Dadintux_2Today would have been my dad’s birthday. He would have been 52 years old. I would have been calling him about the time that I am writing this. We would talk for approximately two minutes. I would have asked him what he was going to do special for the day. He probably would have said he was going to work though he would come home early and my mom probably would have cooked him a nice dinner, like steak or a roast chicken. He would ask me how I was and I would say I wish I could have been there for his birthday. I would have meant it. We’d have joked a bit longer and then I would have hung up the phone and gone about my day, probably calling again later in the evening to see how his birthday turned out.

Instead, I have to create a new ritual around his birthday, now that this is my dad’s "theoretical" birthday. A couple people have asked me if I’m doing anything special for the day. I think I’ve decided I should maybe take the day to do things that he would have done. Little things done consciously so that I’ll remember him.

The white wine is chilling now (though I can’t bring myself to drink it with ice cubes). I’ll pick up a Snickers bar today to put in the freezer at work. I’ll put on my "Life Is Good" t-shirt and sweatpants when I get home from and maybe grill on the back deck. I’ll sneak Sadie a good size chunk of food while I’m cooking. I’ll have the chilled Snickers bar/white wine combo for dessert. I’ll watch some Harrison Ford movie that he would have liked or maybe just put on some rock music from the 70s. At the end of the day, I’ll lean back and think of how lucky I am. Because that’s what he really thought, and because I am so happy that I got gratitude and a positive outlook from him.

That’s how he felt about life, and that’s how he felt about money. He believed in being generous and enjoying simple pleasures that don’t cost a fortune. So I’m going to take time to salute that today as my daily thought on personal finance.

Tomorrow, back to personal finance completely but for now, this is all I can think about. I hope you understand and have gotten the very smallest of somethings out of this post. Happy Birthday, Dad!   

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