, at least. Until my dad got an iPod. Now he has two full 80gig iPods and a third that he is working on filling. And he listens to it all. Trust me. He has a system.
He taught me to love the Beatles and concerts and music from a very young age. We've been to tons of shows together, too. Billy Joel in the fifth grade. Paul McCartney junior year. KISS- twice- as a teenager (The show where a very drunken man asked my dad how long we had been married as we waited outside the MGM Grand... Ahh memories...*shudder*). Arcade Fire this spring. And about a dozen front row Weird Al Yankovic concerts in between. And I'm not exaggerating. We love Al.
My dad is my spiritual rock. He has always shown me how important gaining a testimony of the restored gospel is through his tireless efforts to serve the members of our home ward and stake. Whenever I need comfort or help or have a really great experience to share, he's the guy I call. He has shown me how to build my own testimony, and what really matters in life. By example my dad has shown me how to love the sinner, how to receive truth and light, how to forgive and how to give and love and support and serve. It is my lifelong goal to be an integral part of a ward family, as well as my own family, because of the legacy he has given to me.
I love him oh so much. And I miss his mustache.
It's time to bring it back, Daddy.