Guess what day it is: Friday--my favorite! It's also my Dad's birthday! Happy Birthday, Dad! In honor of his birthday, I am going to reprint a post I wrote on my other blog about a trip my Dad and I took together back in 2007. I am blessed to have all kinds of good memories of my Dad, but that trip is definitely one of my favorites. I hope you have an amazing day today, Dad! I love you big bunches! XOXO
Today I am happy to introduce a new series on So Very Vicki: Favorite Memories Friday. Each Friday I’m going to share a special memory with you. I started this blog last year to serve as an on-line journal–a place I can record events and joys and memories. I have so many wonderful memories. By writing them down and sharing them with all of you, I feel like I can celebrate the goodness of the past. Sometimes I will talk about big memories and sometimes it will be just a snippet of a good time. I hope you enjoy this new series!
Week #1–Country Living Fair, Ohio 2007
My Dad and I love to shop for antiques together. We can spend hours together slowly looking up and down the aisles of a good antique store. Sometimes we chat along the way and other times we just stand side-by-side and quietly look. Dad loves stores packed with tiny treasures tucked in display cases, while I prefer the stores that stock colorful kitchen items and fun toys and sewing notions. Sometimes Dad shakes his head over the stuff I go ga-ga over (a rusted gate…a bag of old spools), but he always encourages me to buy what makes me the happiest. (Except that pink scale. I really wanted that pink scale and he talked me out of it. I’m still thinking about that darn pink scale!) Some of my very favorite memories with Dad involve things that happened on our antiquing expeditions. There’s been plenty of laughs along the way (What? You only want $30 for that Bauer bowl?) and lots of bargaining along the way (but mostly by Dad; I’m still not very good at bargaining).
In 2007, Dad was diagnosed with colon cancer. It was a scary time, but thankfully, everything turned out well. Right around the time he was in the hospital, I saw an ad in my Country Living magazine about their fair. The fair was to be held in Ohio, so I knew the drive from Chicago wouldn’t be too bad. That fall, we packed my mini-van, programmed the GPS and headed to Morrow, Ohio together, just the two of us.
Have you ever taken a road trip with just your dad? I highly recommend it! The long car ride gave us plenty of time to talk and laugh (stop looking at the speedometer!) about anything and everything. We managed to get lost a few times (because obviously we’re smarter than the GPS, right?), but we finally made it safe and sound to our bed and breakfast. We stayed at the Kirkwood Inn, which served fantastic breakfasts that we ate in the house’s beautiful dining room.
You know what I remember most about the Country Living Fair? This:
Woo-wee! The fair was packed!! I’m pretty sure they weren’t anticipating such a huge turn-out. There were people everywhere! As far as treasure-hunting at the Fair, we didn’t find too many. But we did have a blast going to the Antiques Roadshow tent. My dad is an Antiques Roadshow fanatic! He loves that show. When I found out that the show was going to be webcasting from the Fair and that they were going to have appraisers there who wanted to look at audience members’ treasures, I knew I had to get Dad involved. I sent the Fair an e-mail and a picture of one of Dad’s treasures and they e-mailed back and said, “Bring it along! We want to look at it!” The hour we spent in the Antiques Roadshow tent was fascinating–my favorite part of the weekend! Folks brought in all kinds of things, including an antique coffin. Seriously. Some stuff was worth a whole lot, and other stuff wasn’t worth much. Dad’s statue was worth about what he paid for it (we were secretly hoping it was worth millions!).
My favorite antiquing of the weekend actually took place at the local shops. I found all kinds of treasures including a few aqua bowls to add to my collection and an old locker basket from a community pool in Texas.
My very favorite part of our whole trip were the nightly dinners we shared at The Houston Inn. We went there every night. It was right across the street from our hotel, and the food and service was excellent. The Houston Inn is famous for its frog legs. In fact, there are frog statues all over the restaurant. My Dad was like a kid in a candy store when he found out about the frog legs. Apparently, he grandma was quite famous for her frog legs and my Dad had many fond memories of frog legs dinners on the farm. I wasn’t so sure about the frog legs. First of all, they were huge. Secondly, they still looked like frog legs. By the last night, though, I knew I would always regret it if I didn’t try the frog legs (he would have never let me live it down!). The truth is, they weren’t bad. They taste just like…chicken. : ) Those dinners together each night were the best–Dad shared all kinds of old stories and memories with me. I loved it!
We left Ohio with a few antique treasures and a life time of good memories. Any time with Dad is time well-spent, for sure.
Thanks for the memories, Dad! I love you.