Small town girl. Joins Navy. Sees the world. Flies in planes. Hunts submarines. Gets out of military and has 3 kids. Rejoins Air National Guard as an "old lady" of 38.

A humorous compilation of stories and lessons learned. Usually the hard way.

Friday, June 15, 2012

For the Beauty of the Earth

In honor of Father's Day this weekend, I wanted to share one of my dad's most influencing lessons that he taught us- more by actions than words.

My dad spends the brisk winter months logging and during the summer he owns an excavating business.  He has worked outside his entire life from sun up to sun down in the deep Minnesota woods.  

During this time, weathering in the climate, he learned one of the greatest lessons I feel that our generation and those to come could benefit from.  How to take care of the Earth.   

Many people have had the association that loggers are bad and destructive to our environment.  Of course clear-cutting rain forests down in South America is definitely toxic to our world.  However, logging- the kind most loggers do- is very essential to the preservation of the planet.  These loggers are cutting down the old trees and using their resources- in turn, making room for the new undergrowth to rise and mature.  This speeds up the entire regeneration process and uses our natural resources instead of the often toxic, man-made ones.

Dad taught us (his daughters) how to hunt and fish, but in turn respect the Earth and all of its creatures.  It is not a sport to kill animals.  We put back what we take.  We only take what we need.

He taught us that God is all around us- just as the Native Americans believe.  Our God, or whatever one chooses to call their Superior Being, surrounds us in the woods and the lakes.  He is encompassed by the sun and reflects in the moon.  He is a part of every living soul.  

My father didn't just tell us this, he showed us in his everyday actions.  

Then one day while I was in second grade, something very tragic happened.  One of his best friends was killed in an automobile accident.  Grief hung like a wool blanket over his friends and family.  He had a son my age and a daughter a few years younger.  It was sheer devastation for our small town.

I’ll never forget the day I overheard my dad and mom in conversation shortly after the accident.  My mom had asked my dad, “Do you think he believed [in God]?” as he was not the type of church-going citizen.  What my dad said to her is something I will never forget.

“Of course he believed.  A man could not work amongst the beauty and life that surrounds us in our line of work every single day and not believe that this didn't come from somewhere.”

Suddenly, everything became very clear to me in that moment.

My dad does not judge and he would discipline us when we did. He believed very much in a live-and-let-live attitude. He was/is friends with people from every walk of life.  The prestigious and the poor.  He has taught us the power of generosity as we watched him over the years give to others when he barely had anything to give.  

It took me many years to realize just how much he affects my way of thinking or approaching a situation everyday.  And so on this Father's Day as well as everyday, I thank you, Dad, for being the person you are and teaching us so much about what life is really about.

Wishing all dads everywhere a wonderful Father's Day!

What is one of the best lessons you've learned from your father that sticks with you to this day?



  1. What wonderful lessons! Great post!

  2. LOVED this post.

    "Dad taught us (his daughters) how to hunt and fish, but in turn respect the Earth and all of its creatures. It is not a sport to kill animals. We put back what we take. We only take what we need."

    My dad passed on his love of nature to my five siblings and me. I'm always planting something to give to Mother Nature, as I like to call it.

    (Found you via WOE)

  3. What a beautiful tribute to an obviously very wise man! My dad has the same attitudes - generous and nonjudgmental, willing to give everyone a chance. We're both blessed!