Donna Smaldone
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Friday / June 15 / 2012

Growing up Racette: what have you got to fill this up?

I'm crazy about my Daddy! (pic taken by Hubs, May 21, 2012 in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina)
I’m crazy about my Daddy! (pic taken by Hubs, May 21, 2012 in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina)

Growing up Racette was, well… magical on many levels. There were boundaries and consequences, yes, but all sprinkled with a dash of, “I dare you!” As part of my blogging experience, I’ve promised to occasionally share “Growing up Racette” moments with the hopes of sowing dream seeds into your soul.

In my first “Growing up Racette” post, “Splashy Splashy“, I shared that until about age four, I swore my Dad was responsible for pushing the sun up and magically filling the house with the smell of freshly brewed coffee. This was just one of the enchanting powers I believed my father had.

I love the comment he posted in response, “…what do you mean when you were 4 you believed I pulled the sun up. I still do!!! In fact right now it is 5AM and I am about to take the dogs for their morning walk… but first need to go out and pull the sun up.”

Keeping the magic alive is one of the many reasons I adore this man. True to Daddy Form, he continues to rise before the sun every day — and since I rarely do, a part of me remains impressed with his mysterious powers.

My father and I have certainly grown older through the years, but have refused to fully grow-up. Being able to still “be a kid” is one of the most valuable, refreshing things my parents taught me.

Growing up Racette trained me to always take the opportunity to add a little fun to the mix.

I think that’s a key ingredient for embracing and enjoying life. It seems so simple; yet often, people hit a certain age when they pack away everything “child”… including the desire to love extravagantly, hope unswervingly, and buy the big red ball!

When Skip-n-I lived in Myrtle Beach, my Dad and I made a habit of scheduling “Daddy-Daughter Dates” at least a couple times a month. Oh how I miss the luxury of having those penciled in on my calendar!

One of the great joys dining out with my Dad is watching a man with two Masters Degrees, try to figure out the menu. Very comical. In fact, I still owe my precious friends Jonathan & Kristin Harrell a dinner experience with my Dad. And indeed, it is an experience.

Allow me to give you a glimpse…

First, you must realize my father is a commanding presence at 6’5″. A public speech teacher for most of his life, he’s earned the respect of many, colleagues and students (and me!) alike.

So there we are on any given Daddy-Daughter Date, seated at the table with menus in hand. Dad and I are chit chatting about what sounds appetizing. I, am truly considering what I will order. Dad, on the other hand, is only pretending to consider when in actuality, he’s waiting for our server to arrive so he can be “on”.

During the standard tableside introductions and review of the specials, Dad listens intently, actively nodding with eagerness as he hears the word, “shrimp” and then vigorously shaking his head with disgust as soon as the word, “asparagus” arrives. Hesitantly amused, the server has no idea the animation that awaits.

As the words, “prime rib” hit my Dad’s ears, he transforms into the larger-than-life man I know and love. Tossing his hands into the air, he gives the server a friendly raspberry, “pfffffft!.” Quickly adding in jest, “…NEXT!

Allowing the perplexed server a brief intermission, he sets his menu on the table, covers his face with a seemingly concerned look, very deliberately looks into the server’s eyes, and asks, “What have you got to fill… this up!?” as he points to his protruding belly.

The response that follows is almost always worth a picture, though the only ones I’ve taken are in my memory… and now, of course, painted here on The You Evolution™.

 

 

4 responses to “Growing up Racette: what have you got to fill this up?”

  1. Kristin Harrell says:

    I WILL cash in on that dinner with you & your dad one day. from one daddy’s girl to another, i still LOVE my daddy dates. Love you and trusting we will see each other one day. Katie is heading to Saranac camp tonight. How far are you from there?

    • Donna Smaldone says:

      Indeed… and I look forward to it! Love you, too! And wow… we’re only about an hour and a half from Saranac!!

      Love,
      Donna

  2. Rick says:

    🙂 My youngest daughter, Lori and I still have Daddy Daughter lunches. She is off on Tues/Wed and almost always we have a lunch date on one of thos days…I look forward to them as often as possible…Im sure your Dad did too, Donna.

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