My Dad often called me “mugwump”, and just as often I’d ask him, “Daddy, what’s a “mugwump”? He’d tell me that it was a little bird that sat on a fence with its mug on one side and its wump on the other. The answer always made me giggle. To date, I still remember it and it still makes me smile and giggle just a bit. I think it’s the memory of the cheerful, mischievous tone in his voice when he answered my question that gets to me.
I adored my father when I was little. I was the “baby” of my four siblings ~ the “baby of the family”. But I can remember following my dad around wherever he went just to “see what he was doing”. “Daddy, whatcha doin’?” I’d ask. He’d say “Something to make little girls like you ask questions.” (with a grin) From my father I learned the intricacies of gardening, what certain tools were and how to use them (like the lawn mower and grass clippers!), how to make peanut brittle from scratch and how to make the secret family recipe of “punch” ~ reserved mostly for weddings and such gatherings. He also taught me, through his actions, how to respect and love my mother… which he did on a daily basis. He adored my mother until, after 50 years of marriage, she passed away in 1994. He followed her in 1998.
I think of him often, my mother too. I remember all the ways he showed me he loved me without ever saying it, really. Too many things to put into words ~ but they’re memories etched into my mind forever. I’m glad I have them! Love you, Daddy.