Thursday, March 31, 2011

{Embrace} Seven Years and Cherry Blossoms

Dear Ayla,

The meaning of this moment is probably lost on you for right now, especially since you slept through most of it. But just as my participating in the Embrace movement is a way to record for you what your mommy looked and lived like when you were a baby, I want you to know your whole story, going back to how Mommy and Daddy fell in love.

Seven years ago this week, I was visiting friends in Washington, D.C. Two people I usually spent time with while here were Michael and John. This particular weekend Michael was busy, so John and I found things to do. (Now, I was not one of those girls you will meet who has more guy friends than girl friends, I just happened to get along well - in a strictly platonic sense mind you - with these two guys.)

One of the things your dad, (oops, getting ahead of myself here) John and I did was go for a motorcycle ride. That night we met up with a group of friends for dinner. After dinner, John said goodnight to me with a "holy half hug" (I'll tell you all about this later) and told me, "You're such a blessing."

(Yeah. Exactly!)

The next day, a beautiful spring Sunday, during church I noticed what an amazing smile John had.


Since Michael was still busy that afternoon, John and I decided to go for a run around the National Mall.

Now, here's where it gets good. I had just trained for and run a half-marathon, so I was in pretty awesome shape. John, on the other hand, hadn't been running so much. Let's just say, I kicked his butt!

That, and the beauty of the in-full-bloom cherry blossoms surrounding this city's beautiful monuments and memorials, made this one of my favorite runs in my entire life. Afterwards, John and I rested under one of the trees and told each other our life stories, neither of us having any idea that soon and forever after this day our life stories would be intertwined.
(Photo taken March 28, 2004)

I told John on our way home that this was the kind of day to fall in love. I meant fall in love with Washington, D.C., of course, but we have to watch our words, baby girl!
Young John in his old Jeep Wrangler (Photo taken March 28, 2004)
Two weeks later we started dating, 16 months later we got married, and nearly 7 years later we were blessed with you.

So you see, my precious jewel, this is why your mommy and daddy will always try to take you to see the cherry blossoms. You never know, maybe you'll meet your own love there someday!


  1. so sweet!

  2. Golly! What a touching story, and great picture, too. Love the embrace the camera!

  3. So so so sweet!! I love that top pic!

  4. Congrats to you and John on how far you've come together!

  5. Sounds like I need to find a girl and hurry on down to DC!

  6. looooove hearing that story. and love seeing the beautiful cherry blossoms!

    (and wait -- john is leaving? being deployed?? i so need to catch up with you...)


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