Design Idea A580 Pendant

by Tim Cronkhite, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®

Father's day is approaching fast, and my Dad just turned 80 years old and is still going strong. Have you ever wondered how the whole Father's day tribute came about? Read this great article "Celebrating Father's Day" (link can be found below).

We didn't buy Dad ties--all he ever wanted was to just spend time with his family. So what we did on Father's day, and most other occasions, was go camping. We would all spend weeks at a time camping during summer vacation. We went to the same place, same spot with the same people. There were so many of us we would take over an entire section of the campground.

Father's day at the campground always involved activities using the family jet boat. Dad loved to load all of us kids up and take off to the island on the lake. On the way, we would all take turns water skiing. I was the klutz of the family, but that didn't stop me from wanting to show off my skiing talents. So, off into the water I went. Dad tossed the skis out to me and I slipped them on. He slowly pulled away to take up the slack in the tow rope, and I gave him the famous "thumbs-up." Dad pushed in the throttle and before I knew it I was up and skiing, laughing and having a great time.

As I looked in the distance, I saw a HUGE wave coming at me. To this day all I remember thinking was "I'm gonna die!" Well, I didn't die, but I did fall. It felt like I ran into a brick wall. My skis flew off into the air, and as I looked up the ski came down on my head knocking me out cold. Dad jumped into the water to rescue me, and as he pulled me up Mom was yelling "Tim, wake up! You can't fall asleep!" It's a good thing that Mom was a nurse, because she knew just what to do.

When the boat finally hit land, I was off, running up the hill and walking for hours to see what new and fun adventures lurked around the corner. I, of course, was the wanderer of the family, and would always take off on hikes. Those were the good old days when parents could let their kids just go and stroll the hillsides.

As I reflect back on my dad and all of our wonderful years, I wonder what to do for him this year. I've been racking my brain on what to make for him for Father's Day. If your dad is like mine, he's a fisherman, hunter and a total outdoorsman. What do you do this year to show him you care? When it comes to gift giving, I always like to think outside the box. You have to when creating men's jewelry because when being creative for men, less is more.

How about making some fishing lures? Fire Mountain Gems and Beads offers a 3D animated video showing how to use our fly tying vise to help you make them. The type of lures you make will depend on the type of "great white shark" fishing he goes for. If he's a fly fisherman, you can make all kinds of fishing flies using many of our feathers. Check out the other tools as well, they'll help get the job done.
Design Idea 8903 Fishing Fly

Design Idea A306 Necklace

Design Idea A306

Not long ago, my dad saw me in a summer flyer catalog and I was wearing a fish necklace made out of fancy jasper. He went on and on about the page and the arrowheads featured on the page. He said that if I was a good son, I'd make him one for Father's Day. So, I guess I'll be making an arrowhead necklace for him. SURPRISE DAD! (If you read this before Father's Day, Ha Ha.)

Dad lives in Arizona and we don't get to see each other as much as I would like, but the best thing I've learned in life is to value the ones I love and to always give a piece of me in my work. When Mom passed away from pancreatic cancer, I learned who I was as a man and how I would like people to remember me. I'm not saying I don't have bad days, by any means, but I always look for ways to become a better me.

If you read my other article ''Remembering the Ones You Love ... Holiday Season Beading'' you'll understand why life is so precious to me and all my family and friends mean the world to me.

I've scoured the Fire Mountain Gems website and picked items that I thought would be perfect for dear ol' Dad. Have a very special Father's Day this year.
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