You posted this album (all 3 parts) almost 7 months ago but I just found it and read all of your beautiful journaling. What an exceptional tribute to a very special father! I am sure your album will be cherished for generations to come. Thank you so much for sharing this. :)
This is a beautiful tribute! Love it!
Project - Ali Edwards Album (CKU '08) part 3
posted 02/26/10 at 05:11 PM
This is the final section of the album. The journaling reads:
Blueberry donuts. Lucy's cake. Photography. Books by Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Anne Rice, and Brian Lumley. Your 1986 Toyota MR2, electric blue. Innovative technology that makes life interesting and fun, and sometimes a bit easier. Just a few of your favorite things, and even after all this time, they still make me think of you. What fascinates me though, is the idea that in the history of the world, there has been exactly one person that loved all of these things, and country music, the color green, and cherry pie, and tops Quaker Oats cereal with cold banana slices and milk for breakfast: you. Though I will admit that I often tried to cultivate my tastes to align with yours. It wasn't really that much of an effort, really (sports and science being the notable exceptions); I suppose thanks to the same genetic code that gave me your freckles, hazel eyes, artistic aptitude, warm hands, and eye for style and quality.
Of course not everything you gave me is written in my DNA; you often brought back presents for me (and Jeff) from your travels abroad: jewelry from Hawaii and Saudi Arabia, dolls from New Orleans and Sweden, T-shirts from Hard Rock Cafe in Paris, Stockholm, and Honolulu, the Nintendo games The Legend of Zelda and Dance Aerobics, the Monopoly board game that Jeff and I logged countless hours playing. But the gift I cherish most is the last, my horn; the conversation in which you expressed to me your wish that I should buy a new horn with some of the life insurance money is seared into my memory with painful clarity, for it was then that I realized what you already knew (for how long?): that you were truly dying.
Even random scraps of paper bring you to my mind, if they bear your distinctive hand. Meaning very little at the time, how they ever escaped the trash bin I'll never know, but now I am thankful for it, occasionally popping up as they do in unexpected places to make me smile. Your voice comes alive in the Christmas letters dutifully mailed to family every year, in postcards lovingly sent home from places far away, in the cryptic entries in your day planner. I don't think I ever really appreciated Uncle David's home movies, until I found you on film: first as a dashing young man on his wedding day, then many years later, an accidental inclusion in the background as you packed the car for our drive back home from Fort Worth. The startling reality of the sound of your voice, the way you move, jars my senses, while I simultaneously long to pull you through the screen and back into my life. There are far too few photos of your adult life, especially once we kids were no longer so small and close to home; but as the official photographer of my own family now, I completely understand. It is not often that I step out from behind the lens, but I am trying. So that when someday I am with you again, my children will have something to hold on to, something less capricious than those moments preserved by memory alone. In the meantime, I will strive to emulate the exemplary life you led: to be a good wife to my husband, a good mother to my children, a good friend to all. And thus to honor your memory, and keep you alive in my heart.
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