We aren’t big “birthday party people” in our family. The kids may get a small deal at home, but getting together, throwing a party, or anything big, usually doesn’t happen and we’re all ok with that.
Tris was not one for birthday parties. I’m not sure what all his reasons were, but he would have been happy without them. That was one of the reasons we threw him a big 30th party 3 years ago. He was completely surprised, but also completely enjoyed himself. I guess that started the wheels rolling in his mind because this fall before he died, he mentioned Tys’ birthday to Lisa. He wanted a party for Tys, just like his own, and at Christmas when Tys least expected it.
Tys was a very important person in Tris’ life, as his only brother, they were very close. They talked on the phone almost every evening, they spent Saturdays together in the shop. They shared common hobbies, tinkering on vehicles, riding dirt bikes, buying things on Craig’s list, visiting pawnshops and much more.
The idea was already brewing in the back of my mind, but before I voiced it to anyone, Lisa called me one day and told me what Tris had said. And just like that, Tys was having a birthday party because Tris had already planned it. There was no way we were skipping it now.
Tys’ wife pulled off a lot of the work, along with her family. We had a few lines in place to get him where he needed to be the night of the party, but overall, it really wasn’t too hard to surprise the one who claims he can never be surprised.
Before we get to the party, a few things about Tys. His name is Tyson, but I haven’t called him that since oh, I don’t know when … probably the last time I was mad at him. He’s Tys to everyone.
He’s great for a good laugh. My favorites are when we’re in a crowd and he’ll come up and quietly say something stupid to make you laugh. He also knows exactly how close to the line he can go with Mother. This dirt bike in the house would be one foot over the line.
He’s the fixer all things. If it needs to be tinkered with, he always has a knife or tool in his pocket to fix it. He will work on something for the longest time and is almost always able to fix it.
He calls to check on me, to see how I’m doing. He listens.
He will tease mercilessly, endlessly. And for some unknown reason, the kids love it. They fight him, chase, and badger right back.
You need a job done, call him, he will come. He is reliable and hard-working on a big or small job.
He has three boys and they love him. For the most part, they are a jolly bunch, but I’m not sure what was happening here. He seems to have added the 4th big blue son over Christmas time. These boys love to be with their dad. One or all three have been known to cry if he leaves without them.
He is the King of taking dumb pictures. If you have a camera he’ll strike a pose, or he’ll use your phone and later you’ll find countless selfies of him. I’ll leave it at that, use your imagination since space does not allow me to post all the photos I have like this.
He is welder by day and a MIG welder by night. He made these bikes from scrap welder rods and a few drawings on cardboard.
He was asked to make one for the Haiti Sale in FL and since he was bored with the Schwinn model he was making, he created a 3-wheeler with a Pinecraft license plate. Go to Florida and buy it. It’s one of a kind.
Now about that surprise party…
All the way down there, the sky was dark, overcast. I kept watching one place where the sun was shining from behind. It was hanging right over the church where we were going. It wasn’t until I took a picture that I saw the heart in the sky.
He obviously has lots of friends!
A selfie stick.
Just what he needs to photograph himself from the top of a grain leg he is welding.
He had lots of help opening gifts.
He asked for this gift! He bashed vests in a very loud and obnoxious manner one night, so we bought him one! He says, “Never mind that your arms are frozen, at least your torso is warm!”
Max, down on the right, just cracks me up!
For being the son of Tys, he is a lot like Tris.
He was a little worried about opening some of these bags.
Now he’s stylin’! Add that vest and he’s ready for the mall!
Happy 30th birthday Tys!
We love you and are blessed to have in our lives.