Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Delightful Little Surprise

This morning, as my alarm clock began to ring around a quarter to six, Husband was bustling around just getting ready to come to bed. His work schedule is forcing him to stay up all night, even on his off nights. As he got into bed, I reluctantly forced myself up, and did the first thing I do every morning: I headed for the bathroom. There was a post-it note on the bathroom mirror, something Husband and I use often when our schedules are flip-flopped in order to communicate important or semi-important messages. It said "Breakfast! Cinnamon rolls on the kitchen counter."

What a delight! Husband used his insomnia to give me a wonderful treat. It was so nice to enjoy a hot cinnamon roll with my usual coffee; but it was an even better treat to feel like such a special girl!

In other news: Major congratulations to one of my most loyal readers on welcoming a new baby boy into her family!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Holy Crap! I've been married for a year!

That's right. A year ago today I stood up in front of all my friends and family and promised to be a faithful and loving companion to the man who would become my husband. The funny thing is that after that moment, not a lot has changed. I often get asked, "so how's married life?" I have to reveal the secret I've discovered. Married life is just life.

Well, it's life lived in tune with another life. (And since Husband and I are both musicians, I think I'm going to extend this analogy.) Sometimes we are living on two harmonious notes. Sometimes we live on two notes which are discordant, but which lead back to notes which build a more pleasant sound. And of course, sometimes one of us goes flat and creates quite an unpleasant sound. But that's ok, one will signal to the other to tune back up, and we go right along making fabulous harmonies.

Tonight we'll celebrate by getting dressed up and going out to a nice restaurant. And then tomorrow will be another day. We'll go back to work. I'll fix dinner at the end of the day. I'll groan when he only picks at the food. I'll work on my knitting. He'll play video games. And the next day we'll do it all over again. This is our "happily ever after."

Monday, September 21, 2009

What Keeps Me Sane

I've struggled with chronic anxiety since I was in high school, and I get easily overwhelmed. I was having a particularly bad day recently, and I said to Husband, "It's days like this that make me want to drop everything, pack a backpack with just a few essentials, and take off into the wilderness."

"I don't think I fit into a backpack," Husband said. And suddenly, I didn't feel so eager to get away. It's so nice to be reminded what is important, when all the little things are stressing me out.

And in other news, Husband and I went on a rare date this weekend. We jumped in the car and drove up to Baltimore to see the world-class aquarium there, and wander around the inner harbor. We hardly ever do things like this, so it's that much more special when we do.

Here's a funny bird we saw in the rain forest exhibit:

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Mo Money, Mo Problems.

You hear all the time that money is the most common topic of marital arguments. I think that Husband and I have done a great job of managing our finances in a way that allows us to avoid arguing about money most of the time. That's not to say, however, that money isn't a problem for us. And when I say that money is a problem for us, I mean that it's a problem for me, and therefore for Husband as well. That's part off what marriage is, sharing our problems.

You see I'm not great with money. I find that I'm either struggling with money, or I don't think I'm struggling and later I find out that I actually was struggling, but I didn't find out until it's too late. At that point, my frustrated Husband has to bail me out. This has happened more often than I'd like to admit. And I'm not so foolish as to think that that doesn't put a strain on our relationship.

So, Husband and I had a little discussion about how I can better manage my money, and he'll help me out a little bit. What we'll do is a little financial housekeeping that we should have done a long time ago. We'll combine our car insurance into one policy so that it will cost us less and will get paid for out of our joint funds, rather than each of us paying our own. We'll also use joint funds to pay for our cell phones.

Here's the hard part: Husband wants me to build a safety buffer in my personal account like he has in his. This has been a goal of mine forever, but I've never been able to manage it. And I know he'll be hounding me about it.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Being Alive

Ok, at risk of sounding like one of those angsty teenagers who talks about how a certain song describes perfectly how she feels about her boyfriend, here goes:

Last night I was watching the musical Company on PBS (frequently interrupted by PBS representatives begging for money, of course). I used to love this show when I was in high school, but hadn't really seen it since.

So when Robert's big number came at the finale of the second act, what he had to say (er...sing?) hit me harder than ever. You see, he's singing about marriage and why he has avoided it, and yet why he also longs for it; and it struck me because I always find myself defending my unconventional relationship with my own husband, but Robert's words described exactly the sort of relationship Husband and I have.

Somebody, hold me too close, (Sometimes, he likes to
get in my space and smother me just to laugh at my claustrophobic

Somebody, hurt me too deep, (he does it too often
to count, I probably do it to him too.)

Somebody, sit in my chair

And ruin my sleep (Have I mentioned our disparate
work schedules?)

And make me aware

Of being alive,

Being alive.

Somebody, need me too much, (The man is helpless, I
tell you, HELPLESS.)

Somebody, know me too well, (we have a super hard
time keeping secrets from each-other.)

Somebody, pull me up short

And put me through hell

And give me support

For being alive,

Make me alive.

Make me confused, (So often, I ask myself why I
love this guy so much, and I just don't have the answer. I'm not even sure
I need the answer anymore.)

Mock me with praise, (Oh the sarcasm.)

Let me be used,

Vary my days.

But alone is alone, not alive.

Somebody, crowd me with love,

Somebody, force me to care, (He and I just don't
have the same interests, so this is an ongoing thing for both of us.
"Honey, it's not just any opera, it's TRAVIATA!")

Somebody, make me
come through,

I'll always be there,

As frightened as you,

To help us survive

Being alive,

Being alive,

Being alive!

This has been your daily mushiness. You can thank me later.

photo by Sandy Underwood: Raul Esparza in Company

Sunday, July 5, 2009

A New Routine

Husband starts his new job tomorrow. After months and months and months paying his dues in a menial job he hated in order to get the experience he needed to pursue the career he wanted, he'll be starting a job that will use his skills and have huge potential for growth. I am so happy for him!

I'm also happy that with his new schedule I'll be seeing more of him. Although, I also fear that it will be a mixed blessing. You see, I've gotten used to being on my own most evenings and on weekends. I'm able to do my own thing; eat whatever I want for dinner, stay after work for drinks with my friends, et cetera. Now, I find myself thinking about cooking dinner, and not knowing what to fix since Husband is such a picky eater.

Another challenge is finding something for Husband to wear. In his previous job he wore a uniform, so it was pretty mindless. Now we're faced with finding something conservative and professional. We decided on his best charcoal and pinstripe suit with a white shirt. He pulled out the only two white shirts he owns and he was swimming in both of them. After a quick trip to the menswear store, we got two new white shirts and two ties.

I'm looking forward to seeing him off tomorrow morning, and hearing all about his first day tomorrow night.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

I read a great essay today in Slate Magazine's blog, The Happiness Project. The author chooses five habits of hers that have become obstacles to her happiness in her marriage. As I was reading about the 5 items she listed, I realized that I could have been writing them.

I particularly identified with the following passage:

First, I remind myself of the phenomenon of unconscious overclaiming; i.e., we
unconsciously overestimate our contributions or skills relative to other
people’s. This makes sense, because of course we’re far more aware of what
we do than what other people do. According to Jonathan Haidt’s The Happiness Hypothesis, “When husbands and wives estimate the percentage
of housework each does, their estimates total more than 120 percent.”

Does this remind you of a blog post I made a few months ago?

Monday, June 8, 2009

A Spontaneous Adventure

If you knew my husband, "spontaneous" might be the last word you would use to describe him. "Methodical," or "practical" would be more appropriate. So, imagine my surprise when I woke up on Saturday morning and found him dressed in street clothes instead of his uniform.

"Don't you have to work today? What's going on?"

"I'm driving down to Norfolk," he said simply.

"What? What for?"

"E. told me about a Magic tournament they're having today."

E. is a friend of ours from college who lives down in Norfolk. He and Husband used to while away hours playing the trading card game "Magic," and talking about tactics, deck-building, rare cards, etc.

"When did you decide this?" I asked.

"Oh, about 11:00 last night."

"Uh-huh. . . do you want company for the drive?"

He hesitated. The last time I agreed to tag-along for one of these tournaments, I couldn't contain my boredom. But this one will be near the beach, so if I get bored, I could just head out on my own adventure.

Within about 30 minutes we were heading south at a steady 65mph. It turned out to be a really fun day. E. showed us around his territory, and we had an awesome seafood dinner. And Husband, who hardly ever does this sort of thing was having a blast. When we got home that night around midnight, we were both in good spirits having spent a really fun day together.

Monday, June 1, 2009

From the Mouths of Babes. . .

As a newlywed, it is so easy to get caught up in trying to meet others' expectations of marriage. I often worry about what other couples think when they see me flying solo so frequently. I'm constantly having to answer the question: "Where's your husband?"

But today, a friend of mine shared this clip from a favorite childhood TV institution

I watched it and thought, you know if those are the standards that my marriage is being held up against, then Husband and I are marriage experts!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Our Porch

Our first-floor apartment has a nice little porch. It's pretty bare, but there's a hedge and a couple trees just outside it that make it green and pleasant.

Last year, I put some plants out there, but there were a couple problems: I didn't get enough for the size of the space; and also, turns out you have to water plants if you want them to last at all.

I'm ready for round two now. I went to Home Depot and got some flowers with labels that say they do well in the shade. I also got some boxes and mountings.

After about $100 and an hour of work the porch looks lovely. I realized when I got back from the store that I only got one mounting for the two boxes I bought, but now that I'm finished I like the multiple levels of color.

I think that all I need now is a small table to rest a couple glasses of iced tea.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

A Retreat

Tomorrow, I'm heading down to Buckingham, Virginia (yeah, I have no idea where that is either) to enjoy a long weekend retreat at Yogaville. I booked this a few weeks ago as a remedy for the stress I've been enduring at work, and in general. I have kept saying that I'm craving silence, and I can't wait for a great big helping of it at the ashram.

Nothing about my relationship and marriage pleases me more than the independence that Husband and I have each been able to maintain while building a life together. I can go away for a long weekend, and there is no "I'll miss you more--no I'll miss you more!" conversation. I'll be gone for two nights, and yes, it will be a little bit lonely when he's not sleeping at my side; but on Sunday when we're together again it will be all the more exciting!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Twelve Jars!

Can you believe that there were twelve mostly-empty jars of pasta-sauce in my fridge? I think I've probably been collecting them since we moved to this apartment about two years ago. Today I decided to take them out of the fridge and wash them out, so that they can be re-used.

It took about an hour to get them all clean. For most of them the labels cam right off, but some are still stuck on there.

Any ideas about what to do with them? I thought about making my own pasta sauce and filling a few jars with it. Perhaps they could hold flowers or something?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Agree to Disagree?

I've often said that my relationship with my husband is based on the "opposites attract" concept. He and I have very little in common, and we disagree on most political and social issues. My stance on this is that it makes things more interesting. We always have something to talk about. . . and talking is exactly what we did at dinner last night.

You see, I believe that as "mere mortals," we humans have no claim to the land we live on l(beyond, perhaps, the house we live in) and therefore no right to say who can and cannot live in our country. The idea of "illegal immigration" is absurd to me. If you are an honest, law-abiding person, you should be able to make a living wherever you have the means to. I disagree with the immigration laws that make it so difficult to legally immigrate to the US.

Husband, on the other hand, believes that immigration laws protect us from terrorism, and other kinds of ill-will. In fact, he had recently been offered a job in which he would be involved in enforcing those laws.

Well, last night, after a long discussion (read: argument) about our feelings on this issue, Husband confessed that he is anxious to accept this job for fear that it may negatively affect our relationship.

In the past, we've always been able to (if you'll excuse the cliche) agree to disagree. But I can't say with any confidence that I won't resent my Husband for any involvement in enforcing these laws that I believe are wrong. But I've always appreciated our ability to maintain our respective independence. I don't want Husband to decline this offer only because of my feelings. That would certainly lead to resentment on his part.

So, I guess my question is this: Does Love trump Politics?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Am I too blue for you?

I've been in a bit of a funk lately.

I've let the house become a mess again (although it's still manageable). I'm dining on garbage. I've found myself spending most of my free time sitting in front of the television, often dozing off and waking up hours later.

I occasionally find the motivation to break up this cycle, (Saturday morning, I went for a short hike) but soon find myself in front of the television again eating junk food.

And I look at myself and I'm pretty grossed out. It is so lame to complain about how fat you are, but I can barely recognize myself. And when I feel so ugly, I am less interested in being intimate with Husband. So, this little rut I've found myself in is affecting my relationships as well.

What got me here? That's what I'm asking myself. Sometimes I think that I'm just overstressed at work. Maybe it has to do with how infrequently I see my friends. On a more melodramatic level, it may have to do with my recent inability to have any faith or belief in God or any kind of divinity. I don't want to say that I feel hopeless, but the feeling that there is no
"higher power," is a pretty hopeless notion.

I've been in this sort of place before, and I don't expect it to last long. I booked a weekend retreat at a nearby ashram with the hopes that it will be rejuvenating. I've also got a date with a dear friend to have coffee in a week or so. If you're reading this and you want to help, you can invite me out for a drink or a walk or a bite to eat. If you're reading this and you know God, tell him to pay me a visit.

I hope this doesn't sound terribly melancholy. As I'm reading back over it, I see that I sound pretty emo. As far as blue spells go, this one is pretty mild. But I could use a friend to get me off the couch and out into the sunshine.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Perfect Marriage?

In keeping with my obsession with the Obamas, here's a great article from Newsweek about how my generation looks to the Obamas marriage as a model for our own.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Put up your dukes!

Last night, Husband punched me in the face--in his sleep.

I felt him shifting positions in bed, and as I groggily opened my eyes, all I saw was a fist coming at me, and felt it slam into my left cheek. Husband then made a little whimper and rolled back over.

I might have to start wearing a helmet to bed!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Republicans are People Too!

If you know me, you know that I'm pretty outspoken about my political positions. I'm a pretty firm liberal, and I don't really get along with Republicans and other conservative politicians. I'm not afraid to mock major figureheads of the Republican party and I can be pretty ruthless.

Every once in a while, however, I am put back in my place. Watching this clip on the news this morning reminded me that even if I don't agree with some one's politics, that person is still a human who has fears, and hopes, and a family whom he loves, and who love him back.

Blending Traditions

My dear friend Millie recently described how she observed the traditions of her husband's family blending with the tradition of her own family right in their kitchen.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Snow Day

I took this picture outside my apartment about an hour ago. We're having our first major snowstorm in a couple years. As I'm writing this, we're at 6 inches and counting.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Spoiled Brat

I enjoy doing nice things for Husband. Who doesn't like to do things to make the people they care about happy?
For example, this morning, I woke up early. When I went to brew my coffee, I saw that I had a box of blueberry muffin mix on hand. Blueberry muffins are one of husbands favorite treats, and with the mix, they don't take long to make. So I whipped them up while he was still sleeping so that there would be a surprise for him to wake up to.
Sometimes, I do nice things for my own sake as much as for his. A few days ago, Husband was doing laundry, but couldn't find the time (or the interest) to hang up his dress shirts. When I was ready to turn in for the night, I found them heaped on the bed. In my usual after 9:00 stupor, I dumped them on the floor.
Of course, they have been on the floor ever since, and I'm really and truly trying to keep the place clean, so I decided to put them away. Of course, they were hopelessly wrinkled. Knowing that Husband has a few job interviews coming up, and that if I didn't do it, he certainly wouldn't, I took it upon myself to iron them too.
When I get into these generous moods, Husband is very appreciative and it puts him in a good mood, so it really does benefit me almost as much as it benefits him.
But sometimes, I worry that he's getting spoiled. Is he expecting this sort of thing from me all the time? Am I setting him up to become dependent on my own efforts? Lord knows he is totally incapable of any kind of cooking that goes beyond the microwave.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Public Service Announcement

Dear friends and readers,

Many of you folks are intimate friends and family, and some of you found me in your internet wanderings. I welcome comments from all of you, but if you are one of my "real life" friends, please keep in mind that I refrain from giving Husband's name or showing his face to protect his privacy. I hope you all will do the same.


Tuesday, February 24, 2009

What I have in common with the Obamas:

If you know me, you know that lately I've been obsessed with the Obama family. Everything from what kind of dog they might get, to where Sasha and Malia would go to school has cought my attention. So, when I heard that Michelle Obama would be featured in the cover story of this month's Vogue, I ran to the store to get a copy.
I finally got around to reading it last night and was disappointed to find that it couldn't really tell me much about our beautiful new first lady that I didn't already know. It talked about how "real" she is, and what a dedicated mother she is, etc. What did catch my eye, however was actually a line quoted from a 1996 New Yorker interview with Barack: "

"I'm extremely happy with her," he told Mariana Cook in a 1996 interview with
the couple recently published in The New Yorker, "and part of it has to do with
the fact that she is at once familiar to me, so that I can be myself and she
knows me very well and I trust her completely, but at the same time she is also
a complete mystery to me in some ways.…It's that tension between familiarity and
mystery that makes for something strong, because even as you build a life of
trust and comfort and mutual support, you retain some sense of surprise or
wonder about the other person."
My best girlfriend may remember me saying somthing similar to this on late night on her family's front porch during the somewhat embattled early years my relationship with Husband. Husband and I had a hard time back then. We fought a lot, and I often found myself in tears and he found himself not knowing what hit him. I often asked myself why I stayed with him when he made me so upset sometimes. I found myself conflicted with my rational self telling me to ditch him and my emotional self telling me that I couldn't live without him. (This all sounds very dramatic, doesn't it? I don't mean to be so gushy.)

But why? How did I manage to fall so stupidly in love with a man that I have so little in common with--a man who just didn't get me, and I didn't get him either? That night on the front porch I realized that the question was the answer. The fact that Husband is such a mystery to me is what made him so enthralling. To this day, I tell people that I just don't get him, and I like it that way.

In the time since we've been together, Husband and I have each learned so much about how the other thinks and operates. I understand why Husband has chosen certain weird hobbies and that has helped me accept them. I understand why Husband doesn't like parties and other large gatherings of people, and I often go by myself. I also learned that he and I each have different ways of showing our love for each other. Now, the raging fights that we used to have on a regular basis are rare.

Reading over what I've written, I can see that I appear to be trying to sound like an expert on relationships. I'm really not, but I have decided that it was important for me to question why I chose Husband and why he chose me, and to question frequently why I choose to stay with him, especially when the answer seems the most unclear. To this day, I find that the answer is that I still havn't solved the puzzle.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Valentines Day

I had a big long post planned about how Valentines Day is a fake holiday invented by retailers to force men to give women gifts in order to get a piece of ass. I was going to write about how Husband and I haven't really celebrated Valentines Day except for when we first started dating and still had something to prove to each other. And then I was going to confess that even though I feel that way I still get a little disappointed when I see other women being wined-and-dined.

I was going to write all about all of that until I found the diamond earrings that Husband strategically placed in my path today.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Losing Control

This morning, I woke up having recovered from a particularly difficult day at work which led to a particularly happy happy hour. Dehydrated as I was from the three vodka-tonics I’d had the evening before, I groggily wandered into the kitchen to get some water. When I looked around I realized that I’d lost control.

There were dirty dishes on the counter tops, a pile of clean clothes on the couch waiting to be folded; miscellaneous papers, boxes, receipts, and a couple winter coats lying on the dining room table; and an air of general dust and untidiness hung about the room.

After all the hard work I’d been doing to keep my apartment clean, Husband finally pitching in, at some point in the last week I must have gotten overwhelmed and let go. I couldn't’t tell you exactly when I stopped bothering. I think it must have happened gradually. I probably gave up somewhere between being extraordinarily busy at work, and realizing I’d gained twenty pounds and declaring I would go on a diet.

So here I am, back where I started at the end of 2008: fat, in frumpy jeans, a tee shirt, and fleece pullover, hair a mess and pulled back into a ponytail, and sitting in a messy apartment.
But, as I repeated so many times in Mr. Thomson’s high school drama class, “Yes, yes, I am hemmed in on every side, but don’t imagine all my battles lost.” I’m determined to get back in control. This weekend I will get my apartment shining again, and in the meanwhile, I’m going to continue following the diet I started last weekend, and one day I will live within 30 minutes of my office and all these things will be 100% easier.

Friday, January 30, 2009


Tomorrow, for the first time since the holidays, Husband and I will each have a day off from work at the same time. To make this even more exciting, neither of us have the obligation to go visit anyone. We get to spend the day together.

And I have no idea how we'll spend it. We talked about going to the movies, but that's only going to take up two hour or so. Maybe we'll just stay home an revel in each others' presence.

I'm so excited!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wisdome of our Elders

My grandmother, whom I call Mockie, is the poster child for "Better Homes and Gardens," or any other housekeeping tome. Her humble single-story home in Georgia is always immaculate. The garden bursts with perennial flowers every spring; tantalizing scents drift out of her kitchen; and the woman literally vacuums the floors every day. (Am I the only person who thinks that's nuts? I had a roommate once who insisted on vacuuming every day, and I'd be like "um...you vacuumed yesterday...")

Mockie is also the matriarch of a very large extended family with four generations living today. She and my grandfather (may he rest in peace) raised four boys who grew up to be the kind of men you would be happy for your daughter to marry (just ask their mothers-in-law!)

I recently asked her (along with a few other women who have influenced the woman that I have become) how she thinks a homemaker can relate to the Feminist movement. "When I was younger I probably was not ,or did not think of myself as a feminist, there was no such thing at that time," she told me.

She married my Grandad in 1948, a time when America was still rejoicing over the end of the hardships caused by World War II. Women who had joined the workforce while their husbands and sons were fighting in Europe and the Pacific were now returning to their traditional roles as homemakers. "I loved your grandfather, always thinking that if he made the living it was my duty to do my household responsibilities: washing, ironing, cooking, cleaning, and rearing four sons."

I've just finished reading the first chapter of Betty Friedan's iconic manifesto, "The Feminine Mystique," where the author describes how women of this era did not feel fulfilled by homemaking alone but were unable to voice their trouble, thinking that their feelings were unjustified. It is possible that my grandmother felt this way too. She said that she sometimes felt resentful when my grandfather spent his weekends away from the house playing golf, leaving her to look after the boys for a sixth and maybe seventh day that week. "But as the boys grew . . . we began to join him, swimming and picnicking."

"Now I realize that I probably evolved as a feminist," Mockie said, "When our son's married I made it plain to them that as long as their wives worked, and contributed to the income, it was their responsibility to do their part in the household duties and the rearing of the children. "

Husband and I do work together to maintain our home. In fact, recently as I've been making more than my usual effort to keep our apartment tidy, he has been more eager to help out.

Husband and I have only been married for a few months, but we are already learning what Mockie told me about marriage: "It is not easy. It is not always perfect, there will be good times sometimes not so good, but the good outweigh the bad. It takes a lot of working together to make it work."

She finished by telling me that she is "no authority on marriage," but I think the almost 60 years that she and my Grandad spent together speak for themselves.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

He deserves a medal.

Today is Tuesday, normally Husband's day off. He had to work on his last day off which was last Wednesday, because of heavy traffic from the inauguration. Today, he was called in to work to fill in for a coworker unable to get to work in the snow. That means that today will be Husband's seventh day at work without a day off. If he continues to work as scheduled, he won't have another day off until Saturday.

That's ten straight days of work!

If Husband's supervisors do not reward him for his unfailing work ethic and dedication, I will personally punch them in their respective faces.*

* = empty threat

Saturday, January 17, 2009

How I Spent My Saturday Afternoon

This is what my bathroom usually looks like:

This is what it looks like today:

I bought this little cabinet at Target:
I stored my cleaning supplies in it for easy access, because I plan to maintain the current status of my bathroom.

Pay no attention to the man--er--mess behind the curtain!

I'm saving the shower and tub for tomorrow. . .

Friday, January 16, 2009

Sleeping Beauty?

Last night, I fixed myself a quick dinner and put on a movie that came in the mail from Netflix. After I finished eating, I curled up on the couch to continue watching the movie.

Next thing I knew I was being rudely roused from sleep by a pair of very cold hands! The movie's DVD main menu was running and Husband was telling me to go to bed. Looking back on last night, I remember being extraordinarily cranky with him. But then, if you want somebody to be nice to you, you shouldn't put your freezing cold hands on her bare skin.

I promise I'll get that first posting about feminism and housewifery this weekend!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Wisdom of our Elders

We have a lot to learn from those that have come before us.

That sounds like common sense, but it is amazing how we humans are always arrogant enough to believe that we can improve or out-do our ancestors. Trying to knock some of that human arrogance out of my own brain, I decided to consult some of the influential women in my life about their approaches to marriage, and homemaking. I also flavored my inquiry by asking how the 20th century feminist movement has influenced their approaches.

I had hoped to use the results of my query to write a series of mini essays on the topic. Unfortunately, I only got one or two useful responses. (If you'd like to contribute your opinion, you are absolutely welcome, nay, encouraged to!)

Anyway, look for my thouts on the most intriguing response I received, which was from my last living Grandmother, in the next day or two.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

What's the big deal about folded pants?

This morning when I arrived at my office, I had an e-mail from Husband:

Honey! You folded my pants! I love you!

He couldn't have said anything to make me happier (except maybe, "Have you lost weight?"). Nothing feels better than having all my hard work noticed and appreciated!

I love you too, Husband. I love you so much that I am happy to iron, fold, and put away your pants. (I also love the way you look when your clothes aren't wrinkled!)

I was a little put-off when some of the members on the FLYlady forums were referencing Fascinating Womanhood, and the incredible difference it made in their marriages. I had never heard of Fascinating Womanhood, so I Googled it and came up with this: http://users.rcn.com/bendesky/about/cbta/50swoman.html

Now, I have no problem taking care of the home and taking care of my Husband; but these tips make it seem like everything a wife does revolves around pleasing her husband. It makes it seem to me that a wife should be almost like a servant to her husband. I don't want that in my life at all.

Perhaps I would feel differently if I were a full-time homemaker, but even then, I would be keeping up my home for us, not for him.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Nothing says "I love you," like sleep deprivation.

This morning, around 4:00 AM, Husband woke up barfing.

I'm pretty sure he all-out ran to the toilet because within one second, I felt the bed covers thrown back, heard the bathroom door slam, and then a giant puking sound. You know that sound. It's the sound that makes your own stomach lurch in sympathy and disgust. Just from hearing that sound, your nose is filled with the acidic stench of HCL mingled with half-digested food. When I heard that sound this morning, my maternal instinct jumped into hyper-drive.

I was immediately wide awake and jumped out of bed. I dashed to the kitchen to pour a glass of water and scour the cabinet for any medicine that might help (I couldn't find anything, although I'm pretty sure that once your dinner's in the toilet, there's not much to be done.).

I attached a vomit bag to the bedside. This is something Momma did when I was a little girl. It is at the same time so stupidly simple, and completely genius. All you do is take a plastic grocery bag and tuck one of the handles between the mattress and box spring. A little fluffing will allow the bag to sit open, then when your patient feels it coming on again, all he has to do is lean over the side of the bed.

Anyway, this is how I started my day today and now I'm worn out. I'm also driving myself crazy with worry, because when your six-foot-tall husband weighs less than 130 lbs, the last thing you need is for him to be unable to keep any food in his stomach.