Saturday, February 15, 2020

Saturday 9: Secret Valentine

It has been quite a while since I joined the Saturday 9 posts, but decided this Valentine weekend would be a good time to get back.

Secret Valentine

Saturday 9: Secret Valentine (2008)

In honor of Valentine's Day. Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

 I have never heard this song before and am not familiar with
"We the Kings" singing group, but I will play along with this week's questions.

1) The lyrics talk about a song that's so romantic it "turns out the lights." Are the lights on in the room you're in right now?

Yes they are.  It is a cold, rainy, dark, dreary day where I live on this Wednesday, Feb. 12, when I happen to be answering these questions.  I have lamps on in various other rooms, but the overhead light in the office is on.

2) In the video, our heroine's Valentine's Day adventure begins with a note slipped into her pocket. What's in your pocket right now?

I am still in my workout clothes and don't have pockets.

3) This week's band, We the Kings, are proud sons of the state of Florida. Bradenton, to be exact. They even called one of their CDs Sunshine State of Mind. Have you ever been to Florida? If so, where have you visited?

I have only been a couple of times and both were visits to the beach.  Both were near San Destin.
4) Lead singer Travis Clark has a pierced lip but doesn't always wear a lip ring. Do you have any piercings? If yes, are you wearing jewelry in your piercing(s) right now?

Both my ears have only one piercing, and no I'm not wearing any earrings at the moment.

5) The band's name comes from a cheer they did when they attended Martha B. King High School. Have you attended your high school reunion?

I have attended a few high school reunions but our class was so small, it is difficult to get much interest stirred at this point.  I graduated in 1962 so we are old folks and most of us live away from the village where we went to school.  I do stay in touch with a couple of friends though.

6) Hearts are the symbol of Valentine's Day, so here's a little heart trivia: whales have largest heart of any animal. When we say a person is "big hearted," it means we think of them as generous. Think about the people in your life. Who would you describe as big hearted?

There are several but my husband would be the first to come to mind.  He is so very thoughtful and would do anything for anyone.  Our son inherited this thoughtful nature and loves to do sweet things for his wife and family.  He has something very special planned for his sweetie this Valentines Day by the way.

7) It's estimated that 9 million people buy Valentine's Day presents for their dogs and cats. Have you ever purchased a holiday gift for a pet?

I did give all of my granddogs a Christmas gift the last couple of years.

8) Valentines to teachers are also big sellers. Did you ever have a crush on one of your instructors?

Oh yes, I had a huge crush on Mr. Griffith, who was the most handsome man I had ever seen when I first saw him at the age of 5.
 Eugene Cecil Griffith
I still found this dear man to be handsome until his death in 2013.

9) With the popularity of e-cards, fewer Valentine messages are sent via the USPS. What's the most recent thing you dropped into a mailbox?

I happened to place six (6) Valentine cards in the mail today.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

10 Ideas for Celebrating Valentines at Home

Happy Valentine’s Day

I thought it might be fun to think about some tablescape ideas for celebrating with your significant other tomorrow.

My valentine date and I decided that we would prefer a nice evening at home rather than competing for a table in a restaurant somewhere in town.

So, how might I make it pretty and special?

10 Valentine Tablescape Ideas

This was one I used a few years back.  We really do prefer it pretty yet simple.

Whether you are entertaining ladies or "real men who wear pink", this is always a sweet way to celebrate a Valentine lunch or early dinner.

These are great ideas for sharing a Valentine breakfast with your special one, especially if he has plans to wine and dine you in the evening.

This simple, elegant table setting is a perfect way to start a morning together.

If fine crystal, china and candles aren't for you, then go with something much more informal yet pretty.

The beautiful arrangement, perhaps your valentine gift, could easily become the focal point of the table and keep everything else rather simple.  Nothing like celebrating with a gift of flowers.

I personally love the simplicity of this layered setup and pretty flatware.  You don't need much more than a few candles to dress up this table.

Now this just simply says "I LOVE YOU!" and enjoy spending time with you.

Should you want to keep your celebration really low key, then just a small touch of red with perhaps a gift for your sweetie is enough.

Or maybe something whimsical is more in keeping with the way you like to celebrate.

And of course, there is nothing wrong with going all out with your best china and crystal with lots and lots of flowers and candlelight.  I personally love this one.

I would love to hear and maybe even see how you and your sweetheart plan to spend this Valentine Day.

On a personal note, this was us in 1965 when we first became sweethearts.

We will celebrate 55 years of Valentines together this year.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Retirement: Fun or Frenzy

We had some couples over for dinner a few nights ago, and the discussion among us women was how to live with our husbands 24/7 after retirement.  Therefore, this post is written from a woman's perspective and is not intended to offend the men folk who may read this.

Dick and I both retired together in May 2011.  I came from an administrative position that required a lot of deadlines, decisions, and dealing with people.  Dick was a full-time minister with a leader's heart for people and a need for service.

Thankfully, Dick also had a second career in real estate that he had been cultivating for a number of years and simply shifted offices and full-time job.  This fulfills his need to be with people and to serve.

That has given me the alone time that I must have to remain sane and is probably the secret to keeping us civil with each other.

What about you?

What adjustments have you had to make after you and/or your husband retired?

I've heard some say that having separate living quarters in the same house has been the solution.

Others choose to simply ignore each other for half the day, then reunite for dinner.

There are a few who confessed that they are so miserable, they find any excuse to be out of the home and away from their spouse.

Some are having to care for an ailing spouse and their time is no longer their own.  How do they keep from losing themselves while being an around the clock caregiver?

On the other hand there are those couples whose lives are completely wrapped up in each other and can't imagine not sharing every waking and sleeping hour in each other's company.


What about when the husband decides that the way you have run the house isn't right anymore and wants to reorganize the kitchen, or thinks the floors need to be done in a different manner, or that you waste too much time on frivolous things.

Are you suddenly expected to have three meals on the table?

What about the husband who thinks you should be as interested as he is in all his history channel or automotive repair, or stock market shows, yet refuses to watch a Hallmark movie with you?

After being in the workforce for years, you crave quiet and are unable to tolerate the way your husband talks all the time?  Or wants to be with you all the time?  Or constantly calls and checks on you when you leave the house?  Or maybe he plays golf or fishes all day every day rather than spending time with you?

Getting along with someone else is always a challenge, but when two people who are suddenly forced to share a certain limited square footage together happily, it can get to be a REAL challenge.

How do we reconcile these day-in day-out differences?

In our case, Dick enjoys grocery shopping - I don't - so that's his major role.  He has definite ideas about what he likes to eat - it's not that important to me - so he often does the meal planning.

I do the laundry and he helps put up the clothes and make the bed.

We share the outside work because we both enjoy it.

We both look forward to our time together in the evening.

We have discovered that a lot of patience is required.  We have also discovered that we must still consider and appreciate the differences in our personalities and make concessions.  It also takes a lot of honesty and being open with each other about issues that arise and conflicts that inevitably occur.

Even after 54 years of marriage, we are still realizing subtle things about each other.  It takes humor, and forgiveness to keep on keeping on.

In the meantime, we are more in love with each other than we have ever been and grateful to be sharing this stage of our lives together.

What about you?  What are your particular challenges in living together in retirement and how are you handling them?