They say shit gets real when you get married. And it does in the whole lot of vow making, ring wearing, debating about who gets which side of the bed kind of way.
There’s something unctuous about it. Something delightful about pointing across the room and saying, “He’s my husband.”
Is that pride talking? Damn straight. Because not only is he a red bearded, blue eyed statue of handsome man flesh – he’s smart. Frustratingly so. And stubborn. And passionate about making me smile.
But the white dress and legal binding aside – I think shit gets real when you go into debt together. Big debt. House buying kind of debt. The kind where the kid gloves come off and the serious talk of commuting and acreage stop being bedroom whispers and turn into dinner table list making.
Priorities meet reality. Money becomes all too real. And the 826-square-feet of 2-bed 1-bath apartment living closes in on your like a black hole of clutter that quickly throws cuddle sessions and googly eye moments into a sense of primal survival.
Which is why – as stressful as mornings can be commuting to the city – as hair pulling, sleep depriving, and muscle taxing as applying for a loan, making and offer, closing, and moving is – buying our first home was one of the biggest moments in my life.
Sometimes I find myself standing in our kitchen laying on the kitchen counter just because it’s big enough I can. I like to walk the hallway and twirl. I mull over which shower to use. (Thus far, the master bath has won every time.) I spend my workday moving from bedroom to guest bedroom to kitchen to den. And when Garrett comes home and we kiss in the doorway, I feel my heart jump and settle all at the same time.
We bought a house. And got a dog. (Though not in the order.) And at the beginning of this winter, when the temperatures dipped below 20 degrees, we spent 18 frantic hours defrosting the pipes in our well house.
Needless to say, it’s been an adventure.
More on the dog. And the house. And the frozen pipes, kitchen counter laying, and hallway twirling soon.
Honey Mustard Slaw
Inspired by Melanie Cates
This salad is really more of a guide than a strict recipe. Melanie’s first version included pears and cured chorizo. Chicken happens to be a freezer staple in our house, so that’s what I use. I marinate it for a day or two in garlic and lemon juice, pan sear it and finish it in the oven before shredding. If you don’t have feta, parmesan would be a lovely substitute. You could also add in finely chopped kale or green onions. Really, this is an anything goes kind of ordeal.
For the Dressing
2 TBS Dijon mustard
1 TBS horseradish
1½ TBS honey
1 TBS minced garlic
1 TBS minced fresh ginger
¼ cup apple cider
½ cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Combine mustard through cider in a medium bowl. Whisk to combine. Stream in olive oil, whisking to incorporate. Taste. Add salt and pepper as needed.
For the Slaw
1 cup shredded Brussels sprouts
8 cup cabbage mix
1 red bell pepper, chopped
7 – 8 radishes, halved and thinly sliced
¼ cup chopped Italian parsley
¼ cup chopped cilantro
1.5 pounds shredded chicken
1 cup feta
In a large bowl, add everything but the feta. Toss gently to mix. Add half the feta and half the dressing. Toss gently to mix. Add remaining feta and dressing as needed, tossing gently until slaw is fully coated.