Monday, January 31, 2011


Hope you all had a wonderful week-end! We sure did. Friday night found us playing our weekly card game with my parents. How we all enjoy that time together, and it is SUCH good therapy for my mom that it just puts the icing on the cake. And the best part? We DID win (though barely)...YAY mom!! And that puts us up two to one for the new year....On Sat. Jeff and I just spent a lazy day. Long chat in the morning over coffee and tea, and then lunch out, a movie (nothing great, haha) and a long drive afterwards. Sun. we had my oldest son and his family and my youngest son's wife and family (Sun. is a LONG work day for James) over for Cody's second birthday. How I enjoyed all my little grandkids playing together. They don't get a whole lot of opportunities and their excitement is contagious. They had a GIANT fort going in the living room at one point. Remember how fun a fort was??  Leah made her delicious spaghetti and meat balls, and a wonderful salad and garlic bread finished it off. I actually did quite well with the meal and I am feeling soo good now that I did. Nothing tastes as good going down, as eating right feels!! I carefully followed Jenny Craig for breakfast and lunch, and then at dinner covered 3/4 of my plate in salad, and the rest in spaghetti, having no bread and only two tiny meatballs. Soo yummy, and it was just right. I did manage to have no cupcakes either, and my grandkids made quick work of them so there weren't any leftovers, haha. I am soo glad we were able to have this day. Joe brought his new guitar and it was good to "see" him as he played, haha.

This is how these two like to do close to Grandpa as they can get..We watched Toy Story 3 yesterday, soo cute!

Waiting for their mama's to fix their plates

Cody with his new Thomas the trains from Grandpa & Grandma

She enjoyed this...or can't ya tell?

Cody enjoyed his as well...

Lindsey too...she is gettting to be such a big girl!

My book has arrived!! I am actually quite happy with it with one small exception....the pictures are not very big...I have them extra large here on my blog (thus the "stretch" template) so that you can see them better, but they did not come off that way in the book. They are actually quite small. Which when you are my age and have my eyesight, is a definite issue. BUT!! I was happy enough with the rest of it that I will continue to do this in the future. My kids definitely enjoyed looking through it yesterday. Maybe in the future they will do it with bigger pics. In the meantime, it is good enough that you get the idea.

I couldn't get a real good pic as there was a glare on the glossy cover, but you get the idea.  This pic was taken of Jeff & I last yr. on our anniversary and is one of my fav's of goes with the "feel" of that year I am thinking..

They give you a page for a also get a table of contents

One post follows another in order of dates

It is a pretty big book..I am really glad I did this..

Tomorrow will mark my 36th wedding anniversary!! 36 years is a LONG time...I have spent 16 whole years of my life longer as a "Class" instead of a "Merrick", haha...In fact, it might as well have been several lifetimes ago that I was a Merrick. I was thinking that this might be a good opportunity to write out a few of our first few dates and our impressions of each other to have as a record for my kids and grandkids to read someday, so guess you will have to bear with me. = )

I was only 19 years old when I met Jeff but felt like I was A LOT older. I had been through soo much for as young as I was for one thing, and was the mother already to a 17 month old ACTIVE little boy. I was both going to Jr. college and working part time. I was still (thankfully) living at home, but my parents were in the midst of a divorce, which made the rest of my life quite difficult as well. When my girlfriend Sue told me she had someone she wanted me to meet, honestly I wasn't really very interested. This guy was just here to spend the summer in California and would be heading back to Sioux Falls, SD in the Fall. He had just finished school at Nebraska where he had played football on a full scholarship and wrestled, and I felt like he was probably used to being "fawned over" and was just looking for some summer fun. I was definitely not interested in that, haha...I ended up getting talked into going a blind date thinking to myself, "a single date is no big deal, I just won't let myself let my feelings get involved", which when you had been hurt as much as I had by that point in my life I had become an expert at doing. I had just recently given my heart to the Lord, and my first prayer as a new Christian had been that the Lord might bring a man into my life that would both love me and my son, and SURELY this guy from Nebraska couldn't be him. But I couldn't have been more wrong! I found out a few dates later that he too had just recently given his heart to the Lord and had prayed a very similar prayer, but I am getting ahead of myself, haha. That first date really didn't go so well, haha. He was VERY nice and friendly, super outgoing, funny, and much better looking than Sue had lead to me believe. However, all of these things made me feel very unsure of myself which resulted in my being kind of quiet. Now he tells the story that I got into the car and immediately brought up this guy I had been dating who was on the radio as a DJ for the first time that night (he was and I was soo excited but guess it was kind of dumb to go on about) and he figured right off that this is obviously NOT the girl the Lord had in mind since she was obviously still hung up on someone else, haha. The truth was my relationship with this other guy was definitely over and we had been nothing but friends for a while. The rest of the night went OK, but I think my guard was up, and he figured I wasn't interested. However as he walked me to the door that night and we had a few minutes to chat by ourselves I wondered if I had been too hasty. He was SUCH a nice guy. He gave me just a little tiny kiss at the door, and I felt my heart quicken, (which kind of surprised me) and I thought to myself, "You fool, you probably blew this chance" lol...But as it turned out we quickly fell in love that summer, and the rest is history. 36 years is a lifetime that is for sure. We have seen so much of life together that it is hard to remember a time when it wasn't the two of us. He quickly adopted my son and together we have raised four wonderful kids and have 8 glorious grandchildren together so far. We have been through soo many good times and I'll be forever grateful for them all, and have somehow managed to travel the bad times as well. And trust me in 36 years you see them both. He is my forever best friend, and I have felt many times in the course of our marriage that I didn't really deserve him. I can be quite high maintence I guess is a nice way to put it, haha. But I have leaned on him soo heavily in this last year, what with the breast cancer and the move and everything else, I can honestly say I don't know what I would have ever done without him. The Lord answered that first prayer for me in such an overwhelming way. I look forward to growing old with this man, (and the process has definitely begun, haha) and thank God for him every day. My prayer for each one of my children and grandchildren would be that they would know the love of a good marriage, and be as blessed as I was with their own.



  1. Awe, I just love your love story! I could read it over and over! Happy Anniversary Debbie!

    I love your blog book! Just another reminder of something I HAVE to get done! Great picture for the cover and I just loved your dedication. So sweet!!

  2. Glad you had such a great weekend Debbie!
    Your blog book looks fantastic. I am really glad I did mine through blog2print too. It is a priceless thing to have isn't it.
    What a sweet love story you and your husband have. Happpy Anniversary!

  3. What a beautiful post. Happy Anniversary. I loved reading your story of how you and your husband met. So sweet. God has brought you through a lot and hand picked the perfect mate to walk beside you. So much to celebrate.

    I also love the blog book. I never knew you could do that. What a wonderful idea and keepsake.

    Glad you had such a great weekend.

    Much love,

  4. Your sweet love story was special - especially on your "stationery" of hearts and love all around! Just perfect:)

    I was reading your blog earlier and didn't quite finish when I had to leave the computer - so I was thinking I would come back and pick up in the middle....little did I notice - it was a new post! I am so silly - and I was so confused! For a bit.

    But - I loved hearing about your weekend..and another card game in the WIN column! Oh yea:) and really loved your "how did you meet" story. I will have to share mine sometime:)

    I hope you both have a sticky, sticky sweet day tomorrow!! Happiest anniversary wishes!! Hugs, friend -

  5. Hi Debbie,
    Happy Anniversary! You and your husband are such a wonderful match! I loved hearing your story again, and I loved the pictures of all of your grands. I know how your heart swells when you are with them, because it is the same for me. I was at Gennifer's today when her blog book came. I MUST get mine done too.
    : ) K

  6. Happy Anniversary!!! I just loved reading your and Jeff's story!!! Kind of made me teary eyed. The Lord works in mysterious ways. My Father told me that years after the divorce he felt he was ready to fall in love again so he prayed to the Lord and asked for someone to come into his life, he listed some attributes he would like etc.. Well, he was just about done when he added, and can she be from the midwest? I would like a midwestern girl. (My Father is from South Dakota, but living in San Diego at the time). Within a couple of weeks he met Jeannene, and she was originally from Minnesota! They have been happily married now for 16 years.

  7. Ask and you shall receive!!

    George's number is 951.733.8325

    I do know that he goes out into Orange County and does some pretty big houses once a week. He might be willing to hit you up on the way back? Call him and find out, it wouldn't hurt! Just tell him that Kristi referred you!

    Just FYI, I pay $65.00 biweekly for 2355 square feet and kids. Make sure that he quotes you fairly. Also tell him that you've had some housekeepers you are just not happy and he might not make you pay the initial cleaning fee. The first time he came to my house he charged me $80.00 which I talked down from $85.00. Hope this helps!

  8. Beautiful post, Deb! And oh how I love your book. Thinking I may do the same someday!

    I may have shared with you before, but your love story is so similar to mine and my sweeties....I was a very hurt young divorced gal with an 18 mo. old son when I met my Larry at church. And I too had prayed and asked the Lord for someone who would fall in love with my son first AND that's exactly what happened....God is so faithful isn't He! We celebrate our 35th anniv. in Sept! PTL!

    Happy Anniversary!

    Hugs and Blessings!

  9. Well, how was the anniversary?? I hope it was a wonderful day. Did you do anything special?? (you know - that you can blog about!!) :) Hope it is a week long of sweetness, friend!

  10. happy anniversary! that is such a treasure
    in these days of easy 'outs.'

    your book is gorgeous! what a wonderful
    tribute to your perseverence! another
    treasure for your family.

  11. Happy Anniversary Debbie, and what a beautiful story! You got a good one from Nebraska, that's for sure!
    I love all your photos, they bring you right to life as I sit and read this.

    I do the book too, one for each year, and I love to have it in print. It's the stories of our journey, and somehow having it there in book form matters! :)

    Hugs to you both on your special day!


  12. I understand your feelings of love toward your husband... mine is an exceptional man. We've been married almost 14 years; he, too, took on the fathering responsibilities to my two older sons, adding two more to the mix along the way. I shudder to think where I would be in this moment without his love and support, especially over the past 6 months.

    He's more than I deserve, yet another reminder of God's grace and love for me.

    So glad for the love you share. Many blessings to you both in the days ahead.



I am so glad that you would take the time to comment on my thoughts and feelings, it is such a blessing to me!