Paper Anniversary

Last night we celebrated our one year anniversary by going to a fancy-pants restaurant called the Honuhonu Room. I’m pretty sure honuhonu literally means “fancy pants.” We appreciated an opportunity to dress up and go out, even though the servers earned a pretty low tip (and having worked in the service industry, we are great tippers) and the food was good, but not spectacular.

None of this really mattered for us, though. We sat down to dinner in a U-shaped booth where we sat side by side as the sunset colored the skies above the Harbor. Boats pulled in to dock, cruise ships sailed away, and the mountains in the background turned shades of dusty green. The large glass windows acted as a movie screen to watch the change in the evening as the horizon slowly disappeared…

It really has been a tremendous year.

In one year (immediately following graduation and our engagement), our marriage has consisted of:

  • Two months living in Bakersfield, one of which we lived in my parent’s home
  • A move to Hawaii (involving culture adjustment, making new friends, and missing home)
  • Learning how to work together, be married, and figure out how to run a Jr. High ministry
  • A promotion to co-Directors of Student Ministries where we now have to figure out how to be married and run both Jr. High and High School ministries. Phew.
  • A rambunctious puppy who currently likes to run vicious laps around the cottage when we say “Come”

As we sat and talked last night, I thought about this year and how marriage was different than I expected. I never knew a human relationship could be so rich and intimate. In the beginning of our marriage, we were thrilled at “being married” and the newness of living together. After moving to Hawaii we learned how to make a home together – learned that JD is really anal about how things should go in the kitchen, and how I don’t really care. A few months after arguing, I finally figured out that since I don’t care – I can just do things his way. We learned that I have a great fear of debt and often send so much money to our credit card companies that we have to eat Top Ramen for weeks at a time.

These past months, however, have been the greatest. Going out last night reminded me that fancy dinners and dressing up don’t make a great marriage. The everyday choice of surrender and love make a great marriage. We enjoy each other as we work in the kitchen, clean the house, watch Scrubs or Friends or the Office, take Rowdy for a walk, go to the beach, grab coffee, work together in our office. Intimacy grows in the mundane, and is expressed greatest in the humility of asking for a favor, or quietly picking up after the other. The intimacy that fabricates every day of our married life becomes exposed and cherished in the special moments – fancy dinner, coffee dates, and candlelight.

I don’t really know what “Paper Anniversary” means – but I do know that we just celebrated one of the richest years of our lives. And I’m really grateful.

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5 thoughts on “Paper Anniversary

  1. Hey thats my dress! Hands down way hotter on your lil’ sexy- sexy married bod.
    And for the zillionth time I will say- girl, you are blessed abundantly. I love seeing you thrive and watching the Groves light shine.

  2. Heather says:

    Oh my gosh!!!!! Can you believe it has been a year? It is amazing how God has blessed ya’ll during your year!!!! Yea for marriage.

  3. You have no idea how much of an inspiration you and JD are to me. I love you guys so much, and I am so excited to see you grow even more. Any, by the way Annie, you look just like your mom in that anniversary picture…did she tell you she saw my husband at YS last weekend? Love you.

  4. anniegroves says:

    Cait – confession. I’ve had your dress since you moved to Cal Poly. I think you knew that. Um thanks for letting me wear it on my 1 year 🙂 I swear I’ll give it back soon…
    Heather – I know. a year! your year has been crazy too huh? We definitely need to chat soon.
    Teddy – thanks girl. it’s been a blast. Can’t wait to see the Kileys sometime… My mom did tell me she saw Brian – she was happy to see someone she knew!!

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