As I’m sure you know, Maria and I have put a lot of effort into putting the good financial management practices from Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University into effect in our lives. I mean, we did just pay off a massive amount of debt. The results of these practices have been fantastic for our lives together.
However, there is just one little thing. Let me tell you a story.
Like a lot of guys, I like to buy my girl flowers on occasion. She likes getting them, I like giving them, and it shows Maria my continuing love for her. I most recently decided to buy Maria flowers last week. Maria has been back at school getting her classroom ready for the start of school, so I decided to order them online and have the flowers delivered to her at school. While ordering, I decided to do it on our debit card through PayPal, figuring that it would only say “PayPal” in the bank statement, on the chance that Maria looked at our checking account and saw the charge.
So, the day after I ordered the flowers, but the day before they were to arrive, Maria and I were sitting in our office. I was reviewing documents for work and Maria was balancing our checkbook. I was deep into my work when Maria asked, “Did you buy flowers for someone?” My first thought was, “Crap, how’d she figure it out?”
Apparently, unlike I had assumed, PayPal doesn’t hide the name of the vendor you made the purchase from in your bank account statement. So as Maria was going through our checking account, she saw “PayPal 1-800-Flowers” and wondered why the heck that charge was there. She knew she hadn’t bought anyone flowers, so that left me as the only person who could have made that charge.
I am a terrible liar. Always have been. Maria would have seen right through me if I had tried to make something up. So, sighing, I just told her the truth: the flowers were for her and she should expect them tomorrow at work. Maria felt bad that the surprise was spoiled, but it wasn’t anybody’s fault. We just pay too much attention to our finances to miss a charge in our bank account like that.
Despite knowing that they were coming, Maria still appreciated the flowers and they were quite lovely.
The spoiled surprise flowers actually brought this problem to our attention early considering that both of our birthdays and Christmas are coming up in the next few months. We will have to figure out how to our gifts for each other a secret now that we only have one checking account between the two of us. One thought we had was to get Visa gift card or something similar, but those usually come with activation fees. If you have any suggestions, we’d love to hear them!