First 100 Days Came to an End

David and I completed the first 100 days of our marriage on Christmas Eve, December 24, 2018. Of those first 100 days, my last daily blog post was December 2.

Potato,

I remember you worked, and then came home because the office was empty. I was with Rocky. When you returned home, we loaded up the car again and made the drive to my family’s home in Connecticut to spend the holiday. We missed seeing Tom. He was en route to Maine for the holiday. The girls were in Europe, your mom in Arkansas. We skipped your dad’s because of Rocky.

We arrived before my parents, who were coming home from a Christmas party. I remember the next day: full of family, food and companions! Zack and Curtis came with Duke. Rocky played happily. Chloe rocked her senility. It was cold, but nice for walking. There was a dusting of old snow still on the ground. We talked entirely too much about pest control. It was nice to be fireside in the living room. We exchanged presents!

In the week leading up to Christmas, I started work as a children’s librarian in Rye, New York. That first week was a treat, and it was nice to commute from Greenwich where we house-sat your Chapel Lane childhood home.

I love my work. I will write about it as my next blog theme. There’s a lot grad school didn’t teach me that I’m learning now, a lot still to be learned, and a lot learned that has yet to be relevant.

The days leading up to Christmas were a blur. My internship with EveryLibrary ended, and my final day of grad school for my Master’s of Library Science (MLIS) was December 18.  I last wrote about food (Cream of Broccoli Soup). I like communicating through food. In the weeks before and after the holiday we shared a lot of takeout, leftovers and grocery story filler trip food items.

It was so nice to start the new year with a clean kitchen. I’m remembering us in breathing masks, going full swing with caulking guns, the new mop, bleach, insecticide, and dish towels.

Today we returned home from our new year retreat in the Catskills (my Christmas present to you). The king size bed upgrade, the sugar cookies, the late night french fries, Jackson, the walk around town, to Pennsylvania, and the storm hike with hail that looked like vanilla Dip and Dots ice cream. I remember gorging on the extravagant breakfasts, the naps, the sniffling. Then there were the luxurious shower supplies, the fireside rummy game, the conversations. I remember one that began with me saying marriage didn’t seem to feel so different, and you taking the other position but elaborating little.

You lit up when we were driving back across the George Washington bridge. Back to your city where success, wealth and victory hides in every corner.

Back to the world of League, where things are less shiny and you play games on end. I watch your gameplay chat like a concerned mom-type. “Hey, that’s like the meanest thing you can say.” And celebrating your team’s little victories. Another game cues to the sound of Newt Gingrich and Christopher Hitchens debating the nature of the “war on terrorism”.

So what’s next? Past the first 100 days? I love you, and I’m excited to see.

Yours Truly,
Samantha

“Cream” of Broccoli Soup (Vegan)

The day started with a shared bagel and leftover veggie smoothie. Computer time then fitness time, followed by veggie tacos. The rest is a pleasant blur.

For dinner? Soup!

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 leeks, the white parts, rinsed and chopped
  • 1 qt. vegetable broth
  • 2 heads of broccoli, rinsed and chopped
  • 1 tbs. Italian herbs (thyme, oregano, etc.)

Directions

  1. Cut up the leeks and saute them on medium heat in a large skillet or pot. Use a bit of water or veggie broth to keep them from sticking to the pan.  Cook ’em for 10 minutes. Add herbs and cook for 1 extra minute.
  2. Add the chopped broccoli, broth. Bring to boil then reduce to medium heat. Cover and cook for 10 minutes until broccoli is tender.
  3. Blend it.
  4. Add pepper and salt to taste.

Serve with toasted, buttered bread because that’s the best.


Tonight’s about catching up on the blog.

Bullet Points

Here’s what I remember of the day:

  • The John Brush stairway
  • Leftover linguine with homemade tomato sauce
  • Afternoon exhaustion
  • Great sex
  • Trying to do computer work
  • Call the Midwife
  • Dinner date at Harlem Public

We ate together outside and then inside when it started to drizzle. Fried avocado, $2 club soda, and meal covered by roommate gratitude (in the form of a gift card). I loved walking with you.

Sunshine

Dear David,

You were proud of me today for getting the jump on job prospects, and also for my homemade tomato sauce which was “better than yours” (thanks, Joy of Cooking). The best part of the day was relaxing into the weekend with you.

The morning started slow, the early afternoon was a downer, but the end of the was sunshine.

Thank you,

S

Love Letters

What if…

The first hundred days ended in love letters instead of data?

Dear Potato,

We woke up on the twin bed, warm in the cold front room. The night before ended in last minute arrangements and exhaustion, but most importantly – it ended in family time.

Our slow morning was so much like the night before. You decided to join me on my “trip to Coventry”, and I love those moments because it’s so much like getting to take home with me. You insisted on driving despite my feeble offers. Let the debate rage on

Thank you for encouraging my professional life forward, even if you had to stimulate my competitive side.

Being home with Mom and Mitch comforted me. I feel, with hopes stacked tidy, that you and I have so much to look forward to in the years ahead.

Thinking of late night cuddles,

S

Friendship

Today featured an opportunity to see Broadway Under the Stars with Ashley and her family, who were visiting. The event featured performances from the stars of Broadway’s Beautiful, Head Over Heels, The Band Visit, Ruben and Clay Christmas Show.

 

Sometimes I get surprised by the realization that I’m living in New York City and this kind of talent is always in my backyard.

It was also great to see Ashley. We book-swapped again and now I’m on to reading Anne of the Island. Reading through the whole Green Gables series has been such food for my soul. While walking to Columbus Circle I saw someone who looked just like Anne, and she was wearing a Nova Scotia sweatshirt!! Coincidence?!

Picked up some after-show croissants near Lincoln Center and headed home. Going out is fun… coming home to hubby is better.

Data Doom

Madisen calls to talk about the pitfalls of keeping a husbometer. And with a quick, effectively argued blow – the husbometer becomes a private off-blog project (that will probably die a quiet death at the 100 day mark). Mad says the world doesn’t need to know all that, David doesn’t need to see that, and a positive frame of mind is the most important thing. Not the data. She talked about men that would come into the bar and talk about their unhappy wives, wives qualitatively and quantitatively unhappy with something in the marriage. No one needs to publicly wonder whether honeymoon highs are coming, rather need to remember and cherish all the little honeymoon highs throughout the day, the week, the year – and foster those into existence.

My phone call with Mad started with a request for private conversation, and that situation caused a tension that’s difficult to explain and very relevant to the events of the day.

Perhaps I’ve been lazy with my stream-of-conscious, daily-reporting tone for the blog. Perhaps I should experiment with different styles of writing.

In closing, some (non-data) highlights from the day:

  • Having a slow departure, big breakfast kind of morning
  • Watching Anne of Green Gables DVD (surprise side 2!) from the library on my laptop during the train ride
  • Thinking back on last night’s dinner with David and Omo
  • Having a really productive day at work (…using Adobe Premiere again to video edit!)
  • Free pumpkin pie with whipped cream! First pumpkin pie of the year
  • Having a phone call with a lost friend
  • Being given a seat on the subway
  • Coming home to David
  • Peaceful yoga and shower

Guest Post

Title: first 60 days have been great

Sam is reasonable, fun, sexy and hard working. The first 60 of marriage have been just like these traits.

Most of our time is spent working, which is normal and good. I’m still super impressed that she’s going to school full time and working. We’ve had measured discussions where she’s been reasonable. And we’ve gone dancing – which is sexy – and we’ve also gone on vacation, which was fun.

I joke with my friends that the first two months of marriage are easy. Sam’s been great.

Broken Stairs and Budgets

How do I break up my day, you ask?

Stairs, my friends. Stairs.

IMG_7897
Alas, unlike TRADITIONAL STAIRS, these machines break. For today’s workout, I moved to the rowing machine.

I’ve been on a stairs kick. I like to see how long I can last before total exhaustion, and I like to read while I step (–got that Anne of Green Gables addiction–).  Then I chase it with an upper body session on the assisted pull-up / dip machine.

David and I are having a great debate about Planet Fitness, and fitness more generally. You see, the PF gym is right across the street from us. I would like David to join PF. David would not like to join because he says the chain is prejudiced. A New York Times article from 2006 summarized the issue:

Planet Fitness bills itself as “The Judgment Free Zone.” But in the weeks since Mr. Argibay was booted, a number of members have accused the gym of judging with extreme prejudice, saying the club humiliates members whose physiques are too chiseled and who take their workouts too seriously. And the incident has raised other imponderable questions.

Where do you stand on gym grunting?

Personally, I am happy to keep my grunts at a minimum for a rate of $10/month, $0.05 down, no commitment. (And a $42/annual fee, but that’s in the fine print and who reads the fine print?)

The New York City winter is beginning and that’s my best angle in the will-David-become-a-PF-member debacle.

To David’s credit, he completes a good number of apartment workouts. He keeps a black Patagonia backpack stuffed with cushions and a 45lb kettle bell. He does a variety of exercises with that (squats, presses, etc).

I tell David in a message that:

Signing you up for Planet Fitness is really about me. I am more motivated to have a kickass workout when you’re there.

And that’s true. Besides, you get over the awful purple and yellow branding after a little while. And the place makes for good people watching.

David says I don’t listen to him when we workout together. I explain that it’s because I always saw him in the friend-partner role, not the trainer role.

Ah, relationship fun. But you know what they say: couples who sweat together, stay together.


On a separate note and not entirely unrelated to buying David a gym membership, I want to:

A) Check-in on my finances and budgeting
and,
B) Get better at giving people gifts

Doing A always helps me feel better about doing B, especially when costs money. Any tips for becoming a better gift-giver?

(We are fast-approaching the season of giving.)



Alert! David is writing a guest post tomorrow! Look for it. Who knows? Maybe there will even be some wife-o-meter data…

Please No Photos

Waking up with Allison was a great way to start the day. I could hear her teaching Joshua English as a Second Language (ESL) from the room over.

We shared her homemade kombucha. She also made hard boiled eggs and supplied the materials for my breakfast staple: peanut butter toast.

After chatting with Allison for a while, I departed for Rochester Central Library where I interviewed the director of the Henrietta Library. I went to the conference immediately after and volunteered for the registration booth from 1-5pm.

Now I’m computing at the home of local friends… (Lane is a great human and I like his family). I’m looking forward to sleep.

EveryLibrary Executive Director posted our election recap.

I chatted on and off with David today and that was one of the things I shared with him. He commented on its being a “wall of text”.

I miss my ad guy. I mused with him about the benefits of conference attendance v. staying home and getting work done.

How far have my blog posts strayed from their intended theme?