We have been married twenty-five years! Yes, we celebrated it on March 4, 2014, and were able to get away touring some east coast cites earlier this fall, but I figured why not continue the twenty fives with our Christmas card this year.
I started a rough draft before March 4, 2014, of possible thoughts and ideas to mark this year. I even forgot about it until I decided to try to post this year’s Christmas card to this blog. I imagined doing a book of my favorite moments but realized once I made my list that there are some things only words can capture.
I actually made a list…1-25 of course. I’m married to a man who communicates in bullet points but am finding it increasingly difficult to simply list my list! I feel like I have to explain each one…of course. You married a wordy girl. One, I love your eyes. I just love them. Two, I love how you love our kids and want to be in everything. You miss them when you are away and you miss missing out on every little thing from band concerts to basketball games. Three, you love me! You know it took alot to fill that hole in my heart that Steve-Carrie-Keyna-Patti-Bill-Beth-John-Jim hole!!! Oh how I cried when we drove away to Liberal, Kansas…and you loved me through that and every single moment of every single day for these twenty-five years. Four, the funny moments. The funny moments that if we so much as think about we are laughing so hard that tears are falling! The “I promise we are only staying one night” and the “my boy wants some rootbeer!” cannot-contain-the-laughter-moments! We keep adding to this one. Five, The Kroger Kill. I love that you love to shop for me. I love that you know how to shop for our family. I love that you drag it in and spread it out all on the cabinet and show me what you got: the Kroger Kill. I love that going up and down the grocery aisles is relaxing to you!
Six, night owl. Please tell me how many times we have said: we need to start getting to bed earlier! We are night owls! I keep thinking when we grow up maybe we will actually have a bed time! We are getting better here, right?! Seven, support. No matter what I sign up for…and I have signed up for some things…your support is there. I love that you support me in every endeavor. I have seen you in crunch times folding banquet programs as if you were presenting them to your CEO! All of my “you we’s” you made “we we’s!” (Even though I’m sure I was reminded they were “my we’s!”) Eight, listener. My goodness you listen. Now, I didn’t say you take hints but you listen. Hints have to be in the form of a list! I can only hope I listen as well as you! Thank you for listening to me until your right ear showed damage! And, sorry about that…maybe you should let me drive more?! Nine, patient. I do not have your patience, but I am so thankful you have your patience. I borrow your patience sometimes when I know it would make you proud. You especially have more patience over all the parenting moments we have experienced. I love you for your patience! Our children will return home once they are grown and married because of your patience trumping my maniac-ience. (yep, just made up that word) Ten, guide. You are my guide. I love you for your godly guidance. I know my Lord and Savior is my constant and never changing guide but you are that physical-I-can-see-constant example to me everyday. I love that about you!
Eleven, AWANA grand prix car designer! This is the worst thing for your actual health and yet year after year after year you hop out in that garage and carve, ah hum, Dremel up a car for the kids to race in the Grand Prix! Sometimes they come home with hardware sometimes they don’t. They have yet to ask you to help them design something you have not been able to do…I’m talking from snowman to skateboard and firetrucks and light sabers to rainbows! Twelve, teacher. The kids busted me on this one early! They ask me any question about random things and my answer is…well, it serves a purpose. They said mom, why is it we ask you something and we get “it serves a purpose” and dad EXPLAINS things? Stink. They got me. And I thought I was doing so good. I’d say probably because you loved reading those Childcraft encyclopedias that we have that were yours when you were young. The ones Cole calls the books what tell you everything you need to know! We actually are a perfect parental team: you take math and science while I take English and history. Thirteen, competitor. You are a fierce competitor! I’m not fooled by any of these other attributes! You will go down before you let anyone beat you. Period. Always have. Always will. I know it. The kids know it. I love that about you even though along the way I did try to change you by asking you to please let the kids win once in a while! You knew the day would come when they could beat you in a pick up basketball game even though you had to break an arm to get out of it…mmmuuuuaaaahhhah! (Your mom laughed too!) Fourteen, genuine. You are the real deal. I know I don’t deserve you! Honest and thoughtful to the core. Fifteen, the consummate team player. I didn’t pen that one the journal sports writer did from your college basketball days. I have copies of it and would love to have a link type thing to say click here to read it. I’ve tried to find it on the web. I’m guessing we are older than the internet so no luck there! I do know I made copies for each of the kids’ baby books for that page “About My Parents.” He called you the consummate team player after interviewing you and your coaches at Louisiana Tech and after twenty-five years of marriage: I agree! I know sometimes I heard you say after one of the kids needed help with homework that you already finished the sixth grade! You got in there and helped them anyway! You are the best team player, and we are so blessed to have you on our team!
Sixteen, wise. Our entire family leans on your wisdom. You just have solutions to our problems and we are often plagued with problems! When I react with panic and uncertainty you respond with a calm resolve and great wisdom for the situation from one child getting “stuck” on a curb to the unexpected ambulance rides a couple of our kids made to the hospital. Seventeen, rocker. Remember the time our crazy neighbor took away the rocking chair to see if you really were a rocker!? Your words: if I promise to bring it in and then put it back can I keep it! I love that you and my sister Keyna, born on the exact same day must rock! Eighteen, a boy at heart! I love all the stories your family has ever shared about your childhood days! I knew you were forever a little boy at heart when I heard that you taught the boys in your cabin the “under the armpit straw trick!” I think you said it had to be done because you were on the defensive! Enough said! Nineteen, pursed lips. One thing I have learned to appreciate is what I call your “high blood pressure face.” I know when I or one of the kids has pushed you too far! Twenty, road trips. You either love to drive or have trust issues with my driving! Thank you for putting up with all of my crazy drift off then wake up moments thinking we were running off the road when all the while we were safe because you are behind the wheel. You are a road warrior!
Twenty-one, kind. You are one of a kind and there is no one kinder than you. And truly your kindness knows no bounds. Twenty-two, godly. I love your dedication to the Lord. You serve Him and bring His love to our family. We have the best conversations about His book, His ways, His people. You know so much and share it in such a unique way. Twenty-three, provider. I thank Him for His provision and for the way He has enabled you to provide for us. You have worked for the same company for twenty five years too. I feel blessed beyond words for the dedication you bring to Anadarko and the blessing it has been to our family through you. Twenty-four, giver. I say over and over that my love language is that of giving! You tell me that I would give away everything but the truth of it is that so would you. I can give because I know you would do the same. Twenty-five, laughter. I love your laugh. Oh my goodness when you laugh it just makes everything better! You get tickled and there is no containing it! None whatsoever! And Christmas is about just that. We cannot contain the love that He brought to us so many years ago. We cannot show our love any more than when we try to by wrapping up gifts and putting them under the tree to show those they are for our love for them… this is an expression which we love doing year after year. I love Christmas-ing with you! Merry Twenty-Fifth Christmas Keith! I Love You!