Happy Birthday, Grandpa

grampa & me, originally uploaded by kate / for me, for you.

Today is my grandpa’s 75th birthday. Most people would never guess that he’s 75. He plays volleyball every Friday night, for crying out loud! When I talk about him to Andrea, she says, “Who, young Grandpa?” because that’s how people think of him.

Despite the fact that he doesn’t read my blog, or really understand what the heck my blog is (though he is a fervent emailer and likes to send me about 3 forwards a day with animated gifs, prayers, and/or funny videos) he gets his own birthday post because my grandpa means more to me than most people on this earth do. He raised me for a chunk of my life, and he instilled in me many strong values. I have him to thank for that nagging voice inside my head every time I buy something unnecessary, every time I don’t save some of my paycheck for my savings account, every time I don’t separate the recycling, every time I turn the heat up too high, and every time I leave too many lights on in the house. But I also have him to thank for teaching me that you can judge someone’s character by their handshake, you always hold doors open for the person behind you, family always, always comes first, how to make a gin martini, how to do the electric slide (I’m not joking), and above all, how to be responsible when I needed someone to set that example for me at the time.

When I stayed with him for a while as a kid, he would wake me up every Saturday morning to Willie Nelson. More specifically, Pancho & Lefty. So for his birthday this year, my brother and I recorded our own version of the song for him (my brother did most of the work, I must note) and my brother played it for him at his birthday party. He called me right away, in tears, and I knew it was the perfect gift.

I don’t know what I’d do without you, Grandpa. Here’s to many, many more very young years.

p.s. I don’t want to share the song because it’s just too personal, but Matt and I are working on trying to do some more long distance recording so hopefully we’ll have more songs to share soon. If your new to my blog, you can hear the older songs, here and here.