This is my beloved and this is my friend (sol. 5:16)

10 years ago, I met bryan, a college freshmen, 18 years old.
9.5 years ago, we started dating.
8 years ago, we got engaged and
7 years ago, we married,
in Arkansas, his home-church, on a blistering hot day in august. I went All In. for the first time, I was truly shepherded, protected, cared for like Jesus cares for the church. Taken out of the cheap plastic planter and pushed into deep, rich soil. Seven years in, I’ve never felt more grateful for bryan. Who humbly is the servant-leader of our family, who protects us, guides us. I am thankful that he chose me, and that he chooses me each and every day.

got to snatch up the good ones young–we were 19 in this picture!

six years together

sunday bryan and i celebrated our six year anniversary

our first valentines together, when we were nineteen

we started dating midway through our freshmen year of college and were married senior year. i remember noticing him the first week of school and thinking how cute and cool he was. we were both immediately “dating” other people.

at an outdoor concert, i randomly ended up sitting behind him and the girl he was dating at the time, and i thought “why am i always dating dorky guys like the one i’m dating now? why do cute boys like bryan like goth girls? i wonder if i could be goth. no. nope. but i can wear my supercool striped pants” (just an example of my eighteen year old self’s inner dialogue, in case you were curious). 

we were in the same freshmen get-to-know-each-other group, so i would see him pretty often but i thought he was just completely out of my league.

then over christmas break, i was shopping in target with my sisters and i got a phone call from a number i didn’t recognize. i answered, shocked that a boy was calling me, and, holding my hand over the speaker, whispered to karen “oh my goodness, THE cutest and coolest boy at union is ASKING ME OUT!!!”  so i said yes and we did go to the dance together and the rest is history.

i’m so thankful that we met young and married young–i feel like we’ve been able to grow up together. i’ve seen him grow up into a strong christian man, humble and servant-hearted, a spiritual leader for me and our daughters, and he’s changed me too, for the better. so much of what i’ve done in life i know i wouldn’t have had the courage to do if he hadn’t been by  my side.

so, all that to say, i’m grateful for my marriage to the CUTEST and COOLEST boy in school!

inked

my husband got a tattoo last week; this is the shema in hebrew — “hear oh Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one”. and is followed in the Bible by “love the Lord with all of your heart, soul and strength.” he had been thinking of it for a long time, and so i’m glad he went for it. on a completely different note, tattoos are also hot. or at least i think so.