A Valentine’s Day First

I told ya’ll last week that I boycott dinner at fancy restaurants for Valentine’s Day and the reasons why. I wanted to follow-up and tell you that even though I’m not spending Valentine’s Day with my love it doesn’t mean that he’s forgotten. He’s so supportive and loving of my quirks that I wanted to do something different for Valentine’s Day.

Last year, we spent Valentine’s Day in NYC at a concert and had a ball. Remember this cute shot? Yeah, it was pretty great.

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We still didn’t go out for Valentine’s Day to dinner. We had a couple of slices of NY pizza and just enjoyed the day sightseeing. We went back to the hotel and I fell asleep before the concert and then we went and had a great time.

This year since we are in an official relationship, I told him that I wanted us to do something different. I told him that it was our first real Valentine’s Day as a couple, but more importantly I wanted to suggest something that I’ve never done for Valentine’s Day. He said, “Okay.”

I told him that our gift giving limit is $20.00 maximum. No more. I told him that I would allow $21.20 to cover any tax but I didn’t want any expensive gifts. I told him that I want him to show me how he feels about me for $20.00. Let’s keep it real. He laughed and said cool.

Now, I know ya’ll are probably thinking that I’m crazy, but I’m not. Trust me. I’ve received diamond tennis bracelets, handbags, shoes, perfume, expensive chocolates, etc for Valentine’s Day. But, I never had someone think about the gifts that they had to give to express their love to someone with a $20.00 cap limit.

This means that you need to really think about the person you’re dating. What is it that you want them to know/think about how you feel about them? What can you do to show your feelings to someone in $20.00?

I’m glad you asked. Here are some quick ideas.

For the woman that you love – why not remind her to love herself each and every day by giving her this cute key chain?

Love You More Tassel Key Chain – $8.00

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What about for the wonderful love that loves to write? Why not give them this personal journal and on the first page write a love letter to them?

Love Me Journal – $10.00

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If you really want to give her jewelry, what about these?

10kt Yellow Gold Diamond Stud Earrings – $19.99

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If you want to do something together – why not think about a book about the two of you that you can complete together and have for years to come?

Me, You, Us Book – $18.50

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Here’s another great book if you two want to see how your relationship grows. It’s a 3 year journal.

Our Q&A a Day: 3 Year Journal for 2 People

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See, there’s a lot of cute things you can do for your mate for under $20.00. I just hope that my gift includes a love letter. Hint, Hint!

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On the 9th Day of Christmas

What I received this year…

Wisdom – My mother told me when I turned 40 in January that one thing that she wants me to know is that 40 brings about wisdom. A greater understanding of self and others. She said you will really begin to dig into who you are and what you want when you turn 40. No truer words. This year has been about me learning to love me, accept that others won’t ever love me and be okay with it. I’ve been wise to hold my tongue and I’ve shown strength when I’ve walked away from unhealthy situations and people. I received wisdom this year and I’m grateful for it.

[ File # csp5262413, License # 1720724 ] Licensed through http://www.canstockphoto.com in accordance with the End User License Agreement (http://www.canstockphoto.com/legal.php) (c) Can Stock Photo Inc. / payphoto
[ File # csp5262413, License # 1720724 ]
Licensed through http://www.canstockphoto.com in accordance with the End User License Agreement (http://www.canstockphoto.com/legal.php)
(c) Can Stock Photo Inc. / payphoto

James 3:17-18 (MSG)

17-18 Real wisdom, God’s wisdom, begins with a holy life and is characterized by getting along with others. It is gentle and reasonable, overflowing with mercy and blessings, not hot one day and cold the next, not two-faced. You can develop a healthy, robust community that lives right with God and enjoy its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honor.

On The 10th Day of Christmas

What I received this year…

Joy – Unspeakable joy. Sometimes I’ve been in the midst of trying situations and I couldn’t do nothing but fall on my knees and pray. My prayers are sinners prayers, “God, why me?” but I tell you that joy I have when I know that I am not forgotten is immeasurable. When I think about the goodness in what he’s given me I just can’t do anything but say Thank You. No, my life isn’t all sunshine and roses, but that joy that I have knowing that I have a God who reminds me that he is in all things helps me to appreciate my blessings a little more.

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The Fish Tales

I’m not a murderer, but I’m not good at taking care of fish. Particularly gold fish. I have a dog, that I love, nurture and care for like he is my own child. In essence, I guess he is. Bailey is my first-born. He is munch’s older “brother”. But, munch is a child that knows his own mind and decided that he would like another pet. Not Bailey. A new one.

So, he decided that he wanted a bird. We said no. “Why not?” he questioned. “We don’t think you’re ready for that responsibility” we answered. “Okay, I want a gold fish for Christmas” was his reply. We agreed that gold fish would be okay and off to the pet store I went to purchase three different gold fish on Christmas Eve.

He loved them instantly. He named them, “Max, Figureo and Bella”. Not sure of the gender, but it doesn’t matter to munch. He believes in gender equality. LOL. So, they were the new additions to our lives. Beautiful fins, color and they liked their environment. They were welcomed into our family and all was well.

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Munch seemed to forget about his pet gold fish. They were just swimming along in their bowl not making any noise. All was peaceful. A couple of days later, munch went to spend a couple of weeks at his dad’s house. He soon forgot about his fish. Why? Probably that old saying, “out of sight out of mind”.

His dad asked him, “Do you miss your fish?” His reply, “No, mommy’s taking care of them.” There it was…the fish became my responsibility. So, I made sure to feed them and say hello and good night every night because that is what munch would want. And all was well…

Until, less than two weeks later when two of the three fish died. I thought it best to share the “circle of life” story with munch and to let him know that all things die. That his fish went to that big fish bowl in the sky. He cried. He was hurt. I told him, “I will buy you another fish baby.” He sniffled, “Okay, mommy. Are my fish with God?” “Yes” I replied.

I took the dead bodies of the two fish back to the pet store for a refund or more precisely to exchange the dead fish for the exact same species of fish that he had. Unfortunately, they didn’t have them in stock. So, I made a parental decision and got him a beautiful big black gold fish. I followed the instructions from the fish technician and put the new fish in the bowl with the other one remaining one.

Munch came home the next day and was excited. He told me that Max and Bella had died and Figuero was the one in the bowl. He loved the new fish. He said, “I shall call her Blackie. Blackie the gold fish.” I laughed. All was well in our house…

Until one week later when Blackie decided to die while we slept. Before we could even clean the bowl (because we were rushing off to school), Figuero died between the morning rush out the door and when we got back home that evening.

Munch was devastated again. We talked and I told him that I was returning Blackie’s body back to the pet store for a refund but that her spirit will live on. He asked, “Did Blackie and Figuero go to heaven with Bella and Max and God?” “Yep.” He smiled, “Mommy, I want more gold fish.” “Really munch? Let’s try some other fish. We’re not doing good with gold fish thing. How about a beta fish?” “No, I just want another gold fish.” “Okay” I responded.

As I cleaned out the bowl and tried to disinfect the smell of death in my house, munch asked “Where did you put Figuero and Blackie?” I looked at him ashamed, “Umm, Figuero is in a ziploc bag and going out with the trash and Blackie is in a ziploc bag going back to the pet store.”

He just stared at me. I turned my back and caught him rummaging through the trash looking for the body. I said, “Munch, get out of the trash. He’s gone.” He then looked at me defiantly and said, “I want more gold fish mommy”.

And so the fish tales continues.

From the Mouths of Babes

My son is a good child.

Simple in his wishes.

He is six.

He can’t figure out when is Christmas.

We tell him.

He forgets.

He asks daily.

He sings Christmas carols.

He doesn’t get the lyrics quite right.

We laugh.

He told me that all he wants for Christmas is a stuffed bunny rabbit, a fire truck and a gold fish.

We are lucky.

No, we are blessed that God chose us.