Happy Father’s Day
I’m not celebrating Father’s Day with my dad today, but I’m celebrating. My dad died of cancer when I was 10, but he lived his life before getting sick with an easy-going conviction to enjoy every minute and really notice and celebrate the good stuff. He laughed big laughs and loved to poke fun at himself. He was always the life of the party, but he also took time to find quiet moments to just sit and think and look out the window.
I still have very vivid, wonderful memories of him slow dancing with me with my feet on top of his feet, and watering the garden together on summer evenings talking about the day. We used to make up words like “squg”, which was a cross between a squeeze and a hug, because that’s how we embraced every day. I still do it with my kids, too. I named my boy after my dad, Ian, and my daughter has our family name as her middle name. We are connected, we all squg.
Big or small, we all need squeeze-hugs.
I know you’re celebrating the fathers in your life and your kids’ lives today with me. My husband is an incredible father and we are celebrating and cherishing him today. Last June we were on top of the Eiffel Tower on an incredible trip he planned to Europe for us. He wanted us to leave our usual day-to-day and explore new places together, something he learned early from his father and mother. So much to remember and celebrate with these dads!
To sign DADDY in American Sign Language, tap the thumb of your open hand to your forehead.
Don’t forget to sign DADDY, and give your kids a squg from me!
‘I Love You’ in American Sign Language
Hold up your hand with index finger, pinkie finger, and thumb extended.
I’m challenging you to teach someone you love how to sign ‘I LOVE YOU’ in American Sign Language. Let’s learn and teach and spread some love this month!
Send me a photo of those hands – little or big – signing ‘I LOVE YOU’ on my I LOVE YOU CHALLENGE post on Facebook and Instagram for your friends and family to see & like. Make sure to tag @signingbabies and use the hashtag #SIGNYOURLOVE.
Be creative, make it cute, and show them how to sign. I’ve got some prizes to send some love back to those whose posted pics get plenty of likes on my sign language lovefest!
Please post your photos by midnight PST Feb. 14, 2015. Spread the love by sharing & tagging your friends so they can play & learn ASL, too!
My little girl left yesterday to go to outdoor education camp with her grade 6 class. Okay, she’s not actually that little, I know, and she’s more than ready for a week away with her friends and teachers from school. But I was a bit teary and feeling tender as we pulled up to the school and schlepped her gear to the waiting bus. She saw my moist eyes and shot me a wide-eyed look of despair: please, please don’t gush and embarrass me with a million kisses and hugs, Mom! But that’s all I wanted to do.
I wanted to squeeze her until the very last minute before she got on that school bus.
I held my enthusiasm in as much as I could. I know she needed me to send her off strong. I took a deep breath and gathered my reserves. Suddenly I had a vivid memory of the first day I took her to daycare at 2 1/2 years old. She was a very social kid and was interested in the new toys and teachers that greeted us. I was encouraged to stay and play for a little while but then wisely told to move on without a lot of goodbyes or delays (those teachers were so smart!). It was terribly difficult to leave her, but I knew I had to go. I looked her in the eye as I stood at the door and signed “I Love You” before heading outside. I did that each and every time I left her at daycare, and it very slowly got easier to turn away and head out the door. Some days she cried when I left -tears would literally pour out of her eyes as she signed “I love You” back to me. But some days she didn’t cry. Some days I would have to call her name to catch her eye as she ran in and began playing with another little friend. But either way, soon enough we created a routine that always included saying “I Love You” in sign language before separating, and it was all ours.
Back at the school bus yesterday, I gave her a long hug and told her I loved her, and to enjoy every minute of camp and to tell me all about it when she got back. Then, because it was time for her to go, she turned around and started walking away, but before she got too far, I called her name and signed, “I Love You”. She smiled and signed it back to me, and I felt so much better.
Ella signing “I Love You” with me & her brother, 2010