Tuesday, February 21, 2017

We Ate A Little Slower And Lingered A Bit Longer

I'll never forget a short story that I read many years ago. It was about a middle aged man and his wife who had passed away recently. The man wrote about a pivotal moment that happened only days after his wife's funeral. He was going through her dresser drawers and came across a beautiful piece of lingerie and matching silk robe she had purchased the year before when they were vacationing. In the months ahead, the man pleaded with his wife to wear it. Each time, the wife said, "I'm saving it for a special occasion."

As the man ran his fingers over the fine silk, he remembered conversations that took place over the past year about the beautiful piece of lingerie and robe. His wife never wore it. She had passed away before that "special occasion."

The man continued to write of the lesson he learned about those things we save, wear, make, and only use on special occasions.

The beautiful set of China that's only taken out for Holidays.

The old family recipes we only make during the holiday season.

The little black dress that sits in the back of the closet and is only worn for the annual Anniversary dinner.

The crystal candlestick holders that are used only on Thanksgiving.

The candles that are only lit for romantic dinners.

The cupcakes that are only baked for birthdays.

He concluded his short story with a message to those who took the time to read his story. Don't wait. Use the China dinnerware. Wear the dress. Light the candles. Don't wait for a special occasion to make cupcakes or whip up Aunt Gertie's famous meatballs. Tomorrow isn't guaranteed. Do it now.

The short story has stuck with me over the years. It made an impact. I don't wait for special occasions to make gorgeous cupcakes to share with our neighbor friends, fire up the grill for a cookout, use the crystal plates and bowls that were passed down from my great-grandparents, or put on my favorite shade of lipstick.

Tonight, while Lisa was outside grilling our dinner, I set the table. On a whim, I included a small square candle on a plate.

When Lisa was done grilling, she put the food on the table and washed her hands.

"Wow. A candle. What's the occasion?"

"There is none." 

You don't need a holiday or Hallmark occasion to "celebrate." Sometimes, it's about being in the moment.

Right here. Right now.

Embracing the many blessing at the end of a long day.

Enjoying a quiet dinner together. Something that, as of late, seems far and few between.


That's exactly what we did.

Dinner was scrumptious. The kids sat quietly at our feet waiting for pieces of grilled chicken and steak. Lisa and I caught up on the week's happenings and our schedule for the remainder of the week.

We ate a little slower and lingered at the table a bit longer.

It was that simple.

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