Birthday wishes from Lizz’s family!

The following are birthday wishes and memories that friends and family have sent to honor Elizabeth on her birthday!  My thanks to those that contributed!  I love you all! – Julie

The first message comes from her cousin Paul Ratliff and his family:

Happy Birthday Elizabeth!

One of my most enjoyable moments is when I always picked up you and your sisters in Blue, Texas.

You would always show how tough you were by arm-wrestling me and David Franklin.  Then we would watch MTV spring break edition and you and I would imitate the dancing.  I loved playing truth or dare.  You always choose the dare. (Imagine that).

The best memory I have of all time is watching you grow from birth to adult hood.  Our families became so close and we still are.

Love,

Paul, Christi, and Meagan Ratliff    

Paul:  Here are some pictures of you and Elizabeth dancing at her wedding!  I guess all that MTV spring break edition watching paid off!

Wedding 418Wedding 413Wedding 411Wedding 410Wedding 407

This message is from her cousin Katie Warren Gould:

Elizabeth,

Often times you enter my thoughts at the most unexpected moments. Other times something triggers a thought of you, whether it be a scripture I read, a song I hear, or an infectious laughter I hear that reminds me of the happiness you exuded. I have so many memories of you, of all of us, as children, as cousins, always up to something. As I reflect on the time that we had together, I can’t believe now how imaginative we were. It seems like only yesterday, you, Jennifer, Lauren and I were somewhere planning on how we could convince our parents to let me stay a weekend or longer with all of you. Those times were some of the happiest memories of my childhood. Now looking back, I don’t really think that much convincing was needed, it just seemed necessary at the time. I cherished those times, and now I cherish those memories even more. They were always filled with adventures, fun, and love. Being around you was always a joy, and certainly never dull.

I thought of you today in church. We sang a hymn that’s verse ended with, “Seek justice, love, mercy. Walk humbly with your God.” As you grew into a young woman I know this was your mantra, but even as a child you were living these words without even knowing it. You were never quick to judge, you loved without inhibition, and you always had a compassionate heart. I could have written about a particular memory I have of you, but the one thing all my memories of you have in common is that you had an amazing ability to be joyful in all circumstances, and spread that joy to others. How fortunate I was to be affected by your joy. Thank you for the memories and for the example that you set for us, walking humbly with God. I love you. Happy birthday!

Katie Gould

Katie:  I am so excited and honored that you would chose to name your daughter Elizabeth Anne.  My prayer is that she too will be full of life and joy and love of God!  I love you!  Aunt Julie

This birthday message is from Elizabeth’s aunt Debbie Warren:

Celebrate!  I think this is just one of the words that describes how Liz lived.  She didn’t need a special day designated by Hallmark or an event.  Every day was a celebration for Liz.  She celebrated her God, her life with her husband and children, family and friends.  Even as a young child it was plain to see that she had that joy that is just innate in some people.  
 
When Liz and the girls were very young, we got to spend quite a bit of time with them and oh, it was so much fun.  You never knew what might be said or done.  I remember one time when Liz was quite young, I walked past the bathroom and there was Liz, sittiing on the potty, swinging her legs and her hands on top of her head just pushing down.  Funny sight!  I asked her what she was doing and she said she was pushing the poop out!  I think she was serious – she was too cute.  She was too cute her whole short life.
 
As short as it was – and it was far too short – our Liz got it!  She knew how to live a life full of joy and it was clear that she and Sam were teaching their children to celebrate life as well.  Those big blue eyes of Liz twinkled with that joy and love and those dimples….you could get lost in those big craters!
 
So, I guess my message would be one that maybe Liz would have for everyone…..celebrate….be joyful….not just today, but everyday.  Don’t take things for granted.  Live every day to its fullest, just as this young, beautiful woman did.
 

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