Marriage Gardening

This little plaque hangs on our kitchen wall right next to our stove. It’s in a prominent place so it can serve as a frequent (and much needed!) reminder. Although being happy is not usually an issue for me, one of the things that can threaten my usual happy attitude is the weather. Plain and simple, I don’t like cold weather. I don’t like anything about it. And, when a little rain is added on top of the cold, I have to fight hard to ensure Cranky Carol doesn’t surface. Cranky Carol is just one of the four or five women who live in my head. Normally you get Perky Paula when you’re dealing with me, but the weather over the Christmas holidays just about did me in. Seriously. It was too cold to go outside and do anything, and I was about to go stir crazy being stuck in the house. I had cleaned and organized and piddled with projects, and I was near imploding. So, I say to Brad on New Years Day, “Let’s go for a ride. Anything to get out of this house.”
Well, about an hour into the ride, I had an idea. Of course, who knows why I didn’t have this idea when we first got in the car, but… So, I say to Brad. “Let’s go to the windmill farm in Tolar. I read all about it in the electrical co-op magazine. It sounds so cool, and you know I love windmills, and they have over 40 windmills, and blah, blah, blah.” He reminds me that it is near dark, and Tolar is an hour and half away. Details. Schmetails. But, being the wonderful hubby he is, he immediately says, “We can go on Saturday. I think the weather is supposed to be pretty.” So now I’m all Perky Paula again and say, “We can have a date. We can go for breakfast and spend the whole day, and I think there are some antique stores we can stop in along the way and yada, yada, yada.” And he does what all good husbands do. Nods his head and let’s me keep blabbing.
So, true to his word, when I got up this morning, Brad said, “What time do you want to head out?” Long pause on my part. And, I think he could tell by the look on my face that my “to do” list was already racing through my head at lightening fast speed, and I was about to bail on the idea. What? Spend my whole Saturday goofing off with him when I have a list three miles long to complete? (We won’t mention that going to the windmill farm was all my idea in the first place and just three short days ago, I was ecstatic about it.)
But then I got to thinking… well, actually I think I clearly had some kind of “divine zapping” … sounds so much nicer than a “divine smack upside the head” … it was like God said to me, “Seriously, girlfriend, your hubby is offering to spend the day just hanging out with you, doing what you want to do, and you’re about to pass it up because of some ‘to do’ list?” 
Note to self: If I most often find happiness right where I plant it, then it’s definitely time for a little marriage gardening. Thank you, God, for my divine zapping! 
So, off we go. A beautiful ride to Tolar, Texas, home of The Windmill Farm. You couldn’t ask for a nicer person that Chuck Rickgauer, who lovingly restores old windmills and shares his passion with others for free. Here are some of my favorite pics from the farm. 

And, then I realized we were just eleven short miles from Granbury, so who could pass up lunch at Babe’s Chicken Dinner House. Yummy friend chicken, mashed taters and gravy, creamed corn, green beans, biscuits. and oh, the warm chocolate pie. Needless to say, someone needed a nap on the drive home.
Life is busy. ‘To do’ lists never go away. Someone always needs something. But here’s the simple truth:
Relationships are about spending quality time with one another. Whether it’s my relationship with my hubby or my relationship with God, I have to be intentional with my time. Joy and contentment won’t continue to grow if I’m not busy planting it. Good thing I have that reminder plaque on the kitchen wall.
And speaking of kitchen walls…
I’ve made Brad an extra large Valentine on the red chalkboard wall we have in our kitchen. Just call it a little creative gardening.

My prayer is that you have a little dirt under your fingernails and you’re busy planting happiness, too!

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