Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Parent of the Week: Scott

This week's Avant Garde Parent of the Week is Scott. This post might be our most unique yet because it is actually written by Lisa, Scott's wife. She wrote me wanting to nominate him and her words were so sweet and genuine that I asked her to write the post herself. You'll see why I didn't ask her to cut this long post- it's possible the most kind entry you'll ever read. Now go. Get a tissue and read it.


Don’t worry, Dad’ll fix it.

These are the words spoken most often around our house.

Because my husband is a Renaissance Man, though he doesn’t know it.

Though he’ll probably never write the Great American Novel, (notice I said probably – never count him out), or compose a magnificent opera, or sing at the Met, I have never met anyone who can accomplish whatever they set their minds to the way he can.

Scott and I have been married for more years than I care to recall.  We have five children, one girl and four boys.  Our daughter, known as Girly Girl, is our oldest.  She is 21, an opinionated spitfire, the self appointed princess of our household.  She also happens to have Down Syndrome.  When she was born I was a wreck and Scott was a rock.

Come to think of it, Scott has a lot in common with rocks.  In a good, geology loving sort of way!  He’s solid, he’s dependable, he’s deep – yet he can also be unpredictable.  Landslides do occur you know, and suddenly all those rocks you imagined so safely lodged up on the mountainside wind up in a heap in your front yard.

Scott would know just what to do in a landslide.  If the rocks landed in our front yard, Scott would figure out just the right way to move them. He’d find someone with some sorta rock moving machine, barter a deal to borrow it, magically know how to drive the thing, and fashion the rocks into a water fall.  If the rocks crashed through our house, smashing the walls and wrecking the furniture Scott would repair the walls, craft new furniture, (and probably figure out who to sue over the landslide).

My boys would help him, and be both amazed and slightly annoyed.

How does dad know how to do this stuff? 

This is a question I’ve heard countess timesMy answer: He tries hard.
And that’s what makes Scott a Renaissance Man, and a great husband and father:  He tries hard.

Scott, Little Bit, & the new table crafted from
a rough beam cut lengthwise with a chainsaw!
He puts his all into everything.

When I decided, all those years ago, that homeschooling the kids sounded like a fun and interesting thing to do, Scott went along with me when everyone else we knew thought I was crazy.

His days off became our field trip days.

Scott has accompanied us to a Hindu Temple, up the winding stairs of a clock tower, a Greek Orthodox church, and a noodle factory, just to name a few.  He’s been a boy scout leader and escorted Girly Girl to school dances and luaus.  He’s been there when each of our children were born (His only negative comment as I was squashing his hand:  No nails!  No nails!!).  He’s taught our boys how to gut fish, mince onions, build a fire, change a car’s oil, and butterfly a chicken.  He’s braided Girly Girl’s hair, curled her bangs with my curling iron (which he’s frankly not so hot at, though he’s been practicing for years),and gotten on Space Mountain just one more time despite a splitting headache.

Every Sunday Scott makes a big breakfast.  Often it’s pancakes, he mixes the batter (never measuring) and pours it into the different shaped pancake molds we’ve collected over the years.  Little Bit, our youngest, is always on hand to flip the cakes over and present them to the rest of us on a platter with the words “Order Up!!!”. This, my friend, is a time honored tradition.

Most Sunday evenings Scott is in charge of dinner.  He creates homemade soups and curries; he marinates and barbeques and dices and chops, cleaning up as he goes.  The kids line up, assembly line style, as he gives them each their instructions.  More tradition.

I’ve heard that some men go golfing on their days off.  I’ve heard some men watch sports on tv or play sports, go hunting with their buddies, or just hang out with their friends doing nothing in particular.  I personally know men who get together to play poker every week, or catch a bus to the Nevada border to gamble, or attend sporting events.
I just can’t imagine it.  These poor guys aren’t enjoying the rich, diverse life Scott is!

Just look at what they’re missing: 

~Reading Goodnight Moon for the four thousandth time; helping their 7 year old, struggling with reading, to sound out words, over and over again; crafting, with his son’s help, a beautiful new table for the kitchen; frosting a ginormous cupcake cake only to have the top separate from the rest of it and topple onto the floor, (naturally we ate it anyway).

~Family camping trips:  backing the rv into the tightest spot possible because we decided we like the look of “that tree” and wanted to be right next to it; helping the kids catch frogs; playing badminton, catch, and football; rigging up a laptop with speakers on the camp table so we could all watch a movie outside.

-Taking the kids to the dentist, the doctor, the physical therapist, science classes, theatre classes, scouts, and the library (three of these all on the same day.  Every week.)

~All of our vacations are family vacations.  All our evenings family evenings.  We play games together, bake together, read together.  Scott and the older boys have been listening to The Lord Of The Rings on cd yet again, during their weekly drives to and from various activities.

So – Scott can change diapers, get up with a baby in the middle of the night when I’m too exhausted, tutor geometry, repair anything (without winding up with extra parts!), cook, clean, read aloud, craft fine furniture, fish, hunt, and not get lost in the mountains. He also shops for food and is unafraid to buy feminine hygiene products and makeup for me when I run out. What can’t he do?

He stinks at laundry.  He combines the wrong items and puts the towels I’ve folded away backwards.

Doesn't sound like such a bad thing, does it?

A year ago, when we moved, Scott unloaded the chicken coop off the back of his truck, all by himself.  My 17 year old whispered to me later,  I I can’t believe Dad did that.  He’s so strong!

Some months back we discovered a mouse in our pantry.  Scott instructed everyone to arm themselves and grabbed a bat.  He and our oldest boy went into the pantry and shut the door.  The rest of us stood outside, armed with a second bat, a stick, a katana, and a plastic light saber (green).  We waited with baited breath – then Scott cried out There it is! Get it!  Sounds of loud crashing, of wood smashing against tile, sudden silence, and then my son saying: Oh I’m sorry!  Are you ok? 
Yes he had wacked his father with the bat.  More silence.  Then Scott, evidently still alert, cried out a second time: There it is!  More whacking.  And soon Scott carried the deceased mouse outside.

The last time we had a mouse in the house Scott herded it into the hall closet and shot it with a pellet gun.  It was rather a sad sight.  The nasty critter laying there with it’s dirty feet up in the air. But our kids thought that was so cool.

From baking to car repair to mice shooting:  Dad can do anything!

And it's true. 

Scott and Past Parents of the Week: Feel free to grab the Parent of the Week Badge:


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