One thing I have learned about our marriage is that we really do give gifts to each other every day.
The gifts we exchange we must take care to see, for without a keen eye for appreciation, they may go unnoticed.
Our gifts to one another are not always tangible; although, to create the gift, one usually has to deal with many tangibles, even if unpleasant.
These gifts of which I speak, of which we try to exchange daily, are chores.
Boring, every-day chores, which make up the fabric of our ordinary lives, turn into gold when they are done with great love.
I would have never thought to give gifts like this a few years ago (nor would they have been on my wish list), but indeed they are some of the most precious gems to give and receive.
Packing my husband's lunch each day is a gift I like to give, and he values it so immensely! Nothing makes me smile wider during the school day than receiving a text from him, telling me that lunch was delicious.
When Michael gets out of bed early on Saturday morning, it is to give me the gift of a neatly mowed lawn. He'll be out there for two or three hours, mowing the grass, raking up leaves, and picking up branches. The end result is a beautiful gift for my eyes to enjoy, and my body delights in not having to do the labor!
Cooking meals and washing the dishes are gifts I like to give Michael. I get so much satisfaction out of the action of giving these gifts, and Michael's expressive reception of them makes me want to do it all over again tomorrow! But that doesn't mean that these are only gifts I give and never receive; Michael frequently surprises me by giving me the gifts I normally like to give him.
Surprises keep happening with this style of gift-giving. The other night Michael suddenly vacuumed the whole house, getting in every nook and cranny, and the result was refreshing!
This weekend, we are, unfortunately, sacrificing some of our own time together in order to give one another rather large gifts.
Michael is in New Jersey with his parents, and he'll be spending the majority of the weekend in the garage with his father, replacing the breaks, filter, timing belt, spark plugs, and more on my little green car. I miss him so much already, yet I appreciate how his hard work will be saving us several hundred dollars.
As a gift to him, I stayed here to reorganize our basement, plan out meals for the week, and clean. Unexpectedly, I'll be adding "shoveling snow" to that list, since we're getting a steady falling, and it's accumulating on our sidewalk!
Oh, how beautiful Sunday night will be when he's back and it's time to exchange our gifts to one another!