Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Land of 10,000 Kisses

So, we of this little Irish Norwegian family are Minnesotans. Not by birth, but by circumstance and choice. This state we call "home" is referred to as The Land of 10,000 Lakes. The truth is that there are probably more like 15,000 or so lakes. There are lakes everywhere in this lovely state. They dominate the landscape, which is a fantastic thing.

Where I live my life is the Land of 10,000 Kisses. Give or take a few thousand. I figure about 10,000 though, since my favorite Irish fellow and I shared our first kiss 10 years ago today. At the very least we've probably shared 3 kisses a day since then (minus a summer apart...Spain for me, DC for him...but we made up for that I'm sure!), so the math says at least 10-15,000 kisses since that first magical one. I remember it clearly. With a giggle.

What's funny is that, the night of our first "real" date---to an Olive Garden in Jackson, MI----the Cutest Irish Fellow on the planet told me he could see me being the mother of his children. I thought it an adorable comment, but never in a million years would've dreamed it to come true! We were opposites attracting, to say the least.

I'm glad that he was right and I was wrong. I'm unbelievably blessed to live with him and our three kidlets in the Land of 10,000 Kisses, where love dominates our landscape through the up and the down. God has richly blessed our lives and orchestrated us to come together at a tiny college in a tiny town 10 years ago. We are so grateful.

image courtesy dakota community college
I am also incredibly grateful to have a love that has grown more deeply than I could have imagined back in 1999 when we started dating, or in 2001 when we tied the knot. Here in Minnesota, wild prairie grass is prevalent and gorgeous. The thing about planting a prairie, like planting a good marriage, is that a lot of the important growth is below the surface. To weather the hot summers and the cruel winter, the prairie has to have a strong root structure. Our love has definitely grown that structure over time, with God at the center of our marriage. We have gone through ups and downs, trials and struggles. But with deep roots, we know that our prairie will continue to thrive and be gorgeous through the years.

I am thankful for that first kiss so many years ago and every one since.

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