Friday, February 18, 2011

9 to 91

Today we headed over to help celebrate our Grandson Anthony's NINTH birthday!! Happy Birthday Buddy! He had a few friends from school over and we came by and so did his other Grandparents. He wanted pizza and 7 layer salad for his b-day dinner...Steph made his cake and we ate, sang, opened presents, and listened to he and his friends laugh and wrestle around like 9yr old boys do! It was a fun night and I can't believe how time has passed. It sounds like a cliche, but so true.

Let's open some gifts!
The cake was very yummy...make a wish Anthony and hopefully all your wishes will come true!
Anthony says: It's fine turning NINE!!!
Now for the 91...

Today would have been my Dad's 91st birthday. It's hard to even think of him at that age because he died in 1976 at the age of 56. He was a fun guy! In a room of strangers, he'd be everyone's new friend. He loved to tell stories, play his guitar, sing, laugh, write poetry, read and most of all, he loved his family. He was devoted to my Mom and always made us 6 kids feel we were his most prized possessions. He could fix anything. He built his own house in 1951..and Mom lives there still. He served in WWII..he drove a tank, was shot in the leg and came home to start a his life and live in peace. The saddest day was when he had to send my 2 older brothers off to Vietnam..thankfully both returned safely. He wrote a poem about it. It's long so I'm only going to give a few lines. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think of him, and always wish he could have met my children and shared in our lives. Here are just a few of his thoughts about going to war and sending his children to fight....
Then once upon a monarch's whim
I walked upon a foreign land.
I never knew just why
The sun upon the earth was darkened
The laughter in me died...
And I was not so young, and I was not so young

I took the path God gave me
I walked it straight and true
The happiness I found was not laughter
But home, and love, and family
That was so young, so very young
Then one day for the very cause I served
The happiness left me
To walk upon a foreign land
I loosed the hands I guided
I watched these men depart

I know from long ago
They are no longer young, no longer young......

That's how time is. One day we're 9 and life is full of promise and fun and endless days...then in a blink...we are no longer young. But what wonderful times and memories are etched in our hearts when we spend it with those we love. And remember those we will always hold in our hearts. Happy Birthday Dad!


Stacy Crawford said...

You must be a lot like your dad. You are fun in the room. I was always interested in what you had to say, ever since I met you. Happy Birthday to your family!

rosaria said...

What a beautiful poem your dad penned, full of sadness and pride and a bit of regret too. How lovely of you to share this with us.

Donna said...

How poignant! NOW I know where you get your love of poetry from. What a special man, your dad! The love we have for a parent lives in your heart always...beautifully written! full of life and a full one ahead! He looks like he has a LOT of personality! (fine to be!) It's always fun to celebrate with family!!

Karen Whittal said...

Been catching up on all your blogs today, things are really hectic around here right now. Both yours and your dad's poems are really great i too love poetry, when i do a sermon I always love to include an appropriate poem or psalm, as the case maybe. I love your photo's of the snow, keep them coming, it gives me inspiration to keep on saving for my "dream' holiday. Congratulations on your grandsons birthday, looks like it was a lot of fun. i am planning a retreat in June and am going to do the whole thing around your bucket list blog, I hired the movie it was really good, gave me a lot of inspiration. What happens when the ice starts melting do you get flooded??

Donna said...

Ooooh! You put you gorgeous backyard pic on the header...yeosa!! It looks so pretty! You need to post that you took it because someone would otherwise think that some famous photographer took it in the great northwest! Looks perfect!

Hilary said...

What a lovely tribute to your Dad. It's so true.. the time passes much to quickly. Happy Birthday to your grandson. And thanks for your visit to my blog.

Sue said...

Your dad seems like a very loving and thoughtful person. You are fortunate to have such wonderful memories of him.

And happy birthday to Anthony!


Grandma Yellow Hair said...

Honey what a sweet post and I love your dad's poem. I know it is hard missing him so because like you I think of mine each day. My dad died at 63 and I always thought way to young but 56 is certainly.
You can tell from this picture that he was a man that everyone would love to be around.
Your grandson is the same age as my Kaci. lol She was nine in November. Like you said time goes way to fast.
Happy I got to visit today and read your dads poem
Love ya

Life 101 said...

What a beautiful post! I lost my dad in 1986 and my column in today's paper talked about him.
I'll post it tomorrow night on my blog.
My wife and I wrote a song once called "Time has Wings". It's about life and how quickly it passes.
Again, beautiful post.

Jilda said...

Beautiful post! Memories are wonderful treasures, whether they are jewel or dusty relics. Thanks for sharing!

Amy and Craig said...

Sorry I missed knowing Grandpa Arends and sorry I missed Anthony's Birthday! Looks like fun!