Thursday, December 19, 2013

To My Micah, On His Birthday...

I have been mulling around this blog post for quite some time.
How would I pay tribute to my best friend and spouse?
The one whom I have affectionately referred to as "My Micah..."
for oh so many years...

You may need to bear with me.
I don't mean to brag or boast.
Rather, I want to point to how all these things
I am about to say... are not because of Micah, alone.

No, he is a truly new creature each day.
Made new by his Savior.
Constantly honed and brought through the refining fire,
and time and time again, he proves...

He is worthy.

I cannot explain what is like to live with a man who truly
realizes and lives out selflessness.
I have no need unmet. No want un-noted.
He goes without, and gives to us.
He will "make do", so we can have "shiny and new".
And I do not mean he provides and meets our needs on a purely material basis.
You should know, we are in the hardest financial season of our marriage.
Yet, we are happy as husband and wife.
Why? Because I don't need a fancy new car, dinners out, or an expensive weekend get away
for my husband to show his love.
(not that we both don't enjoy those things, or that they aren't fun and awesome. We are just doing without those extras right now, and it has shown us they are "bonuses", not "necessity".) 
He shows it when he washes the dishes.
He shows it when he helps me bring in groceries, or wakes up and greets his children with hugs and kisses, or holds me when I am sad or hurt, or encourages me when I feel weak, or even, yes, even when he rebukes me when I am wrong.

He is a true man of integrity, honesty, and justice.
He does not waver for the applause of men.
He is diligent in his pursuit of raising three little boys to be godly men.
He is loyal.
He is willing to tell you the hard things, and walk with you through your battle to face them.
He is beyond intelligent... he can do any job or task you give him. He will have read three books to learn about it before you blink.

I have never met anyone like him.
I never need to.
My Micah is the real deal.
You can't buy that.

 So, with all the It's A Wonderful Life gumption and sentiment I can muster, to my amazing husband, on his birthday I lift my glass and toast,
"To Micah, the richest man in town..."

"Character is like a tree and reputation like a shadow.
The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing."
                                                   ~ Abraham Lincoln

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Off to a Rocky Advent start...

One of my least favorite qualities in people is the fake.
I like that balance between "keepin' it real" and "Your Facebook status is NOT a diary."

Every woman has her Holiday Breaking Point and this is the story of mine. 
Maybe yours will be in the post office while mailing packages.
Or decorating the tree with rowdy children.
Or burning cookies.
Whenever and whatever yours is, take heart.
You are not alone.
Oh, and be kind to your fellow females when their meltdown comes.

My HBP 2o13.
(It came early, lucky me.)
You see, I was totally into getting our Advent countdowns started.
I have a system of three things so that each boy gets to do one a day until Christmas.

We wrap up 24 books, like so:

And we have our homemade Advent calendar, like so: 

And this year, we added in these cute little bags, like so:

Only the story of how the bags got their home is a tad, um, not so Martha Stewart.
Maybe cigarette trading-jail Martha, but not "It's a good thing" Martha.

You see, I stamped/painted the numbers on the bags. Easy, done, looked good.
I placed a "Ticket" that I made (yes, made! I am tech challenged so I was kind of proud
of this part. No computer was crashed during the making of this card! Yeah!) and a
chocolate goes inside each bag. (the tickets are for various home perks, like skipping a chore, extra lunch cookies, etc.)

Then I got the bright idea to hang them from the ever adorable red baker's twine.
This would've been fine except for I also decided to use cute holiday Washi Tape to hang them on the wall.
Yeah, so Washi Tape... not so strong. I started to have my doubts about the sustainability
of my Advent Wall Art.

So that night, as I lay in bed, every few hours, I would hear a distinctive thud, knowing it was my cute little bags hitting the floor. And yep, I admit it.
I was so mad about getting woken up, repeatedly,
that I thought some not so nice thoughts about those cute little bags.
HBP had arrived at my door and I was not ready for it.
At one point when Micah leaned up upon hearing one of the thuds, I just muttered, "It's just my stupid, freaking Advent bags falling down." 
What kind of a heathen mom makes Advent bags and then curses their existence?!

So the next day, I set about making things right.
This old crib spring was supposed to be hung for a photo display a long time ago.
Someone couldn't decide what color to paint it though, so it sat.

But it works just right for my vile, adorable little Advent bags.

The moral of the story is...
Um, there is no moral. Just keep it real and be on the look out for other women in your life going through HBP. I have seen it on the baking aisle at the grocery store, the class Christmas party, and even, the Christmas tree farm. Encourage one another, and offer soy, I think that helps with the hot flashes, oh wait, wrong woman disease.  Offer wine...