Monday, February 16, 2009

A many splendored thing

Dustin and I had a wonderful Valentine’s weekend (I’s only a day, but I like to expand celebrations as long as possible. Hence my birthday week each year.) We did a lot of nothing, including sleeping in, lots of eating (we made Winter White Burgers and Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies shaped like butts....I mean hearts...sorta.) and movie watching (saw Enchanted, and the equally riviting Step Up 2: The Streets). It was nice to not go anywhere for a change, and just hang out.

The main event of the weekend was going down to the Strip District an area of town that has authentic ethnic markets, a new organic grocery and all kinds of food stands (and plenty of black and gold t-shirt huts, but we digress). Our goal was to hit up Pennsylvania Macaroni Co., the biggest Italian deli in Pittsburgh (technically I made that up, but it’s probably true!). We wanted avoid going out to a fancy dinner, and instead go on a “food adventure” creating our very own smorgasbord of meats, cheeses, and snacks. We really had no idea what we were doing (when they finally called #78 at the deli counter, we were no better prepared than when we walked in). We just trusted the nice cheese lady to take care of us (she called us both “Dearheart” how could you doubt that?).

This is what we ended up with:

That's what $70 worth of meat, cheese, fruit and bread looks like, in case you ever need to know.

Mmmmm. Moldy milk.

Our choices ended up pretty good....we could have done a bit better with the variety and portion control though- Dustin quoted Anchorman about a million times (“It’s quite pungent”) and we have enough cheese to eat for about a week. But overall, it was a fun experience with delicious results.

The second part of the weekend though, was a surprise success. For our marriage small group our current homework was to list all the ways we have hurt our spouse, and vice versa. We were then supposed to pray for forgiveness and then come together to share our lists. The lesson was supposed to teach us how to share and forgive, with the ultimate goal of eliminating all of our pent up hurts so we can start over with a clean slate. Now, at first this process might sound a little like the the “Airing of the Grievances” portion of the Festivus celebration. (To loosely quote George Constanza: "And at the Festivus dinner, you gather your family around, and tell them all the ways they have disappointed you over the past year! I got a lot of problems with you people! And now, you're gonna hear about it." ) But I assure you it’s not. Well, it is I guess, but with a prayerful heart and a forgiving attitude. We had been putting it off for a while because we were hesitant to launch into such a heavy topic, but while I was still on some sort of a Vday Cheese High I suggested we just go for it. (Dustin said he had a more romantic evening in mind, but caved to my desires. Surprised?) It ended up being my favorite part of the weekend. Parts of it were difficult, but mostly it was really freeing, and brought us much closer together. I learned a lot about what he needs from me, and it felt good to have him acknowledge my feelings so sincerely. It was probably not a typical valentine’s day date, but one that I am very thankful to have shared. (For those of you wondering, we did not in fact, follow up that portion with another Festivus tradition: “Feats of Strength”.)

Oh, and if all that wasn’t enough, Dustin got me an amazing gift:

Last season’s J.Crew Bubble Necklace in Sweet Papaya

I had been dreaming of it long after it sold out on the website, and he painstakingly searched it out online. (Or, maybe I sent him 5 links to it on ebay and he took my not-too-subtle hint. Tomato, tomahto.)

Hope all of you had equally delightful holiday!

The butt cookies also wish you a Happy Belated Vday!


  1. ohh man... as scrolled down and I saw your present (before the caption), I thought no way, he got her last season's bubble papaya necklace from jcrew? i have a picture of that hanging in my closet...whatta keepa court.

  2. and just fyi, that was susan, not Mck girls