Saturday, March 9, 2013

The Longest Birthday Card Ever

Today is Neal's birthday. I won't say how old he is because I'm a true southern lady who doesn't believe in unnecessarily revealing a person's age. But here are forty-five reasons why I adore him so.

#45 On the day of our wedding, instead of saying "I do," he said "Sure." He also took a shot of bourbon with his best man before walking down the aisle. He thought both of these were hysterical. Now, 7 years later, I find them pretty funny, too.

#44 He has no idea who Taylor Swift is but he could spot Mitch McConnell from at least 100 yards.

#43 His teeth.

#42 He finds himself much funnier than anyone else does. And that alone cracks me up.

#41 Last weekend, he watched an entire movie with Clive Owen and a baby (which they never stopped to feed or change, by the way) just to see how ridiculous it was going to get.

#40 As long as it's no longer moving, he will eat anything I set in front of him. Even if it has been on fire. Even if it looks like a family of spiders just moved out. Thank you, US Army, for priming the pump.

#39 He treats every idea I have like it's the best one he's ever heard. And then adjusts his schedule/routine/life to make it happen.

#38 He has a clothes hamper. He knows how to use it. Likewise, he has a full working knowledge of the washer and dryer.

#37 He started cleaning the litter box when I was pregnant. He still does it.

#36 For him to make a decision takes anywhere from 5 seconds to a week. He may have researched the Prius for 2 weeks before buying it. We will never be that couple that took 6 months to pick out a dishwasher.

#35 Ally: "Let's watch that 18 hour documentary about the Lewis & Clark Expedition."
        Neal: "Sounds great!"
He completes me. Obviously.

#34 When I mentioned once that a friend's husband was all bent out of shape about some paint colors she had chosen for the living room, his first response was, "why does he even have a say in it?"

#33 He didn't divorce me when I accused him of cheating on me with some skanky whore who left her thong in the back of my wardrobe. He even laughed when we realized it was my cousin's from when she owned the furniture before me.

#32 When he received orders to deploy to Kuwait just 11 months after we were married, he stood in the kitchen with me and cried.

#31 He can whistle all of the ridiculous synthesized songs that Baby Blue's toys play.

#30 He purchased not one, but two, sets of cordless headphones for the TV. Because we're old and deaf and never really learned to read lips.

#29 For the first week of Baby Blue's life, I didn't change a single diaper (for realz, that circumcision is intimidating like a grizzly bear).

#28 If I've had too much to drink at the manager's reception, he talks me out of doing stupid going to a restaurant where the entree prices are fixed at $50+. His theory is that we may as well go to Taco Bell. I won't remember it in the morning anyway. He's absolutely right.

#27 Ally: " I need new jeans/bedding/stand mixer/wine glasses/haircut/career/cell phone/townhouse."
       Neal: "OK."

#26. Three of his favorite musicians are Josh Groban, George Michael and the BeeGees. He worked out on the weight machine in our spare bedroom to the BeeGees once. It was the funniest damn thing I've ever seen.

#25 We talked about purchasing an inscription for Shepherd on the Memorial for the Unborn in my hometown. Come to find out, he went ahead and bought it.

#24 He didn't divorce me when I called the florist that was listed on his Visa bill to find out why a $75 arrangement of flowers had been sent to some lady in Mississippi. As it turns out, he was the "money collector" for the entire unit and they were purchased for the commander after the untimely death of her sister.

#23 He says things like "Well, of course the University of Richmond Spiders are going to have a lame motto. What else can they say? 'We're going to stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp all over you?'"

#22 He takes calculated risks: skydiving with an instructor, flying me to London to meet him face-to-face for the first time, purchasing a townhouse sight unseen after our realtor, mom, and I had all agreed on it, and joining the AGR program although it would mean moving every 3 years. They have all paid off. He would say that he "would rather be lucky than smart." But I think he has the perfect mix of both.

#21 He took his own man-cave furniture to Goodwill when we downsized.

#20 His phone is larger than my entire hand. Shana calls it "the large print edition" and he doesn't mind a bit.

#19 He comes home from war with better habits: drinking coffee (this is a plus in my book because now he can't be all gloom and doom on my bean obsession), shaving his head (when your hairline begins to resemble the IMAX, y'know it's time), and working out consistently. But he believes in PTSD.

#18 When I call, he answers with "hey beautiful." Every. Single. Time. Even though I'm all stretched out and fairly flabby.

#17 He won his war on the squirrels in Georgia. But not until many battles were fought...some of which he lost. And it was all quite entertaining to everyone else. My husband...AKA Drummond Jr.

#16 Ally: "I was thinking...we could have a New Year's Eve party here at the house. And everyone could bring a dish. I could pick up some pimento cheese from the Mousetrap."
       Neal: "Sounds great. I'm surprised you haven't already sent out the invitations."

#15 The key to a happy marriage is double sinks in the bathroom. But when we had to share one in GA, he kept it clean of beard fur, toothpaste droppings, and anything else that falls off of a man in the course of his grooming routine.

#14 He didn't divorce me when I woke him up at 1:30 AM (after he had been asleep for about 4 hours) to capture and kill a palmetto bug that had scurried under the bed. Trapping said bug involved moving the bed, the cedar chest and an enormous stack of laundry. But in the end, he got his man.

#13 Every plan has been examined from all angles...even if it sounds like he just hatched it seconds earlier.

#12 He almost never says "I'm sorry"...but that has translated into me realizing that I say it too often and too quickly.

#11 He remembers the day we got engaged. I know if it's Memorial Day Weekend, we're getting close.

#10 There is a lot of kissing and hugging on Baby Blue. And it makes Baby's eyes light up and huge smiles flash across his face. He feels loved by his daddy every minute of every day. He will never question it.

#9 Previously a dog person, he has learned to embrace (and dare I the whiskered babies in our house.

#8 He hasn't divorced me over all the business I give him on my blog.

#7 Three weeks after we lost Shep, he took me camping in the woods, dragged me along miles of trail, gushed over my campfire-toasted pizzas, and told me I should write a book about Kentucky vineyards. It was exactly what I needed and I have no idea how he knew that.

#6 He has financed more girls' trips, bloggers' trips, and pedicures than he probably cares to think about.

#5 The first week we had Baby Blue home, he made me sleep between him and the wall so I wouldn't lie there and watch the monitor all night.

#4 He manages my expectations and understands my need to control. And when the situation calls for it, he calls me out on both.

#3 When he returned from his first deployment, we had been "dating" via email and phone chats for about 4 months. A week after he got home, he bought a his/hers desk from Haverty's and the fanciest coffee pot I've ever seen a non-coffee drinker buy. I knew then that someday we would be married.

#2 And then of course, there's this:
 Right?? This is the first picture I ever saw of Neal. It convinced me to email him that very first time. And they lived happily ever after.

#1 But then there's also this:
(applying knuckle pressure at 3 AM before epidural was ordered)

and this:
and that makes this the easiest list of 45 things that I've ever written.

Happy Birthday, oh captain, my captain. I would follow you anywhere and stand beside you through anything. I'm so glad you chose me to be on your team.


  1. Ahhhhh!!! That was awesome! Happy Birthday, Neal!

  2. Oh, this made me cry. :) I'm so happy for you, Ally. You definitely found a diamond.

    OH, and Happy Birthday, Neal!

  3. And all of that and even more is why we love him too!

  4. This is a wonderful list. Clearly he is a wonderful guy, and clearly you appreciate him. Besides, you probably bring out the best in him. Happy Birthday, Neal, from a fellow Pisces.

  5. I love this! What a wonderful birthday card for Neal.
    He sounds like a funny, sensible, strong and wise man ;)

  6. Belated, but heart-felt Happy Birthday to my favorite major!

  7. I know i haven't commented on here - or anywhere for that matter - in FOREVER (that's what having a baby did for me... can you believe he'll be TWO this month?!). Anyway, i just had to come on here and tell you that this brought tears to my eyes. I absolutely love seeing love like this. Your Baby Blue will grow up knowing and feeling the deepest, sweetest love and he'll know exactly what to seek out for himself. So sweet!

    Your long lost blogfriend, Foxy. :)

  8. This definitely made me smile, but it also made me tear up with the sweetness oozing all over. I loved it. Thank you for sharing girlfriend.


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