Our family started with a love story.
My name is LaRea and my husband’s name is Kirk. This is a second marriage for both of us. My first marriage ended in divorce and Kirk’s first wife passed away. We were both lonely and lost wondering where our lives would lead. We turned to online dating. I had so many ups and downs that I was ready to give up on dating all together. When one day Kirk sent me a message. My thoughts were, “He is not ready for commitment, he lives far away, he is safe and he just needs a friend.” I needed a friend. We started communicating online and I gave him my phone number and told him if he ever needs to talk, give me a call.
Within the next couple of days we started talking on the phone. We shared stories about our lives and found that we had a lot in common. About a month later we decided we should meet… as friends. Friends have to eat lunch. It would be nice to talk face to face. So he made the 100 mile trip and I drove 30 miles to meet near the middle for lunch. I was nervous but Kirk was even more nervous. We had a wonderful time and as the Christmas season was soon upon us we extended lunch to walking through the mall. We spent the next few weeks going Christmas shopping and sharing stories about our lives. A daily call from my new best friend always brightened my day. Our distance kept us from seeing each other but the anticipation of those bi-weekly dates kept us talking.
Finally it was Christmas. My children were spending the holiday with their dad so Kirk invited me to come down to his house for the holiday. I drove down on Christmas Eve and went to his brother’s house for a family get together. Apparently nobody knew I was coming. So many questions!
After Christmas Kirk and I tried to visit each other more often. Our friendship was becoming more of a serious relationship. Three months after that first conversation we had our first kiss. (Kirk was so nervous.) I was nervous as well. I was worried that he just hadn’t met enough other women and was going to settle with me. After all I was really the first person he had dated since his first wife passed away. I challenged him to go out on 5 dates before he made any decisions about us. He fought it a little but accepted the challenge and went on a few more dates. A couple of weeks later he called and said “I have gone out with 5 other women and I am ready to date only you!”
Easter weekend we took 8 of our 10 children to Mesquite, Nevada for a little family vacation. It was stressful but fun! Teenage kids trying to get along for the sake of lovesick parents was rough. Then right before we left to come home we went to the little gazebo in front of the Casa Blanca Hotel. There Kirk gave me a stuffed bunny for Easter with some carrots and carats. I was so surprised! Of course I said yes. Kirk is quite a catch and I felt like the luckiest girl in the world.
About a month later we planned a simple wedding in his parents backyard. Our families came together and we had a wonderful party.
With 10 grown children between us we have had a lot to keep us busy. Now as they are all going to college, taking jobs, getting married and having children we feel that we are so blessed!
I am still the luckiest girl in the world!