Tag Archives: romance

Finding Love as an Old Married Couple, or the Difference Between Paris and Madrid

A vacation without kids, sounds perfect, no? Well, about five years ago I took a trip to Paris with my husband and it was. Romance, sex, monuments, and did I mention the sex? Fast forward five years to the beautiful city of Madrid and it’s a very different picture.

Paris: Long romantic walks along the Canal St. Martin, collecting Buckeyes and kissing languorously at every bridge.
Madrid: Holding hands as we stroll around the Plaza Mayor. Oh, hey, we should probably kiss.

Paris: Aw! Look at the babies! I really miss our kids. We need to bring them next time.
Madrid: Aw! Look at all of the puppies! I miss our dogs. Do you think anyone has a dog we can rent?

Paris: Three hour dinners, accompanied by at least two bottles of Bordeaux, while we make friends with the couple next to us and we all drink and chat until the restaurant closes.
Madrid: The Spanish eat at what time?! Oh, hell no. Let’s get some bread and cheese at the corner market and have a bed picnic in our room. Done.

Paris: Selfies at the Eiffel Tower, on the top of the Arc De Triomphe, next to some hobos.
Madrid: Hubs chases me with a camera, I take photos with my cell phone of every monument. Token selfie in front of a statue (maybe Christopher Columbus?!).

Paris: Ten minute commentary on the virtues of Caillebotte and how his paintings reflect the transformation of Paris from Medieval city to modern marvel.
Madrid: Let’s play guess the name of this famous painting in the Prado. I’ll go with, “Woman with a candle.”

Somehow, even though the conversations and French kisses are not as deep, they are just as romantic. Maybe it’s a reflection of the maturity of our relationship, or, more realistically, we’re too old to impress each other anymore. Either way, there is still l’amour. And sex.

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Love, Disney Princess Style

When I got married almost 10 years ago, I thought it would be a Disney princess, happily ever after story. I mean, we were young, stupid, and madly in love. Why wouldn’t it be picture perfect?

I’ll wait for the laughter to die down.

The pee-soaked diaper of reality slapped me in the face 10 months later when my first child was born, and every high and low since then has flown in the face of storybook perfection. But, it wasn’t a nightmare; it was actually pretty good.

Sadly, over the past few months, my marriage has struggled against villainous tests and there were moments when I thought I’d have to go through the horrors of dating again. I mean, divorce is easy compared to entering the dating pool again. Even in the shallow end, I would be devoured by douchebag-shaped piranhas.

I have leapt free of the piranhas, and learned a few choice lessons about what makes a good relationship.

Books are the way to a woman’s heart. I fell in love with the Beast when he took Belle into his library. There is nothing that makes a woman’s panties drop like a thoughtful gift. For me, yes, it would be a magnificent library, or even a few books. When it comes to literary gifts, it doesn’t take much to get me off.

Love, Disney Princess Style | Ponies and Martinis

When you feel sexy, you are sexy. Cinderella had some hot glass slippers that took her outfit to the next level. Once she put those things on, she felt amazing, looked amazing, and got the man of her dreams. Or, at least the guy that could pull her out of that rat trap of a home she shared with her stepmother. So, find your slipper. A sexy skirt, some hot red lipstick, whatever it is that gets your mojo running and work it harder than a pimp turning out his most profitable trick.

Sometimes you need a little extra help. Did Snow White singlehandedly clean the dwarves’ cottage? No. She had some chipper little woodland creatures to help her. They used their tails and wings, and worked that shit out. The cottage was shiny and Snow White looked like a hero. My chipmunks were the maid service my mother paid for after my son was born. My home was clean and I got to nap with my kid. Lemon-scented cherubs filled my dreams and carried me away on clouds of sanitary sweetness. Oh. Hell. Yes.

Not speaking the same language is OK. John Smith and Pocahontas learned to speak with all of the colors of the wind, but even if you don’t have a talking willow tree as your own Tower of Babel, it’s all good. Once upon a time, I traveled abroad to visit a friend who lived in France. While she was in class, I was left to my own devices. I must have looked like a lost sheep because this ever-so-helpful Frenchman took me under his wing and showed me around Lyon. My French and his English were equally as awful, but he was hot and I was young so it was all completely magical. Le Mew, Le Sigh.

Take a catnap to work out your issues. Sleeping Beauty had a lot on her mind. The women who raised her were not her parents, she found out she was a princess after living out in the woods for 16 years, and there was a curse hanging over her head. Can you blame her for taking a powder? I would have too. Also, I never bought into that whole “don’t go to bed angry” business. Sometimes, you are angry and tried, and you’d rather sleep than face that cocksucker you married. Mostly, because he’s being an ass,  but you also know that sweet somnolence is restorative, and in the morning, your sweetie will seem more like the sexy beast you married. At least if he knows what’s good for him.

Ah, love. Spectacularly twisted. I am slowly finding my way back to the land of sparkly, twinkly, unicorns prancing through rose-scented aphrodisiacs. To get there, I shall strap on my favorite heels, brush up on some French, and prepare for some amazing sex atop a pile of books.

L’amour.

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A Conversation With My Collegiate Self

When I graduated from high school, I flew straight from the parental nest to college. I expected to learn all I could about archaeology, meet a hunky guy who would sweep me off my feet, and above all, have fun.

If I could reach back through time, I would have a long conversation with myself, starting with the basics, like learning how to balance a checkbook or dressing for Ohio winters. Then, I’d move on to heartier words of advice.

Just because you know his name, doesn’t mean you know him. You know that cute guy who smolders in your Romantic Literature class? He’s only talking to you about “The Law of Love” because he wants to get in your pants. It’s not because he finds the combination of Puccini and dramatic fiction to be compelling. So for the love of all things sacred and holy, know this and BE SMART.

Really? You decided to go on a date with Mr. Sensitive? You know he’s a douchebag, right? Christ on a pony.

Please use a condom. And birth control. You don’t know where that boy has dipped his tender wick, and you do not need to pick up whatever cooties he has. If you ignore this advice, and then feel like you have pop rocks in your panties, GO TO A DOCTOR. Get that shit cleared up.

Note to my younger self: This advice is the same if you are sleeping with a woman. Pubic pestilence does not discriminate based on gender.    

There were times, when I might have tried to drink my feelings when I was in college. Younger me, let me give you a few more words of wisdom. I know the pain that’s coming, and it’s not from the boy.

Do not drink from the trough of alcohol. The hairy buffalo may seem delicious, but you don’t know what is in there. It may be alcohol, but there could be roofies, or even worse, germs. Do you know how many people have put their cups into that booze? What if they have herpes? Or they are slobbery drinkers? For all you know there could be syphilis floating in there. Open your own drinks. You’ll save money on antibiotics.

Now that you’ve ignored my advice and drank more than you can handle…

Fresca and Chinese food will cure any hangover. The carbonation will settle your stomach and the grease from the Chinese food lubricates the system to carry all that alcohol out of you. You may end up pooping out your insides, but that’s a lot better than nursing a hangover. With a hangover, your head is stuffed with cotton, your eyes can barely open, you feel nauseous, tired, and your head spins when you close your eyes. So, which scenario sounds better to you? Right. Poop. There’s my smart college girl.

Now that you’ve worked that man out of your system, there’s something that can cure what ails you.

Get more than three hours of sleep. It may horrify you to hear, but you can leave a party early to catch a few well-needed winks. There will be another party the next day, and the day after that. I promise. There’s even a whole week of nonstop partying called Spring Break. Maybe you’ve heard of it. Who knows? You may even find that studying is more important than a fraternity party.

I laughed along with my younger self on that one.

You know what’s most important? Your girlfriends. These are the women who will hold your hair when you vomit, hug you when you’re heartbroken, and will be there for you long after you all have been given your diplomas. These women will be your backbone.

Stock up on aspirin, ramen, and condoms. That’s the holy trinity for college.

Major in something you love, but have a backup plan. Yes, spending four years with Degas or Jane Austen is mentally fulfilling, but it won’t bring you a paycheck when you graduate. Minor in something substantial, like basket weaving, so you can have a trade when that whole reading-books-for-a-living thing doesn’t pan out.

Finally, be secure in the knowledge that you’ll met a really hot guy, settle down, and pop out some exhausting, but wonderful, kids. It’s a wild ride, but well worth it.

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Date Night is Not My Bag

Last night, my husband and I had a night out on the town without kids and I had an epiphany; I am not a fan of date night.

Hold back your horror. I’ll explain. I absolutely love spending time with my husband. He’s smart, funny, and wicked sexy. It’s all of the other trappings of date night that I don’t enjoy.

First, there’s getting ready. I gave myself a pedicure, because my hooves were looking rough and I didn’t want to expose them to the world without at least sandblasting the callouses.

Then, I spent a good 10 minutes debating the merits of showering and shaving my legs. I had taken a power yoga class that afternoon and I think I last shaved about…. well, see that’s my dilemma. I have no clue when I shaved last. I also spent additional time sniffing my shirt to see if I could get away with wearing it for a few more hours.

Date night with a cat

This is the kind of date night I can get behind.

In the end, I didn’t shower or shave, but I did change shirts, apply a fresh layer of makeup and engulfed myself in a cloud of perfume. I looked pretty good, if I do say so myself. And I am almost 100 percent certain I didn’t stink. Okay, maybe 95 percent.

I had secret hopes that my husband would travel from work on one side of the town and then drive me, but, alas, I was forced to drive my own carriage.

You know, my husband is usually pretty chivalrous, but in this instance he failed me. I wanted to gaze upon him adoringly without children asking me for water or goldfish. I also wanted to enjoy a martini or two, and you can’t exactly do that when you are driving.

We ended up at a comedy club and had a blast. The comedian was inappropriate and awesome. And there were mozzarella cheese sticks. The sticks were my favorite part.

And it was all downhill from there.

Afterward, my husband wanted to go out and get crazy. I wanted to go home and pop some corn and watch Orange is the New Black. You can see how this might have caused some conflict.

After a long day of work and kids, I feel like I have been beaten like a circus monkey. Getting me to a comedy club is probably the most you can get out of me. If I could wear my jammies to the club, I might think about extending the night, but since I can’t, well, my couch wins out every time.

My poor husband. All he wants is to feel like a man instead of a kid-toting donkey.

I tried to rally and he offered to drive to the casino on the other end of town. And what did I do? I fell asleep. At 10:30. I suck at dates.

There has to be something in between couch surfing and partying until 2 AM. I don’t know what that is, but until I figure it out, I’ll be in my jammies trying to figure out how to make things up to my husband.

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