Thursday, October 4, 2012

Happy Birthday LeAnna!

My Cousin LeAnna is awesome. 
And today is her 29th birthday. 
(Though to be fair it could be tomorrow. FB didn't tell me, and I always forget, though Skype assures me it's today)

She is 6 months younger than me, so I am always winning in the age race. And I managed to get married 3 months before her, so win again...but then again she and David did start dating before Paul and I, and they beat us to having a child, so who knows what the score is anymore ;)

LeAnna and I grew up together - our parents were married the same summer (as were we, fun!) and they had children the same year (not true for us) so we got to grow up together. We always had a guaranteed friend at family dinners. We played barbies (my favorite) and polly pocket (her favorite), and micro machines when Jenna made us. We wrote, directed, acted in and filmed NUMEROUS plays, movies and shows. We made radio tapes as well. We forced our family to listen to or watch our creations. I'm sure they did so willingly. We also both loved to read, so we often read together, though Jenna hated reading so we couldn't get away with that too much. 

Sadly I don't have many photos online of us, but I did manage to find this one of us singing in the Little Kingdom Choir.

LeAnna and I went to different schools since we lived at different parts of town but in Junior High I started going to her Youth Group, so then we had friends in common and hung out most weekends with sleepovers and youth nights and youth retreats. It was great to have my cousin there. 

Finally in High School we were in the same school - though at first we had different groups of friends, she was always so willing to draw me into her circle of friends. I had an especially hard time through parts of grade 12 and LeAnna welcomed me into her friendships with open arms - that spoke so loudly to me and I have never forgotten in. 

LeAnna moved away for College (first Vancouver then Victoria) but through the wonders of blogging we got to stay in touch, and eventually I moved to Victoria for a year. I was dating one of her now husbands friends and so I got to hang out with her socially as couples. Later she moved into the building I was living in. It was fun having her a few floors below, though we did not take advantage of it like I would now!

Since then LeAnna has lived in Edmonton, Toronto and Cambridge, UK. She is currently in Germany for two months and then who knows where jobs and life will take them. She is living with her husband David and their sweet, new baby Walter. 

LeAnna has never been afraid to be different, to pursue what she loves, to be who she was created by God to be, and to chase after the desires of her heart. 

She has found an amazing husband who just fits with her. Watching them in relationship is beautiful. Her husband and I are very different (understatement) but even I can see how much he cares for her, and how happy they are together. I love listening to her mom, my Auntie Sandy, rave about the relationships. Every parent loves to know their child is happy, loved and with such a good fit - they definitely have that. 

Summer 2010 I had the privileged of being in LeAnna and David's wedding - it was a beautiful time, a celebration of their years together and their future years to come. It was a joy to be a part of - my cousin was beautiful and radiant and David looked overjoyed at this gift he was receiving. Thought she looked pretty darn excited as well. 

As well she has pursued a relationship with God relentlessly. She hasn't been afraid to follow the path in front of her, and seek Him. We in some ways have very different faiths (Traditional Catholic vs. Evangelical-Charismatic Protestant) but in the end we have in common a longing to have relationship with God, and to have that be the center of our lives. I love that connection that we have. 

We both love to read and write - blogging has been a wonderful tool in our friendship - for years I LeAnna was one of my two followers. I always knew she was reading and following along. She actually got me into blogging back in High School and I am so thankful for that. 

So LeAnna, wherever this next season takes you....whatever happens in the future, I am proud to call you my cousin. I am thankful for our friendship. You have loved me so well over the years and I pray this coming year is filled with all the great things that God has for you. Happy Birthday Cousin!

1. LeAnna getting ready for her big day.   2. LeAnna and her Bridesmaids.
3. LeAnna and I at my sisters wedding.   4. Me, LeAnna and Jenna at the bridal shower.
5. The cousins and Grandma.   6. At LeAnna's Stagette.   7. With Bridesmaids again.
1. LeAnna and David at a ball    2. LeAnna and David looked in love at their wedding.
3 & 4. LeAnna and her new sisters   5. LeAnna and our whole family.
6. David and LeAnna, newly married.   7. LeAnna, radiant.

1 comment:

The Porters' Lodge said...

aww, thank you! What a special birthday present :)

You've been in my thoughts because the grocery store across the street from our flat sells ready to cook fresh spaetzel. it's so good!


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