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tales of something simple - the wooden spoon in a marriage

i believe

Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.

all types of chaos

the wooden spoon in a marriage

Shortly after Brian and I moved in together in 2006 and combined our heaps of crap under one roof, we discovered that I have a very strong affinity for wooden cooking accessories–wooden spoons in particular.  At the time, I don’t think either of us realized what a running joke and consistently bothersome item this would be between us in our kitchen.  Brian finds wooden spoons to be a waste of wood.  We have a kitchen full of plastic, metal…in short, very good cooking utensils and I insist, downright demand to only use the wooden spoons when I cook.  Regardless of how much he complains that they are useless and never truly clean, a wooden spoon is always my first choice.

Why my insistence?

I never really thought about it until recently.  My mother always had wooden spoons in our kitchen when I was growing up and it was always the utensil she passed when I’d help make the macaroni & cheese and the Hamburger Helper (which I made tonight by the way, with my wooden spoon).  Having a wooden spoon in my collection of kitchen accessory crap gives me a small piece of childhood and keeps a big piece of my Mom in my kitchen and I never even realized it.  Holding that spoon makes me feel a little closer to the past by bringing such a mundane item into my present.

So tonight, when my husband teased me as he begrudgingly picked the wooden spoon out of a pile of Hamburger Helper I said, “When our daughter finishes college and we go to Bed Bath and Beyond to buy stuff for her new apartment I guarantee you that she will pick up a set of wooden spoons and put them in the cart.  And when she does, I’ll know that I’ll have succeeded as her mother.”

My point?  I like the wooden, he likes anything but.  But we keep them both.  And even if I didn’t have some cutesy story about how they remind me of my Mom, he would still let me keep them.  There are differences and idiosyncrasies between people in relationships and they tell stories about where we’ve been and the people who love us best listen to those stories, respect them, love us all the more and are there with us as we make new ones.  Whether it be a toilet seat left up (though he never did), a ritualistic way of lining up the tooth brushes (don’t ask), putting the silverware spoke up or spoke down in the dishwasher (does it matter?), laundry left in the washing machine till it molds (I’ve proudly done this) or wooden spoons, some things will never change.  And the man who loves me more than life itself doesn’t ask me to.

Sometimes the best pieces of life do stay the same.

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