Someone had the nerve one time to inform me that I couldn’t claim this one. As I recall it was said with an air of superiority. I don’t remember my exact response, though I’m sure it included a snarky demand on my part to see the rule book or something of that sort.
Because as far as we’re concerned – we claim this one! We absolutely claim this one! I’m quite sure you would too, had you been given the opportunity before it was gone.
Technically, he isn’t a Moore. And in fact our oldest girl chose to take his last name in lieu of the one she had always known. Oh, she’s still ours, through and through, but now he is too. And we couldn’t be more thrilled.
He charmed his way into our world almost 6 years ago. Not in a manipulative way by any means. But we found him to be completely genuine and genuinely charming. He was the first dating experience we went through as parents, and frankly, I’m a little surprised we didn’t immediately scare him away.
We’ve always stressed to our kids the importance of choosing a spouse who not only shares their faith, but one who loves Jesus with all their heart. Smith is that man. Yes, Smith is his first name. We see it in so many ways.
From the times he would come over to our house and head straight out back to spend some time in Bible study because for some reason he had missed it before work that morning. He would sit at the table under the big bottle brush tree and read for a good 30 minutes before he would even come to the door.
Then there was the day he turned 20, exactly 4 years ago today. Katy threw a surprise birthday party for him. I’ll never forget 20 something of us piling in our living room and one by one sharing what Smith had meant to each of us. How he had loved us, made us smile, encouraged us to walk closer to God. More than a few tears had run down my cheeks by the end of that celebration.
We’ve also taught our kids to watch how a guy treats his Mama and how a girl treats her Daddy. This relationship can be a great indicator of how he/she will treat their spouse. His Mama is an extremely gracious woman who, along with her husband, loves to smile and laugh with their children. They have raised them well. Everyone seems to call her Mom. She has a beautiful Khmer name but more often than not, Mom is the one by which she is known.
The guy’s also got a great sense of adventure – definitely an asset in this family. He spent an entire summer traipsing around Europe on a mission trip with a bunch of people he had just met. And he’s also brave enough to spend the holidays all in for the Family Olympics. Yes, he was truly a sight to behold that day.
And he could not possibly win a staring contest, because just like our blue-eyed girl he just can’t help but smile when you’re staring right at him.
We all know how critical it is that a guy passes the “girlfriends” test. Aka. if the girl’s friends don’t like him, it ain’t happenin’. He passed that one with flying colors, and our girl is often asked if he has a brother. When you have 3 siblings, and no less than 17 cousins, it also matters that extended family approves. They do.
I love the way he can hang with all the craziness that seems to abound whenever family and friends are gathered.
I enjoy that he loves people. Even when those people are kids who want to be swung around in a circle in the hot Haitian sun after he’s been painting their new home all day. Especially then.
But mostly, I enjoy how he loves our girl, in that way that only he can. Whether it’s a more understated painting date night…
Or his signature over-the-top celebrations
His care for her always feels a little like the raw wonder and gratitude of that first look.
So, basically …
Whatever the rules books say about whether or not we can technically claim him as our own, we’re not really concerned. Granted his Mom and Dad had the honor of carrying and raising him through skinned knees, childhood adventures and those harrowing “Hey, wouldn’t it be cool if…” teenage boy moments.
Regardless of all those minor points, we’ve decided that we absolutely get to claim this one!
We enjoyed the last 594 that we’ve claimed you as one of our own and we look forward to thousands more!
Your Mama Beth loves you! We all do!
More than you’ll ever know!