Valentine’s Posing Pansies

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Dear Lindsey,

Chris and I have never been much for the typical Hallmark holidays. We love each other,

English: Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, one with ...

and tell each other regularly…in our own ways.  It might be my making his favorite meal, or his taking the kids so I can go for a walk ALONE on a sunny afternoon. We each have love languages that are outside of Chapman’s book, but it is good, because we have discussed it and both agree our language is right for us. (Shouldn’t chocolate be another Love Language? Or fishing? Or …oops, I am off my story.)

I love that for our anniversary one year (ok, many years), he stopped at a convenience store and bought me my favorite candy on his way home late at night. Somehow it makes me feel special that he trusts me not to be a high maintenance girl, and he can count on me to not be needy when he is living life for a purpose, our purpose. I know it’s weird, but it flatters me just the same. Of course, I have never been offended by his brag-worthy gifts, either!

For his birthday, I spell “Happy Birthday” with cookies since he likes them better than cake, and I am confident that it is one gift he cannot get for himself. I guess that’s how we speak love in the Brady house.

But one Valentine’s Day a few years ago, he decided to dare to be different. Or actually, he dared to be typical, since he was usually different.  He dared to get me the typical Valentine’s gift: a dozen red roses.

Children's Valentine, 1940–1950

I am guessing he planned on walking in and creating a dramatic moment, carrying the lovely vase of abnormally gorgeous flowers in full bloom.  He probably imagined his bride descending the stairs and covering him with grateful kisses, while kids oohed and aahed by our side. He knew the “typical” would be a surprise in itself, since it was different than our norm.

But I was not home. He had forgotten it was my day with the homeschool group at church.

By the time I got home, the flowers were proudly displayed on the kitchen island.  Immediately putting my nose to them to take in the fragrance, I realized they were silk. Silk? Yes, fake flowers. I tried to think through his reasoning:

“Silk flowers will prevent her allergies from bothering her.”

“Silk flowers will last forever, while real flowers will die away.”

“Silk flowers look perfect, and have more vibrant colors.”

“Terri likes silk, which is why she had them at our wedding.” (In reality, we had silk wedding flowers, because we got married Mother’s Day weekend, and no flower shop would commit to live flowers…oh yeah, and they were cheaper.)

But then I got real:

“I bet he didn’t even notice they were fake. He probably stopped at the store and was on the phone. He grabbed the first thing he saw, paid with a credit card and brought them home.”

 When he was done with his conference call, I went into his office and told him thanks for the Valentine’s Day flowers. He never explained the silk, and I never mentioned it. He was beaming that I was pleased.

The next day, I couldn’t hide it any longer.

“Did you know those flowers were fake?” I asked him in his office, mid morning.


…Long pause…

“Are you kidding?” He looked up at me with those sparkly eyes, which seemed to be restraining the grin to sheepishness.

“The flowers are fake?” He asked me.

I giggled, “yes.”

I continued, in order to relieve his awkwardness and bring the humor we both love, “Let me guess: you stepped into the flower store at 90 mph and picked up the prettiest thing you saw. You couldn’t get off the phone, patiently waiting while someone was talking in your ear; you paid for the order and brought it home to the counter, never noticing that you had purchased silk flowers.”

“Guilty as charged,” he said, with a full-out grin, which burst to laughter. “I even held it carefully with one hand on the passenger seat, trying not to spill the ‘water’ on the way home!” He laughed some more.

A man who can laugh at himself is easy to love.

The flowers didn’t make me sneeze.

They were vibrant and colorful.

They made a beautiful year-round decoration, and even survived a move or two.

Discount Flower Delivery Detroit   3 Dozen Red...

They reminded me that I married the man of my dreams as a playmate. The humor of the situation bonded our marriage further and was truly my favorite Valentine’s present ever.

Any Prince Charming could have given me flowers. Mine gave me a story.

May you cherish the stories with your Valentine!

– Terri Brady

30 thoughts on “Valentine’s Posing Pansies

  1. What a fun story! It made me laugh out loud, as I imagined my husband being capable of the same gift. I love your perspective and loving, positive twist on every situation. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Terri, what a great story! I could just see Chris, doing exactly as you described.
    My husband tried to hide flowers from me one time. Only he chose the freezer as his hiding place, forgot about them, and well, let’s just say the blooms did not take kindly to it. The stems were lovely, and the laugh we both had when I found them later was the best part of the gift. I still tease him about it. (He doesn’t hide them anymore!)

  3. Thank you so much Terri! I needed to read this. You help me when I’m down by all of the positive relationship experience you put on your CDs. Yours and Chris’ relationship sounds a lot like mine and Justin’s. we are both definitely a work in progress!! There was one part that really stuck out to me. The part where you said he trusts you not to be a high maintenance girl and that he is living for a purpose, your’s and Chris’ purpose together. I used to be selfish with my time with Justin. Both of us working long hours and to then only come home to rushing out again to build the business. Sometimes I just felt it left my love tank on empty. But as I read more books and listened to more CDs, I quickly realized that he wasn’t leaving because he wanted to, he was leaving because he was making a better life for us. So we wouldn’t have to keep making someone else’s dreams come true but to make ours come true. Thank you so much for coming into our lives and being great inspiration to us!!

  4. Cute..cute story!

    This Valentines Day will surely be one that Raymond remembers because Sharon Jaynes 14 day challenge is helping me out in ways I never imagined but will grow from for years to come!

    Raymond through his example and sacrifice taught me a long time ago that love is a decision not a feeling…I am blessed to have such a Valentine.

  5. Thanks for the story, from someone who has a great valentine, as he gets more out of giving me gifts than getting them himself. I do know I have a great man who spoils me with gifts and his love.

  6. Terri

    Thank you .. I always enjoy your blog.  Your celebration of holidays sounds so much like my husband and I.  What Chris did sounded so much like my husband, Roger, I had to laugh.  Roger has an engineering degree in Construction Science from Kansas State and I have a Home Ec Education degree from Ft. Hays State (KS).  Cody and Tara Newton sponsored us.  Thank you to both of you and the policy council for creating and standing behind this cause.  The cause is what attracted us to LIFE, as we have been involved in other network marketing businesses and we were not looking to join anything, again.  I enjoy the blogs where you tie daily activities to scripture.  Thank you for the encouragement from stage and the CDs!

    Have a great day! Connie Seymour


    • Hi Connie, Thanks for your encouragement. We have a little tie – my dad graduated in engineering from KSU:) Small world. God had our paths cross for a reason. I am excited to see time tell it.

  7. I remember Tim totally forgetting Valentines Day, and I called my mentor, Ann Franks, in tears. She shared with me that Terry had forgotton her birthday in January that year. Know ing our guys the way we do and how hard they were running to build a life for us we both had a good laugh through it all and vowed to call each other on those special days just to make sure we are not forgotton, :-D. Tim doesn’t like generated holidays either and I would much rather have “just becauses” anyway which he does pretty often now.
    Love ya, Claudia Miller
    P.S. It does not do anyone any good to make the other feel terrible for forgetting something like that. If we as women would step back and appreciate him for all he does do on a daily basis, our relationship would be altogether different and more of what we want it to be.

  8. Thank you for your stories … I love the way you reframe and turn things into positive perspective. I’m learning … it’s difficult to do sometimes, but I can see how much better life can be and how much happier we can be (and those around us) if we make the effort.

  9. Terri,
    What an awesome reminder of what is really important. I love your storeis and the teaching they bring.You always inspire me to be a better wife and mom. Thanks so much!
    Lisa Diamond

  10. Dear Terry,
    Just like with all your stories and thoughts, I enjoyed this one as well. You have such great insight on all things good for the soul. I too have a husband who provides me with daily stories and laughter. I love the beautiful roses he gives me and the wonderful thoughts behind the sentiment, but I love it more when he hands me a bag of flower bulbs for my gardens. He knows that those bulbs will brighten our day for years to come. Thank you so much for sharing your great life with us.
    Marsha Ward

  11. This was hilarious Terri! Thanks for the laugh! I just love your example as a couple. Thank you for teaching us to find each others love language and apply. Also, to not take things so seriously, to be able to laugh at oneself and with each other is refreshing and needed in a healthy relationship. This is a fairly new quality that I’ve learned thru the LIFE business and specifically thru your examples. Our family is enjoying the application part (we melancholys can be a little too serious) ;0D
    Thanks again! Blessings!

  12. Great story, Terri! Thanks for sharing. I love how you could picture exactly how the purchase happened. Having listened to a lot of “Brady CDs”, and seeing you both on stage, I found that I could picture it too! I hope you have another memorable St. Valentines Day!

  13. Pingback: High or Low, Friend or Foe |

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