Thursday, February 14, 2013

60 Stories for a 60th birthday

My dad is a very special man.  I'm 100% a Daddy's girl.  I'm not sure how that came to be, but I think it has always been.

Like most Irish Catholic men, my dad is a storyteller.  He loves to tell stories and is very good at it.  The more beer you get in him, the funnier and longer the stories become, too.  It's fantastic.

Dad is turning 60 today, Valentines's Day, and in my eyes, that's a big deal.  I didn't know exactly what to get him, I've purchased more than my share of golf balls and golf shirts, so I turned to Pinterest.  Not even really looking I came across a story about a daughter who had friends and family write down stories about her dad.  She wanted 60 stores to share with him on his 60th birthday.  For a man who enjoys a good story like my dad, this is perfect.  That post can be found here.

Two months before his birthday I reached out to all of Dad's siblings and immediate family.  I wanted to get 60 stores for my dad's 60th.  Through a lot of follow-up emails and hounding some people, I did it.  I got to 60!  (To be honest, if everyone had participated I would have cleared 100, easy, but I'm okay with reaching my goal.  I know people are busy.  Too busy to write a few sentences in an email...I'll stop)

As each one came in, some emailed, some hand written and mailed to me, I placed it in an envelope and numbered it.  Some letters came in with multiple stories, some were inside jokes that I'm sure only my dad will understand written on a notecard.  For letters that had more than one story on a page, I counted the stores in the letter and numbered accordingly.  I purchased plain envelopes at a Paper Affair and used stamps for the numbers.  I think using stamps vs. having numbers printed on the envelopes really makes a difference.  The stamps feel much more personal and because they aren't perfectly straight each time, there is a handmade quality about them.  In the end, I think I ended up with 28 envelopes with 60 stories.

I'm so excited.  I can't wait for him to sit down with a glass of wine or beer and be taken back to days throughout his lifetime.  I won't be able to be there with him when he opens his gift, but I'm looking forward to the phone call after.

Happy Birthday, Daddy.

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