#795 Valentine Staycation.
by Erin Napier
Well y’all, Ben went way out of his way to make sure I felt loved on a Valentine’s Day. That’s not surprising though, is it?
I thought that since we both were going to be so busy with work (Ben had 3 meetings and a funeral) and then preparing for the movie night at the theatre (the youth group showed You’ve Got Mail, and I cried at the end as always when she says, “I wanted it to be you. I wanted it to be you so badly.”), it would be a low-key Valentine’s Day with a sweet Hallmark card.
At 10 o’clock, after we swept up the popcorn and locked the doors of the old theatre, I thought for sure we’d go home and call it a day, because to me, honestly, every single day of our marriage is like Valentine’s Day.
Every day he surprises me somehow—a hot buttered biscuit when I wake up, a bubble bath at bedtime, a movie night at home or dinner at our favorite restaurant, a cold Nehi peach when he comes home from work, a long walk around the neighborhood, holding hands and making plans, making the bed first thing in the morning. There is much to be learned from this to any men who are reading these words—you wouldn’t be scrambling for cheap nasty pre-wrapped chocolates, teddy bears, roses and balloons at 5 pm on February 14 if you treated her with big, real love every day. And anyway, that stuff is junk that belongs in the trash. But I digress.
After we left the theatre, he said, “Look in your purse. There might be something in there.”
It was a note on his personal stationery, that read “To my dearest love, You will always be my number 1. Now let’s go home and get ready! You will need pajamas, your bath stuff, my present, and plentiful kisses.”
I was confused.
“Are we going somewhere?” I asked.
“Yep. We’ll be back tomorrow for work. We’re not going far.”
I ran upstairs and packed my bag and jumped back in the car. My pillow was already there. He drove us to the nice new Hampton Inn in town and found a parking place. You might call that a strange way to show he loves me, right?
I’ve learned something about us both—we’re pleasers. We both are constantly looking for that thing we can do to make people pleased with us. So when I told him the last few mornings that I haven’t been sleeping well for worrying about the renovations, he did the only thing he could think of to make sure I could for at least one night. We didn’t have time to go on a real vacation and rest, but staying in a hotel with fluffy white down comforters, a cool air conditioner and fresh linens guarantees good sleep in my world. It’s amazing how walking into a hotel can make you feel like you’re somewhere else, even when home is 1 mile away.
I walked into our room and found a little gift and a card sitting on the bed. Our tradition is to give each other books for any special occasion. I opened it up and found this book, about the history of the Volkswagen Beetle. I can’t wait to read it, and he made sure it was a white hardback to look good on the new living room shelves. As he does with every book, he wrote a sweet note to me on the inside cover. His thoughtfulness is overwhelming.
I gave him this book, which they say is like reading a Coen brothers mystery—so I knew he’d like it. And as I always do, I wrote a note to him on the inside cover telling him why I chose it, how proud I am to be his wife.
Being married to Mit is the easiest thing in the world. I wish a love like that for everyone who reads this. Now we’re off to sleep. Happy Valentine’s Day, sweet readers.
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I’m Erin Napier, co-owner of Laurel Mercantile Co. and Scotsman Co. with my husband, Ben. I’m an artist and he’s a craftsman and we help people moving to our town find and restore old houses on HGTV’s Home Town. In an effort to count my blessings, this journal has documented only the good things that happen on each and every day of my life since January 1, 2010. I am a wife, a daughter, a homebody, a bubble bath lover, a book reader, a sentimental, stressed out, slightly obsessive southerner. Welcome!