Yesterday, my father turned 60. I don't think he'll mind me sharing his age, since his friends on facebook didn't really keep it a secret. Turning 60 is something to be proud of, it means you've made it, it means you've lived life, it commands wisdom and respect. Many 60-year-olds are just hitting their stride. 60 is the new 40, right?
Many months ago, when I found out that my parents would be vacationing during dad's birthday, visiting us in Arizona, I immediately started planning. I wanted to do something for my father for his birthday. I wanted to somehow repay the 32 years of birthdays he has given me. I knew I couldn't even come close to that, but that's what was monumentally emerging in my mind. What about a helicopter ride? Or a balloon ride? What if we went to Williams and all took the train to the Grand Canyon? How can I show this person who has done so much for me in my life how much I care and want to celebrate the big 6-0?
Then I took a step back. "What would dad want? It's not really about what I want to give him, it's what he would appreciate as a gift from me." And then it was clear. I could sum it up in one word, "Elote". Every time he comes to Sedona, he loves eating at Elote Cafe. Ever since Corey and I were employees there almost seven years ago when it opened, we have taken our family there to eat when they visited. And, invariably, when my dad comes to visit, he likes to pick up the tab. What if this time we picked up the tab? That was something I knew we could do that would be a true birthday present.
We did not use Fun Dollars, but that was part of the plan. I told Corey, "I want to take dad and mom out for his birthday when the visit. I don't want us to use Fun Dollars because I just want everyone to order anything they want. That's his birthday present from us." He agree. We didn't really bu groceries this week because we've been eating out with mom and dad. It's kind of a vacation week for us too. And if we had used our Fun Dollars to pay for it, it would have been all of the Fun Dollars Corey and I both get for the entire pay cycle.
There was also another present I was able to give my father, in addition to a night out at his favorite restaurant. It's something you can't really buy...unless you know how.....It was time. I gave my father time on his birthday. Time spent with him, time with his grand kids, time doing whatever he wanted to do in Sedona, and sharing that with him. I paid my cleaning lady yesterday, which bought me an entire day to spend with my dad. We all went shopping in uptown while Carrick was at school. When Carrick came home, he got to spend the afternoon swimming with "Nana and Dedah" at their hotel pool, just one-on-one. Lily and I took a shower and got ready for dinner. Then we all went out to a lovely evening and came home to a clean house. We enjoyed hanging out as a family on this special day with the floors swept and the dishes done, not by me, but by someone else via Fun Dollars.
It was truly a Happy Birthday.
Cleaning Lady- $40.00
Balance this paycycle- $20.00