Search This Blog

Thursday, April 7, 2011

I wanted to do something special for my dad & spent zero money doing it.

A few years ago, I received a phone call in the middle of the night.
“Come to the hospital,” my mom said.  “Your dad’s had a heart attack.”
I remember screaming and not recognizing the sound of my own voice.  
I drove to the hospital and ran inside.  My heart raced as I asked the receptionist, 

“Where’s my dad?  Is he going to be alright?”

A nurse came and walked me into a room with beaming lights.  On the hospital bed laid my dad, surrounded by a team of medical doctors.  My dad is as tough as nails, but the look in his eyes showed me he was in a lot of pain.  You see, for almost 20 years, my dad has had severe back pain.  He’s had to sleep in a Lazy boy recliner because he is unable to lay flat on his back.  So there he was in the hospital, suffering through a heart attack and stretched out flat on his back in a bed that looked more like a table.  He was pale, almost gray, but in a reassuring way, he gave me a “thumbs up” accompanied by a weak smile.  I would have done anything to take him out of that experience. 
My mom, along with my sisters and I, talked in the hallway.  Although we weren’t certain he would make it, we knew he knew we loved him.  We hugged and prayed.  It was all I could do to ask God to let him live.  I wanted more time with my dad.

My prayer was granted.
After receiving three stints and recovering for a week, my dad came home from the hospital.

My parents live down the street from my house.  Every day, my dad rides his bike by my home as he heads out to the high school track.  He runs the bleachers every day and is in the best shape of his life. He gives me a thumbs up whenever he rides by.

My dad loves musicals.  I grew up to the soundtracks of The Sound of Music, Music Man, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers and Fiddler on the Roof.  When I heard Fiddler on the Roof was coming to ASU’s Gammage, I knew I had to go with my dad.
So, where did I start?  
I priced tickets.  
I wasn’t surprised to see the good seats selling for $120, but I wanted the good seats and hoped I’d find discount tickets on, but that never happened.  The show was sold out, so I turned to

I found a lady selling row 22 tickets for $75 each.  She was the director of a timeshare in North Scottsdale and the tickets were left over from what they give to people who tour the timeshare.  I asked if she’d take $50 a ticket.  Sold!

My dad is a humble man.  He is happy with a homemade meal and conversation with family.  He loves his children and works most weekends in the yard.  I run into him from time to time at yard sales or at the local thrift store and it’s always a pleasure.  He shares everything he has, mostly his life wisdom. He’s spiritual, a scholar and a lover of the human mind.  As a psychologist, he remains enthusiastic about what we as humans are capable of if we set our mind to it.  He’s never one to quit, yet he's satisfied with his life.

I wanted to show my dad a good time, all on the tab of my dear trash.
I knew that would make him proud!
Last week, I sold the following items to pay for an evening out with my dad.
I paid $5.00 for this Hot Wheels table at a garage sale and sold it for $40.00.
That paid for dinner.
Next, I found this bedroom set; a high boy dresser and a buffet dresser.
I sold it for $120.   
Then I sold this vintage dresser for $75.00.
 That paid for the tickets. 
My dad and I, along with my beautiful mom started with dinner at Pita Jungle.  
He’d never tried hummus, falafel or schwarma.  He loved it.  After dinner we surprised him, finally telling him we were going to see Fiddler on the Roof.

”Are you kidding me,” he said with a chuckle in his voice.

We met my sweet sister and her husband at Gammage.  
The show was amazing.  I felt so nostalgic listening to “Sunrise, Sunset”, “If I were a rich man” and “Matchmaker.”  My dad teared up several times.  My favorite part was the scene of the Sabbath prayer.  I was able to find the music from the original film on youtube.

The show meant so much to me and I’m glad to spend a night with my dad, thanks to the sell of a few pieces of dear trash.  
That made my dad proud!

Linking up to:
Jenny Matlock


  1. That's really sweet. Your dad sounds amazing and he has a very thoughtful daughter. I love Fiddler on the Roof too!
    I also love that Highboy & dresser. Really great design/molding?

  2. It sounds as if you had a wonderful time and made some great memories. It doesn't get better than that!

  3. That was lovely Laura ~ thank you for sharing

  4. What a sweet story.

    Fiddler was the very first play I saw on Broadway years was a magical experience....

  5. This is the best Alpahbe-Thursday post I've read. You are fantastic!

  6. Your dad is lucky to have you for a daughter. That's a nice gift to give your dad .

  7. What a wonderful evening spent with those who mean the most to you... and to think it all started with some trash? I think I might need a falafel now.

  8. Thanks for sharing such a loving story. I get a kick reading what you've "found" and turned around and sold. I just think about doing it.

  9. that is a wonderful musical. Hoping you had fun at the show - your dad sounds like he's in better shape than a lot of us! {:-Deb

  10. What a wonderful story! Your mom and dad look very young. I am glad he recovered.

  11. this is the best thing i have read in a long time. wonderful. i lost my dad this past year and this is the sort of thing i wish i could still do for him.

  12. what a beautiful post. i am touched. an lds young women (and a new follower)- RuthieTootieWishes

  13. what a fun surprise!! and i love that with a little time and effort it was a free night for everyone!! an inspiring post - thanks!

  14. That's so sweet! We saw Fiddler on the Roof a while back, the last show before Topol retired. Of course we were waaaayy in the back, but it was an experience I will never forget.

  15. I really admire how you just get it done. Whatever you want to accomplish you totally do! You are absolutely one of the neatest people I've met through blogging.

    And now I see you are gorgeous, too, we need to get you a TV show like Cash and Cari.

    I'm glad your Dad is okay and you got tohave these magic moments with him and the rest of your family.

    Thanks for sharing this beautiful story. What a lovely wrap up to Round two of Alphabe-Thursday.