Over the holidays I had my dad over to make some Christmas cookies and candies. It was a great day. Dad and the boys had a lot of fun spending time together making food and memories.
There have been so many times in the past few years when I have all but given up on my dad. He has made me so disappointed and frustrated that at times I didn't even want to talk to him let alone have a relationship with him. The one thing that kept me trying is my kids.
My dad is a great grandfather to my kids. They adore their papa and I am so glad. All three of the kids have created their own relationship with him that is so special to both parties. The kids feel like his nursing home and his room is their special place. Dad always has snacks for them, he plays games with them, or he lets them sit on his bed and watch cartoons or whatever they want. He gives them rides on his wheel chair and plays his harmonica for them.
He loves to listen to them play the piano and hangs all of the pictures that they draw for him with such pride. He has their pictures and the pictures of my nephew proudly displayed for all to see. Dad went to Palmer's soccer game and watched Emily swim. He is as much a part of their lives as possible.
When we moved back this was my goal. I wanted my kids to know him. I wanted him to know them. Regardless of everything else that has (for lack of a better word) sucked this has been good. This has been the hidden blessing. So today we celebrate his birthday. I made his favorite cake and we are taking him out to eat. The kids will sing happy birthday and share his piece of cake when they finish their own. They will hug and kiss and tell him how much he is loved. They will warm his heart as grandchildren are meant to do.