Tag Archives: Cooking

#34: “I’m surprised you haven’t somehow contaminated me with this food and sent me to an untimely death.”

18 Nov

Credit: Food Network

Ok, that’s not really what my husband said, but I imagine that’s what he was thinking as he said, “Wow, honey, dinner is great tonight.”

You all know I’m not the best cook, and for the most part don’t even really like to cook (since it involved making a mess, then cleaning said mess.)

On Tuesday, I stayed home with the kiddo because our daycare was closed. I can barely cook dinner when I concentrate, so imagine my horror when I realized I’d have to take a crack at it with my 11 month old half walking, half crawling around everywhere. I’m not a big fan of just sticking him in the playyard or the exersaucer; I feel bad, plus he just screams at the top of his lungs anyway.

But since I was home with him, there was no excuse for me not to have dinner on the table when my husband got home.

I ended up trying out some honey mustard chicken. I didn’t even think to marinade it ahead of time; I just threw together some Dijon mustard and honey in a bowl, and swirled the thawed chicken breast around in there for a few minutes. I threw them in a pan stovetop and cooked ’em on up. I think what helped was throwing a little more honey on them RIGHT at the end.

Served with baked brussels sprouts (ends cut, cut in half, in olive oil with a tad of mustard) that I baked in the oven at 400 degrees for, oh, I don’t know, forever, it seemed like!

But, seriously, he LIKED my dinner! I’m getting pretty decent at this whole ‘wife’ thing!


Some other things:

 

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Situation #6: Weekend update.

11 Oct

DC Bomb Scare. 5mph on the highway. A cranky husband. Those are just a few of the things that have occurred over the past three days.

As most of you know, my husband went away to a conference last week, and I wasn’t sure how I’d handle it. As I mentioned in my last post, I thought I did pretty darn good!

I couldn’t WAIT to see him. He’s been a ball of mush lately, and I’ve been riding the wave of the whole ‘in-love’ part of marriage for the last few weeks.

Trying to leave work:

Friday afternoon, we texted all afternoon, and I was so excited for him to board his flight to head home. About an hour before leaving work, one of my colleagues noticed lots of police outside our office and that the road was closed. I’m not an alarmist, but here’s something I haven’t mentioned yet;

  • Fact #1 I live in Washington, DC. And if you guess that police action in DC is common, you’d be guessing right.
  • Fact #2 I work in an office that is VERY close to The White House (and yes, I know the picture I posted is not of the White House).

So of course my alarm bells were ringing. Then our front desk told us that it was a bomb scare. I left work and went to get the kiddo from daycare to head home.  All in all, it took me an hour and a half to leave work, get the kiddo, and get back home. That’s less than 20 miles, by the way.

Getting to the airport:

I fed the kiddo a quick dinner, packed up the baby bag with goodies in case we had to wait too long at the airport, and we took to the road. It’s 29 miles to the airport. Husband’s flight was scheduled to arrive at 8:49pm. I left the house at 7:15pm I figured that would give me time to park, find his gate, and be waiting at the appropriate area for him.

I was wrong. There was a major accident on the highway, and I was slowed to 5mph. For OVER five miles. Now, there were several exits I could have taken to get off the highway and take backgrounds, but wouldn’t you know, he was arriving at the only DC area airport I haven’t yet been to (we have three major airports here, one I can SEE right out my window. He was not arriving at that one.) So I couldn’t get off the highway; I had no idea where to go. I eventually made it, and arrived right as he was exiting the terminal. Right on time!! It was so exciting! He was with a colleague, so I didn’t get all mushy right away. As his colleague was walking away, he said to my husband, “See you on Monday!”

See you on Monday? SEE YOU ON MONDAY??? Monday is a holiday!! I have it off. He thought he had it off.

He texted his boss to confirm that Monday was a work day. It was. I had to bite my tongue. I hadn’t seen my husband in days, and thought we were going to have a nice long weekend together. It wasn’t his fault, though. No use taking it out on him.

The weekend

My awesome wonderful husband was a crank all weekend. He complained that there was a basket of laundry that wasn’t folded, that there were dishes in the sink… the list goes on. I felt totally deflated. I thought I did a good job! Between the kiddo being sick, me trying to work, trying to get everything done…ugh. I know I’m not the most tidy person you’ve ever met. I admit I’m not. And I know it frustrates my husband, because, well, he IS rather tidy.

I don’t like being untidy; I just FORGET to do stuff.

Saturday afternoon, I went over to Barnes and Noble and bought a weekly planner. In the back, in the notes section, I wrote out a checklist of all the stuff I should be doing on a daily basis (one page for morning, one page for afternoon). And then on the actual days, I’ve started writing other chores that need to be done; for example, today I need to sew a button on a pair of pants. Had I not written it on the calendar for today, it may not have gotten done until next weekend.

The Rest

Even so, the husband has still been a bit cranky all weekend long, and a little distant too. I was frustrated. I know I’m not neat, and I know it frustrates him, but was that reason for me to totally feel deflated? It’s a pretty crappy feeling.

So this morning I sent him an email:

Hey handsome. I love you, and the kiddo and I miss you today.I’m really not sure what happened this weekend.. (besides our great lovin’), I just felt like you were distant and somewhere else. I was so looking forward to seeing you after your trip, and I feel like it just did not go  anything like I thought I would. I thought things had been going great for weeks, I felt really good like we were in a good place, but this weekend was just a down weekend I guess. I felt you come across as negative and cranky all weekend, and it got me really uptight. I’m sorry about all the stuff around the house; I’ll keep trying to work on it. I’ve got a little list going today. I love you lots, and I really look forward to spending the weekend with you next weekend.

He sent two responses, which I’ve edited and put together to save space:

I’m sorry; I didn’t mean to come across that way. I’ve been stressed out about work. It isn’t happening fast enough and that just doesn’t bode well. Everything that I’ve put together has fallen apart and everything of value is taking too long to materialize. So, it’s been weighing on me for a few weeks now.I should have told you that this was stressing me out and not made you feel like it’s you, and I’m sorry if I’ve been taking it out on you.

I learned a few lessons, here:
  • I thought this was all about ME. The world doesn’t revolve around me.
  • I’m glad I had some self-restraint. Earlier, my husband had told me he appreciated me picking him up at the airport, and that his colleague’s wife wasn’t picking him up because it was too much of a hassle. When he started getting on my case about the laundry and the dishes later, it took every ounce of me to not say to him, “Well perhaps this is why your colleague’s wife doesn’t pick him up at the airport; she’s probably too busy at home tidying up to perfection so he doesn’t complain when he gets home.” I can guarantee, though, if I had said that, there’s no way he would have opened up to me and told me he was stressed at work with his new job. He would have been justified in making it about me.
  • It’s best to stay calm and not rush to judgment.
  • My husband is TRYING. He’s REALLY trying. He’s not exactly Mr. Openupandsharefeelings, especially when I bitch back at him, so this is major. He wants to work hard for our marriage, and it’s a conscious thing. He’s not just subconsciously or peripherally thinking about our marriage and our family.

 

Situation #3: What to do when you get home early from work and have a whole hour to yourself

5 Oct

I had at least a whole hour to myself. I thought about doing my nails, laying down on the bed and playing Build-a-Lot on my iPhone, taking a nap, doing some homework…the possibilities were endless!

Instead, I started cooking some dinner for the fam. This, as you know, is one of my husband’s ‘jobs,’ namely because he’s good at it and I’m not.

Seeing, though, as he was going to pick up the little guy at daycare and I knew he would have a long commute, I thought I ought to have dinner ready when he got home.

I cooked some whole wheat spaghetti with artichokes, tomato sauce, and linguica. It was pretty decent! My husband isn’t a HUGE fan of linguica (ok, he’s not a fan at all), but he had told me the other day to get it cooked up. I didn’t realize he would have preferred it on the side. It was still a success, and he gave me some good tips on making the pasta sauce next time.

Maybe if I do this often enough, I’ll actually get good at it….

Note: We did some major cuddling last night. I think he was appreciative that I gave cooking a shot!

#21 – Put on my big girl pants and deal with things

29 Sep

Those ‘things’ I need to deal with? Me. The apartment.

Me

After the crazy night which was last night, plus my recent bout of insomnia over the past week, and an exhausting work trip earlier this week, I kind of felt like I was losing my cool and, well, I wasn’t feeling exactly composed. Today, I used a sick day from work to get some sleep and recharge. I slept until 10am and it felt fantastic.

The apartment

Our house is one big ole’ mess. It’s not particularly DIRTY, but it’s cluttered. Too cluttered. This is essentially my doing; I keep too much stuff. Today? My mission is to literally go through our stuff and throw away the CRAP and get this place organized. It’s a little daunting, but heck, we’re in the city, we only have 1,000 square feet. I think I can do this!

So what does this do for my husband and/or our marriage?

  • A crazy sleep-deprived me is not very much fun to be around. I want to get my act together so I can be a bit, well, ‘nicer’ to my husband.
  • My crazy clutteredness drives my poor husband up the wall. To read more about it, check out my post on the Pile of Doom.
  • Me being home from work today means I can get dinner started before he gets home. Let’s hope that goes swimmingly. I’ve done it before, I can do it again.

Wish me luck. I have about 7 hours to get the job done before he gets home.

Project #18: Make him his favorite: cornbread muffins

15 Sep

Tonight we’re having company over and my husband’s cooking a pot roast. Yum! My best girlfriend is coming over with her husband, and she’s an amazing baker. We used to have weekly baking sessions together before life got too busy, so I’m excited to make ‘dessert’ with her for our husbands.

Cornbread Muffins.

Yup, cornbread for dessert. The hubby is really into cornbread, so when my friend asked if I wanted to bake, I told her I want to do cornbread muffins!

I hope he likes!

Update: See follow up post!

(Curious what my Marriage Project is all about?)

#13: Cook my husband dinner

7 Sep

I burned pasta once. Can you come back from that, or am I doomed?

I can bake fairly decently, but cooking? eek.

Tonight I’ll be home before my husband, and I’m going to cook dinner for us. My husband loves to cook. And he’s very good at it. But I think he’d appreciate a night off, so I’m going to whip something up.

I’m combing the internet now, but if anyone has any (easy) recipes to share, feel free! We have tons of chicken breast, so that might be a good starting point. And now that we have a second car, I can run to the grocery store quick after work to get what I need! Hooray!

Note: this won’t help our marriage if I ruin dinner, so make your suggestions simple!

Update: Read the follow-up to learn more about my evening as a chef in the kitchen!

(By the way, curious what my Marriage Project is all about?)

#9: Wash the dishes!

26 Aug

I’ll admit it up front. Doing the dishes makes me gag. Thinking about dirty old food and germy kitchen sponges is gross.  Most nights, my husband does the cooking, and he also does the dishes.

I know, I know! We should take turns; one person cooks, the other person does the dishes. I try to make up for it by making sure the baby is all fed, cleaned, in jammies and such by the time he is done the dishes.

And it’s not like it’s better this way because my husband is clueless about the baby. He’s not. He’s as much involved as I am taking care of the baby.

I need to do the dishes tonight, and more often in general. We’re having neighbors over tonight for some bacon wrapped filets, and my husband will be doing all the cooking. I’ve got to step up and do the dishes so he can enjoy some social time with the neighbors, too.

Hopefully I don’t gag too much. Maybe the secret is to dress up and wash dishes in heels like the lady in the picture.

Update #1: We just found out one of our guests is a vegetarian! I guess I need to leave work a little early and pick up something else!

Update #2: Dinner with the neighbors was amazing. We had a great time! My husband whipped up some appetizers and a great vegetarian dinner and all went well. Four bottles of wine later, and it was 11pm! Once the neighbors left, I told him I’d get started on the dishes. He said he’d rather me come to bed with him……..the rest you can guess.

(Curious how Project #8 worked out (updating my Facebook photo?)

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