Because it really is personal…


Weekend breakdown
July 31, 2011, 9:37 pm
Filed under: Hooray!, oh you self indulgent hussy!, spouse

We should have 25th anniversaries more often. Perhaps each time a child turns 25, or the 25th anniversary of buying our first/second/third house/first lawnmower/4th metal mixing bowl/2nd washing machine…

Ok here’s a list/breakdown.

Thursday:
Lunch at The Dekalb farmer’s market excellent cafe, where we both ate vegetables because we knew dinner would be at Carnivore Heaven.
I had orange glazed beets and ginger tofu and garlic long beans and curried chick peas. I don’t remember what Terry had except that he had some long beans and chick peas too.

Then we checked in to the Uber Hip and perfectly located W Midtown Hotel, where we fit in about like paper bags at a Coach purse store, but it’s perfectly located so we don’t care. THANKS, TODD! It’s good to know People.

Dinner was at Morton’s in Buckhead, where a friend (THANKS, KEN!!)set us up (he’s a friend of the manager there) and we had an amazing dinner with a very competent waitress named Claudia, tasty drinks (my martini had hand stuffed blue-cheese olives), and we shared a double porterhouse, butter sauteed brussels sprouts with shallots and bacon, and grilled asparagus, and dessert was raspberry air. (Well, a souffle actually, but it was like eating raspberry air which is perfect after that steak) They gave us a special table, had our names printed on the menus, and took a photo that the staff all signed. Apparently they host celebrations from time to time, and know just what to do. It was splendid!

Friday:
Breakfast was muffins from the farmer’s market.
The morning was spent locating and perusing fabric stores and holy macaroons I found this place called Gail K, that buys designer shorts and odd bits of EV ER EE THANG. I’m SO taking Loaner Girl there one day, because they have an entire 20 foot high wall of rolls and rolls and MORE ROLLS of any sort of spangly glittery fringy fabric there is. A wall of fine men’s suiting,worsted wool that’s normally $50-$75 a yard, for $15 to $20 per yard, …bridal fabrics, the highest quality eyelets and every single non-typical button that exists. HEAVEN. I’m going back without Terry so I don’t feel like I’m boring him…and a wallet full of money too…I tell you what, I plotzed when we walked in. Absolutely PLOTZED.
Lunch was cheese and crackers from the farmer’s market.
Time was spent at The Atlanta Botanical Gardens. That’s an inspiring place, and I feel ready to kickback into gear with my own small landscaping adventures. Photos forthcoming.
Supper was delcious Thai at The Tamarind Seed, just a half a stone’s throw from the hotel. Terry had amazing spicy catfish and I had lemongrass grilled chicken in a massaman curry sauce. Massaman is the mildest of Thai curries, and the only one I can eat without next-day digestive repercussions.

Saturday:
Breakfast was bagels and cream cheese from Einstein’s, just up the road. Terry walked up there at 6am, and in the lobby of the hotel, witnessed the early morning round up of last night’s escorts and call girls. “where’s Olivia? Oh.. she’s in room (whatever) with Mr (whomever)…ok I’ll go get her. She knows she’s got to be out of here by 6:30…”
More time at the Botanical Gardens, this time with the camera, and pretty pictures taken. (forthcoming)
Lunch was at The Vortex in Little Five Points, which deserves it’s reputation for amazing burgers. It’s also now a place where painfully normal people (like us) go to hopefully catch a glimpse of those Alternative Types, but on a Saturday lunch time the place is packed with painfully normal people going goggle eyed at the waitresses, who surely must be paid by the piercing and/or tattoos. I had a Holy Guacamole and he had a Black and Blue (blackened burger with blue cheese spread).

Then we spent a couple of hours wandering Little 5 Points, ambling through the used clothing (called “Vintage”) stores, where I purchased a gorgeous peach silk georgette scarf, heavily beaded with silver beads and clear sequins. I have no idea what I”ll wear it with, but for $8 it was too pretty to pass up.

Dinner was light. We walked a few blocks to Veni Vidi Vici where we had a table full of appetizers. Proscuitto, very thin, with roasted figs and goat cheese, grilled octopus with cold marinated potatoes, beet salad, and a tray of artisan sausages with asiago cheese and honey…and breads. A glass of peach prosecco and when they found out we were celebrating 25 years, came out with a plate of house-made tiramisu! Yummmm.

Sunday morning we got up and packed, checked out and went back to The Dekalb Farmer’s Market, where I bought the goodies necessary for future cooking fun: fresh dill and lots of it, and fresh lemongrass,lots of that as well. Terry picked out supper for tonight while we were there: cheeses, deli meats, a bag of ciabatta rolls, and I got the requisite “what on earth is this?” food that I’ve never had before…Havla! It’s a sweet Middle Eastern candyish substance made of sesame paste (tahini), honey, almonds,maybe some other stuff…tasty! It’s kind of a slab, and you crumble off bits of it to eat. I cannot figure out if I’m supposed to just eat it, or put it on a cracker or what. It was in the cheese section of the store, so when I got it I thought it was some kind of cheese like stuff…but it’s not. It is, however, delicious and I shall physically abuse any person in the household who touches it without my permission.

Then drove to Terry’s brother’s house in Madison, where we picked up Eli (he is about 6 inches taller than he was 2 months ago, when we gave him away) and came on home.

Now we’re home but I am NOT ready for everything to return to normal. Neither is Terry.

I had an attack of the nerves Saturday night, I am not sure why but for a couple of hours all I wanted was TO BE HOME. Xanax, however, helped with that. While we were walking around, and loving the proximity of all sorts of fantastic things (like Gail K’s, Piedmont Park with the BotanicalGarden,every sort of fabulous eatery), Terry commented about how people get beach houses and mountain or lake houses, and said he thinks we’d like an apartment in the city more than that. I think it’s a fabulous idea. We have friends with beach/lake/mountain houses, and how coolwould it be to have a city apartment that we could let them use in exchange for their places, how nice would it be to have a place the kids could come for a long weekend or a week or two away in a nice part of the city, with theaters and restaurants and a big ol’ park and shopping of any sort…I like that idea.



It’s quite a day!
July 26, 2011, 1:37 pm
Filed under: aaawwwww, family, kids, spouse

25-1/2 years ago I wove my feminine wiles with a pot roast, and convinced Terry I was The One. 25 years ago today, we got married in my parents front yard, with day lilies and hostas blooming, and a couple of friends improvising music. It was Fun! Then we piled into my 1970 VW Beetle with a canoe strapped on top, and went to Lake Martin for a few days. No details, it’s none of your business.

It has been a wonderful 25 years, married to him. Not all sunshine all the time, every relationship has it’s moments. Sometimes those moments last for months or years, even. Never once, though, not even briefly, was there ever a consideration of ending it. Even in the hardest, bleakest times, like the 2 years I went bonkers and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. It simply was never an option. We might as well have considered turning into birds and flying away. Wasn’t happening.

And I’m glad it worked out like that. When 2 people in a relationship are so completely committed that ending the relationship isn’t an option, then you work things out. You have to. There is no other choice. That’s what we did. We worked it out, and came out stronger on the other side.

I have enjoyed being married to Terry. We complement each other. He’s diplomatic and insightful. I’m a sledgehammer. He’s thoughtful and courteous. I’m…well…Not.
He’s a Big Picture kind of guy. I’m very organized and detail oriented. Between us, we have all the bases covered and things get done. He’s generous, I’m stingy. He’s spontaneous, I’m…well…Not. He can talk me into having fun, I can talk him into just about anything.

He also possesses this VERY HAPPY idea that women should be treated like queens and have anything they want. Honestly, I like that. I mean, wouldn’t you, if you were in my shoes? Granted, it might take him a little while to get it, but who can just run out an buy a convertible without thinking about it? Oh…well, that’s exactly what he did 6 years ago. But we needed another car anyway.

Anyway, Happy Anniversary, Terry I look forward to AT LEAST 25 more years…my grandparents made it to their 70th anniversary, I’d like to do that, too.

post Part 2

20 years ago I felt a little funny, and decided maybe I should head to the hospital. You see, I was 38 weeks pregnant with our 3rd child. I couldn’t explain HOW I felt funny, just that there was an alarm bell in my head that said I’d better go. 2 hours later, CJ was born, in the hallway of the hospital, with a nurse flapping her hands and yelling “OH LORDY SHE’S HAVIN’ THAT BABY NOW!!” and an anesthesiologist who happened to be walking by caught the baby as he kind of came shooting out.
I didn’t even have time to mess up my hair. I think the entire staff of the hospital came by to see the woman who’s baby shot out in the hallway.
He was a wee 6.5 pound thing, compared to the 8.5 pound brothers that came before him.

CJ 3 days old

Cute as a button, he was, and such an easy little fella, always happy, not caring when his older brother threw a tonka truck on his head. Having 2 older brothers so close to his age (they were 3 and 18 mos when he was born. no we didn’t plan it that way, it just happened), he wanted to run with the big dogs (as we say in the South), so was crawling at 5 months and walking at 9mos. Well, not really “walking”, more like RUNNING FULL SPEED. He stayed small for his age, even now at 20 years old he’s 5’7″, but that never mattered. He’s as scrappy and pugnacious as a Cajun, but remains sweet tempered and easily pacified.
Such an angel *snort*
Oh sure, he’s put us through his fair share of excitement, whether it was attempting to bungee jump out of a tree when he was 7, or breaking his arm and deciding one handed backflips were just as easy as 2 handed ones. The teen years were exciting in a different way, but he’s come through them intact, and I can put them behind me.

Now he’s 20, working full time as a welder, making plans for the future. College? Possibly engineering school? Definitely marriage and kids, once he finds the right woman for a wife. He’s living here at home right now. After moving out for a while and realizing it wasn’t All That, he came back with promises to save lots of money for school. Truth is, he missed my cooking.

Happy Birthday CJ!



Thoughts turning inward
July 25, 2011, 11:36 am
Filed under: *eep!, aaawwwww, spouse

Terry and I went to see Captain America last night- excellent movie! It had all my favorite qualities- lots and lots of explosions, easily recognizable good and bad guys (I hate movies that make you think), Hugo Weaving and his spectacular eyebrows. It is a great Summer flick, and Terry announced that the day it comes out on Blu-Ray, he’s getting it. That very day, and he’s going to watch it that night. Capt. America has always been his favorite superhero, and if you know Terry, you’d know why. They are of similar attitudes- compassionate, patriotic, won’t-back-down-from-a-righteous-fight.

On the way home from the show, he was kind of antsy, sort of bouncing in his seat a little bit. Then on the 301 by-pass,between hwy 67 and Mainstreet, right there by Sonny’s BBQ and The Millhouse, he said “open up the glove box and see what’s inside.” So I did, expecting that he’d want me to pull out a map or the tire gauge or something equally boring. In the glove box were 2 white obviously jewelry ring boxes.

Hum.

“Open one of them up.” he said

“which one?” they were identical.

“Either one”

So I did and inside was a man’s platinum wedding band channel set with 5 small diamonds.

Hum.

“Now open the other one.”

So I did and inside was a woman’s platinum wedding band channel set with(let me count them) 12 small glittering diamonds.

“Happy Anniversary! Icouldn’twaittogiveittoyou!”

I….uh….buhbuhbuh…

“I bet you thought I forgot. I bet you thought I couldn’t pull this off.”

“ohhhhhhh”

See, I am not a BIG FANCY JEWELRY sort of person. I can admire the diamond paperweights friends wear, without wanting to own one. Generally speaking, a wedding band is the only jewelry I ever wear. Well ok not EVER, there is another ring, from our 10th anniversary, that I wear, but I’m not into hanging things all over my body. This ring, however, is perfect. It’s quiet and understated,with my favorite type of setting, and just enough sparkle to catch my eye.

You see, tomorrow is our 25th anniversary. We’d talked about getting new wedding bands,as neither of us is as svelte as we were 25 years ago. I had figured we’d go in and get a couple of plain gold bands of the sort we’d always had. Being cheap and all. But he had other ideas! Oh yes!

and now I’m constantly stopping to look at this sparkling thing on my left hand and wondering how he managed to pull it off. But there it is.

Tomorrow is our anniversary. 25 years of roller coasters and children and job changes and moving all over the Southeast. I’ll write more about it tomorrow. For now I have to go admire my left hand.



Better now
June 30, 2011, 11:07 am
Filed under: Anger management, Dewicate feewings, family, food, spouse

See, I knew I’d get over it. I always do. When something upsets me, the best course of action is to go ahead and be upset for a while and get it out of my system. Trying to not be upset is a direct route to a bad headache and a rash. And probably way too much alcohol consumption. So, at the risk of upsetting everyone else in the household (O NO! Mom is mad! What did I do wrong!?), last night I had to go right ahead and be pissy. and yes, the response was as expected (O NO!), but by 5am this morning I was fine, able to smile a genuine smile and face the day with a bit of optimism.

The grass is cut. I took that energy generated by Bad Attitude and used a push mower to cut the front 40 meadow. Well ok maybe it’s not that big, maybe it’s less than 1/4 acre, but this Precious Precious Creampuff Princess is averse to sweating, and yet in the interest of burning off some rage, the grass was cut. However, it was tall and requires raking. However, I have 2 bad shoulders, arthritis and a torn rotator cuff that refuses to return to normal, and raking is…well, I can do it for a bit, but then spend the next 2 days incapacitated and unable to lift or carry anything heavier than a cat. So deciding To Rake or Not To Rake…that is the question.

Still no vacation, naturally. However, the prospect of a day at the beach is cheering. Likewise a couple of days with a friend…that will require some discussion with Terry, but I am sure he’ll be ok with it given the circumstances.

25th anniversary coming up. CJ’s 20th birthday on the same day. And it’s all on a Tuesday. Who planned that one? Who has a 25th anniversary on a Tuesday? That’s more of a Friday or Saturday kind of event, don’t you think? I would like to plan a nice dinner for that night, but can’t really because of Terry’s work. He might have to work late. Traditionally I fix the boys anything they want for their birthday dinner. CJ has requested oysters,even raw,but isn’t there some rule about only eating oysters in the months that have ‘r’ in them? There’s no ‘r’ in July and I would hate for my son to die of oyster poisoning, that would ruin things. Plus I totally DON’T cook oysters. I can make oyster stew with those ones from a can…but that’s the extent of my culinary oyster skills. Thus, I plan to take him to Savannah to some place with more experience in fixing them. We’ll do it on Friday or Saturday, because he gets off at 2 and we could go and be back in time for him to have some fun with his friends.

But I still don’t know what to do for our anniversary.



It could be worse.
June 4, 2011, 11:47 pm
Filed under: *whinge*, Dewicate feewings, Good grief, In The Southland, spouse
Ice sculptures by Nele Azevego

Ice sculptures by Nele Azevego

97 outside, 87 inside and no A/C. Terry can’t get the part he needs until Monday, and I refuse to give up the trip to Kentucky in order to pay a repairman to come out on a weekend. We’ll suck it up, drink lots of iced tea and take cold showers, and put box fans in the windows to sleep.

100 years ago,no one had A/C. 20 years ago we lived in a tin can in South Georgia and had no A/C. We used to deliberately(on purpose! With intent!) camp in the summer, and the tent never had A/C.

It’s why God invented shopping malls, so we could go into the A/C and cool off. Right? Right. And El Sombrero, who keeps their thermostat set on Meat Locker and who’s tacos are cheap.

I dearly love that Terry can fix things. It means that I don’t have to hear someone say “I can get to it in 2 weeks” and then follow that with “that will be $1427″. All that *and* he looks Hawt in Carhartt jeans.



June 3, 2011, 5:28 pm
Filed under: Awesomeness, Hooray!, spouse

I’ve tried hard to keep unpleasant situations out of here. This place is as much about reminding myself of the good things as it is telling you-all about what’s going on in the Toot household. Honestly I don’t remember how much griping I’ve done about Terry’s job. I know there has been a lot of it in my head. His hours have been brutal- 12-14 hour days, 6-7 days a week, for the past 6 years. I KNOW I’ve griped about that.

But that’s all about to change. Due to events I won’t discuss, he has been moved from where he’s been for 6 years into another realm, a bigger realm with a broad scope that, however, will result in happy things like WEEKENDS OFF and NO PHONE CALLS in the middle of the night!

I cannot express adequately how happy this is making me. WEEKENDS OFF. What a concept. People take it for granted that they’ll have 2 days off every week, maybe not Saturday or Sunday, but 2 days somewhere in there. It hasn’t been that way here since 2005. He has had off 1 weekend a month, one day on 2 of the other weekends, and worked 14 days straight every. single. month. There have been periods where he’s worked 2 months straight with no days off. 12-14 hour days. He’s gone from Christmas to Easter with NO DAYS OFF.

So, to look at this new position, and to see that he is going to have off EVERY WEEKEND…well, you can see how that’s making me feel. Giddy, like Christmas and the 4th of July all rolled into one big glass of watermelon lemonade. With vodka.

We’ve talked about it, and he is going to take the first couple of WEEKENDS OFF, and indulge in egregious slackertude, with a hammock. I’m talking possibly not even GET DRESSED. Just boxers and a hammock. And I am fine with that!

Then he’ll be ready to do stuff, all that stuff that hasn’t gotten done in 6 years because he was tired and didn’t have the time. Moldings, a little cabinet for the bathroom, and dare I say…even…(I am scared to say it almost)… A HOBBY! Maybe he get back to playing golf with his sons! Maybe he’ll find him a 1957 Chevy truck that needs TLC and a new engine! Maybe some furniture for the house! WHO KNOWS! O the possibilities…

I could see him and me,driving the backroads, sitting close and complaining about the price of gas, drinking Cokes out of a glass bottle...



One of the things Terry says is that the way to stay in love is to remember how you got there in the first place. That’s been helpful, going over old memories and planning fun together.

In the interest of Fun, we went to Atlanta Friday, spent the night in a fabulous hotel- so fabulous that a model flung herself out a 10th floor window and died…we didn’t find out about that until we left and saw a couple of policemen looking stern and refusing to tell us what happened (“Watch the news.” said he)as other people strung up black curtains around an area while an ABC cameraman filmed the whole thing. Since we were on the 20th floor and didn’t watch local news, we were clueless.

The good news is this: I found the room via hotwire, and paid about 50% of the advertised rate. That was nice. Then I mentioned that we were celebrating our 25th anniversary (which we do on Memorial Day weekend because it’s halfway between our legal wedding and our religious one in July, which also happens to be CJ’s birthday) so the very hip young man who was checking us in said “oh you need a nicer room…here…I’m putting you on the 20th floor with a skyline view” Woop! Boy was it nice. BOY WAS IT NICE. The view was amazing- you could see downtown Atlanta, and Kennesaw Mountain off in the distance, and some other mountain. Huge down pillows-a whole PILE of them on a bed the size of Piedmont Park- which was about 200 yards up the way. Colony Square with it’s jumble of fabulous restaurants was about 100 yards up the other way. We ate at The Tamarind Seed, a Thai place where I swear I wanted to lick the bowl that the Masaman Kai (a chicken curry with avocados)came in, and I had 2 lychee mojitos that the waiter (who was barely English speaking South Asian, but delightful and pleasant)said the bartender said “no more, all out of lychee” which is just as well because they were quite large, refreshing and strong. I tend to laugh alot when there’s enough liquor involved, and EVERYTHING was funny that evening.

After a long and lovely sleep, Terry brought me coffee in bed (!!), we got dressed, and checked out only to see grim looking policemen standing guard while people strung up black barriers around the outdoor bar area. No one would tell us why, but when we called David to see how things were at home he said “Hey- were you at that hotel where 2 drunk women fell out of a window and one of them died?” I reckon so! Checking the news we found out that yes, we were.

Then we went shopppppiiiiiing. Culinary Disneyland, y’all. The Dekalb Farmer’s Market, 170,000 square feet of every kind of food,spice,grain, beer, fruit, veg, tanks of live fish and shellfish…the Happiest Place On Earth. I am now stocked up on cardamom, sesame seeds, all kinds of dried herbs and spices and cheeses (harlech somerdale y’all, it’s where it’s at. A sharp cheddar with horseradish in it O YES)and ginger and lemongrass and 25 pounds of onions for a friend who’s going to swap them for her best pickles ever. Happy sigh.

THEN we went to an Asian market on Chamblee-Tucker Blvd…that area is Hispano-Thai-Viet-Cuban. Srsly. This shop I like is right next to a Taqueria and a Latino-Vietnamese dentist/pawn shop. I got a rice steamer what looks like an aluminum spitoon with a cone shaped basket that fits into it. I was heavily questioned by the staff of the shop as to my ability to use it, and received a detailed lesson on Proper Sticky Rice Preparation. We love sticky rice here, and I am excited about being able to make it properly.

THEN we went up the road about 1/2 a mile to The Oriental Pearl, for their excellent Dim Sum. There is something special about eating in an Asian restaurant and being the ONLY white people there. The place was nearly packed, the staff was courteous and didn’t mock me for using a fork. Terry managed chopsticks nicely, but for some reason my hands were shaky that day, and I needed the security of a fork. Man, their sticky rice is good- they wrap it in a banana leave to cook it, and it knd of gets that toasty green banana leaf flavor in it a bit. yum.

And then we were full. After a desultory attempt at some more shopping, we decided to head back home. The time was spent discussing what trip to make next. Terry has 10 days off in July, I still have some funds squirrelled away, and we do so love travelling together.

Next up: A trip up through the Smokey Mountains of North Ga, Tennessee, and Kentucky. We considered a Low Country trip as far as Kill Devil Hills, but decided the mountains would be cooler.

The whole time was filled in with holding hands, talking about anything, everything and nothing, and simply being happy to be together. It was kind of fun being in such a hip and happening place as Midtown Atlanta, and being such a…well…unhip and unhappening sort of couple, yet not caring about that at all…I was just happy to be there with my favorite person.



Thinking back
April 5, 2011, 2:46 pm
Filed under: Dewicate feewings, Memories, Sometimes she thinks too much, spouse

I don’t have much of a memory. Rather than a long timeline, everything neat and sequential, I tend to remember blips, impressions, and emotions. Sometimes something will set off a flurry of memories, and sometimes I’ll be doing nothing special and *plop* one drops right in, causing some sort of emotional response and I have to stop the nothing special I was doing, and allow the response to happen. Sometimes it’s like walking into a ray of sunshine through a window, and I simply must stop and rest in it.

I was mopping the floor…not really anything special except that it’s not something I do as often as the housekeeping books I inhereted from my grandmother say I should, and as I was mopping I began thinking about the past 25 years…Terry and I have been together that long plus a few months. Recently he told me he’d actually been kind of crazy in love with me for 6 months before we ever got involved, and then the other day he said if he’d known me in high school he’d probably been just as nuts about me. Given that we met when I was 20 and just as cynical and sarcastic as I’d been in high school, I have to believe him on that.

So I started thinking, and there’s blips and sparks and nuggets of memories I like to pull out and flip through like an old album. 25 years seems like such a long time when you’re a kid, but in retrospect it went by so fast. 46 and 47 used to seem so old, but when you’re the one living it, it doesn’t seem that way at all.

Walking down Magnolia Street, sharing this really long scarf with him, because it was cold.

In the kitchen, putting flour handprints on his backside and REALLY making his fiance angry (ok that was fun. I can’t deny it.)

Honeymooning in late July, in a house with no airconditioner, on a quiet lake

Wandering through the woods behind our rental house, looking for fatlighter to make into bundles as Christmas gifts for family

3 babies in 4 years. What were we thinking?

Working in the office of his cabinet shop. I really enjoyed being in the same place he was in, helping with his business, being useful.

camping at Grayton Beach, a huge canvas tent, flying kites, making pancakes

Fixing up a house, one thing after another, and making it OURS

That silly cheap swimming pool, to cool off in after a hot day in the mill, with small boys like wet otters

Moving on, moving up, football games, grilling outside, another fabulous kitchen, another baby

and all the time, he shows up with a rose bush, knowing how much I love roses of all sorts.

and sure, there were bad times. Some of them were circumstances we couldn’t control, some of them were…how to say this…self inflicted. I hate the bad times, and don’t like to think on them, but they are what they are, and are the test of a real relationship. What kind of marriage is it if one person says to the other one “you’re too much trouble and I’m tired of you” or the other one says “this is too much work”. That’s what it all boils down to, isn’t it. The WORK of a relationship. God knows it’s alot of work. but y’know, it’s worth it. I am incredibly thankful he hasn’t chucked it all because it got uncomfortable or stressful. I am thankful I haven’t either. 25 years worth of partnership in all the blood sweat and tears of LIFE has been…kinda….wonderful. I am sure the next 25 years will have it’s fair share of excitement, but having carried on together this long, I reckon we’ll make it.



February 14, 2011, 12:39 pm
Filed under: aaawwwww, food, spouse

Alot of my memories involve food. Since this is Valentine’s Day, I am specifically thinking of meals shared with Terry.

One January night in 1986, it was Terry’s birthday and I wanted to welcome him back to Auburn with a meal he’d appreciate, seeing how he was the proverbial starving student living on beans and rice. So, I broke into his apartment and set up a crockpot with a pot roast in it…you know, the works pot roast…chunk of chuckroast, potatoes, onions and carrots and gravy. I knew I made a bodacious pot roast and that he’d love it.

A couple of weeks later, he asked me to marr….no…he told me he was going to marry me. I knew that was a good idea, since I’d been thinking for a while now that I wanted to marry a man like him, but since he had been off limits due to another relationship, hadn’t really figured on it actually being HIM that I’d marry. However, that situation was resolved, and he announced he was going to, and I agreed. That was in the morning. That afternoon I fixed fried chicken and green pea salad, and we went to the banks of Chewacla Creek and had a picnic. Yes, it was January, but it was also South Alabama, and a sunny 65 degree day.

Valentine’s Day about a month later, he blew half his month’s food budget on 2 Delmonico steaks and a cherry pie. They were delicious (he’s always been amazing with the grill),and my clueless mother converted the leftovers into sandwich paste the next day. Terry still hasn’t forgiven her for that.

For our rehearsal dinner the night before our wedding, we cooked the meal ourselves. He barbequed chicken, I made potato salad,and we served our families.

I remember getting a little queasy on wine coolers during our honeymoon.

18 months or so later, and we were kind of living on love, because there wasn’t much in the way of money. We had a new baby and the larder was nearly empty. We had a piece of venison cube steak, and 2 slices of bacon. Pondering what kind of meal to fix with this, I cut the cube steak into chunks, and threaded it onto skewers, weaving strips of bacon throughout, and grilled it. It was so good I make beef kabobs this way still.

Thanksgiving several years later, all my family was with us and I didn’t want a traditional dinner, but something fun. Terry had the genius idea of a Low Country Boil. Not only do the men do the cooking, but you eat it off newspaper,and cleanup means balling it all up and throwing it away, with only a large pot to wash up. Low Country Boil is large shrimp,smoked sausage, potatoes, carrots, onions and corn on the cob. You take a huge pot outside on a gas cooker, and cook the vegetable in boiling water with a can of Old Bay Seasoning thrown in. When the vegs are done, scoop them out and set them aside, then put the shrimp and sausage in the pot. 5 minutes later, everything is cooked and you dump it all on newspaper in the middle of the table, and eat it with your hands.

Boiled peanuts in the Fall, during a football game. Terry makes wonderful boiled peanuts. You get the green ones, just harvested,and boil them in a pot of extremely salty water for an hour or so, crack open the shells and eat them. Some people base their opinion of boiled peanuts on the nasty ones from the can. Don’t. Freshly cooked ones from a new harvest are addictive, firm to the bite..not mushy like the canned ones.

Yesterday, while Eli was elsewhere, he cooked 2 gorgeous Delmonico steaks and baked potatoes, and we had a candlelight dinner. I promised not to turn the leftovers into paste. I also baked him a yellow cake with chocolate frosting, his favorite, instead of a cherry pie (my favorite). We talked about the last 25 years, and wondered what the next 25 would hold.

Happy Valentine’s Day, Terry!



A Very Short list of things I love
January 6, 2011, 12:41 pm
Filed under: aaawwwww, Dewicate feewings, spouse

ok not things I love, but a particular person I love very much…very short list…

Terry, my husband. Love of my life, he’s 47 today. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

25 years ago we decided to get married. He’d had an unhappy Christmas with his then-fiance, and broke up with her, only to come back to Auburn and 2 weeks later ask me to marry him. Being a sensible sort, of course I said yes.

So why did I agree to marry a man who a mere 2 weeks before had been engaged to someone else? Oh, so many reasons, all sensible, because that’s the kind of woman I am.

We loved the same stuff, laughed at the same things, understood each other as well as we understood ourselves, maybe even better.

I wanted him to be happy…his well being was more important to me than my own, and he felt the same way. We still do.

I made him a leopard print shirt (he’d said once he’d always wanted one) and thought his dream of having a big woodworking shop was delightful. I love the smell of sawdust. His then-fiance thought leopard print shirts were stupid and forbade him the shop, because she didn’t want to sweep up sawdust or have tacky homemade furniture. The furniture in our house that gets the most compliments are the pieces he’s made.

He wanted to have a houseful of kids and wife who cooked. I wanted to have a houseful of kids and be a stay-home mom/wife who cooked.

He is creative, I am creative, so we understand each other’s need to create and encourage it.

He’s got great legs. I mean, really, really great legs. As a person with less-than-great legs, I appreciate them when I see them, and I’ve gotten to see them daily for 25 years,and still smile when I see them.

He’s also got amazing hands…big,meaty, warm and dry…fantastic hands that are strong and gentle and never ever cold or damp. Great hands…perfect for holding. (ahem)

I remember the first time a little bell went off in my head about him. I was at my then-boyfriend’s house and the battery had died on my car. The then-boyfriend attempted to jump start my car and wouldn’t listen to my noise about how he’d crossed the cables (being a girl, apparently I didn’t know what I was talking about), and he fused the battery terminals. I was PISSED. Terry showed up about then, and fixed my battery with a nail file, then he used a screwdriver to tune the engine so it ran like…well… like a well tuned engine. That’s when the bell went off…”O!” I thought, “THIS man is COMPETENT.” Competence has always been important to me.

While Terry fixing my car like McGuyver isn’t the only reason I married him, it was the little shove I needed to get away from Battery McFryersons and realize that there actually was a man out there better suited for me.

And here we are, 25 years later, through thick, thicker and a fair amount of thin, probably both thicker and thinner on the horizon but that’s ok. No matter what, I love him,he loves me, and if he’ll live another 47 years or so I’ll be happy with that. so, having said all that:

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TERRY!! I LOVE YOU!




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