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By Angel Perkins
What is the key to happiness? Scholars, simpletons, and husbands everywhere have wondered this quandry for decades. For me, happiness is fairly simple. It can be that-not-so-far-from-the-door-that-I-need-to-bring-a-backpack-with-a-water-bottle-and-sweat-towel parking space. It can mean the keyboard and computer brain working in unison ALL DAY LONG. It can mean watching my child open a door for some stranger (proving that sometimes kids DO listen to us). And as a woman, it can mean something as little as having a stranger tell you they "love" an item of clothing you're wearing, "love your hair," or some other trivial comment. It can mean tripping down the front steps and NOT landing on your knees or behind. It can mean standing on the scale and seeing one pound less. It can mean having a loved one call YOU for advice. It can mean a short line at the checkout.
And, pay attention gentlemen, it can mean that your husband does something out of his way for you. He can do some menial household chore with no prompting. He can putting the toilet seat in its proper position, or say, "I'm glad I found you," for no reason or holiday whatsoever.
I come from a long line of florists. "Our" business has been passed along for more than 125 years. My husband and I have been together for 19 years. How many times have I gotten flowers? I can count on one hand with fingers to spare. I spent all of Valentine's Day day wondering and waiting. With children and a tight budget, diamonds and trips to the Riviera are out of the question so I wasn't aiming too high. I got no phone call or delivery however ... AGAIN ... and was thinking that surely, with him working in a building with several women, he couldn't have forgotten and, by example, likely has plenty of holiday gift ideas to choose from.
He came home late. I was armed with a heartfelt card and a giant Reese's heart. He came home with ... NOTHING? No, whew! He had a box of candy bigger than my lap (thanks but no thanks since I am on a diet - but the thought was nice) and a bouquet of fragrant tulips. No, they were not from the family business, but they were beautiful and they were in a vase and they were mine. Then, he topped the happiness with more Valentine's Day "heart" than Whitmans or Hallmark ever could. He wrote me a love note. A LONG one. With spelling errors and EVERYTHING ... just to prove he was writing from his heart not just copying and pasting. It only cost him a couple bucks and a few minutes and it was probably my happiest holiday ever. Poor guy. Next year he'll have to match - if not beat - it.