“Paid By Cash”- A New Ring For A Canadian Firefighter at CFB Edmonton

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By: Heather Ferarr

Mark and I got married in August 1996 at CFB Moose Jaw and purchased our first wedding rings at Consumers Distributing.  If you are too young to remember Consumer’s it was a shop you could go into and they had catalogues where you could pick items you wanted to order or pick up.  It was quite handy and convenient in those days. 

Consumers Distributing has since went out of business so those days are gone with computers and new technology brings a new era of on-line shopping. In the 80’s  it was a big deal to place an order from the well-known catalogue especially at Christmas time. Now we raise the roof to find a deal on-line without leaving the comfort of our home.

I took this photo of CH-118 Huey helicopters 1...

My husband Mark is a fire fighter with the air force and his profession has turned his wedding band into something less to desire. Mark is currently stationed at CFB Edmonton and our house has yet to sell here in Rural Nova Scotia. It has been on the market for one year now in hopes we sell to move closer to his work so we can all be together. I will be going to Edmonton in May to visit Mark an anticipated visit I think about daily.

I have not seen Mark since January 3rd and I miss him terribly. Mark will be heading to Nova Scotia in July for 3 weeks of family time. If our home doesn’t sell by then Mark will go back to Edmonton and we will stay here until the house sells.  Until then we will not see Mark until 2013 so we yearn to sell and put our family back together again.

We are on a tight budget,and Mark has hinted the last year that his wedding band is a bit beat up and had lost a stone. I really wanted to make him smile and surprise him with a new wedding band. He is a wonderful father and husband and works hard for our family and the people.

I debated how I would get Mark a new ring without him knowing and not helping me pay for it.  I started to budget $60 a month for my personal allowance but secretly saving part of the money for my special gift for Mark. I was at the mall with my son  one rainy afternoon and found myself outside the jewellery shop.  I was enticed in the store by the gleaming rocks frosting the window and knew I wanted to look for Marks ring.

mildly convex wedding ring, inside titanium, o...

After some eye-opening price tags I finally found a men’s  eternity band very similar to the one he purchased for me in Dubai.  The price tag for the ring was on sale for only $419.00 down from $719.00 which was a great deal. I decided to put it on lay away in November 2011 and every 2 weeks I would  put half my allowance $30.00 cash on the debt until I paid it off.  

I used the following ways to pay off  Marks new ring in cash!

I managed to pay off his ring just under $600 all in cash! I am proud to say it is now in my night stand ready to fly with me to Edmonton,Alberta to surprise my hubby in May. Now I am just hoping it fits as I know he will love it, he deserve’s this, I love him!
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Photos Courtesy of : Copyright (c) <a href=’’>123RF Stock Photos</a>

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  1. I remember Consumer’s!!!! I did a lot of Christmas shopping there!!! We still have the bookshelves and such that we bought there. I still miss that place…. Heather…did you ever manage to sell? WE have friends that were posted in NB for a number of years and had a heck of a time selling the house when he was posted to Trenton. I think it took them a fair while to finally sell. He’s retired now and they live in Perth ON. He was a construction Tech and teacher at the Forces school in NB.

  2. Not only do I remember Consumer’s Distributing but I am still using many things I bought there. I am sure he’ll be thrilled with his new ring & the fact that you’ve been saving up for moths to get it for him. Have a fabulous reunion!

  3. Amazing story! What a nice idea and I hope you’re all together soon. And I remember Consumer’s Distributing too! 🙂

  4. what a beautiful story! I bet this is something your husband will remember and appreciate forever. Reminds me that we can save for anything that we put our minds to.

  5. What a beautiful story! I hope your reunion is wonderful! My hubby did a similar thing to purchase my wedding rings. He had a little help though…traded in my wedding rings from my first marriage lol. Right now I happen to know that he has an anniversary band on layaway for me that matches my other rings (they fit together almost like a puzzle). We saved a lot on his wedding band by purchasing one made out of titanium. It was less than $175.

  6. What a touching story, thanks for sharing. Yet another example of how motivation can inspire us to save money to get what we really want. I am sure your husband will be very touched. Funny, I was just talking about Consumers Distributing the other day at work and how as kids we just couldn’t wait for the new catalogue to come out so we could check out the toys for our Christmas wish lists. Made me feel so old when the younger employees (about 10 years younger) had never heard of it.

  7. What a heart warming story! I remember Consumers Distributing well. It was my first job out of high school. Once a week when the truck arrived a bunch of us would unload it and put all the products on the shelf in their right numbered spots.
    I always wonder how people know what size ring to buy when they surprise someone?

    1. That’s a good question lol.. about the ring size. I guess most think it can get resized or they talk about it ahead of time. The Mrs. is familiar with consumers as I obviously was not in Canada. She remembers going with her family quite often around Christmas time or just for everyday items. Amazing how times have changed. Cheers and thanks for your post. Mr.CBB

  8. That is such a heartwarming story for sure! I keep trying to leave you a comment but wordpress is being a pain today. I would love to hear your husband’s reaction to his surprise gift!! Good for you for saving a little here and there and getting to pay cash!!! I have a goal and it involves new wedding bands for my husband and I. You inspired me to work at making that happen 🙂

  9. What a beautiful story. It will be a very special visit I’m sure. Thanks for sharing how you were able to put away money with a goal in mind….a special gift. I have reunited with my ex husband (never divorced) therefore am married again 🙂 I would love to buy us wedding bands since we both did not keep ours (it had been 24 years). Would love to hear how your husband reacted to receiving his new ring 🙂

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