Leif, My dad

Have you noticed any traits in yourself that you share with your mom and dad, your kids or even siblings? As we age they seem to become more obvious to us and more visible to others. Don’t you find yourself saying “that sounds just like my dad”? Genetics are a fascinating thing, we long to know who we are and where we come from while trying to be our own unique selves, especially when we are growing up. But as we become adults, we see so many pieces of our parents in us and watch traits come out through our kids that they have not seen or heard before. I guess that is why so many people are doing genetic testing, they want to know more about who they are and where they came from.

My dad was born in Norway during a Norwegian depression just before our Great Depression. Only six weeks after he was born, his father (Jens) left for America to help support his new family. His older brother, Even, had traveled to America at seventeen. When Even had purchased a fishing boat a few years later, he sent my grandfather a ticket to come to Alaska to fish with him. My grandfather never intended to stay in Alaska, but after five and a half years he saved enough money to send for his wife and son.

Neither my grandmother or father spoke any English and traveled by themselves all the way to Vancouver Canada to meet my grandfather where they traveled, by fishing boat up to, Ketchikan, Alaska. Things were a lot different back then, no phones, only letters and waiting five and a half years to meet your father or husband seems hard to imagine these days.

We always knew our heritage was Norwegian, my dad was proud of his heritage, but he would always say he was an American first. He flew both flags every day but insisted that the American flag flew on top.

My dad never did have any siblings so he made sure he had a big family with five kids, we always knew we were loved and he supported everything we did, even if it seemed a bit crazy!

A year ago July 2017 at the age of 93 my dad died in our home surrounded by his whole family. We were blessed with six weeks together after they medevaced him to Seattle from Ketchikan. I felt like, I lost my rudder that day, he had always been there supporting me, loving me, encouraging me my whole life, even when I didn’t see him or talk to him, I knew he was always there and would do anything to help me. There are so many ways that I am like him, our genes run deep!

My dad is missed by so many as he was loved by everyone he met. He was a father to so many people and especially to Jeff, who lost his father when he was 19. Dad filled that role for Jeff for over 38 years. My dad always took time for you, he was a good listener and would always share a story with you that would  make you laugh.

In honor of him, we would like to dedicate a Hygge line on our website.

Leif 2017.

Hygge (hoo ga) origin- Norway, Denmark

1. Life moments brimming with happiness, comfort, loved ones, favorite things, beautiful places, contentment

2. Savoring the present moment;

3. Enjoying the good life.

One of my dad’s favorite sayings was “this is livin”. He often shared it with us when we were in his company and we were all enjoying the moment! He taught us that the time we spend with family is truly our treasure.  

We miss you dad!

Your heritage and genes live on in each of your kids through many generations to come.

We will be adding some different pieces of furniture, stairs etc. that represent our Scandinavian heritage and are designed to make you smile as we share a hygge moment with you!

Stay tuned, next week you will see the first piece of work for the Hygge line.


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– Karol Whitmore