Madeline woke up to a bad dream the other night. 

I heard a faint murmur in the hallway.  Reluctantly, I half-opened one eye, but before I could take any action, Dale was up and out of bed.  He was likely sleeping harder than I was even though I had already been sleeping for 4 hours longer than he.  But, man he's got, like, ninja hearing when it comes to our kids.  Always has.  He's good like that.


Why do I give him this high praise?  Because while Maddie came stumbling in to our room for comfort he did a number of things that, even at 4:35 in the morning reminded me how very blessed I am.

Whether he was protecting his slumbering wife (cool) or his own fragile night-vision (less cool) I’ll never know, but he flew out of bed just as Mads was reaching for the light switch.  It blinked on long enough for me to wake up and witness probably the most profound wife/mother moment of my life thus far.

I am not sure Maddie was even awake when through her 5-year-old sweet voice and sniffles slurred she had had a nightmare.  Without saying a word, Dale scooped her up, snuggled her the best he could within his big, burly biceps and the two of them fell back asleep almost instantly.  (Mervins.

But, while I was lying there, now wide awake listening to their sweet, collective snores I thought this little girl might just be the luckiest one on earth.  She’s got a dad that would walk across fire for her, which on any given day may mask itself as plush carpet, and in the near future possibly a parking lot or school linoleum floor.  She never even asked for me; Mom.  She was perfectly comforted.  By Dad.  Her very own big, hairy, security blanket.  In some "Mom eyes" I suppose that would look like a snub, but mine leaked tears of gratitude.  I believe the father-daughter relationship might be the most important of all and in that sweet, tender moment, I had no fear she will ever be longing for it.

This is just a good excuse to use this one.

This is just a good excuse to use this one.

There is no question that our marriage is not perfect.  Being human, no relationship ever is, no matter how hard you try.  And especially, no matter how much you think you are fooling everyone else that it IS perfect.  There’s baggage that just must be brought with you from a single life to a married one.  And at every turn, you must shift, turn, adapt, bend and basically maneuver your way though to the next, better, phase.  My hubs, the only Dale Ripp you’ll ever know, has excelled in this department.  I have brought many personas to this marriage.  Ha.

What does this have to do with flowers?  Nothing and something (like everything else I post).  If you have been following along recently, it’s my intention this year to give and be kind.  Dale and I met almost 16 years ago next week.  (That long story coming soon.)  And, twelve years ago on October 15th, I married a man that picks up our daughter with no complaint to comfort her at 4:30 in the morning, and many, many times before that. 

So, here’s your chance to celebrate and appreciate your own spouse...or another marriage; your parent's, grandparent's, friend's, brother's or your #lifegoal marriage. 

We are opening up sales for our Bouquet CSA on November 8th.  From now until November 7th please comment on Facebook (or below) with a husband and/or wife and/or couple that deserves 14 weeks of fresh flowers next season because they are basically...well, awesome.  My guess is the people you nominate will probably have no idea you appreciate their marriage or the sacrifices they have made to make it great. 

Another good excuse to use this photo.  I cannot wait for 100+ peony bushes to bloom.

Another good excuse to use this photo.  I cannot wait for 100+ peony bushes to bloom.

You can share a story, a photo, tell us why you love them so, or simply just tag a name or two.  (You can also send me a separate message if you don't want it to be public.)  Our little family will read through the nominations together on November 8th and announce the "winners" on November 9th via email and social media (make sure you are sign up for our newsletter below).  Winners because the nominated couple will win one share, and the person writing the story gets one too.  That means YOU!*

I have always thought anniversaries are not celebrated enough, including our own.  This is my opportunity to watch magic unfold again.  Thank you in advance for your willingness to tell someone else they are loved, appreciated and honored.

Have fun with this!

*Rules, shmules: You sort of have to be local.  I'd love to hear from anyone and everyone, but in order to "win" the Bouquet CSA share, you have to be available to pick up in the greater Madison area (listed locations).



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