At a time when little Eli's birthday might try and eclipse that of his mother, here's to the amazing, talented, and generous light of my life.
Just the other day, Brooklyn was telling me that I'm a better story teller than Kara is. I quickly pointed out that "Mom is much better at many things than I am". Brooklyn quickly agreed with, "Yeah, Mom sings a lot better than you do..."
Singing aside (and yes, she most definitely does sing better than I do), Brooklyn and I talked about some of the other things that Mom is great at--like just being a great musician in general. There is nothing quite so relaxing as hearing Kara sit down at the piano in the evenings and fill our home with peaceful music. She also is very good at playing the French Horn (though we might need a sawz-all to get the valves unstuck...), the recorder, and the Little Tykes xylophone in the kids' room.
Kara is a great craft maker, always helping the kids exercise their creativity in assembling their latest paper plate menagerie, mixing up a batch of homemade play dough, or making musical instruments from old beans and plastic cups. Come to think of it, there is more than one night in my memory where she has stayed up till obscene hours in the morning helping me complete my crafts for an impending studio deadline (she is particularly good at cutting out windows on really small buildings, though I've since promised to never design a model with such extensive fenestration again).
Kara is a great comforter. Nobody is as comfy to snuggle up with on the couch as mom, and she now has to get used to all four of us vying for a spot on her lap at once (See below...). Of course, little Eli seems to be winning most of those battles as of late.
Kara is a beautiful writer - after first falling in love with Kara's smile, I think I was next smitten by her prose. From an early grade-school composition of "Loser the Ghost" (which I heard recited at our wedding dinner, thanks to "Anonymous"), to the regular musings in this blog, her writing makes me laugh, makes me remember, and most often, moves me emotionally to try and be just a little bit better.
Kara is a fantastic time piece. I suppose I should get a watch someday, but I actually really enjoy being able to ask Kara for the time - almost like a grade school kid who is looking for any excuse to talk to the cute girl sitting in the next desk over. This did prove a bit problematic the other day when my not paying attention to the time happened to coincide with a three o'clock class and Kara's watch battery deciding that the perfect perpetual time was 1:10. After realizing that it had been 1:10 for quite some time, Kara suggested I go look at the kitchen clock, which happily indicated I was already five minutes late for class.
Kara is a great friend. She is always there to lend a listening ear to my crummy jokes ("So this duck walks into a bar and says to the bartender..."), to my repetitions of the latest things I've been learning in history ("... which clearly demonstrates how the Hellenization of Roman triumphal monuments during the late republic was both a reflection of and a contribution towards a changing political climate that would eventually lead to..."), or simply to the proceedings of an otherwise dull day ("...man, the pig farm was really stinking up something fierce when I biked by it today...").
I'm so grateful for the many memories I share with my dear wife, and I look forward to many years of memories to come. Congratulations, and Happy Birthday Kara!!!