Friday, August 8, 2008 |

Grab your coffee or tea....this is a LONG post!
Today Craig and I are celebrating our 8th wedding anniversary.
About nine years ago Craig and I met at the apartment complex where we both lived. At first we would just notice each other at the pool, but neither of us approached the other. (funny side note: The first time I saw him, he was sitting with an older looking man, and I told my girlfriend, that he looked gay!! ha!.....she didn't agree, and so we made a bet.....I obviously lost! Oh, and come to find out later, that was his DAD with him!! My Father in law!!.....ha!ha! I love to tease him about that still!)
One day while I was at the pool (yes! I have always loved going to the pool....this is NOT a new thing!), he came down and there were only two open chairs, one by me, and one by a mom with two kids screaming!.......he chose the one by me.
BUT, he was NOT about to start the talking.......WAY too cool for that. Apparently he was used to girls approaching him, and was a little taken back by my obvious ignoring of him. (I had already decided that he must be an arrogant jerk because he wasn't approaching ME!! .........yeah I know, I guess we were BOTH slightly arrogant! ha!.....) ANYWAYS, I really don't remember who talked first, but OBVIOUSLY we started talking. From there we developed a "pool friendship" that just stayed at the pool. I didn't even know what apartment he lived in.

When the pool season started coming to an end, I wondered what was going to happen to our friendship because up to this point, there had never even been phone calls between us. Well, he must have thought the same thing, because on one of our last days at the pool, he asked me if I wanted to go to a movie with him that night. Okay, here is where I need to back up the story a little....during this friendship that I had been developing with Craig, I was completely 100% OBSESSED with another guy that I was SURE I would marry. The only thing is, I'm pretty sure the other person didn't EXACTLY feel the same way, because he had stopped calling me, and I had heard that he had been dating someone else!! ha!ha! BUT, that didn't stop me from still thinking that we were going to get back together one day, and I was continually telling Craig this when we would talk at the pool. He thought I was a nut case!

That's okay though, I had already dubbed him as a playa!

So back to the movie thing. When he asked, I was like "is he asking me on a date?" "I'm pretty much engaged to someone else, should I go?" ,"I wonder if @#$*# (the "other guy") will be there, surely by now he's REMOVED the restraining order on me", "but maybe he WILL be there, and get jealous". Okay I was going!

Let's just say that the movie thing wasn't the best of times (he acted like a jerk the whole night barely talking, and I didn't talk to him for about two months after that. Though my mom would keep asking me what was going on with this Craig guy, and if I was still talking to him. To which I replied, he's a jerk, and NO we are not talking.)

One day in the Fall, we ran into each other at the mailbox getting our mail. He could tell that I was being cold to him, and so he asked what was wrong. I told him that I thought he had been really rude that night at the movies. He said he was trying to not make me think that he wanted to be more than friends, because I was SO sure of "ending up" with another guy! To which he coyly asked something along the lines of "how's that working for ya anyway?"
By this time I had reluctantly come to grips with the fact that my "other man" was nowhere to be found and definitely wanted nothing to do with me. Of course I told Craig that I had changed my mind on that whole situation!! hee...hee...

He invited me to come watch football with him, and pretty much that's the end of the story...kind of....... We quickly found every and all excuses to spend time with each other, though neither of us would call it "dating". We were "just friends". This is partly my fault. I had been SO sure about this other guy, and then when Craig and I started hanging out, I had numerously told him that I only wanted to be friends with him. Yeah yeah, I was TOTALLY sending the mixed signal thing.....WHATEVER!

THEN, one night IT happened! (NO! not that, I'm not at the first kiss YET!)

It was a girls night, and my friends and I were going out. We went to Joe's Crab Shack, and about halfway through our meal, guess who walks in? UH HUH, the "OTHER GUY"! You know, the one that I had put my life on hold for.....had cried many of nights over.......yeah you know what I'm talking about. He walked over to me, and after a few awkward words (hi! you look good, no, you look good, blah blah blah) I realized that I was only thinking of one person.....CRAIG!

I got home that night and called him. He wanted me to come see him, and THAT'S when we had our first kiss!! .......Okay now THAT'S the end of the story......the rest is history right? Well, I only WISH all stories had that happy ending. The long and the short of it (because my A.D.D. has kicked in, and I am tired of typing) is that we were married in Maui the following summer, my family, Craig's family, my pastor, and a few friends came with us, and we had a BEAUTIFUL wedding.

Since marrying Craig, we have literally been "through the ringer". Our marriage started out really rough. I got pregnant within the first few months, 9/11 happened and Craig's business suffered greatly causing HUGE financial distress, and things just got rougher. Without going into major detail, it is by the grace of God and ONLY by our complete reliance on Him, that we were able to stay together. (and MANY counseling sessions with a WONDERFUL christian counselor)

Marriage is what made me grow up. I had to. With God's help I have learned, and am still learning how to work really hard at something, and never give up. I can honestly say and very happily say that Craig and I have learned how to love and respect each other, and how to LAUGH together!! THAT is very important! I wish I would have known that a long time ago, because I LOVE to laugh, and had I known it would just be better to laugh than get my panies in a knot, I might have chosen that route!

It has taken me YEARS to be able to laugh at Craig. (those who know Craig, or read this blog regularly, KNOW that he is always doing SOMETHING....most of the time inappropriate) But, I am happy to announce that I FINALLY find the humor in him, and now he makes me laugh all the time! (YES! even about the shaved head.....dishwasher....blaming his "toots" on the kids in public.....etc....etc....ETC....) In fact, he probably tries the hardest to make ME laugh at him, because he LOVES having me think he is funny too! And I will admit, he REALLY is funny! (sshhhhh.....I NEVER admit that out loud!)

One thing that has never faltered or ever been in question, is his fathering. He is truly the BEST dad ever! I'm not just saying that. If you read my blog, you know that I have a lot of "extra curricular activities" (girl's nights, weekends, girl's nights, weekends....) that he allows me to be part of. He actually encourages them, because he knows that my friends are important, and that I need them. He takes care of the kids amazingly! Even after he works a full day, when he gets home he pretty much takes full responsibility for the kids because they are DYING for him, and simply because he LOVES being with them. Basically his Fathering is "OFF THE HOOK!" Ha!Ha!

I love Craig from the bottom of my heart, and I look forward to laughing with him for many many years to come. I'm not sure that I look forward to what he will come up with next.......aaawww, who am I kidding? Of course I look forward to it! He's always reinventing himself with new tactics and trouble! Heck, Madonna should take tips from HIM! Plus it's what keeps our marriage ALIVE!! ha!ha!ha!

Anyways, Happy Anniversary babe! I love you! Now do something to make me laugh.......

Here are pictures from our wedding to celebrate our Anniversary today.

My mom and Hollie.
My sister, me, and Hollie.

My dad.

My mom.

Ha! Check out the look on Craig's face!! Now that's CLASSIC!!.........

Our Pastor and friend Johnny Hunt.

Craig's dad Stan, my brother Pete, and Craig's friend Mike.

JUST MAUIED!!!...get it?? huh? huh??

    Subscribe Via Feed Subscribe to Technorati Subscribe to Google Subscribe to Yahoo! Subscribe to Blogmarks


  • Ivette Falcon

    Happy Anniversary! Loved seeing the wedding pics... you look like a baby! :) So, now you have to tell us, HOW did you end up in Hawaii for the wedding, and how did you get everyone to go along?!!

  • Ivette Falcon

    oh - obviously I meant 'baby' in the best sense of the word! You look beautiful.

  • Christy

    Thanks for posting all the pics Heidi!!! I've only seen that one that Pete and Hollie have at their house. I love them! You looked so beautiful!! I haven't heard about Craig's shaved head, I don't think Jarrett has either. Too bad our birthday things are at the same time!! :( We need to make it work some other time :)

  • Mel @ A Box of Chocolates

    Happy Anniversary to you, Happy Anniversary to you, oh and hubby too. Your wedding pix are gorgeous. It looks like it was picture perfect day.

  • Stacie Stanley

    Love, love the pictures. You look absolutely stunning! If Bruce and I were to do it over again we have both said we would go off to some island as well. You guys definatley did it right!!! Payton says she also wants to get married in hopefully she still wants that when her day comes. :) She also LOVED your pictures. Thanks for sharing! Love you girl!

  • Ashley Gibson

    Oh, Heidi, Your pictures look sooooo beautiful. It is great that Craig still makes you laugh and that your marriage is so strong. Luke and I celebrate 10 years this year. CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!

  • Hollie

    Happy Happy Anniversary!!! I hope yall had a GREAT day together:)

  • Scrapper Mom

    You looked so beautiful in those pictures. I loved every minute of looking at them.

    Another 5 years will be 20 for us and we are planning on renewing our vows in Hawaii. It looks beautiful there. My hubby has been before and loves it, but I haven't.

    Marriage is tough. Definitely something you have to work at, but it's totally worth it. We've been through a lot too, but I can't imagine not having him!

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Anonymous

    Happy Anniversary. Your wedding pictures are gorgeous!

  • ShortOne

    HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!! Hope you had an awesome day of celebration!

    Your wedding pictures are beautiful, thanks for sharing them.

  • Josh

    Happy Anniversary!!!

    Now, upon inspection of this article I notice that your only brother in law, who actually was invited and attended your wedding, has gone completely unnoticed in this posting. Not even a single picture he took.

    How can you leave such a handsome devil out?

    And what about the story of your special visitors on your wedding night?

  • Mama Zen

    Gorgeous pictures!

    Happy Anniversary!

  • Anonymous

    Happy, Happy Day!

  • Anonymous

    Oh, that was such a great story! I laughed, I felt a little emotional(!!), I laughed some more, and the pics were stunning along with it! Better than any magazine read, by far!!! We are coming up to our eighth, too, and reading your start to marriage and how you feel about each other now, and about your husband as a Daddy, well, it just rang so true for me too... isn't God incredible how He brings about "good works", as I like to call them!!! Stay tuned for my little ditty re our eighth next month... And Happy, Happy Anniversary! Enjoy celebrating!!!

  • Rebekah Kern

    Heidi! You were married 4 days before us! Our 8 year anniversary is the 12th!! Love your photos - and you might have inspired me to post a few of my own (if I ever get caught up on my blog - have been in TX with no internet for a week - grrrr)!! Miss you!

  • Connie

    I found your blog recently and enjoy stopping by. I just want to encourage you as I just celebrated 30 years with my hubby and it's not been pure bliss. It's those hard times though that make you dependant on each other and to the Lord which makes your marriage stronger. My husband too, wants to make me laugh and usually during my serious conversation. I ask for him to be normal and he says "I am being normal" and so it goes. With three beautiful children and now a daughter-in-law, son-n-law and 2 beautiful grandchildren and another due in 2 months, life is good! Happy Anniversary! AND keep laughing!!! By the way you've got a great smile and that's probably why your husband loves to make you laugh!

  • Jennifer

    Hey girl! Beautiful pics! Happy Anniversary!

    So did you all get a special dinner out??

  • Fabulous Finds Studio

    Thank you for sharing your story, it's fun to hear how other couples met. Your wedding photos are so beautiful!! Happy Anniversary!

    Have a fabulous day!

  • David, Tammy, Megan and Hobbes

    Happy Anniversary!! Love seeing all the wedding pics. The one of you two at the tree is my fav. Here's looking forward to many more years of Craig doing crazy things to make you laugh, although what tops shaving your head??... :-)

  • Heather

    Happy belated anniversary!! I loved hearing your story, and I especially loved seeing all your pictures. You were a BEAUTIFUL bride!!