It was Niagara Falls when the girlfriend got her last two gifts, one of which was a personalized card I made.
I’ve admitted many times through the years that I’m a hopeless romantic. I think we can drop the hopeless tag now that I’ve managed to convince the most beautiful woman on the planet to fall in love with me. As it turns out, nice guys don’t finish last. In fact, they can kick some serious ass, which is what I’d like to think I did this Christmas …
Before the girlfriend and I dated, we spent quite a bit of time flirting via Facebook. It really was a great game of catch me if you can (never mind that I was too dumb to realize the mouse was trying to reel the oblivious cat in for quite some time).
As written in a previous blog, the courtship accelerated right before Christmas in 2010 when she penned a 12 days of Christmas wish list on Facebook. Pretty sure she knew I was following those posts closely (I commented on several). I wrote every one of them down. Not sure why, though I’d like to think I knew something special was just around the corner.
Several months later, after we’d been dating for a while, I began planning to make our first Christmas one she’d remember forever. What better way to do that than deliver the 12 days of Christmas?
The great thing about her list is that it’s not outlandish. It’s quite reasonable. No cars. No houses. Nothing I can’t afford. It’s also an extremely sweet list, one I’m convinced made me want her that much more.
I began planning months ago, recruiting her sister to help. She was vital in advising me on a handful of the items, most notably the biggest and most important item on the list (or so I thought).
Here’s how the plan came together …
THE RING …
I couldn't wait a month to give her the bling, so she got it the day I purchased it at Pandora's.
Jewelry was one of the 12 items on her list, and the most difficult to find. I looked at hundreds of rings, earrings, necklaces, etc. Finally, I asked her sister for help. She accomplished in about an hour what I’d spent weeks on … sending me a few suggestions to pick from. When I saw the ring pictured above, I knew we had a winner.
I gave her the ring in late November. Why? If I’d started the list 12 days from Christmas, she would have figured it out. That and I couldn’t wait to give it to her.
BARBECUE AND BLUES
There's something hot about a woman who can eat more barbecue than you.
Understand that the girlfriend is a small woman. She’s petite and really doesn’t eat much. But good lord can she put the barbecue away. In fact, she often eats more than I do when we go to our favorite spot … B.B.’s in Kansas City.
We went there several times this year … scratch two items off the list.
TIME WITH HER KIDS
Trick or treating, Dave & Busters, homework ... all part of being a positive male role model.
I say “her” kids because that was on her list. We refer to them as “our” kids nowadays. Anyway, I’ve made a concerted effort to be a father figure, not their dad. Not because it’s on her list, but because they’re great kids.
I’ve taken her oldest son to work to show him what I do and treated her daughter to Dave & Busters. The other part of this gift fell in place perfectly … I spent three hours on the Tuesday before Christmas helping her younger son with his math homework.
A NICE DINNER
The beginning of a pasta dish the girlfriend and kids have come to love.
Honestly, our nice dinners together our evenings alone at home. I love cooking for her. Some of the favorites include non-dairy alfredo, chicken enchiladas and chicken stir fry. And there will be plenty of out-and-about dinners in 2012.
You know you buy a lot of flowers when your voice is recognized immediately by the florist on the phone.
Might as well have been a gardener as many flowers as she got in 2011. Let’s just say the florist near her workplace recognizes my voice enough that she answers with “I’ll send them this afternoon” before I say a word.
I also snuck off on Christmas Eve and brought home flowers.
This ended up being a bit too small. That's a better mistake than getting something too big.
She opened this on the morning of Christmas Eve as we spent our Christmas with the kids. I hesitated to let her open this one, as I suspected she might catch on. Turns out she did catch on. Luckily for me, she didn’t remember everything on the list anyway.
A LITTLE ACTION UNDER THE MISTLETOE
Let's be honest .. if the physical part of a relationship isn't good, forget it. Just saying.
Our parents read this blog, so as Seinfeld once said “I’m little too old for details.” Let’s just say we have a very healthy and passionate love life.
IT’S JUST US
There wasn't much alone time, but our first Christmas included five stops over two days with some fine folks, including her adorable niece.
Just the two of us, enjoying this special time of year together. We shared a great moment on Christmas Eve once the kids went to bed (explained momentarily), then had four stops on Christmas Day, hand-in-hand. I cannot imagine a better Christmas.
NEW YEAR’S EVE
The year started with a bang (the beginning of the relationship) ... and the latter part of 2011 included dressing up in our best duds. Perfect way to break in 2012.
Yet to come, but we’ll be together. The perfect way to say good-bye to a wonderful year that began with the beginning of a great love story.
Her birthday gift was also a gift to myself 🙂
Like many people who have a birthday around Christmas, the girlfriend has often received a gift(s) that counted as a Christmas and birthday present. Seriously, that would suck. For her birthday, I saved one last gift … something from Victoria’s Secret.
A HEARTFELT CARD
A personalized Christmas card, which rounded out the 12 days of Christmas.
The least expensive item on the gift, and the one that produced a waterfall of tears. It’s very personal and will remain so, but it’s three pages full of my words and images from our first year together. When she read it 45 minutes before the official beginning of Christmas, I knew I’d hit a home run …
TAKE ME OUT TO THE BALL GAME
A woman who loves the Royals: Cha-freaking-ching!
Within the card was a certificate for a 13-game pass for the Royals 2012 season … one of our many shared passions.
It hasn’t been a year since we started “this.” There are times when it feels like we’ve been together forever. The first year has gone by so fast. It’s been so rewarding. I’m sitting here thinking “how in the hell do I top this next year?”
Impossible? Maybe. But I did manage to woo the hottest woman on the planet. Don’t bet against me.