It's been far too long since I posted about my list of special ways that Jeff has showed his love for me; but during the months since I started this series, I have jotted down a few things from time to time. Like this incident from back in the spring, and the others that follow...
18. One evening, the boys were eagerly clamoring for dessert before I had even gotten to start eating. I think my delay was because I was cutting up the strawberries and whipping the cream for the strawberry shortcake we were having that night. Jeff corrected one of the boys by saying, "Your mother hasn't even gotten to eat one bite of her food! You need to be more patient!" And I felt loved, because Jeff noticed. Sacrifices made for the family seem light indeed when someone notices. :)
19. In an email discussing some plans for the weekend I was gone with Josiah on his SVCC tour, Jeff wrote, "You are going to be missed!" Ya know, it's a nice feeling to be missed. :)
20. In the van on our way to church one Sunday morning, Jeff lowered his voice so the five pairs of ears sitting behind us wouldn't hear him and then apologized for being insensitive during our date the night before. I can't think of a better way to prepare and soften one's heart before a time of communal worship than by hearing a sincere apology from one's spouse. You can bet I was ready to worship that day! :)
21. On one particular Wednesday, Jeff cooked bacon for breakfast and let me sleep in. In the same day, he let me take a nap after I got home from Josiah and David's violin lessons; and I awoke to the delicious smell of fresh salsa being made and meat being cooked for tacos. Sleep and food are some of the best gifts anyone can give me! ;-)
22. Jeff cheerfully took care of the three younger kids during the violin recital that Josiah, David, and I performed in recently. It's not the easiest thing in the world to single-handedly keep all of them, especially Moriah, still and quiet during such an event; but he did an excellent job of it and didn't complain a bit. :)
23. When I wasn't feeling well, he spoke so lovingly and gently to me. "I'm so sorry you're sick" in a sincere voice makes me feel so cherished. :)
24. A few days ago, I wasn't feeling great about something in our relationship, and I timidly brought it up to Jeff. You have to understand that my tendency--well, let's call it what it is: my sin--is to stuff things that are bothering me and to avoid conflict at all costs; and Jeff's tendency is to let his temper flare up. But (I'm grinning big right now) we didn't do that in this situation! Jeff kindly drew out of my heart what was bothering me; and when he had heard my thoughts, he responded with so much kindness and so much reassurance and so much humility. That was the kind of bump in the road that drew us incredibly closer to each other, rather than further apart. And it's really all because of how he responded.
25. All of these things, both big and small, that I've mentioned--and so many more left unsaid--have meant so much to me. But there's one special thing that Jeff did for me recently that is so huge I almost can't believe it. :) He bought a plane ticket for me to go to Canada! You see, when Uncle Jay died, I was LONGING to go to Canada to visit our family there, especially since all my cousins were gathering, some of whom I hadn't seen in 15 years. When I tossed the idea out to Jeff, he immediately took it seriously and set to work finding a plane ticket for me; but as it turned out, despite the HOURS he spent searching for a good deal, it would have been extremely expensive for me to get a ticket at that point in time. He left the decision up to me though and was willing to buy the ticket and have me go then if I so chose, but I couldn't justify spending that much money for it. I came up with another idea though: to figure out what dates we could get a cheap ticket for, and let me go then. :) Jeff agreed. :) And so, if all goes well and the Lord wills it, I will be flying to Canada in January to visit my aunt and our other family members who live close by!!! The anticipation of the trip brings such joy--I can hardly wait to go!--but even more than that, it brings such a deep reassurance that I am loved bountifully by my husband. What a gift.
~ Jeff and I, during a camping trip in the eastern part of San Diego County, probably in 2000 or 2001 ~