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December 18, 2017

I remember as a kid Grandma Stockman having this iconic pose with her arm on her side.


November 26, 2017

Mom, dad, Sharon and Warren went on a trip to Branson.  Dad and Warren couldn't believe the bathrooms and dad took this picture.  


November 23, 2017

Dad loved gravy.  I remember shortly after they moved to Rapid City that we had a Thanksgiving dinner at the Hotel Alex Johnson.  It was a buffet type of dinner and he couldn't get enough of the gravy.  So dad got a coffee cup and filled it up with gravy.  I recall he got a few stares, but dad being dad he couldn't care less. 

Snow Forts

July 22, 2017

When we were younger, dad used to help us make awesome snow forts.  He would spend all day using the snow blower to pile snow up into one area and then we would dig it out.  


July 7, 2017

Dads old office in Dickinson

July 7, 2017

Badlands Human Service Center in Dickinson where dad worked.  My recollection was that he was on fourth floor and in corner.


SpaghettiO's and the Badlands

July 7, 2017

When I was both younger and older, dad was my hiking buddy.  He loved getting out and enjoying nature as much as I did.  One time we went hiking in the North Dakota Badlands in the middle of winter.  I used to hike with a lot of "stuff" in case got stranded.  I remember it was very cold and snowing.  As we were hiking back to the vehicle, we decided to lay down in a snow drift and cook up some food.  I had a little propane burner and a can of SpaghettiO's.  Dad always said that was the best can of SpaghettiO's he ever had.  It seemed about once a year he would bring this up to me and ask if remembered the time we laid down in the snow, during the blizzard, in the Badlands and had SpaghettiO's.  

First Remote Control

July 3, 2017

I remember dad and our first remote controlled TV.  If memory serves me, it was 19" Montgomery Wards (not that it matters).  Anyways, dad had a process for trying to work the remote.  He would pick it up and hold it in his left hand and then study it.  After he figured out what button he wanted, he would hover his finger over the button from his right hand, then point, aim, and hit the button.  It seemed to do what he wanted 50% of the time.  When it didn't work, he would usually head for his office.  

He embraced technology when and where he wanted.  He did end up learning some stuff on computer, but normally kept his distance.  I know they gave him a computer his last few years at work before he retired, but he refused to use it.  Dad liked to say the IT folk would come and take parts from his computer to fix others.  

Mom not thrilled about being near edge

July 3, 2017

My move to Denver

June 30, 2017

Mom and I were laughing this morning about my move to Denver.  I was already stressed out as heading to the “big city” on my own and my first step professionally.  We had a caravan going down with mom, dad, and Sharon and Warren.  For starters, I was driving a 24ft Uhaul and then pulling my old 82 Ford Bronco on a trailer.  It felt like a train and wasn’t comfortable with it.  At the gas station in Beulah Wyoming, I was maneuvering the “train” I was driving and caught the trailer tire on a barricade.  It bent the rim on the tire, broke the bead, and let out all the air.  I know we waited hours for Uhaul to come change out the tire.  I remember dad and Warren sitting on a bench joking and saying … “you know where we are … leaded and unleaded” as they pointed at the gas station sign both laughing.

After we got back on the road, it was smooth sailing.  Smooth sailing, that is, up to the point we were about to call it a night.  We hadn’t made reservations anywhere as didn’t know how far we would get.  As it turned out, it was Cheyenne days and there wasn’t an open hotel room for hundreds of miles in any direction.  I think that really threw all of us for a “loop”.  It seemed our best option was to sleep overnight, in our cars, at the Chugwater Wyoming rest stop. 

The next day, after a poor night’s sleep by all, we made it to my new apartment in Golden.  Now the fun part of unloading and unpacking.  It felt like it was a thousand degree’s out, 100% humidity, and no oxygen in the air.  Adding to this was the fact that it was two flights of stairs up and then two flights down to my apartment.  I remember Warren twisting his ankle bad and some small neighbor kids on an upper floor kept asking him what he was doing.  I remember dad straining with one box and him saying “what do you have in here … rocks”.  I said yes because it was indeed full of rocks.    

Thoughts from Olivia

June 30, 2017

Olivia was really close to dad.  She has taken his passing reasonably well.  Today she asked, and after thinking about it, a very good question.  She wanted to know why we didn’t throw a going to heaven party.  She suggested we throw one and have cake and invite friends and family.  She also was adamant on clothing colors … no black as it is sad and she thought the color of the devil.  She thought white would be nice.

When dad used to chew bandits ...

June 29, 2017

For a while, dad used to chew bandits.  Basically it was chew/snuff in little packets.  I remember driving around with dad, sitting in the back, windows down (no ac), and he would throw his bandit packet out his window and it would immediately come back into car through rear window.  

First time I heard dad use the F word

June 29, 2017

I rarely heard dad swear out of anger or frustration.  I do recall, though, the first time I heard him use the F word.  It must have been the mid 1980's.  Dad was building me a skateboard ramp for the back yard.  Dad had picked up a 2x4.  He was holding it vertically so it was up and down the long way.  It slipped out of his hands and landed with the face square on his big toe.  Obviously when it connected to his big toe is when I heard that word slip out of his mouth.  

Dad often told this story.  He was a great story teller.  He said that out of all the 2x4's to do this, it had to be the one that was water logged and weighed about 5 times more than any other.  He also liked to say that if he purposely dropped it a 1,000 times trying to hit his toe, that he couldn't have done it.    

Tootsie Pops

June 27, 2017

As long as I can remember, dad liked his tootsie pops.  In this picture, you can see him hiking with one.  

Club house/Humidifiers

June 23, 2017

At the old house in Dickinson, there was an attic above the outbuilding we called the toolshed.  When we were little, Andy and I used it as a club house.  We always had humidifers going in the house.  Dad liked the big old "console" type and couldn't buy them anymore.  So, he started buying all he could for parts and stored them up here.

June 21, 2017

Dad trying to trim nails of "Dinosaur Pete" on Skyline Drive in Rapid City with his finger nail clippers

Chocolate Brown

June 21, 2017

Dad loved the color chocolate brown.  It seemed anytime he painted anything outside, it was chocolate brown.  Andy and I had a saying that represented dad ... "Cut it, Tape it, Chocolate Brown It".

Dad was a very bright, analytical, and intellectual man; but he wasn't known for his handyman or wood working ability.  He couldn't cut a 2x4 straight for a million dollars.  This is where the "Tape it" comes in.  So inevitably any project of this type would involve duct tape and/or wood glue.  

In a lighter moment over this last week, Andy and I chuckled between ourselves that we should have "Chocolate Browned" dads casket/urn.  

One other memory of dad painting ... I remember the time he painted venetian blinds in our old dining room back in Dickinson.  I thought he had totally lost it, but actually turned out great.                 


June 19, 2017

Dad's burial service was today.  I was quite pleased and happy with his final location.  It is a beautiful spot and in the first row.  The headstone marker isn't yet in place.  All markers in the Black Hills National Cemetery have a designated area and number.  Dads is R 273.     

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