I never know whether to write about my husband, father to my children, or about my dad on Father’s Day. These men, along with my father-in-law, are the most important men in my life, and I never want any one of them to feel overlooked. So this year, I’m writing about all three of them.

Dad, me, and the youngest grandson

My dad raised three daughters without ever making good on his (joking) threat to get a hotel room if we all started PMSing at the same time. He spent time with us each weekend, built a playhouse with me, showed me how to repaint a bike, and climbed trees to read books with me high above the park below. We don’t always agree, and we have very different preferences, but my dad played a big role (along with my mom) in teaching me to think and question and stand up for what is right. He’s an enthusiastic grandpa to my kids, cheering them on at performances and building epic bonfires for marshmallow roasting.

Papaw and grandson

I am one of the lucky ones, marrying into a family that has welcomed me as one of their own. My father-in-law never once shied away from his first grand-daughter and all her medical challenges. He built an elevator for their house so that we could get her and her wheelchair in and out more easily. I love watching him driving the kids on his four-wheeler and laughing with them over dinner.

Scott has faced some of the toughest parenting circumstances imaginable. He has been the backbone of our family so many times, helping me when fatigue or fear became overwhelming, encouraging my fledgling efforts at mothering, and loving each of us at our worst. He delights in finding what makes each of our children laugh and encouraging their talents. They love their daddy and they know he loves them — I can tell by the way they look at him. Watching him with our kids are some of my favorite moments these days. And those moments become my fondest memories. I will always treasure the images of him dancing with Elli after her baths, spinning and swooping her and her wet hair about our room to her favorite tune.

Happy father’s day. I love you guys!