Won't you, please? Consider this my little folded cardboard love-note dropped into the construction-paper-covered shoebox on your desk.
So, this year, Alex and I agreed on a very low spending limit, to try and take some of the commercialism out of this Greeting-Card-Company-imposed "holiday." That, and we're broke. In the past, we've made these agreements, say, for example, at Christmas, but as it turns out, sometimes we lie. So this year solemn promises were made, using stump-water and the toenails of a barn-owl under moonlight. We take that kind of thing seriously in these parts. That kind of thing, and Dwight Yoakam-inspired finger foods.
The way I approached the issue was to get creative in the kitchen, knowing that nothing pleases my man quite like Food That Would Like To Kill Him Dead. I fired up the mixer, and whomped up some shortbread, which, in case you didn't know, is just butter, sugar, and flour. Oh, and a little salt. You know, for the health benefits.
And since that probably wasn't enough to stop a grown man's heart, I thoughtfully melted some toffee bars with some heavy cream, to make shortbread topping. And once I'd done that, I couldn't very well NOT crumble up more toffee bars on top of all that, could I? Could I?
I cut it into bars, packaged it all up into a cute little red canister, and stuffed it clumsily into a shiny gift-bag with some heartsy tissue paper, and I was done. Very creative and thoughtful, I reckoned--I mean, I love him so much I made him something delicious, but I ALSO love him enough not to have made enough of it to kill him at one sitting. I'm good like that. (And if you'd like a pictorial on how to do the chocolate-toffee 2-layer topping for the shortbread, you can start here.)
As it turns out, I wasn't the only one who got creative. Alex came home and presented me with this haul:
Some of it is obvious--you can see the rose, the candle, and the card. The pile of stuff on the right is pretty good. It's a stack of mementos that we never got on our honeymoon, because at the time, we were so traumatized by this particular honeymoon destination that we pretty much just tried to block it all out. Thankfully, the second half of that trip was spent in Manhattan, which went a long way toward repressing the memories of the Poconos resort that we booked sight unseen. I'm guessing that all of their bookings are done sight unseen, because if you saw what we saw on that fateful vacation, you would run, and run FAST and FAR in the opposite direction. Alex wrote to them and requested these keepsakes, on the premise that we visited there on our honeymoon and it was "an unforgettable experience." Woefully, that is true, because it all came rushing back. It's been six years now, and I'm just starting to be able to laugh about it. I think I need to write more about The Honeymoon of Horror. Maybe tomorrow. Yes, if I can keep from having nightmares tonight, I'll tell you about it tomorrow.
I may also post the contents of that paperwork on the left, there, because that, my friends, is an original poem by my husband, done in a strikingly similar style to that of Dr. Suess. I guess all those readings of "The Lorax" this week have not been in vain. Yup, he gets bonus points for poetry--even bad poetry. Even--maybe even especially--poetry that contains rhymes using the words "taint" and "porn," while still managing to make me smile and say, "Awwwwww."
Yes, folks, my husband. A born romantic. I hope you all had as sweet a day as I did, and that you never have a trip that is anything like the first half of our honeymoon, and that if you DO, you're with someone you love, and can laugh about it later. Years later.