Ernie and I hung around with the same tight group in high school, but actually only dated one summer. Then he was off to the Air Force, and I went to college. We would see each other when he was home on leave, and one time things just kind of fell into place, and we made plans to marry. When we got married, he was stationed at Fairchild AFB in Spokane, Washington, and he came home in October for the wedding. We drove back to Washington, and within a month he had orders for Dow AFB in Bangor, Maine. So we moved cross country to the east coast. A year later Kari was born, then a year and a half later, Kevin. After almost four years there he again received orders to move across country, to Beale AFB in Marysville, California. There Christopher was born, and after another almost four years we moved to K.I.Sawyer AFB in Michigan. Two years later it was off to Grand Forks AFB, North Dakota, where we remained for the rest of his hitch, about seven and a half years. It was at GFAFB where we started to do foster care, and where we were able to adopt a sibling group of four kids, Gail, Chuck, Lenny and Lance.
At the time Ernie was up for retirement, my dad's health was not good, so we retired back to the place where we met, and we joined the same church again, and he got a job at the college we attended, and where I also worked after raising the kids up a bit more. My dad died a year later, and we were so glad we were able to be here with him those last days. The kids all grew up, made lots of friends, and eventually married and started their own families. The kids all live within a few hundred miles, except for Chris. He escaped to Alaska, which gives us a wonderful place to go for vacation!
During the next years, we were able to have Ernie's parents move in with us because of health reasons. His mom died a year and a half later, but his dad was with us for just short of eight years. When the house was empty and we could retire from the college where he was director of the maintenance program and I was the assistant registrar, we bought the fifth wheel RV and a big white truck, sold the house, gave away the majority of our stuff and packed the rest into a storage trailer, and headed off into the sunset. We traveled for twenty months when my mom's health began to decline, and we decided to move home to help out. As most of you know, my mom died three months ago, in July.
We still have the big white truck, but now have a small trailer/camper. We also have a home base now. We still plan to travel, just not full time anymore. The next trip is to Florida in January, then Alaska in July.
So, we have been a lot of places and seen many of the wonders of the United States in our forty four years of marriage. Of course there have been disagreements and arguments, but neither of us has ever even threatened to leave. You see, we have a third person in our marriage. We have God in our lives, and "a strand of three cords is not easily broken," Ecclesiastes 4:9-12. Our wedding sermon was based on the words of Joshua in his twenty fourth chapter: ".....choose you this day whom you will serve.........but for me and my house, we will serve the Lord." Each time I think of those two Bible verses, I know there is no way I could ever leave, no matter how angry I was. And we all know that we get angry at our spouses! That is human......and no human is perfect. So, until the Lord parts us, we will keep plugging along, some days being better than others, but always together.
And you know what I gave Ernie for our anniversary? A bag of cashew brittle, purchased from the Amish at a farmers market this past weekend. You know what I got? Something I really, really wanted, so I am thrilled! Ernie gave me a folding clothes rack, made by the Amish!
It is much better made than the clothes racks you buy at WalMart. The rods are probably three times the diameter of the cheap racks, thus they don't leave such a line on your clothes. And it folds up so nicely, making it ideal to take along on our travels so I don't have to dry everything in a laundromat, shrinking all the cotton about three sizes. And sometimes, like in Alaska, I have to do laundry by hand, which is another blog!
I love my clothes rack, and I love my hubby even more!