Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Elle Hoo

Last Sunday, the lady leading worship at our church mentioned that she sings at a lot of funerals and she had more than usual during the holidays. During the funeral service she listened to all the praiseful, uplifting, wonderful things that were being said about person who had passed on. She then double dared us to take some time to write a letter to someone we love or care for and to share the words with them while they are alive to hear them….because it is sad to think how we wait until a person dies before we relay all the things we admire about them.

Sitting next to me during the service was my friend of nine years, Elle Hoo. I started thinking about her and all the joyful and not so joyful times we have shared. Getting through her husband’s kidney transplant, Lucas’ health issues, life’s regular ups and downs, and our house fire solidified that we will be friends for a long, long time. When we met at Community Bible Study in 2000, we were part of the New Mom’s Group with our infants. It feels like God brought us together…I just know He did. We slowly became friends, walking our little ones in joggers and spending lots of Mommy time watching her daughter and my son grow up.

The characteristics that keep me wanting to be friends with Ellen are many….she is a kind and loving friend that lets me be me….I don’t feel like I have to be anyone but myself around her, even if that means I am hurting, depressed, or worried, but most of the time I am silly, honest, wine sipping and simple when we get together. Ellen is committed to her family and spends hours at her kids school volunteering in so many different areas from Art to painting shirts…..she is a classy woman who works at keeping her marriage connected, and her small tribe of four in sync. Ellen has her priorities straight! She loves the Lord and looks toHim, but she is not a stuffy, uptight, wagging her finger in your face sort. She radiates grace, compassion and understanding. Because she is genuine, I have been able to come to love and appreciate her warts and all, and she has done the same with me. It feels wonderful to know I am loved even when things do not look or feel anywhere close to perfect or under control.

Ellen is health conscious and committed to plenty of exercise for mental and physical benefits and she has introduced me to many healthy snacks that I would have never met, if not for her. For example… grape tomatoes, munching on raw cucumbers, Smart Pop popcorn, or throwing artichokes in chili. She also is an excellent baker, gingerbread cookies are her specialty. For a while, every time I called her she was baking cupcakes!

When we first met I could not believe that she mowed her own lawn, I thought…” Wow! What a woman, I am going to give that a try!”

I starting mowing and kept it up for six years… so you might say Ellen inspires me with her take charge way.

When our children were three she invited our family to Bass Lake. Since that first trip in 2003, we have shared family vacations at her parent’s cabin and every trip has been packed with the best family memories that my husband, kids and I treasure. Lots of games, crafts, laughter, long walks and home cooking take us over as we spend lazy days at the lake trying to get our kids up on skis or pulling them on a tube with their boat. She is the boat captain and an expert water skier. She is humble about her talent on the water, and everything in her life. She is amazingly comfortable on the lake whether it is knee boarding, canoeing or her world famous cannon ball. I admire the wisdom she has shown in the value of keeping the child inside me alive and active. Her natural beauty on the outside is only outdone by her loving, youthful and wacky insides….. Cheers to you Ellen, you dare to make my life a happier place and I wanted you to know why.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That is so sweet!!!!! You've definitely summed up a special gal so beautifully!!!! You need to frame this pic. Both you girls look soo naturally beautiful and the guys aren't too bad either...keep enjoying and cherishing your friendship...XO Kellie