Happy Father’s Day!

We asked our Care Haven dads for help with a special Father’s Day gift for new generations of dads. They responded with plenty of fond memories and sage advice.

Reflections from our dads on Father’s Day

We noted some common themes in our residents’ Father’s Day musings.

  1. Our dads most enjoyed playing and sharing day-to-day adventures with their children, guiding and watching them grow.
  2. Most taught their kids to
    • Be kind.
    • Work hard.
    • Always do your best.
    • Value your education.
    • Tell the truth and do the right thing.
    • Treat everyone with respect.
  3. As for new dads, they suggest you
    • Get prepared before the baby arrives.
    • Trust your instincts.
    • Help your children make the right choices for themselves.
    • Stay healthy.
    • Marry a good wife — and listen to her!
    • Remember to laugh.

Herb

Always do your best

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? Being in charge!
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Do your best.
  • Any advice for new dads? Follow your instincts.
  • What is the key to a good life? Stay healthy.
  • Any funny stories about being a dad? My kids were pretty big, so I would jump on top of the washing machine to talk to them!
  • What would you consider your motto? Always do your best.

Matt

My word is my bond

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? Watching my kids play and have a good time.
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Be mannerly.
  • Any advice for new dads? Don’t take too much for granted.
  • What is the key to a good life? Marry a good wife.
  • What would you consider your motto? My word is my bond.

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Bob

Always follow the right path

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? Advising my children on what’s right — and then seeing them follow through by doing what’s right.
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Be straightforward — and honest when you need to be. Love your father and mother. (Even though sometimes we’re turds!)
  • Any advice for new dads? Do the right thing.
  • What is the key to a good life? First, be the best you can. And then try to stay on the right path.
  • What would you consider your motto? Always follow the right path.

Jim

Tell the truth

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? Playing with my kids.
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Be honest.
  • Any advice for new dads? Try always to be truthful with your family.
  • What would you consider your motto? Tell the truth.

Ken

Be prepared — and educate yourself!

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? Watching my children learn and grow, seeing what interests they develop and how they make out.
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? To behave in public and do well in school — because you need a good education. I also taught them the difference between what’s right and wrong.
  • Any advice for new dads? Read anything available to help you learn what to expect and how to prepare.
  • What is the key to a good life? Educate yourself.
  • What would you consider your motto? Be prepared.

Mike

On Father’s Day, on every day: Be nice to everyone

  •  What is your favorite part about being a father? Spending time with my girls.
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Be nice.
  • Any advice for new dads? Do whatever you can to be a good dad.
  • What would you consider your motto? Be nice to everyone.

Bob

Pay yourself first

  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Bob’s kids learned to “pay yourself first.” In other words, save for your retirement, your kids’ college and other critical long-term expenditures before all else.
  • What is the key to a good life? If you want to follow Bob’s example, you’ll walk many miles wearing a red headband and drink lots of mochas.

Harold

Develop a strong work ethic

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? It’s a great experience!
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Develop a strong work ethic.
  • What is the key to a good life? Get outside.

Craig

It will work out

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? I get to set the rules that others must follow.
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Never gossip.
  • Any advice for new dads? If you can, then wait so you can better afford the expense of raising children.
  • What is the key to a good life? Do unto others as you expect them to do unto you.
  • Any funny stories about being a dad? I still laugh when I remember my daughters’ horror when I kept eating the chili — even though we’d discovered the crackers were full of weevils. “More protein!”
  • What would you consider your motto? It will work out.

A word from Craig’s family:

If you’re wondering whether our dads’ recollections match their children’s, Craig’s family passed on their recollections for comparison.

  • Craig’s children see him as their mentor — a rock and sounding board in times of need. He’s always curious/ surprised/ happy about the choices they make, proud and filled with wonder at their accomplishments.
  • Craig gave them practical advice for facing a challenge: Make a detailed, comprehensive outline to break it down. That works to create a study guide, a term paper or even a plan to pay for college.
  • His family recalls Craig encouraging them to listen to their feelings. “You think what you feel and feel what you think.”
  • Speaking of feelings, Craig knew his kids might feel mad at him from time to time, which was okay. Parenting is hard, and sometimes you don’t get it right. In the end, it’s most important to teach your children to think for themselves and make good choices — be themselves, strive for happiness, serve others.
  • Craig’s keys to a good life? Laughter, love, compassion, the active pursuit of your own path. And acceptance: “It is what it is — It will work out.” (He might add red wine and a subscription to Scientific American to the list, too.)
  • Did they remember any funny stories? Too many to tell! A sampling: Craig is known for busting out his absurd “hula” moves when feeling silly — and family tradition requires each new dad to eat a chocolate candy bar and drink a warm beer the day his baby is born.

Now, don’t you think Craig was a bit modest?

From our camera-shy dads on Father’s Day

John

Be honest

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? My first grandchild! He’s a beautiful boy, 7 months old. I love watching him change as he grows.
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Be kind.
  • What would you consider your motto? Be honest.

Ron

Never give up the ship

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? Just having my children.
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Work hard at school, and get along with the people in your life.
  • Any advice for new dads? Get some sleep!
  • What is the key to a good life? Treat people like you would treat yourself.
  • Any funny stories about being a dad? Plenty — we laughed a lot.
  • What would you consider your motto? Never give up the ship.

Greg

It’s a wild ride!

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? That it’s a wild ride!
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Be patient.
  • Any advice for new dads? Yep — Do what your wife says.
  • What is the key to a good life? Doing the right thing.
  • What would you consider your motto? Be wise.

Stu

Be caring, not judgemental

  • What is your favorite part about being a father? Stu’s wife, Hazel, says he’s enjoyed time spent with the whole family: traveling, eating together, hiking in Colorado. Janet and Brian agree, recalling how he shared a love of nature, new foods, music and the simple joys of life with his children and grandchildren.
  • What is a lesson you always taught your children? Be honest and caring. Waste not, want not — leave every place better than you found it, too. (And be willing to try new things once.)
  • Any advice for new dads? Take a couples’ class to learn to diaper, wash, dress and comfort a new baby. (Stu so excelled in these that the instructors asked him to demonstrate!) As the baby grows, remember that little eyes always are watching, too. Be a good example.
  • What is the key to a good life? First, show your love through your actions. Second, when life brings you lemons, make lemonade. Third, apologize even when you don’t understand how something happened, too. And, finally, laugh.
  • Any funny stories about being a dad? Hazel remembers Stu following the doctor’s orders to get the baby more sunshine: he took Brian into the front yard and turned him every 10 minutes, just like a pancake. Janet recalls her dad stealthily unwrapping hard candy under his car seat, so he wouldn’t have to share. Brian laughs at how Stu impressed young Boy Scouts: breaking big sticks for the campfire, purging spiders from tents, teaching them how to catch and cook crawdads. (Perhaps relishing a particularly loud burp, too.)
  • What would you consider your motto? Everyone is a child of God, so be caring and not judgmental. (Janet’s suggestion: “I’m just resting my eyes.”)

Uncle Tony

For a terrific Father’s Day visit

Our former Activities Director, Marie Rogers, offers the following tips for your own Father’s Day celebration:

Take this opportunity to show your deep appreciation for an influential father figure.

That may be your dad — or a special uncle, brother or family friend.

Recognize the significant role he played in your life.

Get the conversation started by bringing

  • Coffee table books that feature past travel destinations.
  • A photo album featuring the home improvement projects or gardening triumphs that earned him bragging rights.
  • A classic movie with a favorite scene set to stream on your tablet, so you can thank him for introducing it to you.

There’s so much to choose from: the baseball glove you wore when Dad taught you to catch pop-up flies, a favorite fishing reel or hunting cap, the scorecard from a memorable golf outing, a wooden car he carved for your children.

Father’s Day, in particular, is a great time to share these priceless treasures and memories.

Happy Father’s Day to all dads!

If you need help finding a last-minute present, then be sure to see our blog post on the best holiday gifts for seniors and people with Alzheimer’s.

And, if you want to see how our residents spend the rest of the year, then like our Facebook page.