The Sweetest Gift: A Tomato and A Rose… In that Order

Yesterday was grocery day. Hubs, Taylor and I went to the local Wal-Mart* and bought our two weeks worth of food and odd household/personal items. I wanted to get it done before the storms landed on us and with eldest going to work at 5:20 that gave us nearly an hour and a half to get the deed done.
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As I have shared in earlier posts, Hubs and I did the Five Love Languages test and we both ended up with gifts being important but not most important. So… I’ve been buying him little gifts and even a few really nice ones this past month while I’m out and about during the day. He also bought me a gift on our Date Night Challenge – 15 songs on a Wal-Mart MP3 gift card and bubble bath. I still have not officially decided which is my favorite. For now I will say BOTH.
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He has been very sweet bringing me a candy bar or offering his blow money to buy me a meal. So this week being Valentine’s the store was chauk full of pink and red fare. I bought his gift last week and his card a few weeks ago when they first came out. I also bought him four books from Half Price Books that are written by the author he picked up at the Christian book store a week or so ago. He is reading AGAIN! Praise the Lord. He is. I feel like we made a breakthrough there. He used to read these mystical, magical fantasy books when we met. About six years ago, we began to do a spiritual inventory and I expressed concern for those books. He sold all of them.
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God did the same thing two years ago with me about movies. I had quite a collection — around 400 I would estimate or more. I sold every last one of those movies in a week. God was so funny. Each time I would go back to the store with a new batch to sell – they offered me more money. Not Even Kidding. I would take fewer and fewer DVDs in each time and the value would increase remarkably. Things that make you go HMMMM!

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I remember that my family almost went Berzerk about it. So I only sold the ones I purchased. Which were a lot. The girls have collected some 30 or 40 DVDs since my grand selling adventure but to my delight the desire to purchase movies has all but gone by the wayside. I have “Facing the Giants” and “Fireproof.” I bought Scott the movie about Ernie Davis, “The Express,” last payday but mostly – we just don’t buy movies anymore.

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I digress… and ramble. Back to the story. So we went to Lifeway so I could look through their marraige and family section for good reading material and he meandered through the music section until he found his way back to me. As we were walking back to the front of the store a book caught his eye. It was written by Ted Dekker. I thought – okay, so he could read those. I had told him about the graphic novels Ted Dekker has and we found a few on the shelf. He said he would like to check out a couple of the series that are in the books and if they were like the graphic novels he might be interested. So… We kept looking. On the next aisle, near the end was a package of books wrapped in cellophane. Three novels. One of each of a series of books written by the same author. Stephen R. Lawhead. I thought… HMMM! These look a lot like what he has read in the past. I picked it up. The price: $14.88. I wanted to slap my money on the counter right then and declare “SOLD!” but my husband was not so sure. He perused the copies and said, “For the price, I’ll try them.”
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Okay. We stepped back around to the other side of the shelf and there was one of the books in the set sitting on the shelf. I handed it to him and suggested he read it a bit. He did and decided to purchase the set. This was two weeks ago today. He has read all three books. We ordered the remaining books in one series and a new series of books from Half.com and then I found the other series he wanted to read at Half Price Books for just over ten dollars. I was so excited. I felt like I was on a real live treasure hunt. WHOO HOO! And I struck gold on Monday.

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Fast Forward. We got our groceries and were all packed into the car with about 20 minutes to spare before eldest had to be picked up from school. That is when it hit me. I’m making hamburgers for supper and I forgot the tomatoes. I had been talking about hamburgers, sold Taylor and Scott both a hamburger and then realized my favorite ingredient was ominously missing. :o(
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I confessed I would have to make hamburgers another day because my mind abandoned Tomatoes completely in the store.
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Hubs asked again what time Britt got out of school and I said, “She has to be at work by 5:20.” He said well we can go home and unload and…”

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I told him, “I’ll go get her unless you want me to stay home and put away the groceries.”

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He said, “No. I’m going to get her.”

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Done. We unloaded the groceries while he drove to the school and picked up the girl. After nearly a half hour went buy I got worried. The school is less than five minutes from our house and her work a good ten minutes from there. Plenty of time to get home. I waited another fifteen minutes and called. “Baby, is everything okay?”

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“Yes. I’m just checking out. I went to the store to get the tomato you needed.”

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My heart went, “AWE….”
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He assured me he would be right home and I was quite relieved to learn he was indeed safe and on his way home.
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I was head down in a Sudoku puzzle when he got home. He walked through the living room and almost made it to me before I looked up. I saw something in his hand that looked a bit too large to be a tomato and he grinned. My heart melted. He held one beautiful pink rose behind his back and a small bag with a roma tomato in the other.
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The rose was just opening into a beautiful teacup of soft pink petals. He said, “I picked that one because it was the only one that was opened up like that. I like it.”
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I put my flower in water and stared at the tomato. I’m going to cry right now just thinking about it.
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My man is precious to the bone. He has spent the last few weeks recapturing my heart in none to few a ways. He has been listening and engaging conversations at deep levels, we have done more “getting to know you” type of work than I could possibly even begin to tell you about. And with patience he seeks to find the words that unlock the doorways to my heart. He writes me sweet little emails nearly two or three times a week and most of all he has begun to open the doors to his own heart to me as well. I’m overwhelmed.
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Last night was a huge milestone. He told me, as I have been telling him lately, with his actions that he hears what I need and he is willing to meet me where I am. All with a rose and a tomato. I need a photograph! :o) (So I went and took one…)
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Stay Tuned… More of our life with the dog is coming up and then… The Great Cake Caper that Taylor and I embarked on last Friday! Yummy….
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