Friday, June 12, 2009

5 Years...What a Great Journey!

Today is our 5th anniversary! In some ways it feels like it should be our 10th - not because Craig is difficult to be married to, most of the time :), but because we have done so much in the past 5 years it seems impossible to have fit it all in! In looking back, God's goodness to us is so evident...

We have seen so many wonderful places together! Boston, Cape Cod, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut, La Crosse WI, Portland OR, Atlanta, Chicago, Colorado, San Francisco, Hawaii, Galena IL, San Diego, Seattle...

We built a home together! Our first year of marriage was spent in a nice house on a not-so-nice street...It was perfect for bachelor Craig who started his business out of the basement there, but I was unhappy with all of the college students living in the townhomes across the street. We decided to put it on the market and build a home in Huxley.

Oh what fun it was! We had a wonderful building experience. We actually agreed on most decisions, and those we didn't we both easily let the other have their way! Our home was completed just a few days after we closed and moved out of the other. We were so happy with our new home. We just wanted to be there all the time.

We have been through hard times. Who can ever foresee God's ultimate plans for you? His plan was not in our plans, and we had tough lessons to face financially. A year and a half after we were living "the high life" in our beautiful home, amidst our wonderful travels, devastation struck. Craig was caught in an ugly lawsuit over the sale of his first company, his "baby" that he started while in college, and our world was turned upside down. Our house sat on the market for two years and the bills were piling. We had never had as many "disagreements" as we had during that time. But our relationship was stronger than the battles we faced and God was good to us. Craig made the biggest, most mature and honorable decision he had ever made in his life. He was the bigger person and he settled outside of court, taking a huge loss on the sale of his company. I was so proud of him! After that decision, instead of loss, we saw blessing after blessing. The first was... Our house sold in the summer of '08! We would finally be free of that huge financial burden. What a long awaited answer to prayer.

The second blessing was...on May 8, 2008 we found out we were going to have a baby! After a long year+ of trying to conceive God blessed us with a miracle. What perfect timing, so much better than our own.

In the fall we said goodbye to our beautiful "big red house with a wrap around porch" in Huxley and said hello to our new home...a 3 bedroom split-level duplex in west Ames. It was a very bitter-sweet move, for me anyway. I am a sentimental person so of course I shed some tears for all of the memories we had in that house. But we were looking forward to a new start!

Later in the fall another blessing fell on us...Craig sold his second company, which meant we could finally be completely debt-free! Hallelujah! Craig still had basically the same position in the company, just without the headaches of ownership. A very good situation!

On January 4, 2009 our biggest blessing of all came to us in the form of a beautiful baby boy...Gage William Engelbrecht was born at 10:41am after 17 hours of labor! Those 17 long hours melted away completely as soon as I held my long awaited baby in my arms.

On April 20, 2009 our next blessing...we found out another baby is on its way! (December 24th may not just be Christmas Eve at our house...) Two babies in one year - whew! Just as Gage came to us in God's timing, so would our next baby! A big surprise to us, but we are thrilled and trust in God's continued hand in our lives. Gage is going to be the best big brother, and I can't wait to see Craig holding our next precious gift!

So that, in a nutshell, is our journey over the past 5 years. How clear it is to me that God's hand has been in our lives, our marriage. What a wonderful outlook for the future that gives us! I want to say to my sweet precious husband: Of these past five years, I wouldn't have had it any different. I love the journey and look forward to 50 more years as your wife. I love you!


Jenny said...

Aaaahhhhh! I am so excited for you!!! Congratulations you guys!!! And such a sweet story of the past 5 years... Jeff and I can't believe you've already been married that long. :)

Partyhouse 4 God said...

CONGRATS!!!!!!! Let me know if you need any help. We are so excited for you.