Dear Dad —

A Tribute to My Dad on Father’s Day

“Action Lacksen,” that was his nickname in the early 1980’s when he has crossing the Sahara Desert on camel back. I think the title is still as fitting for my father today, on Father’s Day 2020, as it was back then….

My dad has always had a pull towards the big, open spaces on the map. He points to the terrain that isn’t chopped up by roadways, highways, and interstates. As we gather around the map, his finger always lands on the green regions that swirl with topographic lines crossed and segmented only by the blue slivers of lakes and streams. The wild open spaces where you can’t catch a cell signal, but you damn sure ought to be able to catch a trout — or five.

Jeff Lacksen, aka “Action Lacksen”, Sahara Desert. Circa 1980’
Jeff Lacksen, aka “Action Lacksen”, Sahara Desert. Circa 1980’

My dad will tell you that he is trying to get away from that masses during these expeditions as much as he is attempting to catch a break from the heat and humidity of the sweltering Georgia summers. And while there is truth in that statement, I’m thankful that over the years he has taken (or tolerated?) a few people with him on these adventures.

The most recent adventure we shared was a five night back country camping trip last August into the Emigrant Wilderness in the Sierra Nevada of California with family and some close friends. On the flight home, I was able to journal and reflect on all of the wilderness that I have been able to explore because of my dad and what that has meant to me.

From my earliest memories, my dad has created time and space for exploration with those he loves. A west coast road trip along the Pacific from the Golden Gate Bridge up to Crater Lake when my four siblings and I were all under double digits. Canoeing trips though the Boundary Waters at the northern tip of Minnesota. A backpacking trip in the Wind Rivers the summer before I left for college.

My late grandfather, John M. Schultz, my dad, and 6 month old me on the family farm in Sparta, Georgia. September 1991.
My late grandfather, John M. Schultz, my dad, and 6 month old me on the family farm in Sparta, Georgia. September 1991.

You see my dad not only taught me the skills necessary to explore the outdoors, but also to explore with my mind. He is an avid reader, enthusiastic gardener, and successful businessman. Both my dad and my mom’s father, John H. Schultz (my late grandfather), who we called Paw Paw, planted the early seeds of entrepreneurship. Both men were/are successful businessmen and amazing fathers. I know that their trail blazing, determination and grit, and the overall examples they set helped open my eyes to the world of possibility in entrepreneurship and so much more.

Garden helpers (my sister Elizabeth and me) and Dad. March 1997.
Garden helpers (my sister Elizabeth and me) and Dad. March 1997.

Three final thoughts about my dad:

  • It’s obvious that he loves people. And that includes the adopted family friends he treats as though they are his own.

  • When camping with Dad, one thing is certain — we will NOT run out of food. Eating is second only to trout fishing. His best friends, and kids, say the only reason he hikes is to eat in pretty places. :)

  • In sharing his love for the wilderness with me, he has given me the confidence to go and explore this beautiful world while always remembering the true gift is in sharing those experiences with others.

Happy Father’s Day, Dad. Thanks for sharing the wild places with me. You make this world a better place.

Love,

Katherine

My Dad and me sharing (mostly) the beater from mom’s cookie recipe. May 1993.
My Dad and me sharing (mostly) the beater from mom’s cookie recipe. May 1993.

Earlier this Spring, we created a FREE Guide to Letter Writing called Let’s Write Letters. For many people, letter writing is not a natural thing. And even with the best intentions to write letters, we ourselves (as note card makers!) find that at the end of the week, we have pushed off those letters we meant to send.

For that reason, we’ve put together some letter writing prompts that may help you put pen to paper for Father’s Day (although, we all know celebrating dads shouldn’t be limited to just one day of the year!).

We realize not everyone has a dad they can write to or perhaps your relationship with your dad is strained. This list can work just as well for a friend who has recently become a new father, grandfathers and godfathers, father-in-laws, or anyone who has served as a fatherly figure and inspiration to you!

Finally, regardless of your circumstances this Father’s Day, remember that the words we write, say, consume, and believe carry extraordinary power. Let’s all honor and use our words to spread love and truth each and everyday.

Without further ado, here is our list of ‘dear dad letter writing prompts’ to get your creative juices flowing. Let us know if you have any other prompts or practices that work well for you!

-The Brown Parcel Press Team

 

Dear Dad Letter Writing Prompts —

  • Thank you for...

  • I always think of you when… 

  • You help me see beauty in…

  • Remember that time we went on that trip…

  • I hope that in the future we… 

  • My most cherished memory with you is… 

  • I love this picture of you… 

  • One of my favorite qualities of yours is...

  • The best advice you’ve given me is… 

  • One thing I’m glad we share is… 

  • From you, I learned the importance of…

  • Now that I’m older, I realize…

  • You inspire me to…

  • One thing I admire about you is… 

  • I love your passion for...

  • When I look into your eyes, I....

  • My earliest memory of you is…

  • You teach me to...

  • I apologize for… 

  • The way you live your life has...

  • I have always wanted to tell you…

  • Your ability to… 

  • When I look at you, I see…

  • My favorite adventure with you was...

  • From you, I have learned....

  • If your father has passed away, you can still write a letter to him. Maybe you can tell him what’s on your mind, what you’re struggling with, or let him know what you miss about him.


If you’d like to download our FREE Guide to Letter Writing called Let’s Write Letters, we’ve include it here:

It’s not a challenge (unless you want it to be!), but rather a tool that we hope will encourage you to make space for a practice and habit that can spread joy, reduce anxiety, and emphasize gratitude …

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