Highlights of our weekend:
~discovering that we only need to drive for seventeen minutes to feel like we’re really away
~four kids more excited to stay at nana and papas than they were sad that we were leaving
~the hot tub and wearing the bathing suit I scored on Land’s End Canvas for less than twenty bucks
~steaks so tender we could cut them with a fork
~a salad so yummy I had it all gone before the waiter could even check to see how it tasted and then being so unabashed by it that I didn’t even have the good grace to blush
~realizing the only picture I took was of the steak and my dessert with Happy Birthday spelled out in chocolate (the waiter must have forgotten I’ve given up sugar for lent…shhh)
~realizing how very many varieties of zippered Bible cases there are in Grand Rapids
~a funny speaker that taught us about how to love each other better and told stories in slang
~late night texts from Grant until nana busted him
~lunch at The Green Well
~a love letter written by each and read to the other, making us sit silent for a bit as we thought about the road we’ve been traveling and how faithful God is
~plump organic raisins cooling in our ice bucket to be grabbed in handfuls between sessions
~couples buying and wearing matching Weekend to Remember sweatshirts, shoulders creased as they walked, holding hands, to the elevator banks
~putting a stake in the ground at a time when it feels like marriages are falling like a house of cards around us. vowing not to let it happen to us. even if we have to go to one of these hokey wonderful things every year. even if it takes a radical shift in thinking. even if it means sacrificing ourselves for the other. even if. whatever it takes.
~seeing nana’s car drive up on Sunday, spilling four happy, yummy smelling kids out into our arms for a couple hours of swimming before heading home as a family, the way it should be.
~a message from papa retelling us how great our kids are and how thankful he was to spend the weekend with them. nana had the same message written across her face as she pulled up.
~a note on the door as we pulled into my parent’s driveway to pick up the kids stuff…”We are sleeping…until Wednesday.”
~this man who I love so much and who has such goodness in him, such goodness, and who loves to be with me, even if it means vacationing seventeen minutes from home and at a marriage conference, for crying out loud. He’ll take it for the sake of alone time and steak dinners and seeing his bride laugh. And his bride will lay abed all night after returning home and run the weekend over in her head on a loop. Over and over again and each time finding new nuggets of truth and goodness and assembling them all into a mosaic of what God is doing here. And she’ll be so blessed.
This is me being real. Thankful for a getaway. Thankful for nana and papa who made it all possible. Thankful for a God who is not going to let us settle into complacency, but will continually challenge us to do the hard work of making it better.