In honor of that, here are nine of the many, many things (because it's the 9th!) I love about my papa.
1.) I know I've said this before, but there is something really, incredibly amazing about knowing without a doubt that no matter what - even when I mess up, even when I'm generally bad at life - my amazing papa will love me completely and totally and without condition.
3.) Even when my life is completely void of anything even remotely interesting, Daddy always acts like I am totally cool, and wildly fascinating. It's good for my ego, and I adore him for it.
4.) My dad is one of those men that you could send out in to the forest with nothing but a pocketknife and a book of matches, and he'll build you an entire shopping mall. That also means that whenever I move (which is often), he can come and hang all of my wall shelves up again, and get them straight. He can even find the studs in a wall without a stud finder. Yep, he's awesome like that.
5.) I am pretty much constantly laughing any time I am around him. His looks, his jokes (even the totally lame ones - just kidding, Papa, they're never lame!), his witty little quips.. He makes me laugh all of the time. Even when we are having a serious conversation about serious matters. I still laugh.
6.) And speaking of making me laugh, he is one of the only people in the entire world who can make me go from crying hysterically to giggling in the space of like 2.2 seconds. I don't know how he does it, but he always helps me find the positives in any situation, even when I would much prefer he just let me wallow in self-pity for a while.
7.) He is a really good cook. Obviously, since I don't live at home anymore, I don't get to enjoy his cooking much. But the man knows his way around a kitchen, and can produce some pretty great stuff.
8.) The map he somehow has in his head of oh, I don't know, pretty much the entire world, I think, has saved me on many, many occasions. I'm nearly thirty years old, and to this day, any time I am lost or might not know where I'm going, my first instinct isn't to consult a map, it's to call my father. And usually, Dad "finds me" wherever I am and gets me going the right direction faster than a map would, anyway.
9.) My father is incredibly wise. He just knows things, and he is always willing to share his wisdom, or insights he has gained from his life experience, without seeming overbearing about it. He is always available to give me advice when I ask for it, and as I get older, I put more and more stock in it, because I realize that really, he is basically always right.
Happy Birthday, Daddy. I love you!