To have and to hold Part 2

So….I’ve really enjoyed walking down memory lane. When I told Todd I had only gotten through the first seven years, he looked surprised. “What on earth can you be writing about?” he asked, his voice tinged with a bit of worry. Well….sometimes I tend to get carried away, and that’s especially true when it comes to writing. I’d like to finish this, though, and move on.

6/15/04 Our 8th anniversary fell on a Tuesday, which, up until recently was known as “class day.” I taught my class that night, so obviously we didn’t go out to celebrate. For other people, this wouldn’t necessarily be a problem, but for Todd and I and our personalities, days became weeks and before we knew it, it was October and then November and we hadn’t done anything to “mark the occasion.” Perhaps our tradition had ended, I wondered, in one of those moments between acceptance and grumpiness. But I digress.

Then, in early December (the 10th to be exact), Todd told me to prepare for a night out without telling me what exactly we’d be doing. By this time, I was pregnant with Andrew, but not at the obviously pregnant stage; it was definitely more at the (as my good friend Maria called it) “Are you pregnant or have you been eating too many cheeseburgers?” stage. Not to worry, though, as since it was my 6th pregnancy, I hit the obviously pregnant stage probably the very next day, as it came sooner and sooner with each baby.

We left the house and drove to Harrodsburg, KY where we had a lovely dinner at the Beaumont Inn. It is an historic bed and breakfast with a restaurant, and reminded me somewhat of the Monro House where we had our wedding reception in scenic downtown Jonesville, MI. During the course of the delicious dinner, Todd revealed that afterwards, we would be going to Centre College to see Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops for their Christmas concert. If any of you know me at all, you know that I love Keith–and have loved him since he took over the Boston Pops as conductor in 1995. It was a wonderful concert (even though Centre’s Norton Center really needs more aisles and a cooler temperature as it was blazing hot in there and if there had been any kind of fire or need for an emergency exit, us poor people in the center of any particular row would have most certainly gone down with the ship, but maybe that was the pregnant me talking). Thankfully, the concert proceeded without the sound of any fire alarms, however, and we had a thoroughly enjoyable evening. Sometimes good things come to those who wait almost 6 months to celebrate their anniversary.

6/15/05 A mere short half year later and it was our anniversary again! This time we were thick in the throes of preparing our hearts and home for the addition of Andrew, who was due around this time. We had been painting bedrooms and moving children from one room to another and generally making a mess of the house. My parents were here again and I was large with child again, so this year we had a quiet dinner out to Johnny Carino’s. I probably carb-loaded, thinking that I would most definitely need those extra calories in the rare even that labor would start later that evening. It most certainly did not, however, and Andrew would not arrive until June 24. Somehow my parents stayed here (and survived) a visit to our house for almost two weeks. We took advantage of them being here and let them stay with the other 4 while we welcomed Andrew Walker Beauregard into the world on a brilliant summer afternoon. It was a great way to start year #10.

6/15/06 We wanted to do something to mark the tenth year of our marriage, and really went back and forth between spending some serious change to do something “big” and doing something slightly more “fiscally responsible.” At one point, we even talked about going to France to visit our friends Alex and Andrea who we met in Korea, but that still hasn’t panned out quite yet. I do believe they’ll be in France, however, until we have the chance to go! With the coin landing on the ‘fiscally responsible’ side, we decided we’d splurge a teeny bit, though. With the kids at Nonnie and Papa Tighe’s house for the evening, we drove to Louisville and had dinner at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, an event not to be missed. If you’ve ever seen the movie What About Bob, and specifically the scene where he eats dinner with the family, then you’ll have some idea of how I sounded throughout the entire meal. It was absolutely magnificent.

After dinner, we went further into downtown Louisville and found Shakespeare in the Park. I can’t remember which play we watched, but it was fun to sit outside and spend a few hours back in time.

6/15/07 After what seemed like a brief respite, I once again found myself pregnant for our anniversary. (insert snide remarks here) It just so happened that much like with Ben’s pregnancy, the date fell around the time that I was 18-22 weeks pregnant and my ultrasound appointment was actually scheduled for our anniversary. It was on #11 that we found out Chloe would be joining our family. We were so excited to learn that we would be having another daughter! It was a gift in and of itself, but as if that weren’t enough, Ralph and Laura generously offered to host a sleepover for the kids and we enjoyed an evening to ourselves. We celebrated by going to Malone’s for dinner, one of Todd’s favorite restaurants.

6/15/08 For year #12, we sort of lost all thoughts of originality and had our first repeat restaurant in our anniversary history. Since Todd liked Malone’s so much, we opted to return there for the first time since we’d been for our last anniversary. It was a nice night, one that ended with the most delicious freshly baked enormous chocolate chip cookie served warm and gooey and covered with vanilla ice cream and drizzled with chocolate sauce. It is heavenly. Malone’s is famous for its steak, but in my mind it’s all about the dessert.

6/15/09 After much thought, debate, consideration–along with a bit of looking through emails, date books, and calendars–Todd and I have come to the conclusion that either we didn’t do anything to celebrate our annivesary last year, or we’re that much closer to absolute insanity since neither of us has no early idea of what we did to mark the date. We can’t remember going out or going to anything. We can’t remember taking the kids somewhere or having a babysitter. (Then again, I can’t remember what I cooked last week for dinner, so this should not be as alarming as it seems to me) When it comes time to list the years in the future, I suppose year 13 will hold a special place as “The Year We Can’t Remember.”

And that concludes my chronicle, with the exception of this year. Since our date fell on a Monday, we’re still trying to find a day that works to do something to celebrate. Maybe we’ll have to wait till December again?


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