A birthday post for Lolly

Yesterday was Lolly’s birthday. She turned 35. I have known her since I was 3 and she was 5. So that’s 30 years. 30 years of knowing one of the most amazing people on this planet.

I’m freaking lucky.

Here, in no particular order, are 35 things I love about Lolly Shea.

1. She has an obsession with blue plastic. Especially globes that are blue and plasticky. She loves it so much when she sees it she says she almost craves to eat it.

2. She is really smart. When she was invited to skip a grade in elementary school she didn’t want to be the youngest in her class when everyone was turning 16 and able to date, so she decided against it. That decision is what made sure we were only one grade apart, which in many ways is what led us to falling in love.

3. She is beautiful. Inside and out.

4. She loves to talk. And everything she says is interesting to me.

5. She is also one of the best listeners I’ve ever met. This is what helped me to open up to her at crucial times.

6. Her pain threshold is way higher than mine. When we used to do circuit training together she put me to shame.

7. She loves Halloween. A lot.

8. She also loves every other Holiday, and makes each one special. Without it, I would probably just let them slide by without much fanfare, and then I’d really regret it.

9. She’s very clever. What she says and does never ceases to delightfully surprise me, which I really appreciate. I’m never bored with her around, ever.

10. She is always willing to sing for me, even when she doesn’t know the tune.

11. She is hot. Good body, good hair, looks good without makeup. She is exactly the type of woman that I wanted/needed.

12. She is so patient with me. And she’s really nice about it.

13. She’s also very appreciative as I slowly learn how to do things that come really easily to other people. (Like navigating the complex geography of Provo, UT. That kind of thing.)

14. I really like her taste in clothes and fashion. She’s also a really good artist.

15. Her favorite pastimes are to eat and talk. My favorite pastimes are to eat and talk. It works out well.

16. She is fearless. When she knows something is right, she will do it without hesitation. She knows how to do hard things.

17. Her faith in God is pristine, and her connection to him is very deep and very apparent. He loves her a lot. When she prays He listens. When He speaks to her, she listens. And then she does what she knows she should do. I would not be married to her today without that pure, genuine connection.

18. Related: when talking about getting answers to prayers she’ll often say things like “And then Heavenly Father told me…[miraculous insight]…” I love that her relationship with God is so personal.

19. She is the best. possible. mother. to our three daughters.

20. When she decides to change something about herself, she goes for it full throttle. And it sticks.

21. She isn’t afraid to admit if she’s wrong. She’s also not afraid to stand her ground when she’s right.

22. She can entertain an entire roomful of people with her storytelling. I admire that in a person because I kind of suck at it.

23. She is incredibly thoughtful and concerned about others.

24. She is also very healthy–she doesn’t get wrapped up in problems that are not intended for her. She has very naturally clear boundaries. (The therapist in me really appreciates this.)

25. She is accepting of everyone and always has been. If you are a human being, she will accept you and love you. No matter what. In a way that is special.

26. You will never meet a person who says “I’m sorry” more than Lolly. I remark on this quality in one of her junior high yearbooks, and it’s still the case. Literally, I’m not kidding, as I wrote this sentence she yelled in an “I’m sorry” for something. It’s totally endearing.

27. She is ambitious, but in the perfect way–in a way that’s totally true to herself and her own self-improvement. It’s never about what anybody else thinks.

28. She is the best editor a blogger could ever ask for. She is the perfect litmus test for whether things are funny, and she is also a very good copy-editor. She provides really good ideas for blog posts, and then can tell when they’ve been well-executed. I rarely post something before passing it by her first.

29. She’s good at pretty much anything she decides to do.

30. She is not overly conventional. She’s the type of girl who contemplates one day the idea of doing an entire semester of school abroad, and the very next day is getting her passport. She is spontaneous and not afraid to do things that people might consider weird or risky if she feels good about it.

31. She is also very traditional in a lot of ways–but not to conform to outside institutions.

32. She’s generally unconcerned about what people think of her. Which allows her to be the wonderful woman she is. She naturally does what she does in a very congruent, true-to-herself way.

33. She loves me unconditionally. She fell in love with me when I was a 300 pound gay kid who hadn’t gone on a mission and had no idea what he was going to do with his life. That love has never shifted to any degree as the years have passed and I have lost weight, grown up, and found my path.

34. She is a great cook.

35. She is selfless and wonderful and everything I’ve ever wanted in a partner. I cannot imagine my life without her. She is everything to me.

I don’t know if a husband has ever been more in love with his wife than I love my Lolly.

Happy birthday sweet girl!

This is my all-time favorite picture of Lolly. I love it because she looks gorgeous and sultry, but what you can’t tell looking at the picture is that she and I were totally joking around and having fun, and this was her being ridiculously silly. I love all that this picture represents about her. (It’s in Cafe Rio, which she loves. It shows her deep blue eyes. Her love for me. We’re having fun. We’re eating food. She’s drinking water to be healthy. Etc, etc. etc.)


  1. Happy Birthday Lolly! I will never forget meeting you in a both miraculous and ridiculous way- you came into a room full of men, all strangers, (me the sole woman) and went up to the first guy you saw to see if he had a quarter. You were in a female bind , as we say, and REALLY needed that quarter before you used the ladies restroom right outside our conference room door. I don't go up to strangers and hug them EVER but I was compelled to go hug you because I knew immediately who you were! I could NOT believe you walked into our closed room door. It was so random I knew Heavenly Father allowed me that funny, sweet moment.
    Josh, you don't need it, but I can totally vouch for a lot of these 35 things after having only met in person Lolly for – what was it? – 2 minutes???
    Happy Birthday Lolly!!!
    From The Lady in the Chevron Rainbow Maxi Dress in The Provo Convention Center (was 1 or 2 years ago?)

  2. Such a beautiful list! It's a perfect celebration of an amazing woman. Hope your day was wonderful, Lolly! (And I hope your coming year is full of everything you hope for!)

  3. I think I have decided I want her to be my new BFF … not kidding!! Sounds like we would get along GREAT!! Love how in love you are with each other!! (and love that you would write a blog post all about HER … pretty sure my husband hasn't even ever READ my blog … not once … ever!!) This made my day!! 🙂

  4. Happy Birthday, Sister weed!
    From the day I met you, I knew I was going to get along with you very well! Your a kind, and patient person, like Brother Weed said! You took very good care of us when we were in elementary,and made it to everything you could in your power to. The first time I met you, it was my Baptism. I remember cuz' you were the one giving cookies…
    Anyhow, have a happy one!

  5. Oh, You have GOT to tell the swiffer broom workout story! Or maybe direct me to the link where you've already told it! Happy Birthday, Lolly! I hope I get to know you some day!

  6. Ok I have to say it. Dang Lolly you have gorgeous blue eyes!!! I hope that doesn't sound weird or creepy in any way, shape, or form, but I just had to say it. I hope your birthday was awesome!
    You are a very lovely person. I've only met you once, but you were really genuine and authentic. Lately that's a hard quality to find now and days. Happy birthday 🙂

  7. This is the sweetest post ever! You guys are amazing, and I am so happy that you're happy, even when I don't know you. Lolly, you are absolutely gorgeous, and Josh is lucky guy! Keep up your amazing personality! Happy birthday!

  8. Happy Birthday, Lolly – and thank you Josh for this great list that makes me so happy to read. And how much fun it will be reading a twice-as-long list in 35 years… 🙂

  9. HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY LOLLY! What an AMAZING woman you are! I wish you were in my ward. Josh is indeed blessed to have you as his eternal companion and your kids are blessed to have you as their mom. I admire your strengths and wish I had so many of them. Thanks for being a Christlike woman who inspires me to do and be better.

  10. Happy Happy Birthday Lolly! When I grow up I want to be like you! (Even though I am older than you) You are such a great example. Josh is lucky to have you as his eternal companion and your beautiful daughters are blessed to have you as their mom. Thank you for your ability to be real. Thank you for not being too afraid to be vulnerable and share who you really are. I hope this year brings you more blessings than your heart can hold (and fewer dead birds ha ha).

  11. You really do have a lovely wife. She's one of those people that I wish I knew a little better and wish was a closer friend. You know, the kind of person I want to be someday. Like in Heaven after we're all perfected and stuff. Happy (late) birthday, Lolly!

  12. I'm watching your episode of "I'm Married to A…" and I just saw the scene where Lolly becomes emotional when discussing the mean comments people post on your site…While I don't necessarily understand your relationship, that doesn't mean I have the right to tell you it's wrong, because IT'S NOT MY LIFE. If you guys are happy and your daughters are happy then good for you guys! Ignore any comments that come your way that bring you down.

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