love is… the little things


In 6th grade, I loved walking the long block up the hill from my grandparents’ house to that shining beacon –K-Mart! – to spend my babysitting money. I always made sure to have at least a quarter left over to spend in the toy vending machines.

My favorite was the “Love Is” machine, filled with mini posters of the comic that was especially popular in the 80’s. I lined my dresser mirror with their smiling faces and dreamed of having a love like that of my own someday. I was sure that life would be flowers, and chocolates, and long walks in the moonlight. *Insert happy sigh*

Fast forward 30 years or so.

I AM happily married, but as we all find out, life is rarely filled with those moments we grew up reading about or watching in movies. While there WAS a short time that Tom routinely sent me dead flowers, most of our life together has been more of the day-to-day slog with kids, careers, blah, blah, blah.

In other words, REAL LIFE. And honestly, I’d rather have a plate of nachos than chocolates, and if we were to take a walk under the stars either his knee would give out or I’d manage to roll my ankle. Let’s just say that sometimes those romantic dreams seem very far away.

It took many years of marriage for me to realize that Tom IS a romantic – just in his own way. Instead of chocolates I get oil changes, tire rotations, or a quick neck massage, even though his hard-working mechanic hands ache after a long day fighting cars.

This morning, though, he grandly swept me off my feet all over again.

Yesterday, our coffeemaker was plugging up, so I ran vinegar through to de-scale the junk and let it soak overnight. This morning I woke up early so I could run water through to clean out the vinegar and still have time to make my much-needed coffee. I am ridiculously addicted to the Haitian coffee I discovered on my trip last summer, and it’s the only kind I’ve ever found that doesn’t make me sick. Anyway, the stupid machine wasn’t working. No matter what I tried, nothing would come out. ARGGHH!

Finally I gave up and went to get ready for work. We had some generic tea-bag like “coffee singles,” so Tom made one of those for himself while I stomped around the bathroom, muttering under my breath.

“I can make you some coffee,” he offered.

“I’m fine,” I snarled. “Yours will just make me sick. I’ll just suffer.”

Stomp. Stomp. Slam!

In the midst of my stomping and slamming, I managed to knock the curling iron off the counter onto the top of my bare foot. Swearing like a sailor, I wrestled it back into place, but not before inflicting a good size blistering burn.


In the meantime, Tom high-tailed it out of the room – the chicken!

When I finally emerged, he stood there with a travel mug full of MY coffee, ready to go. He had opened and emptied one of his coffee bags, filled it with mine, wrapped the string around like a noose and nuked it, all just for me! There were LOTS of floating grounds, but it was just what I needed to get my day back on track. Well, until I spilled half of it down my front while climbing into the truck, but that’s another story.

Love is definitely my guy and a cup of chunky coffee… 🙂

20 thoughts on “love is… the little things

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  1. My husband brought me a cup of coffee in bed this morning. Okay, I had to immediately get up and iron him a shirt — but it was still thoughtful. You are right. We need to appreciate the uniqueness of our partners and how they express love.

  2. That is probably the sweetest and nicest love story I have read in a really long time. You are right about everything. And that “I’d rather have a plate of nachos than chocolates”, really is real love. You are really lucky wife but yet probably you deserve it for being a good content person. Loved that post. 🙂

  3. Agreed. I love the day-to-day things too. Like the fact that my husband can fix everything that breaks in my house, or that he fills up my gas tank whenever he drives my car so that I don’t have to worry about it. That’s romance.

  4. Awwww….this gives me hope that there really are still good men out there. Married happily to someone else, of course, but still good. And oil changes are SO much better than chocolates!

  5. I’m always telling my husband to let me make the coffee. But on days when he makes it, and on the days he takes the time to prepare breakfast, it tastes so much better and all is forgiven.

  6. That actually made me tear up at the end, probably because I live with a similar kind of Macgyver romantic. Also, the curling iron part made me laugh.

  7. That is a really sweet story. It’s a good reminder to look out for the different ways people telegraph their love for each other…it’s not always obvious, but still it’s there.

  8. So sweet! There is a book called the Five Love Languages, and it’s really great in terms of helping see how people give and receive love, because often they are different, so people get confused and think they aren’t being loved, when really they aren’t being loved the way THEY love, if that makes sense. Love the details here!

  9. I’m having a really difficult time reading this as I’m very much in agreement with all that you’ve said. My boyfriend and I have had this and have been so enamored by each other. For some reason he’s started feeling that the “passionately in love” feeling wasn’t there and left. We had all of the elements, all the little things, all the sweet moments, every day.

    Co-Record shopping
    Tag-team cooking
    Finishing each others’ sentences
    Being excited to give your ‘best friend’ a hug ‘hello’
    Doing something without hesitation for each other
    Thinking your snoring is endearing (it is and I miss it. nights are so quiet I can barely stand it)
    Liking all the same music, the same day-to-day mundane chores, but still appreciating the things you don’t agree upon
    Feeling like everything’s going to okay
    Making people feel sick to their stomachs with the smotherings of public affection
    Missing each other
    Couch snuggling
    Holding hands
    Not wanting to use the special spoon gift because I want it near me at all times
    Stroking your hair to help you fall back asleep
    Knowing that no matter how far apart, you’re never alone
    Not having to do anything, or go out, but just knowing the person is there
    Waking up sad after a break-up dream
    Warming a cup before coffee
    Receiving a cup of coffee in bed
    Sharing a funny moment that ends up becoming an ‘inside joke’
    Surprise neck kisses at the kitchen sink
    Catching a smile after finding each other in the grocery store
    Getting that first ‘good morning’ text and last ‘goodnight’ text every day
    Going on many adventures together including acquiring 3 aquatic frogs, 3 goats, and 1 alpaca
    Supporting each other in everything that our hearts desire
    A comfort that is like no other.

    Heart aching. Trying to point out that it was all there, right before his nose, but I don’t know that I will succeed. Wish me luck.

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