Thursday, June 17, 2010

36 Becauses on The Maestro's 36th Birthday

1.  Because I can always count on you to make me laugh, even when I want to be angry with you.

2.  Because I still love your curly hair, even if it is peppered in gray nowadays.

3.  Because you will never leave the house in wrinkled clothes, and you (usually) don't make me iron them for you.

4.  Because you are "well-rounded."  I never wanted to date a musician, but when I found out you participated in lots of intramural sports programs, I decided it would be okay.  I'm glad I did.

5.  Because you have a smile that makes my heart skip a beat whenever you flash it at me.

6.  Because you took over the cooking job in this house.  Not only because you enjoy doing it, but because you know I really hate it.

7.  Because you make sure our little family prays together morning and night, even if sometimes it's in the car on the way to church.

8.  Because you are always willing to help me around the house, no matter how tired you are.

9.  Because you are a walking New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians.  It doesn't matter what comes on the classical music station, you know everything about it, down to the date it was composed.

10.  Because you never give me the answers.  You're such a natural teacher that you always help me come to the answer on my own (both in music and in life).

11.  Because you never give the kids the answers, either.  They will always be thankful to have had a father who led and guided them to figure out the right answer but never, ever gave it to them.

12.  Because you honor your parents and always speak highly of them.

13.  Because I can send you to the store to buy anything for me (and I do mean anything), and you will do it willingly and without complaint.

14.  Because you are an awesome brother to each of your eight siblings.

15.  Because you are incredibly supportive of me and the things I want to do, whether it be singing or photography or making our family live on 5 dollars a week.

16.  Because no matter which calling you have in the church, you don't wing it.  Your lessons are well-prepared, you go home teaching every single month even when it's almost impossible, and you make sure our family's building cleaning assignment is always done.

17.  Because you can sing.

18.  Because you are good.  You are obedient and always try to do the right thing.

19.  Because I love watching you conduct an orchestra, especially from the audience.

20.  Because I love spending time with you.  You are my best friend and we always have something to talk about no matter how much time we spend together.

21.  Because you dream big, and you work hard to make those dreams a reality.

22.  Because I am the only person on earth, besides your mother, who can read your horrendous handwriting.

23.  Because you are a food snob.  I really don't mind it, even if I roll my eyes at you.  I kind of like knowing that whatever you deem worthy of putting in your mouth will be really, really good.

24.  Because you are thorough.  If I ask you to do a job for me, you will make sure it gets done right, even if it takes hours.

25.  Because you call me during the day just to chat for a minute, and you don't mind if I call you during the day for some adult conversation.

26.  Because you will drive the entire route of a road trip without complaint, because you know I would rather not.

27.  Because you love the Lord.

28.  Because I like holding your hand.

29.  Because you always make sure that I come home to a clean house if I spend a few days away.

30.  Because you don't mind that I keep the lamp on at night so I can read until 2 in the morning while you sleep.

31.  Because you are an amazing father to our three daughters.  I love watching you interact with them because it is clear how much you love them.

32.  Because you treat me like a queen.

33.  Because you will drop everything when somebody needs your help:  You will go on splits with the missionaries or help somebody move at a moment's notice.

34.  Because you stay calm while I am freaking out, and vice versa.  You complement me perfectly.

35.  Because you are always setting goals to be a better person.  You have lists of them all over the house.

36.  Because I love you more than I ever dreamed I could, even on the day we were married.

Happy Birthday, Joel! 
Lara Neves
Lara Neves

Lara is mom to three daughters—two teens and a tween. She loves to share her parenting and homemaking triumphs and failures here at Overstuffed! She was diagnosed with Lyme disease in 2015 and has been fighting it ever since. When she isn't working on her mother of the year award, you can find her reading, singing, or taking photos.


  1. Awh... that was really sweet! :)

  2. Wow, Lara, sounds like you found a real winner of a husband! It's rare that a woman finds a man of such heightened morality and supernal sensitivity. It must be amazing to live with such a gem - unspeakable, really....

  3. Joel always makes me laugh! And he is all that!! Happy irthday Joey! We love you too!

  4. That was the nicest, sweetest post I have read all day.

    Isn't is a blessing when we find ourselves a real "keeper"

    Happy Birthday Joel!

  5. what a cute way to say happy bday! it's so eloquent i'm half-tempted to cut-and-paste then or change what doesn't apply for jason's next bday - or father's day coming up (kidding - i won't do that). it is a VERY cute and clever idea, though!

    Happy birthday, Joel!

  6. Love this post! He is a great guy! Speaking of food worthy of eating and his cooking...will you ask him how to cook a really good roast? I have yet to figure that one out!

  7. Awww, you made me REALLY miss my big brother. He truly is one of the best people I know. You two are a great team. And he really does have horrendous handwriting.

  8. Happy Birthday Joel! Awesome tribute to him on his special day.

  9. What an inspiring post! You're lucky to have found each other :)


  10. That was beautiful! It is so refreshing to read about a happy marriage! This has given me some inspiration for how I can be a better husband/father.

  11. I can read his handwriting too! It's not that bad!

  12. I totally got choked up on this post. Happy birthday to the Maestro!

  13. Aw, what an amazing tribute to your sweetie! I hope his birthday is perfect and you really are lucky to have someone so perfect for you!

  14. I have been reading your blog for a long while. Why not make a recording of you singing the Love Song "Because" I think that is the name of it, and give it to him on his birthday or shortly thereafter.

  15. What a sweet birthday letter! happy bday to your hubs. And the cooking hat? My husband wears it most of the time, now, too. (It's a sweet relief to not feel that gnawing pressure of whipping up a perfect meal every afternoon...)

  16. OH! You are so sweet! I love this, A LOT!

  17. What a great list! I especially love the part about teaching and not giving the answers.

  18. It sounds to me as though we both enjoy marriages and husbands who are quite similar. Good and Godly men who are completely in love with us. Is there any better blessing??

    Happy, happy birthday to your wonderful husband.

  19. Okay - this was a very beautiful birthday present - but I am going to have to disagree with number 3 - since Joel and I are commonly at the bus stop together in our PJ's! I do guess that fleece really does not wrinkle so you might be right. I - the friend that does not read blogs - am finally reading your blog - why?- because my husband read it before me!!!!!!!