Since that day, we have continued to celebrate Brady each year on January 5th. It has become sort of a Harasick family "holiday" you might say. Rich always takes the day off, and we usually do something as a family that reminds us of Brady. It might be a visit to a restaurant he liked, or even playing a game together that he enjoyed, like Clue Master Detective. It is usually simple and nice, and whatever we choose seems to be just the right way to remember him.
This year we started off with a visit to the Nethercutt Museum in Sylmar. The Nethercutt is one family's personal collection of vintage vehicles. We had a great time perusing all the amazing cars and the train they have. The Nethercutt is a great place to visit - it's free and such a unique place. If you want the full experience, you can make a reservation for the tour, also free.
Early prototype for the VW Bug - a 1946 sedan designed by a man with the last name Porsche.
In the late afternoon, Stephanie joined us, and we went to Tony's Bella Vista in Burbank for dinner. Brady used to love an Italian restaurant in La Crescenta called Dominick's, but since then we have discovered Tony's and like it a lot better. Tony's is the classic Italian restaurant that's been there forever - with the red vinyl booths, cheesy decor complete with fake grapes, and real robust Italians running the place. They have amazing pizza and giant house-made cheese ravioli. We always order the same thing: a large antipasto, an XL half sausage/half pepperoni pizza, an order of spaghetti and meatballs, and an order of cheese ravioli. That way you get to take home leftovers. :-) Their pizza is my favorite in L.A.
My dear husband is always so sweet and thoughtful on this day. Beautiful flowers and a card were delivered the day before. They came with all their blooms still shut and burst open on the next morning. I thought that was kind of like Brady's life - a dark day before he died and then blooming in heaven that next morning.
Rich also framed a copy of our favorite hymn "It is well with my soul." I asked him where he got the music and he answered "I ripped it out of our hymnal." I thought that was cute.
He also gave the family a framed photo of our little sponsored child, Isaac, that we have through Compassion International. We chose Isaac last year because he had the same birthday as Brady. I think in a strange way, he even kind of looks like Brady.