Thursday, June 16, 2011

I am a Living Legacy to the Leader of the Band…. 2011

He didn't tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.  
~Clarence Budington Kelland

Being behind the lens allows me to view the interactions of my son at a safe distance.  I get to observe him as he grows and changes without interrupting it for a cheesy posed "Mom" moment. And after looking through a years worth of photos (really - 1000's of them), I realized that it especially allows me to capture those of he and his father.  Mark will fully admit to hating to be photographed.  Yet, in the past year, his gripes have all but gone away and I believe it's due almost entirely to the fact that he's sharing the spotlight with his son. 

So, in honor of Father's Day - I'm posting my favorite father/son moments caught on film.

Mark's first glimpse at his legacy

Daddy's 1st diaper change

My most favorite picture...Naptime
Mercer visits Daddy at Work

Everyone's tuckered out after landscaping

Cuddle Time after Mercer's 1st day at daycare

All Smiles - All the time for Daddy

Proud yet oblivious...

Sunday in our Jammies

Santa - A role, I'm pretty sure, he never thought he'd play...

Dads are the Best for Naps

Three Men & a Baby

Two spoiled kids at Christmas

The "official" father/son pic

Eatin' Healthy

Mercer's like, "Please stop snoring"

Good times


Mark dumbfounded that a one-year-old can wear you out

Stomping Grapes

Mark - You're a fantastic Dad.  As you know, my own father is pretty awesome, therefore my expectations for YOU as a Dad were very high.  And I'm overjoyed to say that you continue exceed those everyday.  You took to parenting like a duck to water (the dogs really prepped you for it).  I've never seen you more proud of anything than you are of your son (except for maybe your landscaping and that makes sense because you're "growing" both).  I love how silly you are together.  I love how in the mornings, Mercer searches the house for you and when he finds you, he smiles wide, giggles and yells "DADA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!".  You were born to be his father, Mark.  The connection you have with each other is palpable.  I know you will continue to find joy in all his milestones and in all of the moments you share together for years to come.  As a team, you and I are shaping our Mercer into a good little man.  And, I appreciate every dollar you earn (and save), every effort you take and every sacrifice you make in order to make our lives better.  Happy 2nd Father's Day!  I love you. 

I'm fortunate enough to be the kind of girl that is more comfortable in a room of men, than a room of women and that is because of all the positive male role models and peers that I have in my life.  My confidentials below are to the amazing men in my life, fathers or not.  Men whose influence helped shape me to become the woman I am today. Thanks for being so strong yet so nurturing.  All of you are my rock stars!

Dad:  One of the best compliments that I've ever received is when Mrs. K said to me, "Jen…you are your father's daughter" - obviously referring to our stellar personalities, because looking at us, you can't tell that we're actually related.  I got the best parts of your personality:  your charm, your quick wit, your sense of humor and your ability to make people feel at ease in your presence.  Fortunately, Andrea got your temper - and that's her (and poor Jason's) cross to bear.  You are the person who asks the difficult questions when they need to be asked, even if it means rocking the boat. Yet, you're diplomatic enough to back off and let people choose for themselves, once your peace has been said.  You appreciate a stiff glass of scotch, which I also love.  And you're an admirer of a nice rack (of ribs), which Mark & Mercer can appreciate, as well.  And while Mom may have been the one who bestowed in me the need for compassion, you are the one who taught me that there is always time in your day to help someone who needs it.  You thrive as a PopPop and while I know that it may be impossible - I believe that Mercer has your smile, as well as you affinity for Budweiser.   I can't thank you enough for continuing to be my biggest fan to date, still cheering me on from the sidelines of life.  Love ya, DAD!
The Master and the Grasshopper

My favorite men (minus Mark)

I thank you for your music (BRUCE) and your stories from the road (Sopranos Cast)
I thank you for the freedom when it came my time to go
I thank you for your kindness and the times when you got tough
And Dad I don't think I've said I love you near enough…
 - Dan Fogelberg - "Leader of the Band"

To my Godfather:  HAPPY FATHER'S DAY, UNCLE PETE!  I love you.  (Look!  Now, you're on the INTERNET!!!).
Mercer amused by his mother's Godfather

To Grandpop Updike:  Until we meet again….

To Grandpa Lenhardt:  Thank you for instilling in me the belief that I should always stand up for what I believe in, even if it is the unpopular choice. 
I love how big you smile when you see Mercer!
Snoozing with his Great Grandpop Lenhardt

To PopPop Carl: You're doing a hell of a job as a Great-Grandpop.  I know how much you enjoy it and I look forward to seeing the bond between you and Mercer continue to grow.
Mercer having a snack with Pop Pop Carl

To Seiddad: "nksjf4290jf2J()#$j_)MCWMC0PEWJCE".  Mercer says, "Hi Grandpa - Happy Father's Day". He's smart - just like you and apparently can type in code.
All the SeidmEn in the sand

To Jonathon, Kevin and Jamie:  Happy Father's Day to the Dads of the cutest kids I know! 

To Blair, Cookie, Richie, Kevin, Vince, John P., Mel and even my good old BFF Mike:  You are all my "brothers from another mother".  And each of you are amazing men, in your own right.  In a world full of d-bags, it's nice to know that my son has each of you to look up to as role models.  And while I'm sure things will be taught that a Mom doesn't want to know about (Yes, MEL & KEVIN - I'm directly addressing you), I'm glad that he'll be learning them from you and not on the internet.  LOL.

Happy Father's Day to All.
And now - I'm off to the  Lake...

No comments:

Post a Comment