Donna Smaldone
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Saturday / April 16 / 2011

White picket fences: they never look how you imagined… they’re better

Growing up, I imagined my would-be husband, my knight in shining armor. I dreamed about our perfect little house, our two-and-a-half kids, family dog and white picket fence surrounding it all. I called it my “white picket fence”. And I dreamed large.

What I didn’t know was that one day I would realize my white picket fence, but it wouldn’t look nearly as I had imagined. …it would be even better!

Enter Skip. The Story of Us is one I cherish – and love sharing. Our lives, on seemingly separate paths, serendipitously intersected on Sunday, May 17, 1992. Let me back up… I had just graduated from SUNY Plattsburgh and was living at Mom & Dad’s in Hadley. Skip, through a series of events, had determined he was no good at dating and so in essence, had given up on it. His friends teased him saying, “what do you expect… that God’s just gonna drop a woman in your lap!?” He supposed he did, deducing that God could certainly pick better than he could on his own.

For a variety of opportune reasons that particular Sunday, Skip and I both ended up attending a water baptism at Calvary Assembly of God Church in downtown Glens Falls. He arrived early, I arrived late. Embarrassed by my tardiness, I attempted to sneak into a pew unnoticed. Skip was standing, singing. I did my best to skootch past him but inadvertently knocked him into the pew… falling into his lap! True story.

Love God’ sense of humor. Love His purpose for and interest in our lives. Love that He thinks tie-die instead of white.

I'm in love with being in love with my husband. (pic by our dear friend kiT, kathyfreundel.com)

Married to Skip for nearly 18 years, I am in love with being in love with my husband. And I mean authentic, head-over-heels, giddy kind of love. Don’t misunderstand, it’s not all lollipops and giggles. What it is, is a lifetime of committing to falling in love over and over again. The quintessential falling into his lap again and again, if you will, continuing to grow that once seedling love into a mature oak.

It’s hard to shave it all down into a single blog post as really, it’s a whole book. In fact, more and more I feel a book in me, trying to get out, and I’d love to hear what you think about that. Chapter Two would include the question Skip posed to me on our second date… (you’ll have to read the book!)

In the meantime… dream large. And let your white picket fence get splashed with a little tie-die.

16 responses to “White picket fences: they never look how you imagined… they’re better”

  1. De Hasrings says:

    You my dear, are a lucky, lucky, blessed woman.♥
    (…& even more so because you know just how lucky you are! )

  2. You are right, Donna. You’ve always had a book in there begging to be let out. I’ll be the first in line . . . and for the record, your picket fence is crazy funkadelic, and I LOVE IT! You and Skip have a true gift, and best part is that you know it.

    • Donna Smaldone says:

      Thanks, kiT! How I miss you and the sharing of our so-alike-and-yet-so-different funkadelic fences! Love you!! xo

  3. Dave Lion says:

    You are quite the wordsmith, Miss Donna. What a great story! And that 1993 picture is certainly worth at least 101 words. I love a good story, can’t wait to read the next chapter.

    • Donna Smaldone says:

      What an encouragement you are, Dave! Thank you! …and I can’t wait to hear at least 50 of those words from you tomorrow!

  4. Carrie says:

    Very nice! I love learning more about you. You are blessed!!

  5. Karen Ulrich-Dekkers says:

    I love reading your blogs and I love the story of you guys. Like my mom, I’m a sucker for the love story and will most certainly cry. Please write the book for all of us that may not yet have the happily ever after, but we know it’s out there, waiting to fall into our lap when God decides it’s the right time. Love you, Donna!

  6. Rick Modien says:

    Donna, this is a beautiful post. I felt the intense love you have for Skip in every word. The thought occurred to me, reading this post, that you totally understand how I feel about my partner, Chris. How I love him more than I ever thought I’d love anyone. Both of us are so blessed. Do you know how many people are envious of what we have? My fervent wish is that everyone gets to experience the same thing at least once in his or her life.
    Nicely done. I love your writing, and I love your spirit.
    Keep writing.

    • Donna Smaldone says:

      I so appreciate your comment, Rick. I share your fervent wish that EVERYone may experience the same love luxury you and I have been so blessed to realize. I am so thrilled to hear in your writing how head-over-heels for Chris you still are after 19 years. You truly celebrate love and I applaud you. As you are a seasoned blogger, I also sincerely appreciate your words of writing encouragement – thank you! xo

  7. Stacy Morgan says:

    Love you Donna and Skip! With God as the head of your marriage, it’s amazing! 🙂

  8. Donna – you never mentioned you were thinking about writing a book – how exciting! I have to share something with you. I listen to a show called Radio Lab. A recent episode has inspired me so much that I think you should give it a listen. the whole show is great, but if you want to get to the part that kicked me in the butt, go to 27:45. It’s Liz Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love talking about owning your inspiration and putting it work. LOVEDIT. I can’t wait to hear that you’ve started your book 🙂

    http://www.radiolab.org/2011/mar/08/ This is the link to the episode HELP

    • Donna Smaldone says:

      Thank you so much, Adrienne! I love Liz Gilbert’s writing and look forward to giving a listen. Thanks so much for thinking of me!

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