Food Anxiety.

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David came with me to the grocery store today, and while we were shopping he delivered a very sweet compliment about my cooking and how much he appreciates me making food for us. I certainly appreciate his rave reviews, because the truth is that I am very self conscious about my cooking abilities. I am not creative in any sense of the word when it comes to preparing food. Some people are naturals. They throw things together and experiment with herbs and spices and all sorts of goodness and make a wonderful meal, but not me. I hesitate. I follow recipes to a T. (This does, however, make me a good baker.) I am royally afraid of fucking up. (And what’s the worst that could happen? We order a pizza? Not such a disaster.)

I’ve been getting so much better. I am more willing to try things, to alter a recipe, to be more loose in measuring ingredients. But I remain a closeted cook. I pretty much only cook for David and Kennedy. David always compliments the food, but really, that guy eats anything so it’s hard for me to accept it as an endorsement. If anyone outside of the usual run of family requires entertaining, chili is the default. I’m good at that, and everyone likes chili.

On top of that, I cannot figure out how to feed a Texan. I have had to stray from my comfy Midwestern standards of casserole dishes and whipped cream-covered fruit salads. Potlucks down here terrify me. The food is delicious, but unfamiliar. What do I bring? I need to find my thing, you know?

Please know that if we ever invite you over for food, I’ve put more thought into that meal than the average person would. Praise accordingly.

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What Happened to June?

It’s July, and it’s not even fair how fast June went by. I can’t even keep up with my life these days. I’m feeling a little worn out, honestly…I’ve had a lot of changes recently, and a lot of headaches (literally). But headaches aside, we had some fun, too.

A few weeks ago, we took a road trip up to Wisconsin for my cousin Nicole’s wedding. Me, David, and Kennedy. In a car. For 18 hours. It actually went pretty well. We took our time, stopping here and there to say hi to friends or stay the night in a remote place to get some rest before journeying on. I am very proud of myself for managing to keep Kennedy off of anything electronic for a full 8 hours into the trip! We had our supply of DVD players, Nintendo DSs, and tablets, but I wanted her to experience playing some games with us, reading, chatting, watching the scenery, listening to audiobooks…because these are the things she will remember about the road trip, not which video game she played. I call my efforts a success. Only one near-disaster of an evening involved a very, very smelly hotel room in Iowa which lead to a short spat in which I threatened to sleep in the car to leave David and Kennedy in their stinky room, which they seemed to be okay with (the room, not me sleeping in the car.) We eventually got the H outta there and into the Super 8 across the street! Other than that, the trip was pleasant. It was nice to see family and friends and experience the mild temperatures. And, who doesn’t love a family wedding?

We also celebrated our one year wedding anniversary! I took the day off and we went to Spa Castle, which is a Korean-style spa that feels like going to a resort without the hotel stay. IT. ROCKED. (For those of you Dallas peeps, I’ve never been to King Spa, so I have nothing to compare it to.) We went a little overboard with the massages and the food and whatnot, but if you’re careful you don’t have to spend a ton of money there ($35 to get in for the whole day). We went into the various saunas and ice rooms, but mostly we enjoyed the pools outside and the hot tubs inside. They even have a swim-up bar. It was a very lovely way to spend our day. Highly recommended!

And now it’s July. And I don’t know how that happened. But here we are.

Wedding Scrapbook.

I collected some of our wedding memorabilia into a scrapbook. It ain’t fancy–I chose the “git ‘er done” method this go ’round–but it works. It puts the focus on the “stuff,” where it should be, right? Anyway, I wanted to upload it for my family to see, since they are not in Texas.

Here’s the front cover. I bought this linen scrapbook from Michaels because I thought I would prefer it to a faux leather. Turns out, linen covers collect dust and bits of this and that. Oh well. At least I can lint-roller it.

This was my initial mood board:

Some fabric swatches and the invitation materials:

This was the engagement announcement we put in my hometown newspaper (The Marshfield News Herald). The note is from my mom’s coworker, who attached it to a stack of clippings she brought in for my mom. I thought it was funny, so I kept it. Luckily my family expects such shenanigans from me, so they were amused at the announcement, not angry or disappointed.

This was the invitation the girls made for my bachelorette party:

I kept the ads from my dress. I didn’t see the ads until after I had purchased the dress.

The red envelope in the corner holds the receipt for the dress:

Instead of a guest book, we had people write out some marital “words of wisdom.” I won’t show all of those, but here is the page with our moms’ advice.

One spread of the words of wisdom cards:

This is the program. The note there says that the scalloped edge was created using a paper punch that I designed:

The inside of the program:

I printed out the entire script of the ceremony. Here is one spread showing the 7 Marriage Precepts, taken from American Zen Buddhism. These are the vows we, along with our officiant, chose as our marriage vows. I think I want to design a nice artwork print of these to hang in our house, just because I like them.

(In case you are not familiar with these, they are:

1 Will you allow your deepest selves to appear?

2 Will you take full responsibility for your lives, in all their infinite dimensions?

3 Will you affirm your trust in the honesty and wisdom of your own body and mind?

4 Will you embrace all parts of yourselves, including your deepest fears and shadows?

5 Will you keep your hearts open, even in the midst of great difficulty?

6 Will you honor marriage as a sacred space where there is mutual respect and trust?

7 Will you open yourselves to developing love and compassion for all beings?)

Our table numbers had fun facts about us and other things related to us.

91%: David and April’s compatibility rating on OKCupid (the free dating website where we met–we were too cheap to pay for dates!)

2: The number of dates before we say “I love you”

3rd: The date in July when David proposed (ironically, the day before Independence Day).

1386: The number of days between our first date and our wedding

72: The number of breweries in Wisconsin. (We like beer).

25: The number of breweries in Texas. (Thanks to our friend Wim for adding to this number.)

91*: The average high temperature during June in Dallas.

76*: The average high temperature during June in Rice Lake. (It was exactly this temperature on our wedding day, as predicted by the Farmer’s Almanac. Yes, I checked the Farmer’s Almanac.)

9:00: The time of the sunset here tonight.

202: The number of miles between Dallas (where David was living when we started dating) and Austin (where I was living).

1/5: The fraction of a second it takes to fall in love.

34: The number of muscles in the face involved during french kissing.

This is the page of my vows to David that I had with me to read at the ceremony. David lost his between the ceremony and the honeymoon.


The best man’s speech, handwritten and tucked into this envelope.

These are some photos that our friends and family took. I chose some of the ones that I liked and had them printed up to put in the scrapbook. I like this one of my parents…I printed it a second time to frame in my house:


This is a good one of my brother and sister-in-law, and a good one of David’s sister Lizz:

Love these:

This one of Lizz and Megan is hysterical. In the lower photo, I look AWESOME and David looks weird.

Time to boogie:

Love the lower photo with John, Kennedy and Scott.


That’s it! Hope you enjoyed.