This is a guest post from Julie's Husband. I hacked into her blog to post a tribute.
There I sat, lifting the fork full of the fuming casserole toward my mouth in slow motion. As the inevitable collision of my tongue and this dish drew nigh, I wondered, “Are we really going to start this way?” Having worked in a butcher shop all through college, there were few things I disdained more than hamburger, yet one of our first home-cooked meals as a married couple appeared to have a side of beef condensed into a 9x12 pan. I ate my regular sized portion, yet recognized that there was still eighty-seven square inches of rotelle smothered real estate left to be sub-divided. It was only 7 minutes into the meal, and my digestive track was already rebelling against the homeland invasion. It was time for the negotiations to start.
And thus begins the journey of the most amazing wife on earth. A woman who grew up on a cattle farm was willing to give up ground beef (steak is ok) for her husband. Not only did she stop using the pulverized bovine concoction, but over our 9 years together she has completely changed our families eating habits and made us all healthier as a result. I used to get sick a couple of times a year – I’m talking lay in bed and bring me hot liquids for a few days sick – but this past year, other than a few coughs, has been sickness free. This woman cares deeply for her family – and as a benefit, no longer has to deliver hot liquids to the bedside of my frail, pitiful body.
And THIS WOMAN CAN COOK!!! In those first few days it became apparent that I had married a woman dedicated to refining her culinary skills. Every year she gets better and better – even though I can’t even imagine her cooking being any better. However there are two challenges I face, being married to such a marvelous cook. First is that eating out is always a letdown. No one else can prepare a meal like her – because no one else knows what I like and restaurants do not tend to use the quality ingredients she does. Second is that I rarely have the same meal twice. She’s so creative that she gets bored making the same thing again once she’s perfected it. When I grew up, you knew what day of the week it was by what was on the dinner table – very predictable – and that was fine (mom – not complaining here, just stating the facts! Love you mom!). It really is a blessing to have a wife that is so creative with her cooking.
One thing that continues to amaze me about Julie is that she is the hardest working person I know. This is not an exaggeration. The crazy thing is, she’s not someone I would describe as driven. She’s just a hard worker that gets things done. She doesn’t really waste any time – ever. And she doesn’t really have any time-wasting hobbies. Even her ‘hobbies’ are centered on serving other people (cooking, sewing, blogging, reading). She’s such a hard worker, that starting from early in our marriage, when I really need to buckle down and get something done, I ask myself, “What would Julie do?” She would work first and play later.
One of the things I love most about my wife is how fun she is. She’s not afraid to laugh at herself. She’s lighthearted – not taking things too seriously – and she’s very gracious to laugh at my jokes. She helps keep an easy going tone in our home – very few tense moments – and none because of her. We try to laugh a lot around here – and she helps keep us laughing with her witty humor that many of you have seen in her blog writing.
Probably the attribute I am most grateful for in my wife is her trustworthiness. I trust her more than any person I have ever met. She has NEVER EVER given me a reason not to trust her. The other day someone asked us to think through some of our conflicts so we could share a story with others about what happened and how we handled it. I asked her “do you remember how you responded to me whenever I’ve had to seek forgiveness from you?” She couldn’t remember a situation. Not because we haven’t had plenty of ‘conflict’ (and I have had to seek forgiveness from her way more than she has from me) but because she does not hold a grudge – she is quick to forgive and move on. She trusts me completely and assumes that my intentions are good – even when I mess things up.
I could not imagine their being a more encouraging, hard working, trustworthy, respectful, FUN, loving wife on this earth, and I am a blessed man to be married to her.