Jun 3, 2017

Father's Day Love~In Memory and Deed 2017

Most of us are familiar with the origin and history of Mother's Day and its linkage back to ancient goddess festivals, England's Mothering Sunday, the American political activist Julia Ward Howe, and finally Anna Jarvis's campaign from church to church to declare her devotion to her own mother.

But the history and origin of Father's Day is less well-known. I did a bit of research because of this, and found that the idea of a complementary "Father's Day was the brainchild of Sonora Dodd, who first had the idea while she was sitting in church listening to one of these Mother's Day sermons in 1909.

She wanted to honor her own father, William Smart, a Civil War veteran, who was widowed when his wife died while giving birth to their sixth child. Mr. Smart was left to raise the newborn and his other five children, by himself, on a rural farm in eastern Washington state. Her father had raised them, as a single father, with many sacrifices and in the eyes of his daughter, a courageous, selfless, and loving man.

Sonora believed that if a single father had raised and loved children with selfless devotion as hers had, then those fathers deserved their own day of devotion, just as the mother's had. Thus, the first Father's Day, was actually intended for single dads who served as the only parent, and not all dads in general. It simply grew into the holiday we know it as, today.

Sonora's father was born in June, so she chose to hold the first Father's Day celebration in Spokane, Washington on the 19th of June, 1910. She had wanted the use his birth date but pending legislation was slowed down until President Calvin Coolidge, in 1924, supported the idea of a national Father's Day.

Eventually, President Lyndon Johnson signed a presidential proclamation (1966) declaring the 3rd Sunday of June as Father's Day. President Richard Nixon signed the law which finally made it permanent in 1972. In this sense, it is a relatively newer celebration, but one which most of us have celebrated throughout our own lives.

While other countries may or may not have their own versions of this day, some of the variations are quite interesting. In Germany there is no such thing as Father's Day but there are two terms and/or events of an older origin that while similar in name, have entirely different meanings.

Männertag, is always celebrated on Ascension Day (the Thursday forty days after Easter), which is a federal holiday. Regionally, it is also called men's day, Männertag, or gentlemen's day, Herrentag. It is tradition to do a males-only hiking tour with one or more smaller wagons, Bollerwagen, pulled by manpower.

In countries with Roman Catholic tradition, Fathers are celebrated on Saint Joseph's Day, commonly called Feast of Saint Joseph, March 19, though in most countries Father's Day is a secular celebration and celebrated separately from the feast holiday.

In Taiwan, Father's Day is not an official holiday, but is widely observed on August 8, the eighth day of the eighth month of the year. In Mandarin Chinese, the pronunciation of the number 8 is ba.

This pronunciation is very similar to the character "?" "bà", which means "Papa" or "father". The Taiwanese, therefore, usually call August 8 by its nickname, "Baba Day." In Thailand, Father's Day is set as the birthday of the king and thus varies from generation to generation of its royalty. No matter what your country, your culture, or traditions, today is still a special day to honor fathers everywhere.

On Father's Day, I honor my own father, who I miss and love so very much. A dear, dear man who lived a long life with incredible courage, strength, and steadfast determination to do his best for his family and for the state and country he loved so much.


coming and going: 2010

A good, hard working man, who was still working to fix up our childhood home in Douglas, Alaska up and into his last year at age 93, still working so very hard every day of his life care  taking my mother who suffered from Alzheimer's, diabetes and was legally blind. When I was not able to travel up to help on one of my many multiple trips to and from Oregon to Alaska, my dad did it all right up until almost the very end of his life.

I titled this quilt which I made in his honor  "Turning Ninety" , a variation of a "Turning Twenty" pattern.  As a WWII veteran, the father of 5 children, and a hard working and very dedicated and loving husband to my mother, and as someone who never forgot his and his brothers sacrifices for country and for family during WWII, I used photos from that time and from his courtship with my Louisiana French mother, who he met, fell in love with and married after the war years.

Because my mother was legally blind, but could see shapes and colors and could see details if things were large enough, or if she used a magnifying glass, I made the quilt pieces and photos very large.
They both loved it and treasured it. After their deaths, it came back home to Oregon with me, once more and now I treasure all of the memories of making it, of them and our lives together.

I honor my husband, the father of our three children, a man who in many, many ways reminds me of my own father. A man who at 67 still works long, long hours during the day, and often into the evening. Who commutes to many different towns in our area just to get work for our home based business and never complains as he comes home to help me, the cat and the chickens as well as help with the care , when needed of our three beloved grandchildren.

I honor my son, an amazing, amazing  husband and playful and loving father to his little one, our first grand child. My son works so hard, right along the side of his father, my husband, to keep our small family business going even when it meant commuting up to four hours a day. He comes home tired and cooks dinner, helps with laundry, help his wife and plays for hours with his child, and then stays up late at night to get his part of our business's paper work done. He is an amazing young man that I am so proud to say is my son!

I honor the hard work ethic of my son-in-law, who works tirelessly to provide for my daughter and their darling family learning adaptability, with love, and determination to be who he wants and was meant to be.

These men in my life truly are among the best fathers and hard working providers and caring men that I know.

I honor all of my Alaskan uncles, men long gone but with amazing talents, skills, courage, and the perseverance to live and provide for their families with hunting and fishing in territorial Alaska as she slowly entered statehood and changed all of our lives.

Free Patriotic Quilt Patterns

 My grandfathers..one Finnish, one French. Immigrants from their native countries,  who paved the way for those to come before, or after. 

I thank them for all they taught me and all they gave in turn to all of us, their families.

I honor these fathers, and all of your fathers, your husbands, your brothers and our sons who are fathers now, themselves.

Enjoy this special day and know, really know, just how much we all appreciate and love you!

With Heart and Hands: Links: 2,500 Free Quilt Patterns


With Heart and Hands: Free Quilt Block Patterns

  With Heart and Hands: Free Quilt Block Patterns


 *How To Make A Quillow



Free Hexagon Patterns and Papers


Making Fidget Quilts for Sensory Stimulation: Free Tutorials and Ideas



String Quilting: Patterns and Tutorial

String Quilting: Patterns and Tutorial


Father's Day Gift and Craft Ideas...

fun things to do with children or grandchildren, today or any day!

Michele Bilyeu Creates With Heart and Hands as she shares her imaginative, magical, and healing journey from Alaska to Oregon. Creating, designing, sewing, quilting, and wildcrafting... from my heart and with my hands.


Celia said...

Happy memories to us all. Miss those Dads.

Jacqueline said...

Beautiful and informative post. Thank you.

CARMEN S. said...

Hermoso texto sobre el Dia del Padre, sobre su papá, su esposo, su hijo, su nieto, su yerno y todos los hombres de su vida. Gracias por compartir su linda historia. Bendiciones y Abrazos desde Colombia!

Retazos Del Alma

Joyce Carter said...

Nice post Michele. I really enjoyed reading all the info you shared. Thank you for sharing it.
I love the quilt you made for your father. I am happy it came back home to live with you.

O'Quilts said...

Always grateful to see a post from you. xxoo from Charlotte, NC

Marilyn McLeod @ Pink Paper Cottage said...

What a beautiful post in memory of your wonderful father! I enjoyed reading about him and his history and your husband and son and son-in-law... they all sound like hard working and very loving men. You have such a rich history with your Alaskan heritage! I'm going to take some time to peruse all of your patterns and "men type gifts" that you listed and gave to us! Thank you so much! Marilyn