monday, monday

Buenos Day, people! And how are you this fine freezing rain morning? We here on the farm are very well, thank you.

I have not one- I say again, NOT ONE photo of Curt’s par-tay extravaganza. We were having too much of a good time. But Marie documented it quite well, so take a peek: birthday photos

Friday night, Curtis James turned 30 with style. Since moving out here and becoming an official adult, time with The Boys has become scarce. I asked Marie to create a Boys Only Treasure Hunt. For 2 hours, 20 gentlemen raced around Grand Rapids solving clues and closely avoiding traffic violations. After the hunt, they joined us ladies at the ice rink for a little pizza, cake, and skate-o-ramma. I have to say, I have not laughed that hard in a very long time. It was grand. Marie, you are a wonderful friend. Thank you so much.

Someone thanked me on Saturday for a great time and I said, “No! Really. It was our pleasure!” And, it was. I realized, looking around, that these people- all of them- tell the story of our life here in Grand Rapids. The past 6 years can be found in all of them… college family, biological family, church family, study family… and all the new kiddos and all the laughs. It was really something. I could have never known exactly 6 years ago that it would turn out this way.

You see, I met Curt on his birthday. In 2002, I was working for Young Life’s Oakbridge (where I met many of you) as a Program Specialist. My job was to host and help and organize and play. Curt was visiting my friend Kevin (his college roommate), and Kevin called form LA to see if they could come down to see camp and maybe do a little work. I remember welcoming them late that night- February 22nd, and learning Curt was from Grand Rapids. I remember trying to make conversation, like the good host that I was, and saying “I have a friend in Grand Rapids! She’s in nursing school… and she’s tall and blonde and gorgeous and funny as all getout.” And I remember him looking at me sideways and saying, “Well, that’s just about every girl in Grand Rapids.” Oy. Tough crowd. No sparks, if you hear what I’m sayin’.

The next morning, Kevin and Curt and two high school boys and I painted the carnival fence green. I was wearing Carrharts. Kevin asked me how I was doing and I said I was dandy. And he asked me where I thought I’d be in five years, and I said hopefully in a cabin with my fireman on a white horse somewhere in Montana. And he said, “You should talk to Curt- he’s a builder and he just got back from Montana.” And I remember looking at him and thinking, ‘Right. Do you know how many guys come through this camp? How many amazing guys? And they all leave.’ Curt never said a word to me that day. I remember thinking he was a great guy- good with the high school kids and great with Richard, our maintenance guy. I remember him asking me for sunscreen, because it was sunny and hot in February in San Diego. And I remember them leaving after dinner that night and me saying, “Nice to meet you.” and him saying, “When you’re ready to build that cabin, you let me know.” And I remember not giving it another thought… because, well, the boy didn’t say but five words to me and he lived in Grand Rapids and I don’t make great first impressions and he was just another guy passing through.

Never underestimate the power of Carrharts, people. A week later, Kevin called to ask if it was ok to give Curt my address. Eh? What followed was a 6-month courtship that ended in me moving to Grand Rapids in September of 2002. He would come back to California to visit 3 times- in May, in July, and in August… for a total of 11 days together. He even drove to Cleveland to meet my parents without me that summer. I was wrapping up my journey with Young Life that summer, and I thought I’d take a break and move to LA with Chelsey. Instead, John and Renee packed up my U-Haul and sent me on my way East to Grand Rapids. That was the beginning, people. You know the middle. Ridiculous. All of it. But, so very good.

Looking around last Friday night, I could not be more thankful. God had truly blessed us in this place. This frozen tundra of a place. He has made us a home where we are so very loved.

It’s Monday here, which means Torah homework and cleaning. I better get to it. Thanks for walking down Memory Lane with me. You rock my face off.

[edited at 2:30pm to add: I finished my Torah homework- including ALL the questions and The Big Man Upstairs is rewarding me with the finale of the NasCar race that was postponed yesterday. People. All is well.]


About texasnorth

TexasNorth is a little farm in Western Michigan. It's home to 5 chickens, 25 longhorn cattle, a coonhound (Banjo), 1 barn cat, a husband, and 3 ridiculously funny children. The mom of this zoo has been known to mow the lawn in a skirt and roast marshmallows after dark. View all posts by texasnorth

15 responses to “monday, monday

  • Becky Swann

    WHOA I get to be the first comment! I don’t think that has ever happened, I feel like I should type fast lest someone beat me to the punch! I love that picture of Rylie with the balloon hair!

  • Becky Swann

    now that the PRESSURE is off for first comment I can say what I really wanted to say.
    Jeremiah and I knew eachother in college even went out a few times and nothing happened until one day after we both we graduated and I was working at state farm with Sunday I went across the street to the gas station and ran into him looking good in his CARHARTS it threw me for a loop I turned around and ran into the door! it was indeed the start of something grand. And we will never underestimate the power of carharts:)

  • sunday

    Abe is so sweet and cute all pooped out from way too much partying. I love how we got the middle of your story first, and the first part in the middle over a year later. it takes us along time to tell a story now doesn’t it! The part that makes me sad is i was never apart of any of it. oh how times flies! we will have to change this story soon. make sure we all see each other. how far are you from chicago?

  • Jessica, Myron and Rylie

    I dont know but you made a GREAT first impression with me!!!

    Happy 30 Curt!!

  • KatieKate

    Sun- I’m 2.5 hours away from Chigago. It’s the perfect place for a girls’ weekend!

  • Anna

    I think you know how happy I am for you, but I wanted to say it anyway. I’m so proud of you and impressed at the chance you took, and no one deserves it more than you.

    And God bless Curt for having the wisdom to see it!

    Now, if you could have him write his version of this story, I would love it. 🙂

  • JVK

    the adrenaline was pumping Friday night as we raced through grand rapids… a little scary, but very fun.
    thanks for letting us walk this part of the story with you, it has been great and we look forward to many more chapters.


  • Anonymous

    Anna Foster ,call me …..

  • KatieKate

    Dad, I KNEW you were goning to do that!!! I could have bet my retirement on it!

  • thekooiet

    I am SOOOO glad to come along with you on this story of life! It’s been absolutely wonderful and blessed. As Jeff said, we look forward to sharing many more chapters with you!

    Friday evening was a blast from start to finish…what an evening!!

    I love how you and Curt met…and courted…I remember a conversation on a late night around a campfire about that. I think courting is a beautiful thing.

    Jeff and I never really dated…I’d say we just hung out. I wished that he’d courted me. Instead, he took me to get a tattoo….maybe that counts?? How romantic, huh.

    Way to go on pulling off a fabulous surprise! Steaks. Ha.

    Btw, I’ve seen you in carrharts…you do look pretty darn cute. Not many women can pull that off. 😉

    AND, I have a huge bruise on my knee…man, that ice hurts.

  • Jimmy

    I would say this is still the beginning wait until 30+ together then maybe the middle starts, ask your folks. Curt does not look 30 so forget it, maybe 24. The Pictures were great although the ice arena looks like one near here (Artic Ice)must have been the same builder. We in Plymouth are glad you all had fun. Tell Curt his BD present is at Duck Lake. And remind me to tell you Denise and my story.

    And I am glad you let all of us be involved virtually from afar.


    PS Abe looks like he is trying to get you to do something…

  • Jimmy

    All you great lady chefs need to go over to Ilva’s site; Lucullian delights and help add ingredents to this month’s paper chef contest.

    You won’t believe what’s there now.


  • the bantam menace

    yayy!! i LOVE LOVE LOVE all your comments to the photos… I felt a little silly about all the pictures with the bowl of ice, but now they tell a great little story 😉

  • Miss Laura

    We were so sorry to have missed it on Friday…I was really hopeful that we could steal away for some cake, but alas…I’d make some note about the moving process, but I’ll save those morsels for my blog, which will hopefully be written tomorrow night. I’m at the office at 8:45 because we don’t yet have internet at the new house.

    Happy 30, Curty – shame on you for being so aloof with dear Kate at first…but at the same time, I can picture it, and (with you)it’s very endearing!

  • Anonymous

    I could practically hear “Hail to the Victors” playing in the background when Gary came home Friday night. I’m sure he told you that this was his 4th consecutive win in a road rally/scavenger hunt race. Yes, he thinks he’s something. And, yes, he is. Thanks for providing him with the chance to see, once again, that he’s amazing.
    I would have loved to be there for the big fun, but there was a TWIRP dance costume emergency going on, and I got to teach three boys how to use a sewing machine. I’m sure you can appreciate the beauty in that kind of a night as well.
    Love you.

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