My husband and I celebrated thirty years of marriage last week. Because our big anniversary fell on a Tuesday, other than cards and flowers, we didn't do anything. We are planning a vacation in September and will celebrate then. Nothing big, we're just going to do what we love most...hiking in state parks enjoying God's beautiful creation.
I started to make a hand made card to celebrate our anniversary using a card from Pinterest to case as usual. I was almost done with that card when I saw this old photograph just laying on my counter. It was already worn, faded, and cropped to fit an old photo frame that broke. Months ago, I put the photograph on my desk thinking I would re frame it someday then I forgot about it. I picked this old photograph up, covered in layers of dust, and thought "Look at those kids!" It seemed like it was only yesterday we tied the knot, how could it be thirty years already? I knew then, that I would have to make a different card and I would have to use this photograph. Don't worry, I have a nephew getting married soon, and I will give him the other card I made!
I created a frame card by using Spellbinders Nestabilities to create the circular frame. Then I glued the photograph to the inside of the card and added a circular frame around it to cover up the raw edges.
For the front of the card, I used heart patterned paper, then cut "30 Years" out of pink paper with my Cricut Express Machine. I added one heart behind the number using a MFT heart die.
It's a very simple card, but it says it all, and my husband really, really loved it. I was so happy I saw the photograph at the last minute, and changed the direction of my card and made it more personal.
On our anniversary day, I woke up to these beautiful flowers and a lovely card with a hand-written note.
So what is it like to be married for thirty years? It wasn't always easy. The early years were the most difficult as we were plagued with financial problems, health problems, and extended family issues. Then when our kids went to high school and college, we went through other difficult trials that those years bring. But we prayed, and prayed, and prayed, and God answered those prayers beyond measure. Through it all, the good and the bad, we stayed committed to one another. Were there times I wanted to bolt? You betcha! But God would never allow me to harden my heart long enough to do that.
I will say, the past five years have been the BEST years of our entire marriage. Many marriages suffer and fall apart during the "empty nest" phase. Ours seemed to blossom and flourish. It all started with our very first vacation that we ever took alone together. It was a short trip to the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina. It was that trip where we seemed to fall in love with each other all over again. Not that we were ever out of love, but our marriage prior to that trip was mostly trying to build a life: establishing careers, renovating and building a home, raising children. This trip, it was just about us. Spending time together, exploring together, having fun, with each other, alone! It was this trip that started our "Road Trip Adventures" that I write about every Wednesday in my travel posts.
Since that trip, we've made it a priority in our lives to get out and explore on a regular basis. Some years, we were able to take more costly vacations, and some we weren't. But whether the money was there or not, WE DID SOMETHING! Lately I've been writing a lot about staycations: how we're having fun every weekend exploring our own hometown. You can find fun, free things to do with each other anywhere that hardly costs a dime.
Looking back over the past thirty years and how many times I may have wanted to bolt, or how many times I've questioned whether I made the right decision, I'm so happy, so grateful, that God kept pursuing me and never allowed my heart to remain hard after an argument. I'm also grateful I'm married to someone who is so forgiving and is always the first to humble himself and say "I'm Sorry", because trust me, forgiveness and saying "I'm Sorry" is very, very difficult for me. And if he wasn't the one to almost always say it first, I don't know if we would still be married. God certainly knows what He is doing when He picks a mate for you! He puts the right personalities together!
Have a Great Day! Amy
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Beautiful, Amy. Belated congratulations and here's to another 30! x.ReplyDelete
Thank you! Yes, another 30 years is possible...that will make me 84! Yikes!Delete
Happy 30th Anniversary! That is wonderful you are reconnecting and having fun together still after all these years! Heres to 30 more!ReplyDelete
What a beautiful card Amy! And congratulations again!ReplyDelete
We've been married almost 20 years, and I have to admit, the first few years were definitely the most trying for us as well, and it was extremely hard for me as all my family members were overseas. Funny when I look back, most of our arguments were because of silly stuff not worth an argument. But what do you know when you're young and have to learn to live with another person LOL.
I really wanted to visit Biltmore Estates on our way to Myrtle Beach this year, but time was an issue, although we actually made it to the estate, there was no way to just look around the gardens for a few minutes without paying the price. It's definitely still on my bucket list!
Thanks Elli! I will say we had a lot of arguments over silly stuff as well. Your right about youth, sometimes I think a lot of marriages that end in divorce, probably would not have had the couple been more mature. That's not to say I don't believe in getting married young, not at all, I'm just saying we're not as wise when we are young and argue over things we probably wouldn't when we're older. I actually find it funny now when certain things happen in our lives and I think back what my reaction would have been twenty years ago to how I react now. We do mellow a bit and don't sweat the small stuff.Delete
You really should go to the Biltmore. It's not that far for you, we spent the night with my kids in Illinois and were able to drive all the way to the Biltmore the next day no problem. It is expensive, but so worth it. Plan to spend the entire day though! It's a lot to see! We got there the second it opened and we were the very last people to leave at dusk. I would love to go back at Christmas sometime. They fill the castle with gorgeous fresh floral arrangements every day, and they change those arrangements with the seasons.
Happy Anniversary! I wish you many more. And want to say thank you for all the things you share with us, people you don't even know. Marriages like yours are getting fewer and farther between, but so precious. May God bless you both in the coming years with much joy and even more love.ReplyDelete
Thank you! And thank you for being a faithful blog reader who is always interested in what I share! It's always hard as a blogger trying to determine what to share and what to keep private. I wish I could share more! When torn about whether or not to share something I ask myself "Will this hurt anyone?" and "Will this help anyone?" and those answers help me with the decision.Delete
congrats to both of you Amy!! It really takes two and it's such a learning process, isn't it??ReplyDelete
You are so creative with that card!! It's beautiful!!
Thanks Jodie! Absolutely, unfortunately a lot of people give up too soon! Sometimes the best years lie ahead!Delete
Happy Anniversary pretty lady! It's a wonderful life and milestone. Cheers to many more!!ReplyDelete
Happy, happy 30 years to you and your husband! Whenever I see photos of the two of you together or you write about him, you always say the sweetest things. I truly believe it was good you never bolted! lol! I also love that you took a vacation together after being empty nesters and fell in love again, that is so wonderful!ReplyDelete
Happy Anniversary to you and your husband! What an amazing accomplishment to have been married for 30 years. I enjoyed reading your thoughts, and it was relieving to hear that the hardest part is the beginning. I can rejoice knowing that the hardest part of our marriage might be over. LOL!ReplyDelete
xo, Whitney and Blaire
Peaches In A Pod
Thanks Blaire! Every marriage is different. A lot of marriages crumble and fall apart during the empty nest phase because the couple can't figure out how to just be a couple again after the children leave. Getting out and having fun together is huge during this part of a couple's life!Delete
Such a sweet post Amy! Happy anniversary! I hope you and your husband have many many more years together! (And possibly another romantic trip to Biltmore Estates!)ReplyDelete
Thank's Mandy! I hope we can get back to the Biltmore sometime too!Delete
Aw happy anniversary! The card you made is adorable and so sweet!ReplyDelete
Happy belated anniversary. Ours fell through the week this year and we didn't really do anything special. But I prefer it that way. We don't need anniversaries to remember to tell or demonstrate our love.ReplyDelete
Your handmade card was the best! What cuties you were on that special day. Congratulations on 30 years. The best is yet to come.
Thanks Leslie. Yes, ours fell on a Tuesday, so other than cards and flowers we didn't celebrate it either. We would normally celebrate it on a weekend, but because we have a upcoming vacation, we thought that was kind of silly and we would just celebrate it then! Heck, our whole vacation will be a celebration!Delete