Beware the Ice Weasels.

Yesterday we didn’t set our alarms because the district called a snow day by 7pm the night before. We woke up at 9am, a blissful lie-in. As we watched the remaining defining landmarks around our neighborhood continue to lose shape and disappear under the snow, CC looked up from his computer and confessed.

CC: Umm, your flowers aren’t going to make it here tomorrow. Because of the weather.

Me: Flowers?

CC: Yeah, for Valentine’s Day. None of the trucks delivering fresh flowers are getting through. They all have notices up.

Me: Oh. You won’t be receiving your gift, either. It’s kind of a project that involves me leaving the house. That isn’t happening except for the digging out to go to work part tonight.

I’ve long held the view that Valentine’s Day is the largest BS, commercially-fabricated holiday, surpassing even “X-mas”. However, I am a huge fan of chocolate, and flowers. And finally, later in my life, I am a fan of love. So in honor of Valentine’s Day, here are a few thoughts about love.

FROM MY WEDDING INVITATION:

“Love is a snowmobile racing across the tundra and then suddenly it flips over, pinning you underneath. At night, the ice weasels come.”-Matt Groening

FROM MY FRIEND TRACI, WHOM YOU CAN FOLLOW ON PUNCHNEL’S, ON MOM LOVE:

I told my son that I loved him so much it almost hurt. He said, “I love you more, so it does hurt.” If he keeps suggesting that he can outlove his mother, I’ll show him hurt.

FROM MY FRIEND AMY, WHOM YOU CAN FOLLOW ON 50 DATES IN 50 STATES, ON DOG LOVE:

At work, I usually take a moment when things get intense or low or too quiet to ask: Have I told you today how much I love my dog? To which they answer, I don’t think you have yet, today. And then I say: I love my dog so much, it’s stupid.

IN RESPONSE TO MY QUESTION, “WHAT MAKES A HAPPY MARRIAGE?”

My mom, happily married to my stepdad for 18 years: “Let your spouse be him/herself. Keep your sense of humor. Encourage each other’s interests. Learn the skill of listening and patience.”

My stepmom, happily married to my dad for 30 years: “A sense of humor and lots of prayer… not always in that order.”

Me to #5: What do you think is the key to a happy marriage?

#5: umm…I don’t know?

Me: Why?

#5: Umm… I’m eleven?

Me: Okay, what do you love more than anything in the whole world?

#5: Ummm…. I don’t know.

Me: Dad? Jack? Video games? Bacon?

#5: I don’t know. Can I go now?

I love chocolate so much, I don't care if it has 5 different kid spits on it.
I love chocolate so much, I don’t care if it has 5 different kid spits on it.

Happy Valentine’s Day. What do you think about love?

Shock Treatment

I like chocolate.                          

Anyone who knows me and read that just spit their coffee all over their keyboard. It’s kind of an understatement.

Before we got the kids, I bought chocolate. . . frequently.

After we got the kids, I bought it. . .  more frequently. Bags of Dove milk chocolate hearts at Valentine’s Day, which I ate out in the car with the doors locked, crying on the phone to CC, asking him when his stupid show was going to stupid open so he would be home again. Dark chocolate Easter Eggs that never made it into Easter baskets. I cleaned up in the candy clearance aisles the day after a holiday with no pretense that it was all for the kids. I started making excuses to run out to the store by myself, and found good hiding places to stash bars and bags. And bags of bars.

The chocolate got darker. It got stronger and far more serious. I was looking for chocolate that bit me back.

These days, I have a bar of Green & Black’s 85% with me at all times and god help us all if that isn’t the case. It is simple, powerful, and it works. I eat it as needed, in one-inch-square pieces.

Every so often though- when I just can’t field another phone call from school, make another dinner nobody will eat, referee another fight- when I would cheerfully trade a kidney for the ability to finish a single thought without being interrupted- at those times, I need something a little bit stronger than Green & Black’s. Something that isn’t chocolate. Yesterday was one of those days.

 

 

Yesterday was a Sour Patch Kid day. I love Sour Patch Kids because they are soooo bad for you. They stick in my teeth. They make my eyes water. I eat them until my tongue hurts. Once you hit that point, you feel it for days. Also? The kids love them. They hate my dark chocolate. When I sneak Sour Patch Kids, I have the added bonus of knowing that they would want them, only I’m not sharing. Somehow it makes them even tastier.