I must admit, I am not much of a holiday gift giver. And I’m happy that most of my friends and family are the same way. The kind of gifts that I like to give and to receive the most are things like cooking great meals, a foot massage, a terrific house clean, time to myself, being told I am a great mom/wife . I guess what I am trying to say is that I am not a roses, jewelry, teddy bear type of person. Gabe likes games. He likes surprises. And he usually succeeds with these types of things.

Here is how my Valentines Day went.

I called Gabe at work yesterday to ask him if I could cook him a nice dinner. He said, “No, I think I might be working late. We can celebrate tomorrow night.” A little bummed, but I thought, ok, no big deal. Well, he ended up coming home at 5pm, and suggested that I go and rent us a movie and we would have a movie and popcorn night. He said, “Everyone goes out on Valentines Day, plus we don’t have a sitter. We’ll just hang in tonight and maybe go out tomorrow night.” Again somewhat bummed, but I said ok, and left to go and pick up a movie. When I returned home the car was gone from the driveway. I went in the house to find a note on the counter. The note read:

Ethan and I have left for awhile

so that we may bring you a happy smile.

You better put on your nicest gown,

for a night out on the town.

It is best to use a hurried walk

because you must get to the next place by 7 o’clock.

Later on, to open the door

you will need to remember #3654.

Until then the next place to go,

Is somewhere you already know.

You don’t have to go too far

to get a cup of Z——-. (fill in the blank)

Good Luck!

So now I am excited, and hurried as fast as I could to put on my sexiest little black dress, high heels and all, a little makeup and mess up my hair..(guys think messy hair is sexy, I guess) Out the door I went, fancy outfit, driving a truck, and headed to a coffee shop.

I didn’t know if I should expect to find Gabe at the coffee shop, so when I got there I looked for signs of him, and didn’t see him anywhere. So now looking quite confused, I proceeded to the counter only to be stared in the face by a giant package sitting there with my name right on the front. The two people working were thrilled to see that I had arrived, and couldn’t wait to see what might be in the package.

Well, there was a note that said to open the box, and I must assemble the puzzle in the box, then flip it over to reveal my next message. Of course, Gabe made the puzzle and he must not know that it has been ages since I have assembled one, let alone one with so many funky corners and pieces of all sizes. The two baristas where so bored and were thrilled when I was asking them to help me assemble the puzzle. After about 20 minutes we finally got it together. It was a heart(of course!) and then I flipped it all over to reveal the message and it said. “Happy Valentines Day Brandy! Be at the Fitch Building at 7:30, studio 314. Alright! I headed downtown and went inside the otherwise empty building and found studio 314, peeked inside to find Gabe and a lovely table for two, black table cloth and all, flickering in candlelight waiting for me to arrive. He served me sparkling juice, wonderful appetizers, and an amazing dinner that he cooked himself on his college hot plate..ha ha. It was delicious, but more than that it was so thoughtful. We had a great evening without our son, bringing back memories of what brought us together in the first place. Oh, what a night.