Husband and I met in 1994. My best girlfriend KSG, (also my OB/Gyn) was a couple of years behind him in school and our senior year of college told me that she had this guy I HAD to meet. I went to visit her at school, as I was considering graduate school there and met him one weekend. It was, in short, NOT love at first sight. Husband thought I was some sort of spoiled southern California princess and I thought he was this really gloomy, unhappy nerd. We detested each other upon sight, and when I saw Girlfriend KSG later, I asked, "On what planet did you imagine the two of us hitting it off?"
A few months later, I moved up to the Bay Area from San Diego for graduate school and found myself in this small circle of friends where Husband was also an active member. I would see him at church and we would walk by each other with a small wave. As I struggled to keep on top of my studies I really didn't have much time to pay attention to him. But suddenly we were thrown together to teach Sunday school to the second graders, one of the larger classes at church. When he found out he was assigned to teach with me, (please keep in mind I was in graduate school for EDUCATION), he protested to the children's director saying, "I don't need a partner. I'm fine on my own. Don't stick her with me."
The children's director retorted back, "You do need her. She's qualified and she'll be good."
Husband replied, "But I don't want her liking me or anything like that. It might get weird."
Children's director replied, "What makes you think she'll like you? You might like her?"
And with that our fate was sealed. We began teaching together that summer, and soon I found myself "liking" him (to use a teenage term) and he figured out I wasn't such a spoiled princess after all. Underneath his gloomy exterior lay a warm heart and a wicked sense of humor. We began dating and got married some seven years late.
But Husband (back then boyfriend) did something VERY smart from the beginning of our relationship - he made it very clear that he would never buy me flowers on Valentine's day. Our first Valentine's day several months later, he picked me up, and we went around looking for a restaurant to eat together at. It was a lovely time, just walking around trying to find something to eat, and each other's company was enough. I didn't need flowers; I was far too content holding his hand than to have some flowers in it.
The following years we celebrated in very low key ways - one year he was applying to business school so I cooked him dinner and he gave me a potted tulip. Another year I was knee deep grading essays and he came with ice cream and we had that together. We've always celebrated Valentine's day very practically, very low key but always with love.
This year we will celebrate separately as he's traveling and I'll be at home. But no matter. We will celebrate our relationship and be happy to have found one another even if our first impressions of each other were so wrong.
This is my list of "practical" Valentine's gifts - the things I'd like to receive instead of bouquet of flowers. As husband is away, I'm hoping that I can perhaps get a new pepper mill (a beautifully expensive one) so that when he comes home, we can grind some pepper over our food together.
Salt and Pepper Mills. Williams-Sonoma has them for a similar price, but you'll end up paying tax on it. Both of these on Amazon qualify for 4 for 3...so if you buy 3 items you get the fourth for free. You could in theory pick up 2 sets of these and basically get 25% off. (A set for you, a set for your mom?) I love the front loading mechanism, the look, the construction.
The Good Cookie. This is a great book that is now out of print, but in it are a ton of cookie recipes you want to try. You can get one at a much cheaper price since it is out of print. Totally worth it. If you give it to someone, someone will make you some cookies!
Red Electric Stand Mixer. Husband has promised that one day, when the kids are all grown up, and I only have to worry about myself, I may get a red sports car (convertible please) to drive around. Since that day is so far off, I don't even bother drooling over red convertibles, but I do drool over red kitchen appliances. This is one. (I have a kitchen aid stand mixer that is 16 years old, and there is just no reason to replace it.)
Red Le Creuset Canister Set. Getting this would mean I would get rid of my stainless steel canisters, but I do love red and I think it would definitely brighten my somewhat dreary kitchen. :)
Kuhn Rikon Paring Knife: I have four of these knives. I love them. Quick and sharp, easy to use in the kitchen. I may pass these out to close girlfriends this Valentine's Day.
Thursday, February 3, 2011
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