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How to Celebrate Father’s Day

Updated on June 18, 2009
Lela Davidson profile image

Lela Davidson is a mother and writer, passionate about healthcare and education for women and children.

Crafts are all fine and good, but let's get real. Guys really don't want a paperweight that's really a rock with googly plastic eyeballs glued onto it. Shirts and ties are overrated and there aren't enough golf balls in the world to show your love for Dad. Face it, what he really wants is unlimited credit at his favorite Big Box Electronics store, but if your budget allows for something less, try these ideas.

It’s All About the Food

Give Dad all his favorite foods for Father's Day. That means breakfast lunch and dinner. Let him eat what he wants and just as much of it as he can handle. This is the time to indulge Dad in all those no-no foods and beverages that may not be good for his health. It's Father's Day for goodness sake. Let's not mention all the chocolate consumed on Mother's Day and the 100% sugar frosting kids get on their birthdays. Give the guy his food and he'll be happy.

Let kids help out by planning the menu. You may be surprised to find out some secret favorites that only the kids are aware of! Let kids serve Dad like the King that he is and then make sure they help out with his share of the chores to remind him he fathered children for a good reason.

Why Do We Celebrate Father's Day?

You may be under the assumption that Father's Day was dreamed up by greeting card companies to boost profits, but the true origins of the holiday are actually much nicer. Sonora Smart Dodd campaigned for Father's Day to honor her Dad, who raised her and her five siblings alone on a farm in eastern Washington. Mrs. Dodd's mother had died giving birth to her. Most men at that time would have left their children in the care of relatives, but Sonora's father was up for the task.

In 1909, a grown Sonora Dodd heard a Mother's Day sermon that inspired her to create Father's Day. The holiday was first observed in 1910. By 1924, Father's Day was being celebrated across the country and President Calvin Coolidge made a presidential proclamation to support it. In 1972 President Richard Nixon made it official by requesting Congress pass a joint resolution. From then on the third Sunday in June has been a National Day of Observance in honor of all our fathers.

Un-Cheesy Homemade Gifts

There's nothing wrong with a homemade gift. In fact, it's often much nicer and Dad will hold onto it for years to come if it's made with love.

Poems and letters to Dad extolling the many wonders of being his child will warm his heart and maybe even bring a tear to his eye. Digital cameras make it easy to illustrate favorite stories about Dad with personal photos.

Pictures can be put together into a scrapbook for Dad and most digital cameras have features to allow you to give all the pictures a similar look. For example you could take a variety of photos and add the sepia effect for a uniform look. Capturing a "year in the life" in this way creates a lasting memento.

Gift certificates make a great gift. They are completely personal to the giver and receiver. Kids will love to make certificates for taking out the trash, getting the paper, and playing Monopoly - though I'm not sure who gets the better end of the last one!

Why not put together a A to Z of Dad? Writing with kids is fun, easy, and makes a great keepsake. See this article on writing with kids for easy instructions on A to Z projects.

Keeping the Keepsakes

Small kids love to make crafts for gifts, but after a while what do you do with them? An idea I love for holding onto kid's art is to take a picture of it. You can hold onto a lot more Kindergarten masterpieces this way. Simply take photos of all the art projects you want to remember and put the photos into an album. It's much easier than keeping all those boxes of fading construction paper and crumbling clay. The photos capture the fresh colors and un-bent edges!

However you decide to celebrate, perhaps the most important thing kids can do for Dad is to tell him just how much he means to them. With a little encouragement, kids will find the best way to let him know they love him.

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