Today we held a celebration service to honor my Dad who passed away this past Sunday. My Dad was never one for “mushiness” so we wanted to share something that would communicate his character and values, while also reflecting his sense of humor. We will always be thankful for what he taught us.
The following is what we presented to those who attended.
- Working hard is the path to success in life. Don’t expect anyone to give you something you have not earned. Laziness is for losers.
- Complaining is a waste of breath and frankly, annoying to those you have to listen to you whine. Keep doing the right thing and, in general, right things will happen for you.
- Life is full of curve balls. If you feel like complaining, reference #2 again. After getting hit with a curve, whether it be illness or injury, loss or disappointment or your house burning down, keep moving. Set a goal of overcoming that obstacle and run it down until it’s a distant memory. Curve balls do not define you but giving up will.
- Corny jokes make the world a better place. Throw in a cheesy pun or two and you’ve got a party. Never ever pull anyone’s finger, even if invited to do so. And whatever you do, never get your mords wixed.
- Make right decisions even when no one will know the difference. Even when it’s not popular. Even if it costs you something.
- Live life to the full. Don’t waste even a single day. Make the most of what you have been given. See every museum, scenic view and road less traveled that crosses your path. Take a picture of it so you can remember it later. Randomly pull over to the side of the road and send your kids out into the ocean waves just because the lighting is just right for the perfect photo. After all, the photo will last forever, and you can always hold their pants out the car window to let them dry.
- Never be late for anything. If you are 15 minutes early, you are still late.
- Family is a blessing not a burden. Your check book and calendar should reflect that philosophy. Take stock of both of them often and make adjustments, when needed.
- Take responsibility for your commitments, even if someone else makes the mistake. That means when the newspaper company doesn’t provide you enough papers for your paper route, you go to the store and buy more papers with your own money so all your customers still receive their morning paper. By the way, you should run to the store even in the pouring rain, because their paper must not be late.
- Never ever purchase a new house or one already renovated. Making a home starts with ripping out what the last guy thought was a good idea and starting over. It is mandatory to point out the previous guy didn’t know what he was doing at least once every hour during renovations.
- Camping is highly preferred over the Holiday Inn. For one, it’s cheaper and, most importantly, you can’t make a morning campfire breakfast of folded over toast stuffed with raspberry preserves and bacon at the Holiday Inn.
- The key to every room’s decorating success is lots and lots of mirrors. Mirrors make the smallest room look larger and remind you to keep your hair combed. If a wall is in the wrong place, knock it down. If you need a wall, build one. This strategy is also useful when applied to life situations.
- Teamwork is important. This is especially true when your brother chases you with a TV tray and accidentally tears off a strip of wallpaper. You never saw two kids work together so well than when we surgically removed a piece of wallpaper from behind the sofa, cut it to the exact pattern and glue it exactly in place. We let him in on our secret here recently roughly 35 years later.
- If you don’t use something inside a 3 month period, it will be sold at an auction, a garage sale or an online trading site. You will not be told this has happened until you notice that it is missing.
- Drinking tea is just a really good excuse to eat a cookie.
- Jesus is the reason for the season. We say Merry Christmas. Easter is not about bunnies and chocolate. It’s a relationship not a religion. Faith without works is dead. And because He lives we can face tomorrow. Because He lives all fear is gone. Because we know He holds the future. And life is worth the living because we know He lives. And knowing this, our Dad lived his life well.