A girl named Abbers

It was my freshman year of college and I walked alone into a church that was bigger than my high school. I was intimidated walking amongst tons of chairs, circled into small groups of which I was just supposed to pick one to join. 

That day forever changed me as I sat with a couple who not only invited me into their Sunday morning study, but into their family. 

8 years have passed since that fateful morning, and in that time, I spent a lot time with the deSteiguer family. I got to know John, Darla, and their kids Joe and Abby; I love them all, but a special sister-like friendship developed between Abby and I over the next few years.  Abby was in 3rd grade when me met and she  really became like a little sis. Her name is Abby, but I call her Abbers. I think I said it once on our way to get Braums or something, and it just stuck all these years.

We really were like sisters. We jumped on the trampoline, got ice cream, rode bikes and made art projects (Abby was always better than me : ).  We swam at the neighborhood pool in the summer,carved pumpkins in the fall and threw snowballs in the winter. I would do my laundry over at the house, stay for dinner and then make cupcakes with Abby,  Sometimes I was over that late enough, I would tuck her in and pray with her before bed, we'd talk and laugh long past when John and Darla probably wanted her to sleep... but it was worth it.

I got to watch as this little girl as she grew up. I listened to her piano pieces, watched her play basketball,  and got to cheer her on as she tried our for new things. I smiled as she figured out what to do with her curly hair, go to dances with boys and eventually drive with her when she got her license (and maybe around my neighborhood even before  she did :  ) 

Well that little 3rd grade kid has now turned into an amazing person. Abby is extremely intelligent, asks good questions and is a genuinely kind person. She is quick to laugh and loves creating things through baking and art.  She is joyful. Abby is an avid reader, a good friend, and has the cutest little freckle on the left side of her nose (you do!) She eats tomatoes like they're candy, has a great voice and is not afraid to try new things. She is a leader in her community and this summer is headed to Honduras to serve.
Can't you see why I love this girl?  

Though we live in different states, Abby is still a part of my life.  This past year she has been making college visits with John and Darla,  and they made a special stop (7 hours out of the way) to come visit me in Phoenix.  
A few photos from our afternoon together. 

i love this one of her...

And of course we had to take a few with the family!

Thanks for coming to see me!!

This one is for you Abby (and your crazy obsession with palm trees : ) 

Abbers, you are amazing. I'm so proud of the person you are and the path in life you have put yourself on. Thanks for letting me be your older sister all these years and putting up with my crazy ideas that gets us kicked out of Halloween (I was SO not too old). You are a wonderful person and I'm excited to watch as you continue to grow. 

Check out more at: jenn-wagner.com

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