Thank you for getting married 35 years ago today. Thank you for having me six years later, even after a miserable pregnancy with Lis three years before. Thank you for staying married, through the good times and the bad, and giving me an example of perseverance and faithfulness.
Thank you for filling our house with laughter and love. Thank you for drilling into us from childhood that "people are more important than things." Thank you for your examples of how to put other people ahead of ourselves.
Mom, thank you for using baking and cooking to teach me fractions. Thank you for letting us do school outside when the weather was nice. Thank you for quitting your job to teach us at home when public school was no longer working for us, even though that was a pretty radical thing to do at the time. Thank you for reading to me when I had to spend summer days in bed with cucumbers over my eyelids because they got sunburned, for library trips that send us home staggering with piles of books, for introducing me to some of my best friends in life - Betsy, Tacy, and Tib; Anne Shirley and Emily Starr; Lucy and Edmund and Jill and Eustace and Aravis and Shasta; Bilbo Baggins; Randy and Rush, and Portia and Julian; so many characters who have helped shape me into the person I am today. Thank you for sticking to your guns and making us eat homemade whole wheat bread instead of storebought white bread. Thank you for teaching me to sew and knit and tear apart walls and above all, to think for myself.
Dad, thank you for for impromptu trips to McDonalds for fries and hot chocolate even when we couldn't afford it. Thank you for joining the board of the skating club so you could be involved in our sport. Thank you for getting on the ice with the other dads and not being embarrassed to skate to "Born to be Wild" in our ice show. Thank you for going with me to the '98 Worlds, so I could see some of my favorite skaters ever in person, and thank you for asking Todd Eldredge for his picture when I was too shy to say anything. Thank you for working ridiculous hours at your job so Mom could stay home with Lis and me. Thank you for letting me work at that job with you when I was old enough, so I could start to earn my own income and learn about hard work. Thank you for teaching me to fish, to throw and catch (even though I'm still terrible at that), to shoot a gun and drive a car and how to keep my head in an emergency.
Thank you both, most of all, for showing us faith and love and godliness, for raising us to be strong-minded, independent women unashamed of who and what we are.
My greatest hope as a parent is that someday my girls will have the kind of relationship with Carl and me that Lis and I have with you.