Posts Tagged ‘romance’

Friday Flowers



When we were first married IZ worked in downtown Seattle, just moments from Pike’s Place Market. On Fridays, he would swing by the market on his way home from work and bring me an armful of flowers.  Usually big bunches of dahlias, but sometimes sunflowers or wildflowers, anything that was in season. It’s such a fond memory.

We had this huge worktable in our kitchen and I would arrange flowers on it, while IZ would make dinner. It was a chance to catch up on his day. He worked a stressful job and I remember those moments of times of just being present. Listening and supporting and hoping for him, all the things he wanted to accomplish. And it wasn’t lost on me then, either, that in the midst of such turmoil at work, he always made time to bring me flowers.

We’ve grown up. And moved too many times. And these days, when I want flowers, I just go get them. The downside, I suppose, of working from home. He doesn’t have a flower stand to swing by on his way home for work.

So, it was a lovely moment this afternoon, when on our way home from his haircut he pulled over to my favorite flower stand and bought me a bouquet. His day, his week has been complicated and stressful and there’s not much I can do to remedy the problems he’s facing right now. But once again, he’s there with flowers reminding me again that the definition of love is putting the other first.

When he got back in the car, he leaned over and gave me a kiss, “Here you go, Friday Flowers.”


A New Horizon


Last week IZ whisked me off to Cannon Beach for 2 nights. It was lovely. It’s been ages (since our son was 6?) since we’ve been alone in a hotel room together. We’ve just not had people in our world to leave our child with. The few times we did, when Geo was younger, we would come home to be inundated with tales of how “hard” it was for the caregiver. Stream of consciousness complaint, right as we hit the door. Sigh.

Nothing spoils that getaway zen like coming home to kid angst. Sure, I get it: he was a handful– kinda why his parents needed a little R&R, right? Your two days of dealing with a high energy kid hardly trumps my day to day existence. But, thanks for reminding me.

After the last get away, I looked at IZ and said, “I’m not going away until it’s no longer abuse to leave my kid on his own. And remind me to keep my mouth shut when I find myself in this situation with my own grandchildren!”

So, we traveled with the kid. Everywhere. And that wasn’t a bad thing. We’re a happy trio, we enjoy exploring together. It can be fun and exciting and worthwhile.

What it is not, is romantic. Children have a sixth sense about romance: the minute you start to get frisky or intimate, you’ll find you’re not alone by a long shot. (A related aside, how people co-sleep with toddlers is beyond me!) Little eyes are on you. Little bodies step between you. Little voices want attention. Excuse me, I was talking to your dad!

And it’s all good, because that’s the beauty of parenting. Sex is overrated, right? Half consumed coffee, unfinished conversations, is that glass of wine for me? Exhaustion and missing showers is the norm, the beautiful, glorious, norm.

I wouldn’t trade those days. But I won’t lie, the benefits to having college aged children are starting to dawn on me.

One of those benefits is that it isn’t abuse to leave them on their own! It’s not only NOT abuse, it’s easy. Granted, we were 40 minutes down the road, but I was more concerned over how the dog would fair than how the kid was getting on. (she has dementia and needs her routine!) Other than a few instant messages to check in on how the dog was doing, my child wasn’t on my mind. Instead, this beautiful man and I spent the time reconnecting. Dreaming and laughing and remembering what it was like when it was just us.

For the record, the world did not come to an end. The house wasn’t trashed, our son got himself to and from school without any mishaps, and the dog met us at the door and seemed completely unconcerned that we’d gone missing for 2 days.

And taped to the front door when we arrived was this:


I’m liking what’s on the horizon.

So, This Happened


IZ whisked me away to Cannon Beach for 2 nights.  

Surprise Date


Happy Hour at The Supper Club (the bar… so cozy!)

This guy… is really sweet! I came home from a trip to Goodwill this afternoon… parcels in hand and he says, “Hey, let’s go out for happy hour.”  The upside of having a kid at college is dawning on me.

You really don’t have to ask me twice…


I still haven’t figured out how to take a selfie with this iPad. Where the heck is the camera lens?  Why is this so hard? Why is my eye listing? Look at the blouse, look at the blouse. 

Any reason to get dressed up, am I right? Or at least wear something pretty. Rumor has it we’re supposed to hit a balmy  80 on Wednesday and I had run to Goodwill in hopes of finding some shorts.

So, of course I came home with a silk blouse. (Hey, you would too. It’s brand new and $7. You really can’t look at the shorts rack and not  peruse the rest of the store. ) I also scored a bag of vintage and 2 pairs of shorts = a pretty decent Goodwill run.

But his invitation completely validated my splurge purchase.  It’s like the universe said, “Here, buy this… trust me, you’re going to need it soon.”


I popped off the tags on my new blouse and hit the lip gloss hard. Ready.

This is the upside of sitting in a dark dreamy bar. The lighting works in your favor. That’s totally my “romance tip” for the week. Probably not the best photography tip, though.

This is such a non-post. There really aren’t any other photos. I didn’t want to spend our date staring at a screen when this adorable guy was across the table from me.  But if you get a chance to come to Astoria, we highly recommend T. Paul’s Supper Club. Their bar is so cozy and romantic. The staff is amazing. And you can’t go wrong with anything off of their menu!

The Goodwill, on the other hand,  is top secret.

Goodwill is My Anthropologie


The dress code was “business casual” so of course I interpreted that to mean, artsy casual…

IZ, my husband who already works ridiculous hours, was invited to be on the board of a local charity. They’re looking for good people. He’s good people. And he has mad skills they can really use, so he said yes.

In theory I championed this idea (he comes home from board meetings with wine and donuts, what’s not to love) but it did bring up a few worries. Mostly around his work hours. He’s so busy. Really folks, the man goes constantly. And with our work at church and the 4th Sunday ministry, he really doesn’t have a free moment.

But then there is that perennial worry (because I’m vain, dontcha know) — what am I going to wear? Oh yeah, did I fail to mention that this charity puts on a HUGE musical festival in the area and there are events to attend?


Oh my goodness… I love writing that.

IZ sees these events as a chance to go on romantic dates. He’s right: but it’s not without a wee bit of angst. In my case, I’ve been super lazy about buying new shoes. Living here on the edge, it’s always about shoes that can live up to the wind and the rain. Sure, it’s nice if they’re cute shoes, but really–you want shoes that will keep you protected in the weather. I have a great pair of boots that meet this description. And, they’re even cute boots; but I’ve been wearing them with jeans and sweaters. That’s hardly the attire you wear to a private concert of Schubert Lieder.

And you guessed it, I don’t have dress shoes that work with clothes you would wear to such an event.

Like I said, I’ve been lazy. Additionally, this is major role reversal stuff. Since he’s worked from home, I haven’t had to be his “wife” in public for ages. He’s spent years supporting me in all my ministry related fiascos, er, events. . . but it’s been ages since I’ve played the supportive wife role. Frankly, I’m out of practice!

So, my little dilemma begged the question: do I buy something that works with the boots? Or do I try to find a pair of shoes that will work with something in my closet? I don’t know, but the answer is always Goodwill.

I’ll cut to the chase, as this is really a post about nothing: other than I’m gloating. Hello $5 dress at Goodwill to the rescue. That looked great with my boots. (and, of course I layered a Mireio slip beneath it and tied it all together with colored tights! I’m loving THAT trend!) Girl has suitably artsy casual attire to attend an afternoon of opera and champagne.

That no bank was broken to clad my artsy self, well that’s just bonus material.

So, we went on our date on Saturday. It was lovely, lovely, lovely. For a few hours, I sat next to this man I adore, who works too hard, and we soaked in the beauty that is Schubert together.

In a week where we focus on all the things we’re thankful for: I’m thankful for Goodwill. I know, that’s crazy talk. But sometimes, Goodwill really is my Anthropologie.

A Little Romance

Found this on Pinterest and then spent an hour looking for the original source. I can’t locate it. . . but if you know, please tell me!

A Little Romance:

I love Valentine’s Day. Always have, always will. Even when I was a love sick teenager pining for a boy who didn’t know I was alive, the day was a good day.

I’m blessed to be married to a Romantic. Yes, with a capital letter. IZ is a fan of the grand gesture (hello, favorite painting for my birthday). He covers holidays and birthdays and “events” with a lot of style. It doesn’t hurt that he’s an amazing chef. . . we eat well, and food is love in these parts. (It’s a Larsen thing, no lectures) I’m blessed and spoiled and thankful.

Then there’s the rest of the year. IZ would like you and me to believe that he has that covered too. That he is a master of the “little thing”. Those small tokens we tend to over-look because they become so much a part of our everyday life. In fact, he’d tell you everything he does is romantic by definition.

This is where we quibble. Our on going conversation looks like this:

IZ: “See, this is me being romantic. I brought in all the groceries from the car.”

Me: “Um. Thoughtful. YES. Romantic? I’m not sold, buddy. I mean, by that account, my doing laundry is romantic.”

IZ: “It is romantic. Being thoughtful is romantic.”

Me: “Well, it sure doesn’t feel romantic.”

He does this with every chore you can imagine. And often and our conversation is the same.  I can’t help but think he’s pushing the definition. . . just a bit. But then I remember all those heady days of early marriage and wonder? Everything was romantic then. . .doing dishes and laundry and grocery shopping. Maybe it’s a time thing. Because what was once romantic in the early years, is, well, now a big old chore. An age thing? Holy Cow, an “I’m getting OLD” thing.

I can’t win here. So, is IZ right? Is it romantic because he says it is? Or is romance in the eye of the beholder? Because there are sure a lot of you who poo-poo Valentine’s Day and no amount of cheering on from my side of the field will change your mind. Valentine’s Day isn’t romantic to you.

And maybe that’s the catch and the solution. Maybe it’s about perspective. Maybe it’s about choice.

Those groceries unloaded from the car. Romantic.

Those mochas every day when I wake up? Romantic.

Door held, hands held, long talks, long walks, time spent together smiling and arguing. Romantic.

Laundry? Um, I can’t get there. But the rest of it, I’m willing to open my eyes and see the heart giving it all to me. And that, my friends, might be how you keep the romance alive.

Here’s an interesting article from USA Today on people who are “Intensely in love” after years of marriage. Worth a read, I think. . .

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  • Introvert and word lover and Christ seeker
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