. happy father’s day from earth to the man who taught me to be inspired, not to take the easy way out, and not to take life too seriously • i love you {always} .

As with most holidays (hallmark or traditional) and birthdays, Father’s Day is particularly bittersweet for me and my sister. This October marks 9 years since my father’s sudden passing in 2007 and while the memory of that day still causes an ache in my heart, we’ve learned to focus on the time and the lessons that we had with him.

A day doesn’t go by without there being something that reminds me of dad. From my morning coffee run to Dunkin Donuts to my commute to work through the city that he loved, New York City, he’s still here with us. I can credit my curiosity for life and for food to both of my parents but, dad had a particular knack for seeing and tasting something good on his travels and replicating it in the kitchen without the use of a recipe.

Funny enough, dad wasn’t a chef. He worked in a career far from culinary much like me and my sister. Also like us, cooking was very much an outlet of self expression as it was an obligation. While he had six mouths to feed, he started a spark in all of us the hunger to try new things and exotic flavors and the mentality to learn how to make and do things on our own.

The tough love we would receive whenever he mocked us for taking the “lazy man’s way” was never unwarranted. We learned that there was difference in quality between taking shortcuts and doing things the way that they’re supposed to be done. From the way we chopped our vegetables or cuts of meat to how develop layers of flavor, our ultimate lesson was that things take time.

It seems that we’re short on time now a days but it doesn’t mean that it’s impossible to make the time to love, be inspired, take the long way instead of shortcuts, and appreciate what amazing things can come out of hard work and patience.