Monday, June 16, 2014

Rod and Laura

Dear JJ,

Since you were born we have had two people who have been a part of your life.

Rod is a handyman who I've known for 20 years. I've operated on him, he has painted our house. I remember the day he got his liver transplant- he was at our house when he got the call.  He went from being on death's doorstep to having a life again - not without challenges, but he is doing great.

His wife Laura offered to clean the house a couple of days a week. When she would come you would follow her around and mop and clean and help her.  Besides your grandmother, Gigi, she was the first person we felt comfortable staying with you - babysitting.

Every trip Rod has taken us to the airport, dropped us off and hugged us goodbye.

Rod and Laura got new jobs today - so we won't be seeing them much anymore. Do you know what bothered me the most - that they have been a part of your life and they will be much less of it. People come and go in lives, son - for reasons that are beyond control.

So when you find great friends - enjoy the time you have with them, because in a wink of an eye circumstances will change - but cherish the memory.



Sunday, June 15, 2014

Fathers Day 2014

Dear JJ,

This is my third Father's Day!

Somehow this has become my favorite holiday. Not that I want gifts, because on this day I am reminded that almost four years ago I was given the greatest gift -becoming a dad.  It's my favorite title, it is the greatest club I have ever belonged to.

Today you are 42 inches tall and weigh 42 pounds - full of energy, and full of smiles. You love to tease your mom and me - and we can always tell, because you get this smile on your face and a twinkle in your eye. But every night I get to put you to bed you tell me you love me, and even though I want you to get to sleep, that just stops me in my tracks.

I don't have anything profound to say to you today son. Like my dad said - kids provide fountains of love.

And Happy Father's Day to my dad - here doing his duties when I was seven months old

My two favorite people:  you and your mom flying kits
You have become quite a reader - sometimes we are amazed that you can read
Three generations of Simpson Men - always moving
You have become quite a world traveler 
Our First Family Photo - July 20, 2010

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Watching Parents Age

Dear JJ,

I've been lucky that my parents, your grandparents, are still here. But the hard part is seeing them age. If you are lucky, you will see this happen to your mom and I.

While the hearing gets worse, the eyesight more dim, and difficulty negotiating around what I've noticed is the smiles get larger when they see us and no matter how tired they are they always love to hear about their grandson.

Your grandmother goes out every day to tend to her garden, and works until she is tired - she has done this my entire life. It is harder for her now, she gets more tired - but the beauty of the yard is a testament to her love of gardening.

Your grandfather got a hernia several years ago after lifting multiple 20 pound bags of cement to build a fencepost. Two years ago we all went to Europe to chase him around England and France.

We cannot help growing older - just as you get taller and stronger, there comes a point in life when things don't work as well, and it is easy to get tired.

I just hope that I learn from my parents to smile bigger, laugh more, and enjoy family as the best treasure of life- and as you grow older will learn to grow with the grace and smiles we already see in you.

Your old Dad

Your Grandparents in 1991

We meet them at their favorite restaurant for coffee - this was April 2014

And here the three generations - lucky we have you