Dear Tim, 36 years old

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Dear Tim,

When you slipped a ring on my finger fourteen and a half years ago, I had no hesitation. None.

"'Til death due us part" seemed much too short even then.

You have only gotten better with age - smarter, funnier, wiser, and more successful.

A man of projects, you have the very unique trait of being adaptable in both indoor and outdoor pursuits.

Tim Sheaffer

When it comes to real estate, I always tell people that you are well-suited for the profession. One of your favorite aspects of the job is negotiating and you do it with such brilliance and grace. You listen attentively, but also stand your ground - and your clients thank you for it. Past clients have remarked about your "constant availability," "high level of integrity," and "persistence." All true. Call or text Tim at 2am and he'll probably respond within an hour. Or 2 minutes. Probably two minutes.

You are a wiz on the computer. Web design, digital advertising, search engine marketing, tech everything. All of our friends and relatives have you on speed dial and you can usually come to the rescue with any question. Businesses and non-profits that hire your company for web work are pleased because you listen well, over-deliver, and are creative with solutions. Also - you actually answer your phone. A somewhat lost art these days.

After a certain amount of desk hours, you crave the mountains and the solitude of nature.

This year, you planted no fewer than 20 trees in our yard (including apple, peach, plum, grapefruit, lemon, lime, blood orange, and pomegranate) and started a vegetable garden. Our table has been garnished with plump tomatoes, fragrant swiss chard, and crunchy sugar snap peas. Your green thumb is in full effect.

Sitting down isn't really your thing. You prefer planting grape vines, installing floors, and wheelbarrowing soil to more sedentary entertainment options.

At home, you work ceaselessly - staying up after dark to scrub the pots & pans and to read your Bible. You are an expert tucker-inner, bug-slayer, and barbecue griller. Our girls adore you and often cry when you leave the house (even for quick errands around town).

Up for almost any adventure, you make a great travel companion. It's true you leave the details to me and sometimes get grumpy during the packing process, but you will say yes to almost any destination. New food and new places - we haven't been everywhere, but it's on our list.

I like that we can talk for hours about absolutely everything - including business start-ups and ideas. We went away for a miniature "babymoon" at a resort in June sans kids...and you didn't blink when I pulled out a 4-page outline of discussion topics (with roman numerals). We're just not the sunbathing-by-the-pool kind of people.

Don't get me wrong - you are adventurous, spontaneous, and fun too. You like hiking, running, mountain biking, four-wheeling, fishing, and beer/wine tasting. You make people laugh with your extremely honest observations. You are a man of fierce friendships and lots of connections.

When I asked you what you wanted for your birthday, you said the word "productive" - and I knew exactly what you meant. You like to work (in the best possible way) and you know the joy that working brings.

As 35 quietly slips out the back door, I know that the second half of your thirties will be even better than the first. If I could nominate you for every "40 under 40" list, I would. You are bound for greatness - always have been. I saw glimpses of it at 19 when I walked down the aisle. Today, I'm still marveling at the man you are.

Cheers to 36!

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