Sunday, June 16, 2013

I'm Sure Glad that YOU'RE my Dad.

In the Sacred Grove

Father Dear,

I am enjoying the chance to recall a few favorite memories with my dad.

When I was small, I remember being (or at least feeling) selected out of 7 other children to be the one to join you on a quick Saturday night "date" to the grocery store. I felt like I had won the lottery. It didn't matter that we were probably just picking out some last minute items; I was so honored to be your date. I don't remember any details of that night -- just the feeling I had walking through the parking lot holding your hand and the way you would walk ahead of me then playfully pull me forward quickly. What a thrill to be your date. Now that I'm a mom, I think about that experience often and how it meant the world to me just to spend that one-on-one time with you at the grocery store. Sometimes a date to the grocery store is enough.

Fast forward several years. I was an awkward 12 year-old girl experiencing a "rough patch". I felt friendless at school and most the time tried to be invisible. One morning as I was heading out the door for school you said, "Remember: the keyword for the day is 'KEYS'." I was puzzled and tried to get you to explain what you were talking about, but I enjoyed the mystery of wondering what this keyword could mean. I wrote the word "KEYS" on my hand so I would not forgot the important word-of-the-day. I excitedly thought about it throughout the day. I concluded that I would probably have to search for a house key afterschool that day if I wanted to get inside. Then I heard my voice called over the intercom requesting me to come to the school's office for an early-release. When I got the office Chelise and Chenae were waiting to check me out of school. We went to the car where you were waiting. Someone had packed an overnight bag for me and after a brief explanation, the mystery had been solved: we were escaping the the FLORIDA KEYS for a daddy-daughter getaway (while you attended to some business in the area). How I needed that! I needed to feel important and it meant the world to that 'invisible girl' to feel like my busy dad made the effort to scheme and pull of that suprise for me.

Jump ahead a few more years when I was a lost soul trying to plan my life post-college graduation. I had the opportunity to work and live in Maui, Hawaii for several months and it seemed like just the life adventure for me. I had engineered my plans, but things were starting to fall through. It broke my heart when it became evident that I would have to work on Sundays while living in Hawaii. I had to make a decision and was completely torn about what to do. After some weeping, pacing and hand-wringing -- I called my dad and asked if I could come talk things over. We talked, you counseled and helped me consider the pros and cons about both sides of the situation. Finally, you gave me a Priesthood Blessing. I felt so much clarity about what I had to do. Suddenly there was absolutely no question that I had to turn down my Maui opportunity. How grateful I felt for a dad who could help me think clearly, who would support me and be in my corner no matter what decision I came to, but most imporantly who was worthy to hold the Priesthood and help me enjoy the blessings of the Priesthood power.

I can clearly remember sitting in a Sacrament Meeting in a college ward and having an ah-ha moment. I realized how much more I could understand about my Father in Heaven through reflecting on the relationship, parenting, and characteristics of my DAD on Earth. The way that Dad loved me, taught me, offered counsel when I came geniunely seeking it, yet allowing me the agency to choose for myself...these are all things that are present in my realtionship with Heavenly Father, as well. I feel like for the first time I could really understand the Parent/Child relationship that we have with God. As I've become a parent myself, I can appreciate this even more. I am grateful that I have a Dad who is such a good parent and that through my relationship with him, I can better understand my relationship with my Father in Heaven.

I love you, Dad.
Thank you for -- just being my Dad -- and being so, so, so good at it.

"Can Can Chicken"

My Dad. My Hero.

Gosh Dad. I feel a lump in my throat. I am feeling incredibly grateful for my Dad today and hope that I can find a way to express help you understand how deeply grateful I am for you and how much I love you. Thank you for all that you DID as our Dad. Thank you for those things that you DID NOT do. Thank you for giving so much. For sacrifiing so much. To be a little more specific, but maybe not so thorough...
....thank you for being my favorite TEACHER. I will always be grateful for and will remember being taught by my Dad. Family Home Evenings. Personal interviews. Dairy Queen dates. I remember laying on that old pink quilt for family home evenings and listening to your stories. I will always remember a particular FHE on the trampoline where you were especially firm on the topic of finding a good spouse, a husband who would treat me like a queen. That message never left me.
.....I always knew that i could go to you for sound ADVICE and WISDOM. I know that if I dug out my creed document from my Innervictory class, you would be on my board.
.....You found joy and excitement from PLANNING our summer vacations. We loved to load up in the car and go on adventures because you took the time to get us excited about it, to plan it out. To set a date. To plan out the fun details. I loved our summer trips....all cramped in the car....fighting over the back bed seat...packing up that brown game holder on the back of the seat...taking turns sitting in the front middle...listening to Bette Midler....staying up late watching you animatedly lead music and slapping yourself to keep you awake....I could not sleep....I somehow felt that it was my duty to stay awake and make sure that you did too even if I was a silent on looker.
......You made sure that we had TRADITIONS. And they were magical. Everything was perfect. We found comfort in the consistency. Our traditions draw our hearts to our family. Whether it was christmas sheets, throwing calendar papers in the fire on New Years, saturday night hamburgers or easter morning. You made it magical.
.....thank you for SUPPORTING me in my dreams. For coaching me in Jr. High when I wanted to make the bball team in highschool. for helping me find ways to improve. for letting me pray about my own decisions to quit vball or to hang up my bball shoes for student government. I always felt that you were cheering me on in my decisions.
.....You make things beatiful. I remember you always had a way of improving things, whether it was in our home or in our yard or frosting our hair. :) you love to create and I love trying to follow your example.
......thank you for teaching us hard work. I have happy memories of helping out in the yard on saturday mornings. thank you for giving me my first job washing your CES car and helping me put it on my first resume when you encouraged me to apply at Rays Chevron.
......something that I have noticed about you is that you don't speak ugly about others. You are slow to speak guile.
......Thank you for loving our Mom. She is your sweetheart and queen and its obvious. We always knew that you loved her and I always knew that i wanted to find someone who loves me the way you love mom.
Thank you for being one of my greasted heros. Thank you for wanting to be a father. For trying your hardest to be your best. Thank you for being patient when your teenage daughter called you out. :) Thank you for letting me spread my wings and fly. You are my hero. I am your biggest fan.
Happy Fathers Day!
Love, #6

Just Like My Dad

They say a picture is worth a thousand words.

I know it has been a bit of a joke that I want to be just like my dad. Judging by the picture above I don't know where anyone would have gotten such an idea. :) For as long as I can remember I have wanted to be like my dad. He has been so many things for me throughout my life, but above all he has been my model. Dad, if you haven't noticed yet I've been watching you. And now I watch from just across the street. I'm taking notes on being a grandpa. Just last night Grandpa bought ice cream and Popsicle's from the ice cream truck for the neighborhood kids. All the kids were so excited. When they came to tell me they told me that Grandpa bought an ice cream bar for me too. It was in the freezer. See there he is taking care of the grand kids, but he didn't forget about me either. Thanks for always remembering me dad. I told Michelle last night, "People can say what they want about it being hard to live close to family, but I think this is awesome to be just across the street and now with the Allowitz just down the street." I love you dad and have always wanted to be like you. Dad, I love you!

My Letter from Grandpa

Happy Father's Day


Thanks for being such a wonderful parent (to my wonderful mom and to all of fun aunts and uncles) and fantastic Grandfather. 
There are so many wonderful moment and experiences I have had with you,  there is no way to record all of them. There is one in particular that I wish to share in which you were not there, but yet is an experience that I cherish. 

It was a couple days after I had passed my board of review for me Eagle. On that day, I received a letter from you. The template of the letter was blue sky with an ice cream in the middle. The heading of the letter said, "I love my grandchildren and ice cream." On the letter, you expressed how proud you were of me finally getting my eagle and how I was "saving the fat cats of Austin, Texas". Although you were far away in Idaho, I felt your love for ice cream :) as well as your love for me. I still have that letter and it is a letter I will always cherish.

On this Father's Day, I hope that you can see that there are so many people who honor you and think you are a great father and grandfather.

Have a great Father's Day! We all love you!



Dearest Grandpa,
There's so many things to be said about you, all great of course.
 First of all I'm so grateful that I have the honor of calling you my grandfather.
Not many children get to say their grandpa
is the best or that he has written several books. But I am MORE than POSITIVE
 that no one has a grandpa that takes them hunting
through foggy terrifying jungles on ruthless adventures to get Tiger's blood.
Or that their grandfather takes them out for ice cream.
"I Scream for ice cream, I scream for Ice cream!" says Grandpa....
Grandpa, you always take us out for ice cream no matter the day(except the sabbath unless its a serious emergency :) haha just kidding. ) or time. You are so kind to listen to all we have to say even if its boring as crud, you still act like its as fascinating as the things you enjoy in life.

I REALLY appreciate the fact that you have helped us so much. Especially with the move to the Burg and helping us meet new people and asking how Barbra, Frank, Annie, and Bonnie are doing. They really appreciate it too. They were telling me its cool how you really care about my friends and life. You are quite the friendly person trying to meet all my "friends" that may or not exist. HA! 

Thanks for teaching us lesson during FHE, even if they are 12 hours long.....;) 
They are super awesome and make me more interested in the scriptures and learning new things about the church or even digging deeper in what we already know. One particular FHE that I remember was the one you talked about looking out our "windows" and seeing what we see. Whether its  with our physical eyes  or spiritual eyes. And how we have a choice to look at everything in a negative way or positive way. And how choosing to be happy or negative has a really big affect on people's lives. I wanna be happy and be positive. I try my best but sometimes Satan gets the best of me. but  I have NEVER forgotten that lesson because it really hit home with me.  I love how you used snow for your first example. Yes, in the Burg it basically snows 9 outta' the 12 months in Rexburg.....maybe even more some years. But a lot of times we complain or whine about it, but should be happy about it even if its crappy, because the bright side could be that 
- we have a roof over our head
                   - we're safe its not harming us
- in texas we didnt even have snow
-its not as hot
- I can FINALLY wear my SUPER  cute Texas cowboy boots and super cute scarves
we can have fires and not be hot
see, those are jsut a few positive points about snow here in the Burg.
And YOU have helped me see that. THANK YOU!!!!
And that with our spiritual eyes it is important to be grounded and firm in the faith no matter what. And to pray and read scriptures DAILY. Thank you for serving a mission and then a few with My WONDERFUL grandmother and being so firm in the church. Yall's testimonies and examples has helped me build my testimony and build my faith.

YOU are super involved with your family and grand kiddos. You help each of us (your...kiddos, grand kiddos, cousins, aunts, uncles, in-laws,etc.) feels SUPER special because you get to know us each individually and on a personal level. I really love that because   it makes me feel special and loved. And you and I are so close. 
And with all that has happened in the past year or so,  you are one of my many great male role models in my life. You have shown me what a true husband and father does and that it is possible for me to one day trust men.
Thanks again for being so patient with me all these years you PUNK ;) 
TRUST me...I KNOW I was a pill back then, I'm just glad I've changed. 

And PS- whenever anyone says "wickedness never was happiness" it ALWAYS reminds me of you because thats your FAV scripture. haha not cause your wicked.
Thanks for your SWEET SWEET spirit. I sure do LOVE YOU!!!!
the Kid around the Corner.


I love my Dad.

Happy Fathers Day, Dad!

You sure HAVE DONE a great job raising me. You may think you were done when I left home 10 years ago, but I am still taking mental notes of the amazing husband, father and grandfather you continue to be. That's right... you continue to raise me and shape me through your evident belief window and your urgent desire to bind our family into eternity.  I believe one of the best teachers is our memory, and the lessons, large or small, that we take away from our memories.  One that comes to mind...

Sunday Naps... I hated taking naps when I was a kid.  But I loved spending time with my Dad more than I hated naps.  I remember joining you on your waterbed each Sunday, awake and antsy as could be, usually preventing you from the one thing you had hoped to do... nap!  You allowed a few minutes of pestering activities such as letting me pluck your ear hairs with tweezers, pulling out your Mexican machete and other drawer rummaging, and pillow fights. But instead of kicking me out in the end, you allowed me to stay there fidgeting sleeplessly and staring up at the ceiling as you faded off to "the spirit world." I remember taking your giant hands, and comparing them to my little ones. I remember looking down at your size 13 feet compared to mine that were so little.  I remember testing how long I could match your breathing pattern, only to nearly pass out from trying.  In those moments, I can remember often wondering in amazement how it was possible that my childish body could eventually grow to be as big as Dad.  Twenty years later, I have grown physically into my fathers image (minus a few pounds... for now :).  As I continue to benefit from your wisdom over the phone, and during your visits, I ponder the same way that I once did on Dads bed.  I am grateful to have a Dad who has lived a spiritual life that to this day seems so large.  I have faith that as I take on Heavenly Fathers plan for me as a husband, father, and provider, I will one day become like the Spiritual Giant, who I call Dad.  Thank you for leaving me a high bar to aspire to. 

You are my Hero, Dad!  I love you.


Did I learn anything? Hmmmm?

From the first Tiger's Blood to now, there are many stories and lessons I have listened to and learned from you! Some were interesting, strange, and others I would not really like to even think about. However the ones that stand out the most were the more spiritual and inspirational stories and lessons of your own personal view of life and what you learned...from what Grandma had told you. A lot of the time it may have appeared that I wasn't listening, too busy exploring the Tiger's Blood, but I was always listening to the stories of my family and the point of the story.
I remember of a more recent story that you told me, of unexpected change. You had said that you had experienced some of your own personal changes and that this one, in my own life would be one of the hardest ever. As soon as you started telling of your own unexpected changes, I knew "Oh shoot, we are moving!" At the time I hated the idea, but I had known that you were right. The look in your eyes told me that the spirit was only thing that could change my view point, the next morning I was caught looking out homes for sale by the Grandparents.
As I think back on that I have noticed multiple little bits of advice you have given me that really affected my life. A little course correction here and there that has bettered my life in many places. Even the stories that I try, REALLY HARD, to forge, are branded in my brain for a good reason. I may not know why and I am scared to ask why! But I'll keep looking for it.
And as to those who are reading this and are not David Alan Christensen, I would like to you know know, it sounds like an eulogy, but Grandpa is still alive, and is using his life the best way anyone could in 7 magical ways:
1. Wise in counsel
2. Using That (above)
3. Preparing all of us, for the life ahead 
4. Teaching and learning for us
5. Serving his children, and grandchildren
6. Serving his Wife
7. Serving the Lord

To sum it up, I have only lived about 7,626,257 minutes of my life and from what I have learned from Grandpa...I still have a LONG road ahead.

Sincerely your Grandson,
Superman...or Kimball