Making Time for Dad on Fathers Day

June can be a busy month with school ending for the summer, graduations and family vacations. It is also the month in which we celebrate our dads. June 16th is Father’s Day, and amidst all the other events going on, many of us will have a chance to spend time with our fathers. We’ve compiled some thoughts to help you make the most of the time you spend with your dad. In his book, Mom, Dad…Can We Talk?, Dick Edwards shares insights from 35 years of experience working with older adults and their families. He encourages us to look for the everyday opportunities that arise to talk with our parents about their life stories and wishes for the future. “The time you spend with your parents doing simple, not costly, things can mean the most to them. The material things you give them begin to lose their impact,” he writes. “Sometimes doing nothing with our parents is actually doing something. Quietly sitting with them and listening to their stories may be the best gift you could give them – the gift of your undivided attention. Take those moments to ask them questions about their childhoods, or about your childhood, too. They do appreciate a chance to share meaningful memories.” There are also simple, daily activities we can invite our dads to do with us. Find activities that support the opportunity to talk in a relaxed, unhurried conversation. • Hike a trail. The Washington Trails Association’s hiking guide is the most comprehensive database of hikes in Washington and comprises content from eight guidebooks, user submitted info and data compiled by the WTA. • Go out for ice cream. With several locations in Seattle, Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream uses only fresh local ingredients. As their website says, “Molly Moon's scoop shops are where memories are made, traditions are created, and ice cream-induced smiles are infectious.” • Take a drive. The Pacific Northwest offers beautiful scenery for an afternoon drive. CBS Seattle, identifies five favorite drives within 60 miles of Seattle: Seattle to Ferry to Bainbridge Island Snoqualmie Falls Wallace Falls and North Cascades Seward Park to the Washington Park Arboretum Vashon Island • Enjoy a baseball game. We’re fortunate in the northwest to have The Seattle Mariners and the Tacoma Rainiers. Edwards writes in his book, “Baseball is a relaxed-pace game that’s in no hurry to end. In fact, a game can go into extra innings, an apt metaphor for what we all long for in life.” Baseball offers an opportunity to spend quality time together. Edwards reminds us, in order to enjoy this unhurried time with our parents, we need to prepare to be patient. “As you do your simple things with your parents, you’re sure to become frustrated at times. Rest assured, these feelings are normal, and take heart in these words spoken by a devoted daughter: ‘I may have lost my patience with Dad, but I never lost my love for him.’” This Father’s Day, make a date with your dad and enjoy time together. You’ll be glad you did!

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