Tag Archives: Fathers


15 Jun

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis



Back in the late fifties, going to church was a much more sociable activity than it is today. Once the service was over the adults would linger outside the church, on the sidewalk just to chat and enjoy being together. The children, glad to be freed from the trial of sitting still would run around like uncaged monkeys playing tag and screaming until a parent shushed us.  One particular evening, the air had a chill to it and I stood Lucerne Parkshivering next to my dad. Without making a big  “to do” about it, he took off his suit jacket and put it around my shoulders. It covered my small body completely and smelled like my dad’s Vitalis hair oil and a faint scent of cigarrete smoke. I felt completely safe and warm covered by his jacket. That was my first picture of how much God loved me.

My dad and mom loved to fish and we drove to the east coast of Florida every Friday night to fish. In my childhood I can’t remember a time I didn’t have a fishing pole. I started with a cane pole in the local lakes. When I was considered big enough to have a real fishing rod and reel, it was a small Zebco. I remember my dad teaching me first how to bait my hook, release the line and how important it was to “hold your pole Loved catching the big ones.up” when you were reeling in a fish. Next he taught me how to tie a hook onto my line and change the weights. He wanted me to be self-sufficient but he was always there to help me out when I tangled my line or man the long dip net when I had a fish to big for me to reel up. This was my second picture of how God loved me. Like my dad, God would always be there to help me untangle my life and he would be my “dip net” when I called out to him.

Matthew 7:11 says-“ If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!”


My dad was a humble man and because of his humility, it took me many years to realize what a truly remarkable father he was.

Me and dad

Me and dad



Father Daughter Action Plan

28 Apr


Judy Wills


Father Daughter Action Plan 

That title in the Thursday newspaper reminded me of a time that our family enjoyed quite a bit.Back in the mid 1970’s, we were living on an AF Base and, because Fred was an officer, were required to be members of the Officer’s Club.  So, for the dues we had to pay for that pleasure, we thought to have a meal there at least once each month.  However, the food was less than great.

 While we were there, the club began giving out a “chit” for a free meal each month when they sent the bill, to encourage more attendance at their facility.

Well, we didn’t want to waste the “free” meal, even though we really didn’t enjoy eating there that much. But then a plan occurred to me – how about a Date Night between Father and Daughter?  Neither of the girls really had a lot of just “Daddy” time, so I thought this might be a good way for them to have some quality time with Daddy, and be treated like a lady should be treated by a gentleman.  And Fred is definitely a gentleman.  His momma taught him well!

So the plan went into action.  One supper evening each month, one of our daughters would get dressed to the nines, and would go to the O’ Club with Daddy.  He would help her into the car, pull out/push in her chair at the table, and they would just visit with each other while they ate.



The next month, the other daughter would get dressed to the nines, and go to the O’ Club with Daddy.  And she would be treated like a lady by a gentleman.




The girls loved it – they still say it is one of their fondest memories.  They would usually wear a long dress, get their hair fixed “just so,” possibly wear a “touch” of makeup, and be on their best behavior.   So each daughter had her quality time with Daddy, and Daddy got to know his girls a bit better.  Fun for all.

The remaining daughter and I would have hamburgers.


As a footnote to this:  when I told a good friend about this plan, she harumphed and said she would have to teach her husband to be a gentleman first!

Enjoy the Differences

25 Mar

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Photo by Melodie Hendrix

Photo by Melodie Hendrix

The other day Bill and I were in the kitchen cooking breakfast, and he told me about a dream he had. He was working with my dad, something he did whenever the folks came from California for a visit or we went there. Dad loved to putter and fix things. Bill wanted to hang out with him, so they did projects that mother and I came up with for them.

Bill is an engineer; Dad was a man of many trades, race jockey, welder, gas company manager, large equipment fixer in a tomato factory, meat cutter, restaurant owner, pilot, and, most important, fisherman. Ah well, you get the picture; he could do many things.

Bill can do anything, too, or so it seems to me. He was mostly a mechanical engineer with the Space program, specializing in ordnance.

So anyhow, the dream was about Bill and Dad working together. In the dream, Bill was frustrated as he always was when he worked alongside Dad. Dad put his tools down just any old where and couldn’t’ find them the next time he needed them. He drilled big holes with gusto when Bill thought smaller, more sedate holes would have given a closer tolerance and worked better. Dad’s been home in heaven a while now, and we laughed at the silly dream until I started to cry. I hardly ever cry so it felt good.

I finally figured out why I was crying. I could see Dad and Bill in the driveway working on something. I could have walked out there, joined them, and got a lot of joy seeing the two of them together and being amused by the differences in work styles. If it were now, I wouldn’t need to try to make one like the other or change them. Now that I’m older, can see how unique each person is. I can accept them and enjoy the differences. It makes life a lot more fun and less stressful, too.

Psalm 139:13



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