Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Living in the Lap of Luxury

Jeff is not an easy person for which to buy gifts. Gifts rank pretty low on his totem pole of love languages, probably right there at the bottom with acts of service (proving that it must be true that opposites attract, since those two are at the top of my love language list!).

When Christmas rolls around, I usually fall back on my default gift for him: clothes. It's not too exciting, but it's useful, and that counts for least, according to Winnie the Pooh, who once gave Eeyore a Useful Pot for his birthday (after he himself cleaned all the honey out first, of course). You can tell what level of reading I've been enjoying recently.

Now where was I? Oh, yes, Christmas.

A few days (or a week or two, I can't remember) before Christmas, I was walking through Walmart with the boys when what to my wondering eyes should appear but the PERFECT gift for Jeff. In my attempt to take a shortcut, I was actually hurrying through an aisle of the store where I rarely go; but silly as it might seem, I'm sure God directed my steps that day because there, sitting peacefully on the shelf to my right, was something I knew immediately that Jeff would LOVE.

An electric blanket.

I hesitated a moment to find the right size and color, then gleefully put it in the cart, reminding the boys not to breathe a word of it to Daddy when we got home. I could hardly wait for Christmas to give it to him because I knew how happy he would be. And he was. In fact, on Christmas Day, he got the blanket out of the package, unfolded it, wrapped it around himself as he sat in a rocking chair in the living room, turned it on, then crowed to everyone in the room about how nice it was. He couldn't even wait for bedtime.

What I didn't anticipate was how I would fall utterly in love with it, too. I never had an electric blanket so I didn't have any idea what I was missing; but looking back, I ask myself, "Why wasn't this one of the first purchases I made during our first winter back in the States five years ago?"

I can't even describe how wonderfully comforting it is to turn on the blanket while I start getting ready for bed; and then when I crawl under the blanket, my little nest is already warm! No more shivering under the covers for a few minutes until my body temperature heats it up. No more wishing that Jeff had warmed a spot for me (he used to do that occasionally). No more heating a corn bag (that can be used as a cold pack or a hot one) in the microwave to put at my feet to keep the chill of the cold sheets at bay. It's luxury, pure luxury. The only downside to using the electric blanket is that it makes it even harder (if that were possible) to drag myself from the coziness of my nest into the chilly morning or when a child cries during the night. But still, I'd say the $68 I spent on the blanket was undoubtedly money well spent!

Sometimes when I curl up under the warmth, I remember a passage from one of the Laura Ingalls Wilder books in which she describes nights when snow would actually come into their house and pile up on top of the bed that she shared with Mary. Pa would come in the morning and shovel off the snow before they got out of bed. (Am I remembering the details right?) I cannot imagine what that must have been like. My existence is so far removed from the things they had to do just to survive that it's hard for my mind to really grasp what her life was like...and I'm equally sure that she would find it extremely difficult to fathom all the aspects of my life that seem so normal to me. What would she think of an electric blanket???

One thing is for sure: I don't want to take the luxuries of my life for granted. I want to continually marvel at how blessed I am and how rich and full my home and family and general well-being are. But now, if you'll excuse me, I have a warm--ah, beautifully warm!--bed calling my name. I'll be practicing my gratitude there. :)


Elizabeth said...

Its funny I was just thinking of Laura Ingalls today and I was also thinking how you reminded me of her! LOL! Seriously :)

After spending some cold weather time here in Ohio, I have thought of how cold it was for the pilgrims when they arrived and faced that first winter. I can't even imagine it!!!

Your (Jeff's) blanket sounds heavenly! :P

Davene said...


Your comment made me smile. Thanks! :)

Lisa said...

I love Little House! I wanted to be Laura when I was younger. Now...not so sure!;-)

Now I want to go buy an electric blanket. What good marketing you've done. heehee!

Sally said...

I'm so happy for you! I have been spoiled with a waterbed for years, which is heated. Regular beds usually make my joints hurt, so I've had the waterbed. Maybe you should try one of those sometime!

Valerie said...

This is so funny, I was just researching electric blankets! Good to know the one at WM is nice.

Stacey said...

YAY for electric blankets!!!
For some reason this year I was convinced I would open my gift and it would be an electric blanket. I hadn't asked for one.... Just thought there would be one. Sadly there was no electric blanket. I really enjoyed my gift anyway, but it wasn't something I could cuddle up with.

this past sunday as we were walking through Costco. I insisted that we go by the clearance items. low and behold there were electric throw blankets for $20! Unheard of! so my wonderful hubby decided we needed 2 of them. and as I was putting them into the cart he said "Merry Christmas Again". He sacrificed the last little bit of cash he had for my comfort! How I love that man!! And I LOVE that Blanket. it has been a tremendous help for my leg cramps. I know you and Jeff will enjoy his blanket for years to come!

Leigh Anne said...

Electric blankets are truly one of my favorite things EVER. I bought my kids one after I realized it can really help with aches/chills, but then I started using it all the time! I was actually at Costco on Saturday, looking for a back-up lest by beloved ever conk out on me--so sorry I missed the sale!

Beth said...

You just make me so badly want to snuggle up in bed with a good book, my little boys right beside me, and an electric blanket of my own! I have the bed...I have the boys...I have the I just need that blanket! :)

Morning said...

I love my electric blanket! My Geoff, however, won't have a bar of it, so I've just bought a single that fits only on my side of the bed. I often curl up in bed and think how spoilt I am to have clean, fresh sheets and warm blankets. We have luxuries undreamed of by others!

mamajil said...

Your post was so cute!! Okay now I want an electric blanket, especially since its been unusually cold in my neck of the woods!!

Margie said...

How funny! Wayne waxes nostalgic about having an electric blanket in college! and we finally sprang for some for the RV when we went camping in October, and seriously - he couldn't stop talking about them. Like to see his experience validated by Jeff's.

Though we might need them a few nights a year in winter in Texas, they are SO NICE when it's cold, cold.