Eyre Affairs

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Location: New York, United States

Saturday, May 23, 2009

"Now I have performed the part of a good host..." ~ Jane Eyre

The Prince and I are hosting our first gathering...and I am slightly giddy about it.  It certainly is apropos that it is the kickoff to summer, for each day with him is like the brightest day on the beach.  I realize this is the first of many gatherings will be host and hostess for together, and it is a great feeling: being with the man I love and the people we love.  This is as good as it gets...

Since my place is small, its a small gathering, and as much as I wish we could have a big party, it just is not possible right now.  Still, my new patio is big enough to host a party of seven, and that is what we are doing on Monday.

I admit that I fuss over barbecues.  I like doing tablecloths, small centerpieces, and matching colors (this will be a nice blue).  My kitchen table cant be seen at the moment; it is filled to capacity.  Paper plates, a basket for plastic utensils, plastic blue tablecloths, bags of popcorn, chips, and pretzels, a big bottle of wine for sangria, orange soda for the sangria, retro ketchup and mustard bottles, napkins, aluminum pans, bottles of Arizona Sweet Tea, serving bowls, jars of mayonnaise, two boxes of shell pasta for the salad, a small bottle of Bourbon for the baked beans, hamburger rolls, toothpicks, table cloth holders.  The beer is all in a big box by the fridge:  Young's Double Chocolate Stout,  Shock Top, Coney Island Albino Python, Troeg's Sunshine Pils, and of course Pete's Wicked Strawberry Blonde.

The premise of the barbecue is a Burger Battle.  Three couples, us included, will submit a burger to our dear friend Moo, who has been in Uganda doing dissertation work on Mangabeys for the past year and a half and is definitely the best palate to use for choosing the best burger!   So for now, the main course of the menu is top secret!  I am also making a pasta salad with red pepper, green pepper, tarragon, and scallions,  a lime and cumin cole slaw, and baked beans with bourbon and bacon.  For dessert I am baking Strawberry Cheesecake bars.  There will be watermelon and clementines too.  Hopefully lots of cocktails and even some pineapple upside down cake shots!  http://www.drinksmixer.com/drink7884.html

As fun and wonderful as I know the gathering will be, half the fun is already happening in the planning with him.  Paper and pen in hands, throwing ideas around about the perfect burger, talking types of charcoal and wood chips...its all the start to many barbecues to come.  And I know that we are going to be amazing hosts, because, well, we are just amazing at all that we do together.  

At the end of the barbecue when everyone has left and we are done cleaning up and exhausted, I cannot wait to just kiss him and hug him...and high five him because I know we are winning the contest!

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Saturday, May 16, 2009

"My being longed for renewal..." ~ Jane Eyre

It has been the longest of winters literally and figuratively.  

For those who know me, you would think there were previous moments in my life where I would have truly felt my innocence lost, but this past winter was truly a time when I felt nothing would ever be the same again. Death of friends, death of a former way of American economic life, even the death of two baseball stadiums that were filled with important memories I have of both grandfathers.  The winter itself lingered a long time here;  I wore my winter coat up until three weeks ago, still waking up to the cold and needing warmth during my morning commute.  The light of the warm sun of spring just never seemed in sight.  I felt like Jane Eyre during her long days of depression and fog after she travels a harsh road away from Thornfield. 

But then, Jane awakens, and is finally able to enjoy life again...and return to Thornfield.  Nothing is ever the same there...except one thing:  her love and happiness with Rochester.  Throughout all of this, the Prince and I have grown stronger, as has our love.  And, thankfully, as the warmth of the sun has finally arrived and the flowers are in bloom (such as the one in the photo from my garden),  our lives feel like they have blossomed once again.

All of a sudden life has become happy again.  It wont ever be the same, but at least life feels more and more back to normal now that spring is upon us. 

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