Yesterday was the 10th anniversary of the day I married my best friend. We're celebrating with a trip to New York City in November, so we decided not to really celebrate on the actual day-of. (Plus, we're on a family road trip to North Carolina, so the focus has been packing and getting down the road -- thus this blog post wasn't written yesterday.) However, one of Matt's love languages is gift-giving, so I thought I'd get him a little something to commemorate the day.

Thinking it might be a fun place to start, I looked up the traditional 10th anniversary gift which, according to, is tin or aluminum. "The pliability of tin and aluminum is a symbol of how a successful marriage needs to be flexible and durable and how it can be bent without being broken."

What a beautiful illustration of the place I feel like we've reached in our marriage! After 10 years, we've discovered each others faults, realized we can't change them, and learned to strengthen where the other is weak. After 10 years, we've acknowledged that the goals and plans we had on our wedding day may not all become reality, but we're committed to the adventure that is before us. After 10 years, we've learned that our spouse cannot meet all of our needs (that took some counseling sessions) but it's OK to look to friends, hobbies, and God for some fulfillment.

Right now we are in another "pliable but durable" phase in our marriage. Kids are starting school, I'm looking at taking a job outside the home, and Matt's responsibilities are changing again. Transitions are rarely smooth and easy, but I am confident our marriage will survive to the other side. What will the next 10 years bring? If I've learned anything, it's that I have no idea what God has planned. But I know our aluminum marriage will survive.

So, what gift did I give him? An aluminum water bottle with a cool design on it. He can stay healthy and be green -- perfect!
So we were in the car and we had this conversation:

P: Hey, Mom, I learned something new from Kung Fu Panda.
M: Really, what did you learn?
P: I learned that when we're upset, we're supposed to eat a lot.


M: Um, well, a lot of people do eat when they're upset, but it isn't really healthy for our bodies. It's best for us to pray to God when we're upset. We could also talk with someone or go for a walk. But you should only eat when you're hungry.

(BTW, I am an emotional eater, so this one was difficult for me, too!)

These are my favorite moments with my boys. They come when I least expect it -- so I have to always be prepared. When they suggest a topic, and I'm able to put together a rational and correct answer for them, then I feel like a successful parent.