Five Years Married

Well, guys, it's been FIVE years! I seriously love every day we've spent together, and the last five years have been nothing short of fun. Sure, there have been some trials in there, but together and with Christ as the center, we've managed to consistently keep life and marriage pretty darn happy. I don't mean to come across braggy or humble braggy or whatever, but it's just the truth. It's our story, our experience, and our personal take. I'm pretty stinking thrilled that we get to do life together. Soon we'll be starting our next crazy adventure as parents (ahh!!), and I cannot wait for the inevitable laughter and tears of this next season. We always keep each other laughing, and try not to take things so seriously that we can't appreciate the little joys.

To commemorate five years, I thought I'd do this year's anniversary post a little differently. I sought out or made up some marriage-y questions. Some are a little "Newlywed Game-esque" and some are more long form, but basically we did a little marriage interview! We both answered each one, so read on for our answers to those burning questions you have about Tom and I. In fact, we answered all of these just last night over our anniversary dinner and cocktails (mocktail for me, of course). This was super fun, and I hope you enjoy, too!

I'd like to point out that stupid balloon. I grabbed it in the dollar section thinking it was MUCH bigger and I cracked up when Tom blew it up! Haha womp womp tiny balloon!


Describe our first kiss in one word.

Tom: Awkward
Joy: … definitely awkward.
(I should note, we were essentially best friends, so it was suuuuuper weird kissing your best friend all of a sudden. However, after that one kiss it wasn’t very awkward anymore ;) )

What were your top 3 moments together from this last year?

Tom: Iceland, finding out that Joy is pregnant, moving to Nashville.
Joy: Having Hondo for a year, finding out I’m pregnant, and moving to Nashville. I would also say Iceland, but I got limited by three!

What do you know about marriage now, that you didn’t know 5 years ago?

Tom: I feel like I didn’t know anything about marriage 5 years ago. All you have to go on is what others tell you about it, and I don’t think they did it justice. For guys, there’s a perception that you give up a lot by getting married, which is so far from reality. It’s amazing, it’s fun, it’s so much better than before, and it gets better every day.
Joy: I just don’t think you can quite fathom how love changes and evolves. At the time you get married, you think you really love that person a lot. More than you ever thought possible. But somehow, with each passing day, that love has grown. I love and appreciate Tom wayyyy more now than I ever did when I was 23. It’s like I didn’t even know what love even was at that point. Also, I think people always talk about how important good communication is… but it bears SO much repeating. Healthy, honest communication is key to so many areas of marriage. After 5 years, I so appreciate starting our marriage off with practicing good communication.  

What was your very first memory of your spouse?

Tom: “Hey, want to come sit with us?”
Joy: He was dating a girl in the room next to mine, but my door was open and I was singing along with American Idol on TV, and he just plopped down to hear me sing.

How long had you been dating, when you were you pretty sure you were going to marry your spouse?

Tom: … about a month. Or less.
Joy: Yup. Didn’t take long to know.

What has been the hardest part about marriage?

Tom: Not sure that there is anything in particular that jumps out to me… Maybe it’s hard agreeing on figuring out what we’re going to eat this week…?
Joy: Honestly? In 5 years, I can’t say it’s been hard. There have been hard trials, hard days, moody days, grumpy days… but overwhelmingly, marriage hasn’t been “hard.” Had we not had an established friendship, maybe it would have been, but we were friends first, so we communicate honestly and lovingly.

What is your spouse’s most annoying habit?

Tom: Worry snowballing, e.g. getting herself so worked up by THE WORST POSSIBLE OUTCOME of something. For example, Joy had a solid day and a half before we went to Europe worrying about her teeth falling out in France, and not speaking the language, and I couldn’t translate because I was eaten by a bear, and she had amnesia, and all of our luggage was lost, in a hurricane, in the middle of nowhere, and they only had sharpened rocks to replace her teeth with.
Joy: Eating before putting away cold food and forgetting about it entirely.
(Tom’s response is killing me - hahaha - my front six teeth are fake, if that was confusing to anyone. AND IT’S A REAL FEAR OKAY)

Name a time you were most proud of your spouse.

Tom: One time at Walmart, I was trying to toss a bag of cheese in our cart from like 15 feet away and kept missing. Joy grabbed the cheese, all tough, said she could do it and then ON HER FIRST TRY tossed the bag o cheese between her legs from across the aisle and landed it EXACTLY on the child seat between two other items. Best trick shot ever. She’d never be able to do it again if she tried. Also, this blog. Everyday.
Joy: ...for the record I HAVE tried the cheese shot again, and failed miserably every time. I’m super proud of my cheese moment. Okay but for Tom? His handiness. For our first two years of marriage, we lived in apartments and I never saw him do anything remotely handy. And if he did, it always ended up being a big fail (shelves falling off walls, etc..). But when we got our house, he blew me away! He gutted our downstairs and built our whole kitchen and wired everything and cut countertops perfectly. It was so impressive! And he also installed a tankless water heater. Like, who was this guy?!

Are we more opposite, or similar?

Tom: Similar.
Joy: Similar.

What is one thing we’re really opposite about?

Tom: I love pasta, she does not. This is the saddest part of our marriage.  
Joy: I’m much less inclined to invite new technology into our home.

What is one thing we’re really similar about?

Tom: Furniture tastes. Take us into a store. Point at a chair, and we will both say the exact things wrong, right, or odd about it. Every time.
Joy: Trying new foods. Pregnancy has made this harder, but when I don’t have silly pregnancy restrictions, I think I’m most excited for this. Also, house stuff. We can agree on furniture to a T.

What’s my spirit animal?

Tom: A puppy. She is what she loves. Fussy at times, but always wants to be close.
Joy: I don’t think you’d be an animal. I think you’re more like a mixture of an old man, a child, and a nerdy dad. And I can’t wait to see your nerdy dad show up even more in this next season of life. Having said that, you might be an alpaca. Mostly because they seem like they’d wear old man sweaters and Waldo glasses, while running really dorky.

Which of us is more decisive?

Tom: Joy. She’ll say me, because I decide on where we’re going and what we’re doing, but in regards to the minutia, it’s her all day.
Joy: Me.. no wait. Tom. Wait. Hondo? No I think it’s Tom.
(Look! We can’t even decide on who decides better! Maybe neither of us is very good at deciding...)

What do we finish more of: each other’s sandwiches, sentences, or last nerves?

Tom: I’ll eat her sandwiches, we finish each other’s sentences.
Joy: Well, most meals sound like “Tom: Are you done with that?” as I simultaneously say, “I’m done with this.” So sandwiches and sentences at the same time. Nerves, eh.. thankfully it takes a lot for him to get on my nerves.

What is your favorite thing to see your spouse wearing?

Tom: Anything green. Her eyes change color all the time, but they go bright green when she wears that color. Also, giant t-shirts, also known as blogger uniform. She’s most sassy, most comfy, most herself in a xxxxxxxxxxxxl tshirt.
Joy: This is actually really hard. Because Tom in nasty, heavy labor clothes always makes me happy, and I like his usual work clothes or church clothes, but when he gets in comfy pants and snuggles me, that’s probably my favorite. Also when I notice his wedding ring, it still gives me butterflies.

What is your spouse’s favorite food?

Tom: Mexican, but really anything with cheese. Queso, cheesy garlic bread, pizza, cheese plates, cheese, cheese, cheese. We have like 5 pounds of it in the fridge. (this is not an exaggeration)
Joy: Asian. Pho, ramen… mostly the noodle based soup kinds.

What is something your spouse has completely changed their mind about since you’ve been together?

Tom: That I’m handy. She thought I was a total dolt when it came to DIY things for the first 2 years.
Joy: Mushrooms. And Coldplay? He didn’t dislike them, but now he never minds how much I listen to Coldplay.

What was your favorite part of our wedding day?

Tom: As soon as we hit the road to go to Chicago. Thank God for a morning wedding.
Joy: Dinner alone at our hotel the evening of our wedding day.

What is a sure-fire way to get on your spouse’s nerves?

Tom: Leave the toilet paper roll facing inward… or is it outward…? I can never remember.
Joy: OVER, TOM, OVER!!!
Just ONE? We are both the king and queen of pet peeves. The easiest ways to get on Tom’s nerves would be using comic sans, singing a song from Annie, or saying EXpresso (this, only if someone says it repeatedly in a single conversation. It builds).

What is your favorite meal that your spouse cooks?

Tom: Chicken pot pie, or anything baked. The woman can bake.
Joy: Biscuits and gravy. But he also makes a mean ramen.

What’s your spouse’s favorite joke to tell?

Tom: She’s not much of a recurring joke teller. All original content.
Joy: “Who said that?” You have to be there to understand...

What’s your favorite thing to do together?

Tom: Exploring an area together, just the two of us. San Antonio, Iceland, New York, Savannah, Asheville, Florence, Nashville… the locations are great, but exploring them is the best.
Joy: Spending a day exploring new areas and finding new restaurants.

What is your spouse’s signature dance move?

Tom: It was something different in college, but now she does a super dorky flailing arms move that really should be shared with the world.
Joy: Really wide open eyes, serious face, flailing arms, and moon-walky legs. He never breaks eye contact, and he only does this move if I’m there to use as a focus. It’s terrifying, but also hilarious. Again, alpaca.

What personality trait made you fall in love with your spouse that they still exemplify today?

Tom: Sarcasm and how opinionated she was.
Joy: Highly opinionated sassy sarcasm.

Who is the spender?

Tom: It’s me. I’m good at finding deals, okay?
Joy: ...well it’s not me.

What’s something you love about your spouse, that they don’t always love about themselves?

Tom: The way she looks in the morning.
Joy: He can be super assertive, and I think sometimes he’s worried he comes across like a jerk. But I like that about him because it’s a trait a lot of people constantly fight against or don’t use. However, because he’s aware of it, he does a good job remaining kind and I admire that about him.

In the last 5 years, what has been your favorite part of being together?

Tom: All of it. Exploring, traveling, joking, people watching, tasting, crying, being together, sitting and doing nothing, being exhausted from doing too much, living in new cities, talking to new people, coming home to see her after work, waking up and seeing her in the morning, getting Hondo, renovating a home, getting on each other’s nerves, finding the things that only each other would like, knowing the things that the other would hate. All of it.
Joy: Seeing Tom develop in his career while still managing to prioritize being together and go on adventures. I get super restless at sudden intervals, and he’ll gladly get us out of the house, even if he’s kind of spent from being at the office. I just love being with him more than anyone else. He’s my best friend, and when we have to be apart for even a few days, I get unashamedly bummed because I hate missing moments with him. Clingy. Not sorry about it. So, basically, just being together.


There you have it! Cheers to FIVE YEARS! Here are a few photos from this weekend's anniversary adventures: