We just came home from our older son’s wedding.  He married his best friend and first real love, Ashley.

She is beautiful, smart, funny, sweet, and best of all, she loves our son.  We prayed for her to come along, and we’re so happy she did.

A few years ago, Bryan’s Aunt Patty, upon seeing how happy his younger brother, Steve, was with his girlfriend, Jenny, decided that Bryan should have that same chance at happiness. She brought up to me a young lady she knew at her church.  I told her then that I didn’t really think Bryan was all that interested in a “nice church girl”.   I related the conversation to Bryan, and sure enough, he was not interested.

A couple of months later, at our Christmas party at Patty’s house, she broached the subject with Bryan.  He politely said no, and told her he was already interested in someone else.   When he told me about that conversation, I just had to ask about this mystery lady.  He said he his eye on her for that past few months.  I said, “Well, what are you waiting for?  Ask her out!”  And for once, he listened to his mom and did just that.

Shortly after they started dating, he brought her home for Sunday dinner, white chicken chili.   She was quiet that first day, sitting and listening to us tease and pick on each other (all in love, of course).  I talked to Bryan the next day and said that I hoped we hadn’t scared Ashley away.  He said no, but that she told him that now she knew where he got his sense of humor.  I breathed a sigh of relief.

She came  back, and she kept coming back.   As Bryan got to know and love her, so did we.  I could see him changing, growing, happier than we’d seen him in years.  And now he is attending college to fulfill a long-held dream and his God-given creativity.  He has become the man we hoped he would, and we know that we owe a lot of that to Ashley.

The wedding was beautiful, a true celebration of love and joy.  Ashley’s parents, Sue and Ed, really know how to throw a great bash.  We’re so grateful to them, and for letting us love their daughter.

Welcome to our little, but growing, family, dear Ashley.   We are delighted to call you our new daughter.  We will do our best to be good in-laws, and perhaps someday, grandparents.

Love, Mom and Dad Schuh