Today I dug around at the back of the cupboard and pulled out a precious box.
I took it downstairs to show the boys what was in it.
It doesn't come out all that often and so they always enjoy seeing what is inside it.
I'm talking about our Wedding Photo Album, and the reason for its appearance is that today we celebrate our 14th anniversary!
We have two albums actually. One is of informal photos taken throughout the day, and also of our honeymoon in Paris. It lives with all the other photo albums and so has been viewed by the boys quite often. The one I took out today is our official album, a soft white velvet covered album of professional photos. The soft white velvet being one of the reasons I don't want little boys' hands coming in contact with it too often!
This photo was the one the boys all chose as their favourite from the album. Beside me is my dad and beside my husband is his dad. Both are ministers and they split the wedding service up between the two of them.
I remember speaking to a married couple in our church around the time of our wedding, who said that they treasured their wedding album because it contained lovely memories of relatives who had since passed away.
Today as I looked through it I was struck by the same thought.
This photo below is precious to me.
My bridesmaids were: (on the right) my great friend and flatmate, Mary - who was such a help and encouragement to me in those early days at University in the big city (and the not so early days!); and (in the middle) my cousin Ann Marie - who, as I only have brothers, was the closest to what I would consider to a sister as we grew up.
I knew that one day I would treasure the photos because older relatives may have passed away. I didn't expect my cousin to be one of them.
The photo is precious because less than 6 years later, aged only 20, my cousin was killed in a road accident.
Looking through the album now reminds me to treasure what we love.
I thank God for giving me my husband. For giving us 14 years to build our lives together. For blessing us with 4 handsome sons. For families who love us. For dear friendships that last a lifetime. And for a whole host of other things.