Today marks the 34th year of my parents marriage. They are such an inspiration to both Neil and I. They have been through absolutely everything together – and together, they always prevail. They have never let something petty get in between them and they are the epitome of the traditional wedding vows…

“For better or for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, from this day forward, until death do us part.”

Let me give you a little background on my parents.  My dad was a scholarship basketball player at the University of Pittsburgh.  My mother was a chess nerd (but still quite the catch, I hear!). My father tells the story so well, and I’ll try my best to do it justice…

My dad first caught a glimpse of my mom when she was walking to the ice cream shop on campus (she was wearing blue-checked pants…dad will never let me forget that!)  He followed her there but lost her.  Later, he saw her sitting on the bench outside his dorm quietly enjoying her ice cream cone.  My dad first went into the building, then minutes later returned and asked my mother, point-blank: “Are you waiting for me?”  She quickly responded with a, “No!” Ironically, my dad was wearing a Polish Racing Team shirt (my mom is Polish…and you’d think I was there with all these fine details!!)  They ended up spending the rest of the day together and a measly two months later, my mom found a diamond engagement ring in her fries at McDonald’s (why does everything revolve around food?!)  Four months after that, they heard wedding bells.  There was a whopping FIVE people at my parent’s wedding, and he has actually told me once that he had to cut out of his business meeting early just to make it to the ceremony on time!!  Mom made her own dress and they honeymooned at the wonderful Jumer’s Castle Lodge in gorgeous Bettendorf, Iowa.  Ahh, romance!!!

But what can I say?! After 34 years, 2 daughters, 2 son-in-laws, 5 dogs, 2 hamsters, 1 guinea pig, 1 turtle, and a handful of unsuccessful fish, they are still madly in love – just as they were on January 10, 1975.

Mom and Dad…you have been and always will be an inspiration to Neil and I.  I love you more than anything and am so fortunate to have you as my parents.