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Ten Things I've Learned From My Dad

1. ALWAYS give great effortThis has become my Dad's signature phrase and I love hearing him say it. It always inspires me to try harder no matter what I'm doing.  

2. HOW to appreciate and tell the difference between deciduous and coniferous trees. My Dad grew up in Midland, Texas (were there are no "real" trees). When he went to college at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, he grew to have a love for trees and learn all about them. He likes to get up early in the morning to water his trees. 

3. WHEN in doubt, get up early. My Dad used to help me study early in the morning. It's a habit that has stuck. I think most people do their best thinking early in the morning when things are fresh and your brain has rested. How about you? 

4. HOW to show respect. If my Dad was ever in the company of a police officer,veteran or anybody in the service, I would hear him be so respectful, "Yes Sir Officer." He's always taught me the importance of showing respect and how it earns you respect. 

5. FOLLOW through. My Dad was a coach for everything my brother and sister and I played. "Follow through" works for every sport and then some. Just thing about where you want the ball to go or where YOU want to go and...follow through!

6. THE importance of patience, optimism and holding your tongue. So many times, silence is golden. Keep a good attitude. Things will work out best when you have conversations face to face.   

7. APPRECIATE the simple things in life. A bowl of ice cream is sometimes what it's all about.  

8. FAMILY comes first.
My Mom and Dad have always put family first. They still do and they're the best role-models for what good parenting is.  

9. NOT to say "no problem" or "of(t)en." My Dad's pet-peeves have become my own. When someone says "no problem" in response to your "thank you" it is not addressing the thank you. A simple "your welcome" is much more appropriate. Shhh! Remember...the "t" in often is silent. 

10. THE most important thing that I've learned from my Dad is to SMILE. You'll feel better! Just let the corner of your mouth move upward ever so slightly and you have a start on it that won't stop!

This Father's Day also falls on my Mom's birthday. I'm making my Mom's favorite cake, Pineapple Upside-Down Cake. My Mom used to love when her birthday would fall on Father's Day and she could celebrate with her Dad. Sharing is caring!

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
  • 3 ¾ cake flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 ½ sticks of unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ cups whole milk
  • 1/3 cup dark rum
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 fresh, ripe pineapple, sliced
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup fresh cherries
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Slice pineapple into rings.
  3. Melt butter and add brown sugar. Cook until it bubbles then remove from heat. Arrange the pineapple slices and place a cherry in the center.
  4.  In a mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  5. Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time. Beat in vanilla and combine milk and rum. Add dry ingredients and milk mixture. Mix on low speed with a paddle attachment.
  6. Pour the batter evenly over the fruit and bake for 50 minutes.
  7. Remove from the oven and cool the cake in the pan for 5 minutes. Turn the cake out onto a circular platter.
Happy Father's Day Dad and Happy Birthday Mom! 

In case you missed it, Ten Things I've Learned from my Mom.

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