The last time Amanda and I went to T.J. Maxx, I spent 15 minutes sniffing a brand of body washes called Philosophy. Honestly – Amanda loves Philosophy body wash, but they are some of the most expensive body wash you can buy. A bottle can run as much as $50.
“These are such a good deal! Don’t they smell great?” She reiterated the value of the product over and over and over again, but she had never asked directly for it.
Loss Prevention was all around T.J. Maxx in force, and maybe it was the fact that I was wearing a stained t-shirt and shorts with paint stains on them but they were eyeing me up and down. I’m freaked out just a bit – because the last thing the reverend needs is to be suspected of robbery.
So I pick up the Philosophy body washes, and I hold them way out away from me so I don’t look suspicious – which actually makes me look …. suspicious. The Loss Prevention eyes me a little bit, and I put the body washes in a more relaxed position. I check out, and he keeps staring, right up to the time I leave the store.
I pack my car with the body washes, and then I see why Loss Prevention was so interested. There are police cars out in the shopping center, and they are hand cuffing some shoplifters.
I say a prayer for the thieves, and then I realize I only have four small gifts. Amanda is going to be home in less than an hour.
I knew I really had to rush now. I go to Wal-Mart to see if there is anything else I might get her. The Lucky One – a movie she wanted – isn’t out yet, and The Vow was $25 bucks for Blu-Ray, and she would be ticked if I spent that much on one movie. I mozy around the store hoping to find something she might like.
From the colors of the picture in our dining area, you can see what made me think of it.
By this time – I am well beyond the window of time I need to beat Amanda home and set everything up, but I rush home hoping she won’t be there yet.
Lucky for me – I beat her there, and I set everything up on the table.
But once I do – I realize how simple it all looks. It was here that I realized that I needed to do something more. Sure – I was going to take her out to dinner on her birthday, and I would do anything else she wanted to. However, this was the only chance I would get to really surprise her with the few gifts I had to kick off her birthday weekend.
Then I have the idea.
I hide the candle on the deck. I hide the philosophy in the only cabinet in the house that doesn’t have anything in it. I hide the movie in the movies – in its alphabetized place. I place the thermos in the coffee cabinet, and then I hang the mirror up in our bedroom.
After I do all of this, I make her a card that that hints to what the present is and where it is hidden. Then we have a scavenger hunt around the house to find them.
Sometimes we have little – but it can feel like much. Sometimes we have much – but it can feel like little. I treasure that little scavenger hung Amanda and I had. Sure – I would have liked to have a car hiding in the garage for her, but I did my best to make much of the little I had for her.
And it says so much to me about the kind of woman she is – that she made so much out of the little gifts I gave her. But it shouldn’t surprise me because she has always made much of me – even though I’m so little and can provide so little.
Amanda sees a million dollars worth of love in a $5 dollar gift. Her love for me is priceless, and it is billions of reasons like this that I thank God for her – every single day.
Happy Birthday – my Amanda queen.
May this day be as much as of a blessing to you – as you are to me and those who know you.