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6 Ways to Celebrate Dad on Father’s Day

Make it a Father’s Day dad will love.

Father and Son

Father’s Day is meant to be, as the name suggests, all about fathers. The day is meant to focus on recognizing all the things that fathers do for their families. It should celebrate all the good father’s do and thank them for the sacrifices they make for those they love. Most people do this by buying cards for their fathers or making something special for dinner. Gifts are often given to fathers, and people do their best to make the day special for dad. Unfortunately, dad’s day sometimes ends up being about people other than dad.
On both Mother’s and Father’s Day, the emphasis is put less on making the day special for mom or dad and more about making the day perfect. The intentions are good, but dad might not want to have a special breakfast, go golfing until lunch, eat a special lunch, hurry to go see his favorite retro movie and then scramble off to his favorite restaurant for dinner. He might honestly just want to relax with his family instead of watching them work feverishly in the name of creating a day of endless Kodak moments. Here are six ways to celebrate dad on Father’s Day while keeping the focus on dad.
Write an honest letter.

family-loveDads like to know that their family appreciates what they do, so take Father’s Day to tell dad how much he means to you. Instead of a mass produced card with a clever phrase, write him a heartfelt letter. Tell him how you learned to work hard from him, or tell him how he inspired you to keep going during difficult times. Explain that you now understand the sacrifices he made when you were younger or that you now know that he was in the right during that nasty fight the two of you had when you were a teenager. Let him know what he taught you, regardless of whether or not he sat down and gave you a lesson. Tell him how much he means to you and how much you love him. Then, give him the letter to read on Father’s Day.

Let him decide.


Fathers are often referred to as the “head of the household,” but how often does dad really get to decide how the day goes? This Father’s Day, do not plan what you or your family envisions as a perfect Father’s Day. Instead, let dad decide how he wants to spend his day. If he wants to go golfing, let him go golfing. If he wants to go work on the car, keep the kids from being underfoot in the garage. If what he really wants is to crash on the couch and watch TV, let him be the owner of the remote. Let dad be the boss on Father’s Day. Give dad the final say on dinner and let him choose how he spends his time that Sunday. Even if all he wants to do is laze around, let him. He can have this one day.

Give him the gift of being nag-free.

father and daughter

Every family has one person who nags everyone else. It may be mom nagging the kids about doing their homework. It might be an older sibling nagging their parents about upcoming sports games. It could be an in-law who nags both parents about how they are raising the kids. Regardless of who is the nag, give dad the gift of being nag-free on Father’s Day.
In the event that you are the nagger, make it a point to avoid nagging dad on Father’s Day. If it is another member of the family who does the nagging, get them to agree to stop nagging dad on his day before that Sunday in June. Then, quietly remind them as needed on Father’s Day. Dad is likely to appreciate the break.
Set chores aside.

family fishing

How many times does dad end up doing something he hates on Father’s Day? Maybe he despises taking the trash to the dump or loathes mowing the lawn. Those may be his tasks to do, but on Father’s Day, let someone else take over dad’s chores. If, for whatever reason, another family member cannot, then consider asking a neighbor for a favor or paying a small fee to have them take care of the grass that week so that dad can avoid his least favorite duty.
Setting chores aside, however, does not just apply to dad. If dad really wants to spend Father’s Day with his family, make sure that everyone is not going to be working all Sunday. Clean the house on Saturday instead this week, or avoid running non-essential errands on Sunday. More than one father has been given the day off, only to watch sadly as his family scrambles around like cats with their tails on fire instead of getting to enjoy each other’s company.
Choose the perfect gift.

parenting father toddler outside playing

Everyone always hopes that their gift is perfect, but most people fall a little bit short on minor gift-giving holidays like Father’s Day. The odds are that dad ends up receiving another shirt or coffee mug that he will only use occasionally. Some people manage to pick good gifts year after year, but many people end up getting things that are meaningless or simply not terribly useful. So, be sure to get dad what he really wants by thinking a bit more creatively. Dad might appreciate a pair of tickets to a baseball game or a promise to go see the new Star Wars movie with him in costume, regardless of how geeky it might look to your friends. Dad might also like getting a more unconventional gift like a set of “coupons” for things like doing chores without being asked, an extra nag-free day, a day where he does not have to do the dishes or a promise to not fight with siblings or various extended family members.

Play “remember when.”


Dads generally like to know that they have always been an important part of their family’s lives. So, on Father’s Day share some of your favorite memories with dad. Tell him you remember him teaching you to fish. Laugh about the time that he cheered like crazy when you made your first goal at the soccer game, even though you scored on your own team. Smile and tease him about the time he got you all hopelessly lost when he joined you for a college tour. Take a trip down memory lane and reminisce about the best times. Find out what his favorite memories are as well. You may not remember much about the first time you drove yourself to school, but it may be a very important memory to him.

Father daughter kissFather’s Day is meant to be all about fathers, but sometimes it ends up being about everyone else instead. Put the focus back on dad where it belongs, and help him have a day that is filled with what he really wants. Stop aiming for a picture perfect Father’s Day, and instead work to give him the best dad’s day possible. After all, he’s earned it.




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