Mary turns into a cat and anniversary odes

We are potty training Mary for the umpteenth time. I realized that if she could just get potty trained ASAP, she might be able to go to the neighborhood summer camp with Lydia.

An aside that is actually linearly related to the above information: Mary pretends often to be a cat. Lydia likes cats. She treats Mary better when Mary is a cat. Therefore, Mary chooses often to impersonate a cat, crawling around the house and meowing her communications to anyone who will listen. (Lydia listens and happily scatters the floor with food for her sister-kitty.)

Interestingly, potty training has speeded Mary’s full-fledged metamorphosis from child to animal. Today she used the front and back yard to do her business. Good thing I used to have a puppy! I know how to clean poop from the grass–a skill that came in handy today, let me assure you.

On an unrelated note, Abe hoed and planted an entire patch of yard into a cornfield today. He did this while I went out to dinner with my visiting teachers and another friend. We had a great time laughing and chatting while he got down on his hands and knees and farmed away. Our lives are really unbalanced now. Abe has to do all of the hard stuff (like work), and I get all of the fun stuff. It really isn’t fair.

Also, I should post our Facebook Anniversary odes to each other on here (in case posterity doesn’t rifle through our FB accounts).


At the risk of sharing something too personal, here I go: Before Lily and I started dating, I had a dream about her. In that dream, I was able to see what life would be like if I were to marry her. In my dream, I saw a table with family and friends gathered to eat her amazing food, I heard laughter and jokes and interesting conversation. I saw children and perceived a home life of unspeakable abundance. When I woke up from that dream, I knew that the life that I wanted was the life that Lily would give me.

Today is our sixth anniversary, and I look at my life. I have three beautiful children that she not only carried for me, but that she teaches, bathes, clothes, feeds and nurtures every single day. I have a slight tummy bump from all the thirds I’ve eaten of her food, and our house is often alive with friends and family that she is hosting.

I learn more about Lily every day and I find myself falling deeper and deeper in love. She is so spiritually deep, yet so fun for me to enjoy a good belly laugh with. She is like putty in my cracks, filling in all the areas where I lack. She helps me to care more for others, to learn new things about the world, to have faith, to have an open mind and to appreciate beauty, nature, history, knowledge and culture. She’s so outward looking, always meeting new people and reading books and wanting to travel and I’m so inward looking. She is the source of so much of my culture and knowledge. Every time she reads a book, I feel like I have read it too because of what she shares about it and I so appreciate all the learning that flows from her to me. I’m now watching that learning flow from her to my children as she home-schools them, and I’m in awe of her educational gifts.

Lily has made me happier, richer, wiser and has given me a life so full of color and beauty that I feel speechless.

Lily my love, thank you for being the love of my life, for giving me the life I have and here’s to the great things that await us in year number seven!


Ever since Abe’s sweet post, I have wondered whether I should use FB as a reciprocal avenue for anniversary affirmation–and risk saturating your unsuspecting feed in the process. Guess I can’t help myself. Just skip to the next post if you can’t stand the mush!

Abraham Darais has so many incredible qualities that I admire and love, but I’ll hone in here on one cause of continual marvel. Abe always, always sees the best in everybody. During our personal conversations, he stays so positive, never even obliquely insulting others through insinuation or read-between-the-lines commentary. Whenever I ask him to describe someone he just met, I know he’ll immediately begin by saying “S/he is awesome! So-and-so is one of the nicest people.”

I, on the other hand, do not possess this capacity to positively evaluate absolutely every acquaintance in my life. I wish I did. Whenever I struggle in any sort of situation, I can count on Abe to listen empathetically, describing afterward the situation back to me in a way that highlights the positive traits of all involved parties and the potential positive outcomes of even the trickiest situations. He is an absolute light, a beacon of authentic kindness.

His rosy glasses have certainly, without a doubt, made our marriage the treasure it is. Even in my worst moments, Abe always sees the good in me and will reach out to me–literally, to hold hands–in forgiveness and love. I have never asked for forgiveness without being immediately embraced and reassured that I am loved, forgiven, and treasured.

When I consider whether God exists, Abe is one of the foremost evidences I have as an answer in the affirmative. There is no way our lives could have intersected so beautifully without a divine, intervening hand. The breath-taking goodness I witness in my husband mirrors an Ultimate Source. I thank God for my marriage, my husband, and our love.

Happy anniversary, Abe!