Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentines through rose colored glasses...

HALLIE: Today is just about my favorite day of the year (next to Halloween) -- so Happy Valentines Day everyone! My sweet husband and not-so-sweet I have been married more than four decades. I remember reading once that people in long, successful relationships find adorable in their partners things that others might find annoying.

To this, I can completely relate. My husband seduced (and still does) me with goofiness. He plays his head. Hangs a spoon off his nose. One April Fools Day I found a little fleet of paper boats afloat in the toilet. I think he finds my mouthiness adorable because he cracks up at remarks (sorry, they just slip out) that would make a lesser man take offense.

He's not a great gift giver but he makes the most wonderful cards. I don't call it cheap, I call it incredibly sweet, and I've saved them all.

How about you? Do you or your valentine have adorable habits that might drive someone else up the wall?.

RHYS: John is usually the typical Englishman--stiff upper lips and why should I send you flowers when I'm married to you sort of guy. However occasionally he surprises me with cards he's made and other lovely, unexpected gifts. We were once in Hawaii on our anniversary and he had a Hawaiian pendant made in gold with our names in Hawaiian on each side and the number of years. (but he does have habits that drive ME up the wall! I won't mention them here.)

ROSEMARY: This is going to inspire me to be a better Valentine! I am terrible. I almost never buy cards, I've stopped making special heart-shaped cakes and I don't usually buy presents - although woebetide my husband if he doesn't get me three cards, a bottle of champagne and flowers! And he either brings home caviar or takes me out for a lovely dinner. Unfair? Absolutely! What can I say -I'm a spoiled wench.

The one thing I DO do may make up for it though...I do break out the red satin nighties, black lace whatever....too much info? so, we, uh...tolerate each other pretty well.

ROBERTA: My valentine cracks me up--a very desirable trait in a partner for life! And he's utterly loyal to family and friends. He began our formal relationship by proposing with a poem about our courtship. That was Valentine's Day--nineteen years ago today! The only thing missing was a few of Jerry's cartoon illustrations.

Hallie, I agree, somehow the impossible must be found adorable. One of my deal-breakers is being crazy for animals. My John could get along fine without a pet, but for my sake, he welcomed a wild Australian shepherd into the nuclear family, and several demanding cats. He's a keeper:).

JULIA: In our marriage, I'm the non-romantic one. Poor Ross will get me flowers and take me out to L'addition Prix Restaurant, and I'll point out we could have bought another cord of wood for what he's spending. For me, the real romance is in his willingness to do far more than his fair share of what it takes to keep a family afloat. Early-morning drives to rehearsals, grocery shopping, overseeing homework, cooking dinner--he does all of that and more, while I sit in a room and talk to my imaginary friends on my laptop.

As for adorable-annoying habits, we have the same one: we like to get a little flirtatious and frisky in the kitchen, which drives our children into spasms of horror and disgust.

DEB: Julia, you would get along well with Rick. He doesn't subscribe to what he calls "Hallmark Holidays", so if I want flowers for Valentine's Day, I buy them myself. A little annoying? Well, maybe. But on the other hand, this is the guy who spent hours crawling under the house in sub-freezing temperatures with a heat gun, so that I'd have hot water in the kitchen; the guy who bathes the German shepherds and vacuums up the drifts of dog hair that threaten to bury us; the guy who will drop whatever he's doing to fix my computer; the guy who builds me fires and records my favorite movies so that we can cuddle up with popcorn . . . and the guy who keeps everything running when I'm away . . .

On reflection, I think maybe I should be the one sending the flowers . . .

HANK: Awwwww, you all are adorable. Jonathan's annoying-but-charming habits? Gosh, he's not annoying. Oh, okay, it's not annoying, but he is SO EASY to surprise--he's a clever,wise,criminal defense attorney, but I can't tell you how many surprise birthday dinners I have had for him--and he falls for it EVERY TIME. FOR YEARS. Oh, look, he'll say. Our pals are having dinner at this very same restaurant!

And I don't care about Valentines Day at all. I'm as sentimental as they come, you all know that, but, shrugging...maybe too many years of getting bummed out. And now, each day is Valentine' know.

HALLIE: Sounds like we're all pretty lucky to have partners who not only put up with us but nurture and support. A little black lace whatever is definitely called for...though not worn in the kitchen, please.

Are you celebrating Valentine's Day with your honey and counting all his (her?) annoying habits that you find oh so charming?


  1. What wonderful stories (and spouses) these are, especially the frisky-in-the kitchen-with-horrified-children one. My beau and I met on Valentine's Day, so we always go out to a very special dinner, and flowers are usually waiting when I get home. I seem to be the one to obtain the chocolates in recent years, but I'm good at that.


  2. Edith, he sounds like a keeper! Hallie, where oh where did you get that adorable card with the dog on it? Did Jerry draw that one too? It looks like Tonka!

  3. Edith, being assigned the chocolates in a relationship seems like a good deal.

    Roberta, it's actually a button - this web site has mugs, plates, you name it with your dog on it. Have a look.

  4. What a nice group of people--very very lucky people. I just have to say..

    smooches to all..

  5. Ah Valentine's Day. My husband bought me roses early, a surprise. Now what to get him? What does one get the man who has everything? Love is funny and it's what makes everything better, no?

  6. At this moment, the husband is sitting at his PC in the bedroom while I'm at my usual spot in the family room...his Valentine's present? A nice bottle of Tawny Port (he loves the stuff, I think it takes like communion wine), because the last bottle someone gave him was in his words "so bad". We're going on 44 years of marriage, so the presents aren't as romantic, but someone who fixes dinner, does the dishes, and moves the furniture in the living room every other Monday so my massage therapist can set up her table is a present in himself.(Even if he does leave the lights on and brings home regular Sprite instead of Diet). Happy Heart Day!

  7. Maryann, that's so funny. I confess, I've been known to give the thing **I** love to the person I love. Like lingering today in the market deciding what to make for dinner on Valentine's Day, I WANTED lobster (my fave, my husband's not so much) but ended up with swordfish. For antipasto, I did buy some (very pricey) Italian anchovies in olive oil which I adore and to which hubbie sez 'feh.' Let 'em eat anchovies.

  8. Hi guys,
    I missed my chance to chime in. Just coming back from vacation, I'm actually sick of going out to dinner, so I'm making a lasagna and a chocolate cake.

    My husband grew up with three sisters, so he was well trained by the time I got him. He snuck out a little while ago and brought me home the most beautiful roses.

    I think what I like most about him is that he makes a lot of the everyday moments of life special -- not just Valentine's Day. He'll light candles on the kitchen table on a Wednesday or make up a surprise dessert in the kitchen, tape one of my favorite movies and build a fire in the fireplace.

    He's a lot more sensitive than I am, which is both a good and bad thing. But today, it's very, very good!

  9. Oh, you all are bringing tears to my eyes... xox

    oh, my captcha word is an anagram! Wow!!!!


  10. We’re coming up on 44 years also which it makes it difficult to buy gifts. We are trying to downsize our ‘stuff’ and neither of us really needs anything. I did find a box of Hershey’s chocolates (my favorite) and a card on the breakfast table this morning. We ordered out for lunch and had it delivered. Tonight I’m making pot roast, sour cream and chive mashed potatoes, and brussel sprouts (Yes, we both really do like them.) He opened a bottle of white wine last night for risotto, so we’ll have that with dinner to make it special.

    Does he have any annoying habits? Probably. The only one I can think of is he repeats the same old jokes and has since I’ve known him. When I roll my eyes, he comments that I’m good at ignoring him, and then we laugh. How can you get annoyed at a guy who will toss your laundry in the washer or dryer so you don’t have to go up and down the stairs and we know who’ll clean up the kitchen after that special dinner tonight—not me!

    I’ll definitely keep him.