Vintage Dude

The Man…

The Myth….

The Legend…

Also an excellent teacher librarian who spends hours working at home on his own time.  He serves on the teachers’ union board because teachers’ working conditions (ie. class size) are students’ learning conditions.

He’s a soccer referee who gives back to his association by serving on the board as treasurer…

…and he still looks pretty darn good in shorts.

Even more importantly–he’s  a very good daddy.

He is wise and kind, and he sees the world through a lens of compassion.

Not only that—the man bakes his own Christmas cookies!

Thom is of the very best vintage.  Who could ask for anything more?

If I couldn’t have Thom…

…I might settle for Indiana Jones.


But let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.

When the time comes, maybe we’ll have Thom stuffed and put in a museum.

But for now, we’ll stuff him with cake and ice cream.

Happy Birthday, dear Thom, and many many more!

Click here for more interpretations of The Weekly Photo Challenge: Face.

All words and images (except Indiana Jones) copyright Naomi Baltuck



  1. Carol says:

    Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful! A marvelous birthday greeting!

    Sent from my iPad


    1. Dear Carol,
      Thank you so much! This was a fun one to put together.

  2. scillagrace says:

    There’s something very M.C. Escher about that photo of him through his glasses – I like it very much. Wise and kind, a teacher who cares about people…why in the world would you trade that for Indiana Jones????!!! Think again, my friend!

    1. Hi Scilla,
      I love that photo too. Don’t worry–I definitely wouldn’t trade Thom for Indiana Jones. When Raiders of the Lost Ark first came out, Thom and I had been a couple for about six months, and told him I’d only have Indiana Jones if I could have him. When I saw the film again ten years later, I’d been with Thom long enough to realize that I wouldn’t have Indiana Jones even if I couldn’t have Thom. Jones might be a dashing and courageous hero-type, but he’s commitment-averse, extremely uncommunicative, not enough of a team player, and could never be domesticated enough for me. My kind of hero is a nice guy who is there to help raise the kids, and can enjoy a quiet evening at home, from reading aloud to the family to building a snow-woman in the backyard, or filling out the kids’ permission slips for the school field.

      1. scillagrace says:

        I can’t see Indiana reading you children’s books, either. And if he did, I bet he wouldn’t do the voices. Bah!

      2. So funny! You’d better believe our kids expect their readers to “do the voices!”

  3. Happy Bday Thom! Love the photo through the glasses…

    1. Hi Suzanne,
      Thanks so much for the visit, and for your sweet response. Thom really enjoyed the generous response and many birthday wishes he has received from my friends and blogging buddies.

  4. Mary Brugh says:

    Oh, Naomi, I love this! Sweet and unique! Happy Birthday, Thom!

    1. Hi Mary,
      Thanks so much for the birthday wishes. I’ll pass them on. All the best to you too!

  5. Tina Schell says:

    What a lovely testimonial Naomi – love the shot with the glasses especially. He sounds like he may deserve someone as special as his wife!

    1. Thank you, Tina. You are too kind! Thanks for the visit–it’s always good to hear from you.

  6. Happy Birthday Thom.
    Naomi you scored!

  7. summitpath says:

    YOU chose wisely… 🙂

    1. Hi Steve,
      I did indeed, and I thank my lucky stars every day. Thanks so much for the visit.

  8. sue marquis bishop says:

    So so sweet. Loved it. Sue

    1. Hi Sue,
      Thanks so much for the visit, and for your very kind words. So good to hear from you.

  9. Red Hen says:

    Ah, very lovely indeed. Indiana, you’d better butt out!

    1. Thank you for the visit and the chuckle! (No worries–I have long since realized that Indiana Jones isn’t even my type! I prefer a gentler more mature sort of fellow these days.)

      1. Red Hen says:

        Oh, you certainly got a good one – he’s all kindness.

  10. PoetJanstie says:

    What a lovely way to offer your Birthday greetings to you man, Naomi. Sounds like he’s deserving

    1. Thanks so much for the visit–I am so far behind in my blogging, and this is just a short little calm before the next whirlwind, but I wanted to write and thank you for your visit, and for taking the time to share such a lovely comment.
      Wishing you all the best,

  11. Happy Birthday Thom. Woo hoo. You’re the man especially in those shorts.

    I love your family, Naomi. All for one, and one for all! You tug at the strings of my heart. Wonderful pictures of an awesome family. ❤ ❤ ❤

    1. Dear Tess,
      You are so so sweet. Thank you so much for your constant warmth and kindness. Am really enjoying tagging along on your trip to China!

  12. raptekar says:

    LOVE, Still exciting and new and funny, too. Laughing: most important part of a good marriage! You guys are great!

    1. Hi Richard,
      Thanks so much for the virtual visit. See you soon!

  13. nutsfortreasure says:

    🙂 Hope he had a lovely Birthday

    1. Dear Eunice,
      I think he was pretty well pleased, and it meant a lot to him to have shared it with you all. Thanks so much for your kind wishes.

  14. Naomi says:

    Love this! What a great gift to your loved one!

    1. Thank you, Naomi! Thom is really a very sentimental guy–he keeps every homemade gift the kids have ever made him on his nightstand, and still wears to work the neckties they decorated with Sharpie markers through the years–even the ones that look like worm tracks from before they could write (and on which they had me make little arrows pointing to their creation and write messages like ‘This is a horse for Daddy’). Thom has pretty much everything he wants, and the gifts he values most are simple expressions of love and appreciation. That, and chocolate.

  15. Fabulous tribute. Happy Birthday!

  16. Meg says:

    What a contribution Thom makes! What a great way of acknowledging him.
    Three cheers for the man!

    1. Dear Meg,
      Thanks so much. I have passed the word and wishes on the good lad. Am so eager to hear more about your European adventures!

  17. diannegray says:

    What a legend! Happy Birthday from Australia, Thom!

    1. Hi Dianne,
      Thanks so much for the visit, and for your lovely birthday wishes. I have passed them on to Thom, who sends his best all the way back again.

  18. Yvonne Young says:

    I’d definitely keep him if I were you. What a great guy!

    1. Dear Yvonne,
      No bout adoubt it, the lad’s a keeper! Thanks so much for the visit. Great to hear from you–I hope you are well.

  19. socialbridge says:

    Brilliant! Birthday wishes from Ireland!

    1. Thank you, Jean! And we both send you happy greetings and wishes for a lovely autumn from Seattle.

      1. socialbridge says:

        Many thanks. Hope you have a happy one too.☺

  20. Love your photos and your stories!!! I leave with a smile!!!

    1. Hi Cybele,
      Thanks so much for the kind words! It is always good to hear from you.

  21. I love how you’ve captured every good thing. Happy Birthday Thom!

    1. Dear Paula,
      I think we both know and appreciate a good guy when we see one! Thanks so much for your lovely birthday wishes, which I have passed on to Thom. Wishing you a happy autumn!

  22. Judith says:

    Happy Birthday, Thom !! What a lovely and loving tribute.
    Thanks for all you do, and may your new school year be the best ever.

    1. Hi Judith,
      Thanks so much for the visit and the kind wishes, which I have passed on to Thom. It’s already been a good year for him so far. Today he participated in the 5K run to benefit the Edmonds School District. He came home and said it was great to realize how many people he knew and how well connected he was feeling in his new school district, especially compared to the first time he participated in the run two years ago, when he was the new kid on the block. He is really settled in and liking it a lot.
      I hope you are well! I KNOW you are busy!

  23. kathy says:

    Happy birthday, Thom! Here’s to many more! 🙂

    1. Hi Kathy,
      I passed your birthday wishes on to the lad. So good to hear from you, and am looking forward to that next cup of coffee.

  24. Raven Spirit says:

    Happy Birthday Thom! This is lovely!

    I am still writing at Noh Where (or I will be soon I hope). But I am also using Blogger for photography at: mydowntownblog here:

    Please come by and see me. Thanks, Liz

    1. Thank you, Liz! Will do.

  25. Laurel Leigh says:

    Happy Birthday, Thom! What a heartwarming tribute.

    1. Hi Laurel,
      I’ve passed your good wishes on to Thom. Thanks so much for the visit and your sweet comment.

      1. Laurel Leigh says:

        I realize that through your photos and stories, your readers have come to know a little about your family. I like how you bring us into your travels with your family along with showing us the beautiful and intriguing places that you see and the way that you interpret them. I hadn’t really thought that through until seeing the birthday post for Thom and realizing how familiar your smiling faces have become. To me, it’s yet another way to universalize the stories you tell, because we see the art but also the humanity behind the art in the generous way you bring your family to the page. I can’t help but be fond of both.

      2. Dear Laurel,
        This is one of the most interesting and thoughtful comments I can recall receiving. You have analyzed and articulated what I do by feel or instinct. It is what makes you such a good writer and student of humankind. And I can’t help but be fond of one of my most well spoken community-minded nicest blogging buddies. It is connections like this that make me very glad to have discovered a world of friendship within the blogosphere.

  26. Naomi, what a gem of a husband you have in Thom and what a wonderful birthday present for him to have you write that post expressing your admiration of him.
    Sending my belated good wishes to your lovely man 🙂

    1. Dear Sarah,
      I will pass your lovely birthday greeting on to the dear lad. Thanks so much for the visit, and your kind wishes.

  27. Madhu says:

    You are one lucky gal Naomi!!! Belated birthday wishes to Thom! Stay happy 🙂

    1. Oh, my gosh, Madhu. Belated, indeed, but that is mea culpa. My apologies! Thank you for your birthday wishes to Thom! I will see to it that they get there in time for his next birthday!

  28. Maureen Kay says:

    I love the brilliant photo of the glasses! Congratulations on your strong marriage, and I’m happy for you both you found each other.

    1. Hi Maureen,
      That’s another instance of being in the right place at the right time! Thanks for all your kind wishes, and sending the same back to you.

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