воскресенье, 30 марта 2014 г.
воскресенье, 23 марта 2014 г.
Well, it was a million tiny little things that, when you added them all up, they meant we were supposed to be together . . . and I knew it.
~Nora Ephron’s Sleepless in Seattle
He pulled up to the curb in a red VW bug all smiles, obviously unaware that I was not dating. I clenched my jaw and knew instantly what was happening. A blind date (or as I now call it: a deaf, dumb, and blind date) set up by my well-meaning friends, without my permission.
“It’s just dinner, Lori,” my girlfriend whispered. “It will be fun and you could use some fun.” She continued out loud now: “Everyone, this is Bob.”
Well, I was not in the mood for any fun. Recently divorced, a single mom to a sick two-year-old and working two jobs left me little time or energy to go out with friends, much less date. I was tired and bitter. The last thing I wanted right now was to spend time with this happy stranger in the red VW.
Halfway through the evening Bob leaned over and asked, “Do you want me to give you a ride home? I know that you don’t really want to be here.”
“It’s not personal,” I replied. “I just don’t date right now. I live more than an hour from here and my girlfriend is supposed to take me home.”
“Grab your purse,” he smiled. “Let’s go.”
Bob and I talked and laughed all the way home. I shared my story so easily with him. The details came out so naturally it surprised me. I explained my failed marriage as well as my daughter Missy’s illness. At one point I choked up as I shared the pain that I felt and how scared I was to do this all on my own now. Bob was so easy to talk to. Before I knew it we pulled up to my curb.
As I got out of the red VW Bob said, “Hey, maybe I could take you and your daughter to SeaWorld sometime.” He laughed, “It doesn’t look right for a grown man to go without a kid or something. It wouldn’t be a date,” he reasoned. “Just SeaWorld.”
I hesitated. “Maybe. Can I think about it?”
The truth was there was no way that I could afford to take my daughter to SeaWorld. I was working as a dental assistant in the daytime and waited tables at night. The bills were piling up and I was barely making it.
“Yeah, maybe.” I nodded. “That might be fun and thank you so much for the ride.”
Over the next six months, Bob, Missy, and I went to every theme park imaginable. We shared meals that always included a toy. He would spend hours on my living room floor playing with Missy and the little neighborhood girls. The kids would giggle as they called Bob “Ken,” grabbed their Barbies, and dressed them for adventure.
One afternoon I pulled into my driveway and noticed the red VW at the curb. I walked around the house and there was Bob mowing my lawn with that that big wide smile.
“I hope you don’t mind but I noticed your grass could use a trim the last time that I was here.” He went on. “Maybe some water too. I hope it’s okay with you.”
“It’s okay, thanks,” I replied. My hardened heart was starting to soften.
One evening as I cleaned my kitchen I caught a glimpse of Bob and Missy in the living room. They were walking around with pillows on their heads. I laughed, “What in the world are you doing?”
The pillow fell off his head. Missy shouted, “Bob and I are models! We are practicing walking with pillows on our heads.” Bob’s face turned bright red.
That evening, before Bob went home, I asked him if he would like to go out for a real meal, one that didn’t come with a toy.
“What will Missy do?” he asked.
“I just thought maybe my mom could watch her sometime and we could go to dinner, maybe a movie too,” I replied. “You and me.”
“Wait a minute. I thought you didn’t date!” he teased. “That sounds like a date to me!”
The happy stranger in the red VW won my daughter’s heart, and then he won mine.
Happy 25th anniversary, Bob!
Автор: ФИЯ на 23:29
If we’re not willing to settle for junk living, we certainly shouldn’t settle for junk food.
We’re a busy family, but what family isn’t? My husband and I both work full-time outside of the home. Our two daughters are involved in softball, golf, basketball, theater, orchestra and church activities in addition to their schooling. They both volunteer with animals and missions and enjoy fun hobbies like swimming, running and reading.
But we’ve always strived to have dinner together. Unfortunately, that dinner was often called something like “Number Three Value Meal” and was eaten from a paper bag in front of the television as we all collapsed from our busy days. As much as I wanted to cook dinner for my family, I knew that I wouldn’t have time, or I’d spend a great deal of energy making something that would not be pleasing to everyone.
“I’ve got an idea,” I announced one Saturday as I sat down to make out our weekly grocery list. “What if each of you — even Daddy — took one day to fix dinner? Anything you want. You tell me what day you want and what you want to fix, and I’ll make sure that we have all the groceries you need.”
My ever-supportive husband jumped right in and said he’d take Friday nights. This week, he’d fix sausage casserole, his favorite meal.
Our daughters were a bit more reluctant. My older daughter voiced her concerns first. “You are sure we can fix anything we want?”
I nodded my head.
“Anything at all?” her sister clarified.
“Anything at all.”
“Even blue waffles?” my older daughter asked. Blue waffles? I wasn’t sure that I had even heard of blue waffles. “I guess,” I said tentatively.
“I’m in,” my older daughter agreed. “And this week, I want to make blue waffles, fried chicken and scrambled eggs.”
I nodded and wrote down her menu.
The night before she was to cook, my husband asked me, “What are blue waffles?” Honestly, I had no idea what blue waffles were, but I was willing to let my daughter make them in order for us to gain more quality family time and to give myself a break from the kitchen.
When her day to cook dinner arrived, my older daughter asked me if I had a recipe for blue waffles. I confessed that I didn’t even know what blue waffles were.
“They are just waffles that are blue,” she answered. I handed her the waffle recipe and the blue food coloring.
Since that meal, our daughters have turned out some mighty delicious pans of enchiladas, a great Italian quiche, homemade pizza and an awesome grilled steak salad. I did nix the pepperoni and oatmeal casserole — we’re not that adventuresome!
More importantly, we have a great time gathering as a family in the kitchen to assist the cook of the night, and we have come to appreciate being together at mealtime.
I’m no longer stressed about providing a good meal every night, our daughters are contributing to our household, and they’re learning some delicious culinary skills.
We all sit down together at the table to talk to each other about our days, and we’ve all learned to appreciate the effort it takes to put together a meal. We’ve also learned to appreciate blue waffles — they’ve become a staple in our meal rotation.
Автор: ФИЯ на 23:27