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Irish Valentine

"Love never fails."

I Corinthians 13:8

In January, Katy and I decided that for each of this year’s gift-giving occasions, instead of buying things we didn’t need, we would put a sum of money into our Ireland travel fund. As an alternative to floral arrangements, golf balls, nightgowns, sweaters, and wall hangings, a gift that gives us more time together is probably not a bad idea.

When today arrived I wasn’t so sure. We went out for dinner, of course, and exchanged valentines, but somehow the plan felt inadequate. But what could possibly be an adequate gift for a woman who has given her life and soul to me? What’s the SKU number for the item that equals the devotion, friendship, and passion that Katy has never tired of giving?

Early in our marriage when even going out to dinner was not an option, we would bring home fake crab meat from the discount supermarket, put the kids to bed early, and sit down at our cheap dinette table for a romantic, candlelight meal. No amount of spending has ever equaled the sweetness of those moments, the effortlessness of our conversations, or the look in Katy’s eyes.

Today’s dinner out was much fancier, the steak was real, and there were no babies crying in the next room — but the sweetness didn’t come from the surroundings — it came from the woman I have loved for twenty-eight years.

Some days seem impossible and arguments irreconcilable — but ultimately our words move toward healing, and our conversations reconnect us.

Valentine’s day still has its share of leaky roofs, mothers-in-law, health issues, exhaustion, and frustration — but the sparkle in Katy’s eyes as we ceremoniously dropped money in our travel pot was all I needed today.

Together is a very good idea.

February 14, 2005 | Permalink


How adorable!

Posted by: Hope Wilbanks on Feb 15, 2005 7:32:39 AM

You guys are awesome. What a great idea!

My future fiance and I have started saving a small, tiny portion of our paychecks for our future. We hope to invest the money somewhere to help us one day buy a house...

Posted by: Kevin on Feb 15, 2005 7:55:19 AM

Hope: I enjoyed your "You Are Growing" post. Trying to write a little has been one of those painful but growth-inducing experiences. Thanks for the encouragement.

Kevin: You are wise beyond your years - and your fiance is lucky! We're having fun with the save-first method, but wondering when our iffy moms will be stable enough for us leave the country for a while.

Posted by: Doug on Feb 17, 2005 2:09:55 PM

What an example for we newlyweds. At our non-blog site, kingary.net, I put a little PHP script to count how many days Kinga and I have been married. It's only nearing 300, but we both like the idea so much that instead of taking it down, we'll just leave it up for good. Look forward to seeing what it's like when it's approaching 10,220.

Posted by: Gary on Apr 15, 2005 10:04:03 AM

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