Friday, November 26, 2010

My favorite "things"

I'm a firm believer that the best things in life aren't "things". Here are some of my favorites!

This is me and my boyfriend of almost 3 years. We've dated practically all throughout my college career (since my 2nd semester, since his 2nd year) and I couldn't imagine living life without this amazing man! We met my first semester of college at band camp (we were both in the college marching band). He played tuba, I was in the drumline playing bass drum. We became friends quickly and sometime over Christmas break, I saw his phone number on Facebook and sent him a text just for fun (just texting a friend!). We quickly developed a "crush" on each other that developed into really liking each other, into dating, then quickly developed into love. I have known for a long time that he is "the one"- even before I fell in love with him, I knew he was the one I'm supposed to spend forever with. *end of corny rambling*

This is my sweet 1 year old yellow lab, Marshall. I adopted him when he was 4 months old. My dad's secretary told us about him because one of her long-term friends and that friend's husband had him as a Christmas present from their daughter. However, her husband got terminal cancer and could not handle a 4 month old lab. My dad's secretary is a good friend of the family and she told me ASAP about the situation and my dad being the generous, caring person that he is, could not let me NOT adopt this little fella! I love him sooo much!

These are my parents at their wedding in February 1982. My mom was 20 and my dad was 22, and they were both poor college students. The odds were against them in many ways and a lot of people thought they would eventually divorce, but their marriage pulled through as a result of their determination to make their marriage work. 28 years later, they have proved everybody wrong. They are proof that marriage is much more than that "romance" love (believe me, it's a big part of what keeps the attraction, I know)- real love faces many trials and can always persevere as long as you take time to nurture it and resolve any problems. My parents taught me that. My dad and I are two peas in a pod, even down to the personality type (both INFJ). He has been one of my best friends ever since I can remember. Usually we get along great, but at times we butt heads. He will always be the best man I'll ever know as well as the person who gives the best advice. My mom is one of the most compassionate and caring people I know. She is the best listener and is always there to support me, and she will be the first to tell me when I'm in the wrong about something. Both of my parents are the most caring and generous people I will ever know. Perhaps this is why I'm such a "softy" too!

This picture is really old. I had just turned 18 and my parents and I had just returned from a trip to Hawaii as a high school graduation present for me. The two wonderful people standing on either side of me are my grandpa (left) and grandma (right). They have always been there to take care of me when my parents had to work (when I was born, my mom wanted to be a stay-at-home mom but my parents were both too poor for her to do that; if my mom quit her job, we would have had to move to the ghetto basically). They moved from their hometown to the town my parents were currently living when my mom found out she was pregnant with me just so they could take care of me while my mom had to go to work (my mom got my grandpa a good job, don't worry!). My grandma and I have always been especially close. I've been cooking with her ever since I can remember, and she is a large part of the reason I love to cook. We can talk about anything and everything for hours on end. My grandpa and I have an odd relationship. He's never been much of a talker and isn't the best conversationalist, but now he has been diagnosed with dementia (about 5 years ago, I guess). He's still pretty sharp, but he has definitely changed a lot over the years so our conversations don't really go on very long. I will always love him and admire him for not just giving up when he found out he had dementia. He's been fighting it from day 1, taking medications prescribed by his neurologist and keeping himself busy so he doesn't fade away into atrophy. My grandparents are both incredibly strong, generous, loving people and I wouldn't trade them for anything.

I know not everyone who reads this will feel the same, but my faith has always been a large part of who I am. Don't worry, I'm not trying to "preach" or "convert" anybody by any means. My faith in God has carried me through many tough times in my life. Times when I doubted God's existence is when my faith and prayer have pulled me through a situation I wouldn't have gotten through otherwise. There has been an instance where I believe an angel was sent to me when one of my tires caught on fire (I didn't see him come or go, but I saw him put out the fire- he left before I could thank him)- if that man (or angel) hadn't came to the rescue, my whole car would have caught on fire and who knows what would have happened to me. Basically, I wouldn't be who I am today without my faith in God.

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