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As usual, things are running behind around here and because of a massive family reunion, a newborn baby and his five siblings, a farm, and life in general, I’m late singing accolades for father’s day. If anything, it’s given me a chance to figure out how I would sum up Jack as a father, husband, and man in general. Hint: he’s awesome.
Daddy and Peter.
Jack has been through this new parent thing with me six times and it never gets dull. He’s patient with me while I’m grumpy and hugely pregnant, is a quiet cheerleader while I’m in labor, and always has a tear in his eye when each child is finally born. When I’m snapping at children or gritting my teeth and yanking out my hair, he breezes in and sends me off to recenter while he takes over.
To understand how Jack fathers, one would have to understand who he is as a person. For one, he loves the water–the sea in particular. I love a good swim or boat ride, but the sea calls Jack like it calls Moana. If he could, I’m pretty sure he’d be a beach bum or own a yacht and sail lazily around the world.
Plus, he looks really good in a wetsuit, heehee. 😍
He’s determined to make all his kids be accomplished fishers.
One of his joys in life is sharing what he loves with his children, whether it’s fishing…
…becoming a gourmet chef…
The kids are always crowding around Jack when he has something to show them.
…or learning about foraging.
Work becomes enjoyable when he’s around…
Why can’t he go with us every time? 😉
…and grocery shopping is an adventure.
Parton’s hide is about to become shoes. Or maybe some pants. Who knows.
He has an almost inexhaustible supply of patience, like when he’s learning an intensive, time-consuming skill. Ever try to prepare and tan a hide by hand? Jack has!
Jack’s idea of relaxation is going out after dinner and tediously plucking chamomile flowers off so he can dry them for tea.
When it’s his turn to milk the cow, he sits and has a good think.
He’s the first to serve, no matter what form it comes in. I’ve watched him sacrifice time to help people move, tutor the girls in math, fix my lawn mower the second he gets home from work, pick wildflowers for me, get up early nearly every Sunday to figure out how to help fellow church members, fix peoples’ ceilings, offer to send money to those less fortunate, and rock crying babies to sleep so that I could rest.
Saving an injured Cooper’s hawk.
In a related virtue, he’s extremely compassionate and empathetic. Whether it’s people or animals, he’s right there, coming to the rescue.

I have always admired what an upbeat, positive thinker he is. Where I might think, “Oh. Only three cherries,” Jack is saying, “Wow! Three cherries!” I have a lot to learn from him.


Even his quirky nature is adorable and hilarious. It’s not uncommon for him to be grazing along the landscaping he finds. Like that time we picked him up from an appointment with his elbow doctor, and he had a handful of Juneberries to share. He’d even offered them to another patient who’d caught him eating them while he was waiting for us, though the stranger understandably turned them down. Not before Jack gave them a thorough lesson about what he was doing and how good they tasted. 😂

It kind of goes without saying that because Jack loves foraging, gardening, picking berries, searching for mushrooms, and cooking, he has very high standards for his food. I’m always apologizing that he has to eat the slop I make everyone but true to nature, he always eats it and never forgets to thank me for it.
One thing I’ve noticed about Jack through the years is that he is an incredibly polarizing person. People either love or hate him, though those who aren’t fans of his are few and far between (and I’m guessing, probably just jealous of his intelligence, handsomeness, and good humor. Seriously). He’s not only a loyal friend and fantastic listener, he is incredibly patient with people I would have probably run over with my car in frustration a long time ago. Seriously, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen him offended, put off, or annoyed by anyone.
I don’t think I could truly appreciate what an incredible dad Jack is without recognizing what he does for me. All I ever wanted to be was a wife, mother, and friend, which he’s given to me without a hint of hesitation. This family is forever and with Jack at my side, it has been and will be an incredible adventure.

All of that, and I’m only scratching the surface of Jack’s awesomeness. He’s an unsung hero, a wonderful father, and one of those men that restore hope in humanity. We sure love him and are glad he’s ours.

Happy Father’s Day to all you wonderful men!


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True stories of raising children, remodeling, braving the elements and plotting out life, all while living on a humble acreage in central Indiana.

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