Wednesday, June 30, 2010

I can't believe it's been 9 years, but 1 dog, 2 houses and 3 awesome kids later, here we are.
For those who don't know the Rob and Kelli story, I shall share today.
The story of Kelli and Rob...
We both went to a small elementary school together 'back in the day'. We weren't exactly good friends, but Rob's mom was my second and fifth grade teacher (aka: the first Mrs. Bates). :)
We met back up in high school and Rob began checking me out in a study hall class we shared in the library. (He wanted me...tee-hee!) We chatted often over the phone that summer. He was working two jobs and it was rare to get ahold of him, but he always returned my calls even if it was late at night.
We began dating in September of 1996 after he asked me to homecoming and we've been together ever since. We got through some rough long distance when he went off to college in Illinois. I applied to a few different colleges and knew it was the hand of God when the same college Rob was going to accepted me as well. We spent a semester together, but Rob began to persue a music career with his band 'Paging Paul' and left the next semester to return to Florida. I remained at school until that year was over and returned back to Florida. After a semester home, I returned back to college in IL, but missed home so much that after much prayer, decided to remain at home in Florida. Much to my surprise, we were engaged shortly after returning home. (Rob was 20 and I was 19) We planned our wedding for a year and we married on June 30, 2001. Two years later, we moved into our first house, I finished my bachelor's degree in education and we got our first puppy, Riley (whom we still have today...sweet thing).
I began teaching middle school English and during my first year, we found out we were expecting our first baby, Avonlea. The following year, we found out that Lincoln was on his way and after much prayer, we decided I would stay at home and raise our kids. We moved into our current house right before Lincoln's birth. The following year after that, we were blessed with another pregnancy, but that precious little one went to be with Jesus at a tender 7 weeks of age. That was difficult. We decided to persue the adoption of a baby girl from China, but after starting basic paperwork, found out I was pregnant with Norah. What a blessing!
If there's anything I can attribute to the success of our marriage it's God's faithfulness and blessing. He has kept us grounded. He has kept us strong when we felt weak. He has given us joy in the little things when it was hard to find joy. He has gotten us through rough times. He has taught us so much and it brings me such joy knowing that He is going to teach us so much more in the future. I can't wait to spend the rest of my life with my amazing husband.
Now, it's time to get sappy...(skip if you're not good at 'sappy') :)
You amaze me everyday with your loyalty to our family, your dedication, hard work, steadfastness, grace, affection, commitment and love. Your children adore you and I can honestly say that you are their hero. You are our protector and provider. Your love for Jesus is evident and it is clear that you look to Him for ways to lead our family. Thanks for being tender when you know a weary wife needs someone to talk to. Thanks for being committed and for working a job that you may not necessarily love, but know it provides for your family. Thanks for your 'glass if 1/2 full' attitude, even when it's been a rough one. Thanks for supporting my passions in life, even if they're not first priority on your personal list.

"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does nto delight in eveil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails." ~I Corinthians 13:4-8a

Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm; for love is as strong as death, its jealousy unyielding as the grave. It burns like blazing fire, like a mighty flame. Many waters cannot quench love; rivers cannot wash it away." ~Song of Solomon 8:6-7a


The Dryden Family said...

Happy Anniversary, guys!!!
Hope you had a great weekend away!

true blessings said...

aww well Happy Anniversary.I hope your marriage continues to be blessed ,and that your love grows stronger and stronger...:):)

Matthew and Valerie said...

Happy anniversary! What a great story you two have!