Monday, February 14, 2011

cherish the moment, treasure the memory

My "Best Valentines Day" Ever story has nothing to do with a boyfriend and everything to do with my family. Or, more accurately, it has mostly to do with my brother Jack.

{Jack, at my sister in law's sister's wedding, July 06}

It was February 13, 2004. My younger brother Jack was in training to become a Green Beret out in Fayetteville, NC. For whatever reason, he had a four day weekend that weekend, and he left North Carolina on Thursday afternoon and made the nineteen hour drive to Oklahoma, arriving Friday mid-morning.

The coolest thing about this was that Jack had only told me that he was coming! He and I came up with a plan to surprise the rest of the family. Somehow, I had convinced everyone to gather at my mom's house that Friday morning for an early Valentines party. It's funny when I think about it now, because I know for sure that I had somehow persuaded everyone that it was necessary for us to get together that particular morning instead of that evening or over the weekend, when it would have made more sense. But I can be pretty convincing if I really try, plus my family loves me. :)

So, we were all gathered in my parents' front living room. Jack and I had decided that he should enter the house through the garage, just to make our surprise even better. So, we are all sitting around at a meaningless Valentines party of sorts, and in walked Jack from the kitchen. Best moment ever. Except, for a whole minute, I thought my mom might pass out! :)

It took about ten seconds for everyone to realize what was going on and then start yelling and then jump up to hug him. Jack and I considered our surprise to be a huge success, since ten seconds of speechlessness from my family is almost impossible to achieve! It was so fun and so sweet, and I felt so cool to be the one "in on" the secret visit.

That weekend visit from Jack ended up being a catalyst that shaped the future of our family. You see, that was the fateful weekend when Jack met and fell in love with my amazing sister in law, Ashley. But that's another story for another day...

Happy Valentines Day, sweet friends. I hope your day is filled with the giving and receiving of love, as cheesy as that might sound. Please take a moment today to stop and cherish your loved ones. As we have experienced with the loss of Jack, today might become a treasured memory instead of just another Valentines Day.



  1. What a wonderful story to share about Jack. I'm so glad that you have such awesome memories with him. I hope you have had a wonderful Valentine's Day, especially knowing that Jack is looking down on you and the rest of the family.

  2. What an awesome memory! Thank you for sharing it. Much love, Sherie

  3. That was beautiful and oh so true! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Great memory.. great post. Happy Heart Day!

  5. love love love this post.
    great memory! so wise!

  6. What a wonderful story! I love you and your family so much it hurts my heart! Hope you all had a beautiful Valentines day!


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