Friday, December 31, 2010
Thursday, December 30, 2010
It was the summer of 1978. My mom was 19 and had just finished her freshman year at Samford University and dad was about to turn 21, having completed his junior year at Gardner-Webb. Considering that my parents both grew up all over the world, I have to believe it was God’s providence that brought them both to the same small camp training in the mountains of Virginia.
Christian High Adventure (CHA) is an outdoor adventure program that teenagers participate in each summer. My mom was going to be working at Crestridge, a camp for girls, and my dad at Camp Caraway, but the two-week leader training for both camps was held together.
It’s kind of crazy that my mom ended up there in the first place. My grandmother had seen an ad for CHA in a Christian magazine and cut it out and sent it to my mom, knowing that her adventurous and daring daughter would be a perfect fit for that program.
Mom signed up for it right away and headed across the country to embark on a new adventure, having no idea that she was about to meet her future husband.
When mom tells the story of the first time she sawmy dad she always gets a big smile on her face. “I was just standing outside getting ready for the training and then I see this tan guy with dark hair run and jump over the fence and I thought, ‘Man! He’s a hunk!’”
By the time the two week adventure was over, my parents knew that they wanted to stay in touch. They began dating that summer and when they went back to their colleges, they kept in touch by writing letters.
Through the years, their friendship grew, and on December 30, 1982, they were married! I asked my parents today what the hardest and easiest years of their marriage were. They both agreed the first year was the hardest because of the adjustments and changes, but said that it gets easier and easier every year.
My parents have set such a great example for me and my brothers of what a godly marriage looks like. Of course no marriage is perfect, but my mom and dad have always strived to put God first in their marriage and that has given our family a happy and healthy foundation. I’ve been blessed to have such wonderful parents who love each other so much and allow God to lead them as a couple.
Happy 28th anniversary, mom and dad!
Saturday, December 25, 2010
For over 20 years, our family has spent Christmas at "Tarheel Lodge," a cabin in the mountains of North Carolina. When we pulled up to the snow covered lodge today, I was flooded with memories: Opening presents, playing with my cousins, hearing Papa tell stories, eating Grandmother's chocolate fudge, snowball fights...so many fun times!
Now that I live on the opposite side of the country, I treasure these moments with family more than ever before. What a blessing it is to be able to celebrate the birth of Jesus with my favorite people in such a serene, nostalgic place!
Merry Christmas, friends!
Thursday, December 16, 2010
To this day, when I come home one of my favorite things to do on a lazy day is look through the hidden things in our attic. Though we live in a different house now, I still ended up with the bedroom that connects to the attic. I like to go out there late at night when the rest of the family is sleeping and see what I can discover. I don’t know what it is that I love so much about attics. When I open up the attic door, it smells….old, and a little musty. But there’s something about that smell that I love. It brings back memories. When I’m on the floor in the attic looking through old keepsakes, it’s like I’m lost in time.
Tonight was one of those nights. I wiped the dust off of an antique trunk and as I opened it I was giddy with excitement. It probably wouldn’t be that exciting to anyone else, but the hippie spirit within me was overjoyed as I reached in and pulled out an old suede leather jacket that my mom wore when she was a teenager in the 70s. I tried it on and sure enough…it fits! Can’t wait to rock it.
I came across clothes I wore as a baby and letters my parents wrote to each other while they were dating (kinda makes today’s communication via facebook and texting seem a little less romantic!) My favorite find of the night was my “treasure box” from when I was in the fourth or fifth grade. This is a big wooden box my granddaddy made and painted for me for my birthday one year.
It’s been years since I looked through this thing. So long that the paint had melted and stuck to the wood so I had to pry it open. It’s funny the things you think are “treasures” when you’re a kid. I was reminded of what an odd, quirky kid I was (and still probably am) as I sifted through the contents of my beloved wooden box. Inside I found:
*a large stick
*lots of rocks and seashells
*pieces of carpet
*an altoid box with hardwood floor samples inside (?)
*locks of my own hair (I would save it after I got it cut)
*all of my baby teeth (along with a note from my mom to my dad which read: “Hey Babe! Would you put a dollar under Meredith’s pillow? She pulled a molar.” Guess that’s when I found out the tooth fairy looked a lot like my dad.)
*a few happy meal toys
*an empty skittles wrapper (pretty sure it was from a boy I liked)
When I got to the bottom of the box and realized I had looked through all of my “treasures” I laughed a little. Those things were obviously special to me at one point in my life. However, now a candy wrapper, a stick, and locks of my own hair don’t seem like treasures to me.
I wonder if this is what it will be like when I get to heaven. I’ll look back on all the things I treasured on earth and chuckle. It all really is pretty insignificant in the grand scheme of things, huh? Just a thought.
Okay, I’m off to find more treasures in my own little Narnia- my attic closet!