Tag Archive | Dedicated to My Dad

Dear to Our Hearts

Dad and Me
Dad and Me

“Grandma, why do you have so many black combs?” 

“I just do,” I said in my nicest grandmotherly voice.  I made a snap decision to not explain why I had so many combs, so I changed the subject.  “I keep them in this junk drawer.”

“What’s a junk drawer?”

“It’s a place where we put things that don’t have anywhere else to go,” I said.  That seemed to be a good enough explanation.  The little guy was off to explore something else.

When I combed my grandson’s hair earlier that day, I thought about my dad, because it was Dad’s comb I used.  Wouldn’t it be great if you could be here, and maybe leave us another comb? You would love this little guy, I thought, as I tidied up the little one’s hair.  Several times when my father came over to our house with my mother, when our kids were little, he accidentally left one of his combs.  Dad bought them by the bagful.  Dad liked to build towers and other such things with the kids, and somehow the combs slipped out of his pocket and onto the floor.  I never noticed the combs until after my mom and dad left.  I stored them in the junk drawer.  It looks like I forgot to give them back to Dad the next time they came for a visit.

Sometimes, even to this day, little black combs show up out of nowhere.  The other day, when I was organizing a basket of odds and ends, one appeared.  Another time, I noticed one in the street, which made me think of Dad.  Seeing it felt like a good sign, but I decided to leave it stay where it was.  It looks like I get combs from heaven, instead of pennies.

When the little guy gets bigger, and if he’s still curious about the combs, maybe I can tell him this story.  I’ll also let him know that not everything in a junk drawer is junk.  A junk drawer can hold something dear to our hearts.

Old as she was, she still missed her daddy sometimes. ~Gloria Naylor


What Would You Have Done?

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A pleasantly beautiful summer day greeted me when I stepped outside during my lunch hour many years ago.  Tall buildings tried to hide the sun, but I followed the paths where the sun rays fell.  Not very many people headed in the direction of the library.  Many traveled the opposite way, towards the restaurants.

The specially-selected book for Book Club was tucked in its appropriate spot among the other reserved books.  I grabbed the book, took a short stroll towards the scanner, scanned my library card and book.  Safely tucking the book under my arm, we headed back to the office.  As the stop light took its time to change, I gently held the book in my hands and fanned the pages with my thumb.  The book fell open to a particular spot, as though a bookmark had been left and forgotten.  Looking closer, I noticed not a bookmark but a sealed envelope addressed in neat penmanship.  The envelope did not have a return address on the front or the back nor was a stamp affixed.  

What to do?  Open it?  Mail it?  Why didn’t the person mail it?  Did they forget?  Did they want it mailed?  What if they didn’t want it mailed?  Did they think they mailed it already?  Since there was not a return address, I couldn’t send it to the owner.  Coincidentally, I happened to have a stamp in my purse and a mailbox was only a half a block away in the direction I was going.  I leisurely walked towards the mailbox, stood by it for a time, dug the stamp out of my purse, stuck it on the envelope, opened the creaky blue box, and slowly and unsurely dropped it in.  Years later, I wonder if it was meant to be mailed.  

What would you have done?

“I must do something” always solves more problems than “Something must be done.” ~Author Unknown

That’s Worth a Lot!


Have you had to assemble anything lately – something that came with instructions? Did you notice that the instructions only come with pictures and a few names of the items that are inside the box? I find that not having words in the instructions to be confusing. If I can’t figure out the pictures, I end up watching a tutorial on YouTube. I’m glad there’s YouTube, but really, why can’t they include some words on the instructions to help us assemble our project?

Our lives would be so different, if we didn’t know how to read. The majority of my days are spent reading and writing at my job, and when I’m done with that, I pull out a book or my cell phone and read things from there. Plus, it’s the things you don’t think about every day that we’re reading that are so helpful. I’m glad to be able to read signs, recipes, patterns and so many other things.

Dad said he taught all of us kids how to read, and I want to thank Dad and my teachers for helping me. Statistics vary on what the literacy rate is because there are so many different factors to consider, but one site said one in 10 people in the world do not know how to read. When I was small, I needed extra help with reading, and I’m grateful I got that help.

Summer school was fun when I went the summer after first grade. I vaguely remember that there were about 12 of us. Besides working on our reading, we made time for playing, which is the part I remember best. Our summer teacher was our wonderful music teacher. Back then, we read the look-say readers Dick and Jane which used the whole word method of reading. Phonics hadn’t been introduced to us yet.

When my class got to second grade, we started getting the book order forms from Scholastic. There were so many books to choose from the colorful thin paper forms. When our paperback book orders arrived, it was such an exciting day. The books were bound together with a rubber band with our book orders on top. That’s when I learned that books are magical and can carry us off to different times and places to meet extraordinary or not so extraordinary people. The reader knows they read a good one when they get to the last chapter and feel sad that the story is coming to an end. It can be like saying good-bye to a good friend that you’re not going to see any more.

Pictures might speak a thousand words, but wanting to read the fun books helped us to learn how to read the other books. That helped us to read everything else, and that’s worth a lot!

The worth of a book is to be measured by what
you can carry away from it. ~James Bryce