Obit for Bagette Dad

This is the obituary I wrote for my dad. If you would like to view the service and the photo collages I made for the funeral, you may do that HERE

Obituary for David Albert VanHatten 1939-2021

Have you ever known someone who wore the same self-constructed “uniform” every day for most of his life?


Have you ever known someone who wore a pocket protector with pens and colored highlighters for a majority of their life and called it a “nerd pack?”


Have you ever known someone who helped build the world’s first super computers?


Have you ever known someone who grew up on a farm and was equally at home driving a combine as writing computer code?


Have you ever known someone who constructed a majority of their furniture out of cardboard?


Have you ever known someone who put strawberries and ice cream on French toast and called it brunch?


Have you ever known someone who would go hunting and make “pheasant nuggets?”


Have you ever known someone who ordered burnt toast at a restaurant?


Have you ever know someone who loved McDonalds apple pies to the point of ordering several at a time to have on hand as midnight snacks?


Have you ever known someone who loved family reunions and considered them a favorite vacation?


Have you ever known someone who embraced the moniker Bagette Dad and handed out free bags for 13 years for the Green Bag Lady project until his last days on earth?


If you knew my dad, you knew someone who embodied all of these quirky things that truly made him one of a kind. He loved playing cards, he loved puzzles, he was proud of his career, he loved to tinker, he loved being Bagette Dad, he was a man of great faith who loved his family and friends with an unfettered fierceness we all felt deeply. 

From Bagette Barbara

 Thanks Bagette Barbara, you are the best! XOXO--Teresa

Hi Teresa.

Glenn and I extend our sincerest condolences to you and your family on the passing of your dad. I remember meeting him in Nashville when he attended one of our GBL meetings at Belmont University as well as visiting with him in your homes in Nashville and Colorado. I remember how he travelled with his own recliner chair, and I remember him showing me how he folded fabric bags so well when packing them up for shipping in order to get the lowest possible postage charge. Those sweet memories will forever live in my heart and bring smiles to my face.  

Here's a photo of me with Bag #9604, the first bag you gave me when I met you in Nashville. I thought of you and your dad yesterday as I stood by the ocean and marvelled at the beauty of Mother Earth. Please let me know if there is anything I can do for you.

Love from your friend and Maine bagette,


A Tribute to Bagette Aunt Frances

If you read my last post (Photo Finish Friday, June 11) you know that my 99 year old Aunt Frances (Bagette Dad's sister) passed away last Thursday. Quite a blow to lose my dad and aunt in the same week. What you might not know is that Aunt Frances was one of the very first Bagettes! She made 100s of bags before the arthritis in her hands got so bad she could no longer sew. Bagette Dad even had special labels made for her to put in her lovely bags.

Posts about Bagette Aunt Frances:

Aunt Frances Bags

Aunt Frances Freebie (yes, she made all those bags!)

A bag she made me (and I still use) and a cute story from Little Girl.

Another Aunt Frances Freebie

Aunt Frances Visiting Nashville

Amazing Aunt Frances Part I

Amazing Aunt Frances Part II

Aunt Frances Shopping

Aunt Frances Muffin Recipe

Great Nieces and Nephews Decorating Her Bags

Photo Finish Friday


This is a photo of Bagette Dad (far left) and 5 of his 6 siblings. Bagette Aunt Frances is second from the right. Those of you who have been reading this blog for a while will remember me talking about Bagette Aunt Frances in the beginning years of Green Bag Lady. Aunt Frances was 18 years older than my dad. She made bags for several years until her arthritis got so bad she could no longer sew. I’m sad to say that Frances passed away today at the age of 99. She slipped into a coma last Friday, the day my dad went into hospice. Good bye Aunt Frances. You were an amazing woman. All of your siblings are now in heaven. Teresa

Bagette Dad

I’m so sad to tell all of you that Bagette Dad passed away this morning. Teresa

Photo Finish Friday

Sad news. I’m in Minnesota spending time with Bagette Dad. He has decided to suspend care and let nature take its course. He is now in hospice care. He’s in a good mood and all of us kids are here to see him.

This is a photo taken of him a few years ago. Isn’t it great? Love you Dad! Teresa

Workday Wednesday

My friend Christine gave me 2 duvet covers that had seen better days. She thought they would make great bags and requested some special ones out of the blue stripe/yellow polka dot cover that she and her grandmother had made together many years ago. She wanted bags out of it, but she also wanted some pouches to carry around with her to remind her of her sweet nana. I love doing this kind of thing, it's so special. I was able to give her 10 bags (only 4 pictured here) and the 2 pouches. Some of the polka dot bags had small holes so I patched them with clippings from handle trimmings. I like the contrasting patches SO much! They add to the character of the bags. Enjoy Christine, thanks for the fun project! Teresa