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Showing posts from December, 2015

Lessons from a Jeep

My husband has been restoring an old Willy's jeep for the last couple years. It's a very slow, messy, and expensive process. But he loves it.

When this 70 year old Jeep and I first met, I couldn't believe my husband had actually spent money on the old thing. Then he asked me to join him for a ride in it. Are you crazy, honey?  I mean this thing rattled and shook and smoked and had some parts taped together. I was worried it'd fall apart in a very cartoon-esque style and leave us sitting on the bare road with Joe holding nothing but a steering wheel! 


At the moment the Jeep is not ride-able. It's sitting in various pieces in the garage while Joe painstakingly works on each individual one. I'm honestly a little awed at how much goes into this little Jeep. How many parts there are to something that I normally just turn a key for! I really have no idea sometimes just how intricately and creatively even the simplest machine is put together!

And then one day this week I…

Skills

My husband came home early today and started working on changing out the water lines in our new place (it's an old house and they desperately needed it.) I watch him pull out the p-trap. I listen to the familiar buzzing of the reciprocating saw under the house. I smell the primer being brushed onto the PVC fittings. I can tell at what point in the process he'll need me to hold something and be ready for it. I've seen and heard it all dozens of times...and frankly I have started taking it for granted. 

I started thinking about how lucky I am that my husband knows exactly where to turn the water off and how, which tools and supplies he'll need, and about how long it will take him to finish. So out of curiosity, I asked him...

"Honey, how much would someone charge to come out and do this to a house?"

"Anywhere between $800 and $1200."

I was floored. I figured it would be a lot, but that was about twice as much as I was expecting him to say.

Then I realized …

What's in a Name?

I love roasted marshmallows. But this one was particularly good. It was somehow more gooey and more sweet and more delicious than any marshmallow I had before. Normally, I just grab the cheapest bag of marshmallows I can find. I mean, it’s just a marshmallow, right? But in my hurry to get back home in time for company to arrive, I just grabbed the first bag I saw…and it happened to be a $3 brand-name bag. But could a name on a bag make that much of a difference? It had to be. I had bought generic marshmallows in many cities and from many stores and gas stations, and none of them had ever been this good.

“A good name is to be desired more than riches”
I clearly heard that verse in my mind as I enjoyed my second and third brand-name marshmallow. 

A good name…

Like my husband’s…

Everywhere I go, I meet someone who has worked with or knows my husband. And I have never heard anyone speak anything negative about him. It’s amazing really. Everyone knows him as hardworking, fun-loving, generous, a…

Brave

Oak paneling. Leather chairs. Sweet pipe smoke intermingled with the richness of men's cologne. The sound of raspy voices sharing stories and the occasional deep-voiced laugh. Somewhere in my mind there is a memory of a place like this. A place my dad used to go when I was a child and I used to love to follow. A place whose very walls could tell stories of danger, and romance, and heroism. It's a place where you could breathe in the very essence of masculinity and camaraderie. I felt small (in a good way). I felt safe. I felt brave.

When we were courting, I used to feel that same way with my husband. Everything he did was amazing, and there was nothing he couldn't do. But too often I've allowed life to suck the wonder out of our relationship. What happened? Where did the danger, and romance, and heroism go?

It is still there, but I have failed to see it. I have forgotten how to see the knight in shining armor, and only see the knight who leaves his armor on the floor and…