Neeley Ops

Best Friend Forever

Thursday night I got a reminder that I was supposed to write something for the Relief Society newsletter about my wife, Amanda. Oops. I was asked to do it two weeks ago and got a little wrapped up in my own life changes and forgot. Then later that night I got a flat tire in the church parking lot. I asked her to come help me and then fixed it myself before she got there. So Friday morning, I borrowed the minivan to go for my morning workout…and I backed into a concrete post. That’s gonna leave a mark!

Meanwhile, Amanda has been carefully preparing an invitiation to attend her sister’s bridal shower, which she is also going to host. She’s never done that before. She crafted the invitation herself in photoshop. It’s beautiful. It took her three days because she wanted it to be just right. All of this while meeting all the needs of our 11 month-old boy.

Have you ever seen Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat? Me neither. But I know all the songs, and it’s on the bucket list, because theatre is one of the things Amanda loves. In ‘Stone the Crows’ Pharoah realizes that Joseph’s interpretation of his dream is inspired, and Pharoah and the people sing about how greatful they are that he came along.

To paraphrase in terms of my best friend forever, “Amanda, how could I ever say all that I want to about you? I’m so glad that you came my way! I would be so lost without you!” I am loopy, impulsive, and easily distracted; she is steady, stable, and thorough. She listens to my endless ponderings and wanderings. She strengthens my faith with her own. She has great goals. She has her own testimony. She serves in whatever ways she can, without being showy or desiring the spotlight. She is courageous and sure. She cares deeply about her friends and works hard to maintain friendships across miles and oceans. Just don’t ask her to speak in church. I tried.

One of the great blessings of fourteen years with Amanda has been learning to appreciate the small things. Like birthdays. Many familiies make birthdays special by serving favorite foods for each meal. Amanda does this and more. She decorates the house. For example, last year our four year old was really into Jake and the Neverland Pirates. So we had a pirate cake, and she made a ‘Jake’ costume for him to wear. Last month she put together a walk of stars, complete with a stage and curtains, for our eleven year old girl (who also loves theatre and is invovled in two different productions this spring).

Of all the things Amanda loves, family is first. She hosts a monthly fami-wii night, where all her siblings and their families come over for dinner and games. She is a pillar of strength and en example to all of them. Much like the bridal shower invitation, these events are well done and carefully considered. I am consistenly in awe, and grateful to help. One day her mother said to me, ‘Amanda’s a rock!’ I think it was right after our youngest was born. Indeed she is, indeed she is.