(this post is under construction…left over from this blog’s days as our wedding blog. it will be updated soon!)

It is a little-known fact that foxes lay eggs. Most science books will tell you that foxes give birth to live young. For most of our lives, Robert and I were under this delusion ourselves. This is the story of how we were convinced otherwise…and of how our relationship developed along the way.

According to Winnie-the-Pooh, ‘it all comes, I suppose…of liking honey so much.’ In my case, it all comes of liking children’s books and the color orange so much. Knowing this about me, Robert spent a lot of care and thought in picking out the perfect birthday present for me last year. He sent me an orange felt case for my laptop, shaped like a fox. It looked like it had come straight from the pages of a beautifully-illustrated children’s book. Such a special present deserved an equally special thank-you note, so I designed a card with an orange paper fox on the front, and wrote my thanks inside it. I included a wax paper packet of chocolate-covered espresso beans in the bottom of the package, put the card on the top, and mailed it.

A few days later, Robert sent a text, thanking me for the ‘fox eggs.’  ‘Fox eggs? What are you talking about? Foxes don’t lay eggs,’ I replied. But obviously, they had…or why else would Robert have received a paper nest full of chocolate eggs, with a mama fox sitting on top? At first I was incredulous, because all my science books said that foxes gave birth to live young. But then I remembered that foxes are very good at keeping secrets…and eggs with tiny baby foxes inside are certainly special secrets. I realized that probably even most scientists didn’t know about fox eggs. This realization did cause me some worry, however…because, if what I thought were chocolate-covered coffee beans were actually fox eggs, perhaps Robert was eating a baby fox every time he ate one of the egg-shaped treats I had sent him.

However, I remembered a conversation I had just a few days before with my 3-year-old cousin, Moriah, in which she told me about the habits of turtles. Turtles, it seems, lay eggs also. If the mama turtle has eaten lemondrops for breakfast, the eggs will turn into baby turtles. If the mama has eaten broccoli or spinach for breakfast, the eggs won’t turn into baby turtles. It only made sense that the same would be true for foxes, I reasoned…and I was pretty certain that the paper fox had eaten only broccoli for breakfast.

That summer, Robert came home to visit and brought with him a stack of books he thought I would enjoy. Among them was a book that proved instrumental in helping us to focus and grow our relationship. He even made a special cover for the book, complete with a hand-drawn picture of a mama fox sitting on a nest full of eggs. That book was my companion for quite some time over the summer.

So, when my mom and I were at a garage sale some time later, and I found a set of three little orange eggs (most people would call them glass eggs, but I knew that they had baby foxes inside), I bought them. I made a little nest for them and gave them to Robert the next time that he was at home. These eggs lived on his desk for quite some time. Enough time, in fact, to make us a little bit concerned, because none of them seemed inclined to hatch. Perhaps the mama fox had not eaten any lemondrops.

But one day, when Robert’s mom was visiting him in Ohio, he walked into his room and noticed not three, but two eggs sitting in their little nest…and next to the nest, there was a newly-hatched wooden fox!  (Some people are inclined to believe that this incident was in some way connected with a couple of visits I had paid earlier in the week: first to a toy store that sold wooden animals, and then to Mrs. Raynor’s house. However, the timing of these visits was purely coincidental and entirely unconnected to the hatched egg).

A month or so later, Robert came back for a visit. I suggested that he should probably bring along the eggs that had still not hatched. After all, if one of them hatched while he was gone, the baby fox might need his care. Sure enough, while he was at my house, he looked into his backpack, where he had put the nest for safe-keeping, and discovered a newly-hatched fox inside. (Once more, this was not in any way related to a visit I had paid the week before to a different toy store that sold wooden animals…)

The last egg took quite some time to hatch…or so we thought. Robert thought that it might hatch while I was paying a visit to him last October, but no new foxes appeared. It wasn’t until Robert came back home for Christmas that the last fox found its way into his backpack. It turned out, it had hatched while I was visiting Robert in Ohio, but it had accidentally fallen into one of my bags. That fox stayed with me for a while, and I was inclined to keep it…but I thought it would be happier on Robert’s desk with the other foxes.

Well…January came around again, and once more, Robert picked out the perfect birthday gift for me. What is more, he made it himself: a blog theme designed to look like his desk, complete with his notebook and pencil, and, of course…a fox, and the fox eggs that lived on his desk. Because he built the theme using actual pictures of his desk and different items from it, it took some time to get it up and running…enough time, in fact, for him to give me the most wonderful present of all. In June, my best friend gave me a ring and his promise to be my husband. Which means that, before it becomes our blog, the theme Robert created for my birthday gets to first serve us as a website for our wedding…and the inspiration for many of the wedding details.

Foxes and eggs have been a playful element in our relationship for quite a while. Besides being a fun inside joke, it has also provided Robert and me with a tangible way of looking back over our relationship and remembering where we were at different points along the way. We are both so thankful for the way that God has worked to bring us together over the past two years. It has not been easy. In many ways, it has been the most difficult thing either of us has ever done. But by His grace, we have grown and learned so much, and it amazes us to look back on where we were at the beginning of our story and how far we have come since then. We are looking forward to growing even closer to each other and to our Savior in the years that we have ahead of us, and we covet your prayers that our marriage would bring glory to the One who brought it about.

Posted in Figmental adventures, Really truly adventures, Thoughts | 4 Notes