A Canadian gal living in Britain with 3 men and a dog. Wine helps.

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Friday, February 14, 2014

Love Hearts say it Best

Every year, for as long as I can remember my mother has been sending me a Valentine's Day card.  In recent years this has extended to both Andy and myself which I think is so sweet. Mom has always taught us that Valentine's, although traditionally a day for lovers is not only about lovers.  It's about love.  All the various types of love.  It may just be because of this that I was never the girl who whined about being on my own at Valentine's;  I always felt treasured and loved and not just on Valentine's; Besides it is after all just one day,  which is great if you have someone to make a fuss over it but certainly not the end of the world if you are without a lover.   It's only one day. 

The fact that I've married a man who tends to be more saccharine than me on Valentine's is ironic, especially since it's not been as popular in the UK until more recently.  Either way Andy seems to enjoy Valentines and enjoys expressing his love for me on this day in various different ways.  For our first Valentine's we weren't together as we lived in different countries yet he had  flowers and a beautiful gift sent to me.  A few years ago he arranged a scavenger hunt that ended up with me arriving at Greek restaurant to find him waiting for me all suited up and bearing a gorgeous bracelet. He wasn't even supposed to be in town that night.  

As much as I love these romantic gestures I'm always telling him that he doesn't need to do all that; it's money that we don't need to spend. However at the same time I appreciate that he works hard and that he loves being in love, especially with me.  And I love it really.  Roll your eyes over the sappiness of it all if you will but hey, it is Valentine's Day and I do have a lover, so what did you expect?

Today I  received a gorgeous bouquet of long stemmed red roses.  The delivered kind.  The kind that I always tell him not to buy me on Valentines because the mark up is ridiculous But then I think of one of my best friends whose birthday is today and how her boyfriend always used to send her birthday flowers the day after Valentine's because of the price and I realise that it's actually quite lovely to receive flowers at the office on Valentines and know that he's thinking of me.

So no, I don't like to 'buy' into the materialistic aspect of days like today; however my husband needn't worry that I've lost all interest in celebrating it because when he makes it home this evening I can assure you he will be appreciative of what I have planned.  Here's a hint: the blinds will be shut, the doors will be locked and the house has been declared 'no go zone' for the kids (a warning text that I'm sure the kids puked a little over). The wine is chilling and I will spare you the details of what else is on the menu.

Either way, I do know how to celebrate Valentine's and I'm grateful to have a man that I adore and who still turns me on after nearly 10 years of marriage.   

I hope you all have a loved up day no matter what type of love that may be; failing that, there is always chocolate. And wine.  

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Tuesdays with Tasha

For those of you who know me personally, you will know that historically my relationship with Andy's eldest child and only daughter Natasha has not always been the easiest.  If you've been dropping in occasionally to read my posts, especially in the years pre-2010 you might have been able to surmise this for yourself if only because prior to that year I didn't often make reference to her.  I might have made a passing comment in the very early years when she would pop in and out of lives but for the most part I thought it was better to refrain from mentioning Tasha because as I've said, it was a tumultuous time. I use this forum to chronicle my life story, however there are aspects that are private and not for sharing especially in relation to members of my family.

So I had this life with my husband and his two sons where occasionally Tasha would pop in to see her dad or partake in family events.  I could see through her efforts to be polite and knew she barely tolerated me and would have much preferred if I'd fallen off the face of the planet.  In her defence, Tasha was only 12 when her parents legitimately split up, which would have been hard enough at her age however she was also faced with the prospect of my  arrival in England shortly thereafter. It was messy and hard enough for me to accept at times, never mind a hormonal 12 year old who thought she was going on 30.

All of that is history now and for the past three years Tasha and I have been slowly building a relationship; Since she has graduated from university with a foundation degree in law, she has matured in leaps and bounds.  I always thought that with time she and I could be friends however I was hesitant to believe that I would ever feel for her what I do for the boys; after all they have been a constant in my life since the day I met them.  I don't think I'm the only who is slightly astonished that we have become much more than friends and that I have come to love my husband's daughter every bit as much as his boys.  I know it means the world to Andy that Tasha and I now have a good relationship.  One that has progressed to the point where Tasha will ring me when she's upset or needs advice.  I can't help but smile when she's ringing off a phone call and says rather offhandedly that she loves me.  How times have changed.

Tasha recently moved into a house with her boyfriend in Lincoln.  As she has to travel nearly an hour each way to work and does overtime on a Tuesday evening, she has begun staying with me one night a week.   Molly and I enjoy having her company on Tuesday nights and I especially enjoy our chats on the drive to work the next morning. Last week as I was dropping her off we laughed about how far we have come from the days when it was much less than 'perfect' between us.  She reflected on how she used to 'plot various ways of breaking me and her dad up'.  We both grinned and laughed about how pleased we are that she was unsuccessful in her attempts.

I've been known to say many times that I'm not her mother.  I have never, ever tried to fulfil that role in her or her brothers lives - they have a mum. What I am is proud to be her step-mom and most importantly her friend and I hope that never changes.