Tuesday, March 22, 2011

First Things First

The empty bottle of wine sat on the dresser in my apartment.
I had saved it because it was a pretty bottle but now it looked kinda sad because it was empty. 

It needed a new purpose. 
So Dan and I made a pact one night that when ever we would do something fun and out of the ordinary we would write the date on a dollar bill and throw it inside the bottle.

The dollars validated what we already knew.
That ordinary moments with each other were special and even the tiny moments were now reason  to celebrate. 

Watching the bottle fill up with not only bills but memories, was momentous because we were making simple, normal moments...fabulous! 
Some days we would throw a 'fiver' in because there were that many good times to remember just  in one day. 

The month before we got married we took the bottle and hiked a short distance to our tree.
The tree where our beginning started. Where we talked about growing old together.
(You can read about that day here.)

We needed the money in the wine bottle for our new life.
It was bittersweet to break the bottle on the tree and watch the money fly about us.
We knew the amount of money we saved was not measured by wealth but by the richness that those memories provided us with.

We had over 375 dollars.
Looking back now, it doesn't sound like much, but it was 375 things we did that we thought were special enough to appreciate.

I thought of the memories like deposits in a bank.
The more we put in the greater the interest. 
We invested those dollars to preserve a moment that might be lost and other wise forgotten.

Eight years later...

I'm sitting in my office and I thought about that bottle.
Those memories. 
The time that flew by.

So often, the happy fun stuff takes a back seat to the day to day stuff.
The career, the bills, the house, laundry, car, doctors and dentists.
Your laptop. Your iphone.

Please do me a favor.
Stop. Breath. Converse. Appreciate. Be grateful. Communicate, with actually words not just text.
Find happiness in the little moments.
Laugh. Enjoy. Get an ice cream cone. Doodle together. Eat only the green M&M's.

Do what ever you can to make normal everyday stuff, the stuff worth living for. 
Take the time to be silly with each other.

I moved my big 'to do' list/calendar out of the way a few nights ago and out peeked the frame.
Tucked away, waiting for someone to discover it, like the lost treasure that it had become.
It begged to 'breath' again - just like a fine wine should.

I picked it up and looked at the few dollars I couldn't manage to part with back then.
I smiled.
I thought of the excitement. Each dollar. Each memory.

Every laugh that was savored and tasted yet again from that very happy bottle.

I put the frame back down front and center.  
I turned the computer off, grabbed my keys and went to buy a new bottle.
Would you even believe me if I told you we rarely drink?! lol

I didn't want to wait for a moment to celebrate. I wanted the simple minutes of our day to be memorable...again.
I wanted to remind myself that first things should be just that.


Your favorite picture. The ticket stubs you saved. The love notes.
Why do we have them?

It's so we have the ability to fall in love twice.
Once with the person, and the second with the memory.

They say when you go to a wine tasting it's not about the drinking, it's about the tasting.
Maybe just like our memories, it's not about creating them...it's about learning to savor them.


Mallory said...

This is so sweet! I can tell you two have a special relationship; it makes me know more about what I want in one too :)

Show and Tell Photography said...

Mallory, thank you for taking a minute to comment and to read the blog. I think the meaning of life is figuring out how to make those ordinary moments extraordinary!

Crystal said...

Powerful! Very very powerful! I hope you don't mind but I plan to share it on my blog - linked to you of course! thank you for writing it!

Show and Tell Photography said...

Aww, Crystal you made my night! Thank you so much for leaving a comment!

Nichole said...

can you guess what i'm doing right now after reading your post? hehe, i know you guessed right! thank you for always making me stop and smell the roses! you are an amazing woman, Stacey!!!!!

Show and Tell Photography said...

Thank you Nichole for always being so kind to read the blog and post. I can't begin to tell you how much it means!