Thursday, February 7, 2008


My Jeff has a birthday today. I am married to a man in his 30's for one more year. I always have trouble figuring out what to get him because we've just had Christmas and I seem to use all my best ideas then—which aren’t very great in the first place. If I do find something fun and exciting, he usually winds up buying it before I can give it to him. I tease him about the things he wants. They start at something cheap he can pick up for himself at Wal-Mart and then jumps to a Best Buy or Lowes purchase which would tempt me to open up (another) credit card account just so I could get the discount and then cut the card into pieces. I am never very confident in what I have wrapped up but Jeff is a gracious receiver (as long as it fits and doesn’t make him look like “Omar the Tentmaker”) and he seems to genuinely love whatever he opens. So today, at some point, he will “open” this post. I have made a list of things I have learned about him and come to love about him since his 24th birthday during our first interesting year of marriage. Will he genuinely love it? I don't know. A few hours will tell. Here goes.......
He is MORE than handy around the house. In our first house alone, he painted EVERY wall, refinished kitchen cabinets, laid linoleum and carpet, painted porches, hung wallpaper, changed out light fixtures, hung moulding, painted kitchen appliances and hung shutters. I found him just as comfortable with computers, wires, TV’s and stereo equipment. As the daughter of one who has trouble working the remote control and alarm clock, I was in shock after the first week of living with him. So, in my mind he is a mix between Carter Oosterhouse and a member of the Geek Squad at Best Buy. (By the way, Jeff, you are MUCH cuter than Carter.)

He loves a celebration and will pitch in to make it happen. As his wife, I feel VERY celebrated and appreciate the effort he makes in order to see all our celebrations happen throughout the year.

He is able to lead well in many arenas but most importantly, he never neglects his leading and shepherding of us.

His ability to bring order and peace to any situation, whether it be in our home, in a meeting, with friends, during a church service, amazes me. For me, when he is present, all is well.

He challenges me on a regular basis as part of his role as my husband. It’s never fun, but I have learned to appreciate and value it. He is intent on "washing me with the Word". (Thank you.)

He doesn’t mind vacuuming or using anything else around the house that has a “power” button.

He dreams big……….. bigger than my cautious heart ever thought about. Thankfully, he takes seriously his marching orders from the Lord praying for me all the while.

The grace of God flows easily from his heart to mine. His capacity to forgive and extend grace far surpasses what I or anyone could deserve.

He can preach. He is absolutely my favorite preacher. I miss hearing what God lays on his heart week after week. However, I do enjoy getting to sit with him in church from time to time.

If he stops by the store- Sams, Costco, grocery, Lifeway, Lowes etc.- he ALWAYS calls to see if I need anything.

He is a great communicator and if someone were to look under any of our rugs, they would find nothing but dust. At our house, everything is out in the open because of Jeff.

His love for coffee compels him to make it at least twice a day and his tolerance to caffeine is impressive. He also prefers a “drinking buddy” so I have learned to like it (especially when he makes it for me for he is WAY more liberal with the calories) and I am beginning to hold my own with the caffeine.

He just might be more competitive than my big brother. This is still a toss up since I have not fully recovered from all the “in your face” tauntings from Blake. To our credit, we have learned to play on the SAME team when we play cards……..a turning point in our marriage.

He is an excellent daddy. His parenting of Julia and Brighton is beautiful and strong in every way. The kids exuberantly anticipate every Wednesday night because they get him all to themselves.

He hates shots, enjoys getting the mail, reads fast, keeps up with old friends, loves the lake, doesn't require much sleep, likes James Taylor, will go to great lengths to have an orderly garage, thinks I am capable of anything, cooks a mean turkey, loves the smell of leather, doesn’t mind a chick flick every now and then, reads people like a book, never complains, prefers to stay up late, and eats just about anything I prepare. He is a great shopper, my biggest fan, a super gift giver, impressive at Galaga, not bad at Ms. Pac Man and terrible at Jeopardy. He has a great laugh, a dislike for dancing, a "thing" for watches, a soft spot for single Moms and little girls named Julia Karis, big (and valuable) opinions regarding decorating, Fair skills (can actually win things at the Fair) and the best “salt and cinnamon" hair I have ever seen.

Jeff, you are more than I ever dreamed of all those years in my pink second story room in pine tree country. My cautious heart never could have come up with someone as wonderful as you. What I love the most is that God has your heart more completely than I could have hoped for in a husband and friend. Your steady walk, your ability to dream, your passion for others to know Him, your focused efforts to see the Church working together drives me to want to know Him, serve Him and love Him wholeheartedly.

Happy Birthday.


TJ Wilson said...

Um, WOW.
This is amazing.
I'd say you make him sound great, but he really is. I've seen it myself.
Happy Birthday, Jeff - and I can't wait to see what you post come September!

Anonymous said...

Tears again! What at way with words! but what a guy! I may be biased but I can recognize Jeff in all that. He is very special and that's coming from his mother-in-law. I'm delighted that he's the one who got my little girl. JID

Anonymous said...

I thank the Lord for Jeff and you. For placing you both in my life at just the right time to sow His seed of salvation in my heart. May He continue to bless both of you as you yield to His ways and serve Him. Love you! Kath

Raechelle Ivy said...

I agree 110% with the TURKEY and the PREACHING!!!
I miss them both!!! But I cherish all that I did get to experience!!!

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful tribute and great example of how to honor your husband.

Anonymous said...

Good grief, it almost makes me sick. Nah, love ya bro. bsd

nikki said...

happy belated birthday!! one of my favorite things is the way he greets me with a warm hug- and calls me: ms. nikki.