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PHOTOS: Happy Father's Day 2011

How cleaning turned into reminiscing. How reminiscing turned into a Father's Day gift.

Happy Father's Day to all of the awesome dads out there!

And, of course, that statement includes my own father, who is wishing I'd call him back already to instruct him to where his gift is -- this is it -- so he can head out and visit his wife (feel better soon, Jeannie!).

No, I didn't buy him a gift, but as I was cleaning out a closet in my house yesterday, I discovered what I wanted to "give" him.

While I was digging around, I found some old school photos. Upon my discovery, cleaning immediately stopped and reminiscing began.

Those two hours of reminiscing brought back a flood of memories -- all happy.

With a million responsibilities to tend to these days, past memories get buried under the weight of "to-do" lists. But with the quick glance at a photo, all of those memories flood right back to the surface.

It immediately dawned on me that my father deserved to see these photos and reminisce as well, especially since his life has hit a rough patch -- though I know he'll persevere as he always does.

As I looked through my dusty photos, I again realized how lucky am I to have him in my life.

At times, I feel out of place and like people don't quite understand my personality or sense of humor. But if you put me, my father and my older brother in a room together, it becomes crystal clear where I came from and who I take after.

My father is my best friend. He gets me.

I'm not "weird" to him because we're pretty much the same person. We have the same oddball sense of humor, and we can talk for hours about... the wind.

I could truly could write a novel, but I really need to finish cleaning that closet. So, instead of a novel, I'll end my story by asking my dad -- and my readers -- to check out a few of the old school photos I found yesterday.

Once again, happy Father's Day to all dads out there!

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