Rad Dads

another whirlwind of a weekend sweeping through.  we will start with Father's Day and backtrack afterwards.  tomorrow is Monday and because i have been running around with my head cut off, i haven't mentioned here on the blog some really fantastic news!  i'll keep it a surprise until after the fact although many of you already know about it through the Facebook.

yesterday was back to back birthday parties.  we were out from 1130am until 930pm.  by the time the kids were showered and in bed, we didn't have much time to clean up nevermind have some secret time to put kevin's father's day gift together.  i'm having a special guest tomorrow morning and with such a busy weekend, we needed to clean up as much as possible in between events.  i stayed up until just after 1am, knowing full well i would be up earlier than usual to make a card and run out for eggs.  i needed to do it early before the kids woke up or else i wouldn't get ANYTHING done.
i managed to bang out this silly illustration for kev.  he has a funny habit of posing like the 50's style muscle men in his vintage comic books and magazines.
  after making the card and running out to buy eggs while everyone slept, i came back and joined them to rest my eyes/brain.  i had a long day ahead of me and i was feeling wrecked.  we eventually shimmied from beneath the covers and into the kitchen for presents and brekkie.
 when moses brought his Father's Day present home from school i immediately confiscated it and hid it so that there would be no spoilers a la my Mother's Day present being eaten...
 they made a book
 apparently moses thinks kevin has brown eyes
 i love the toast an jam with big kisses overhead
  chloe made a farm cake at Franc Départ for kevin LOL so random
 moses chose some crazy stripey socks for kevin and i bought him the Black Keys on vinyl
 present and brekkie: check!
we headed out to the dyke for a late morning stroll
the tide was ALL THE WAY OUT.  Mount Baker in the distance. 
 just a few photos of the bear because she takes my breath away
 she is really in her Terrible Twos right now which still are better than the Treacherous Threes which are definitely better than the Infuriating Fours...
 i am in love with her hair.  it is not black like her mama's.  i love that.
 i have this guy to thank for that :)
 nature shots
 double piggybacks on the way back
 the wind was windy and chloe peed in her pants, so we headed home.  we cleaned and cleaned until it was time to meet for dinner in Vancouve with my dad's side of the family.  we went for a 10 course meal on Joyce and Kingsway followed by cake at their home.
 photos with auntie ping.  amazing how they have replaced my brother and i.  it doesn't feel that long ago that we were the ones in front of the camera with our dear auntie mom!
 this is my Gung Gung being hilarious.  he is pretending to block me from sight while he continues to shovel more chunks of cake onto their plates after i cut them off.  i had to just laugh and play along because although it was already after 9pm, i needed the three of them to bond like this.
 cake and lai see.  of course they were asking to come back tomorrow...
 sigh.  this is where i grew up.  i spent so many many many many days here.  huge family dinners, christmas, easter, sleepovers with auntie ping, or just dropping by when in the area.  so many things have changes and we no longer visit the way we used to...
 my dad's 4 sisters
 shrine to my Grandma.  she would love chloe's appetite and chloe would love her food.
 it's funny, as a photographer, i have become bound by many different rules and protocols.  there are rules to display and compose photos, but in this house it is an extreme explosion of photos displayed in a thousand different crazy unorthodox ways.  and i love it.  because to them, it's really just about displaying the hell out of all the people they love and surrounding themselves with those that bring them the most joy.  that's me in the white dress.  that photo has been displayed on this wall since it was first developed shortly after it was taken.
 i haven't visited in ages and i have always wondered where and how all the recent photos were being displayed.  they were EVERYWHERE.  just a flood of family all over the house.
 my Gung Gung and my brother in my parents' backyard from what looks like 1991-1992
this staircase feels sacred.  so many years of family photos taken on these stairs.
many before my time and so many other undocumented moments during my childhood, eating candies bought from the cornerstore down the road.  my Gung Gung is so happy.  he can not get enough of these two crazy great-grandchildren.  he is so happy in this photo he looks like he is 5 years old having the time of his life with his favourite people.
a toast to this guy, my Dad.  the best.  the funniest.  the most genuine, honest, hardworking and handsome guy.  he told it like it was.  he understood me and knew me better than i knew myself and he would tell me that all the time.  we were so lucky to have him.  he was thoughtful and always put all of us first.  he would defend my mother when we were angry at her and i'm pretty sure he probably defended us to her as well behind closed doors.  he always spoke kindly of others and shamed us when we failed to follow his lead.  he was easygoing and accepting of others.  i don't think he had a mean bone in his body.  

after 10 years, i still can't believe he isn't here.  i can't believe he has missed out on so many things and that life has continued on without him.  i can't believe that a man so devoted to his family and with such an infinite capacity for life and joy is no longer here.  it is numbing.  all i can do is maintain the status quo of silliness in this home and share it with my children.  all i can do is try my best to instill in them the same values he repeatedly tried to instill in us.  i can keep him alive through my actions and words.  i can live my life to its fullest everyday for him, enjoy and savour every beautiful moment of the life  i have with my family.

i love you, Dad.  i love you and miss you and think about you everyday.  everyday, still.  your spirit continues to inspire me and pushes me to do my best.  and for this, i am grateful.  

happy father's day to all the dads that fill our lives with love and laughter.



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