Friday, February 21, 2014

Apéritif Friday - A Date

Mornings border on a sacrilegious routine around here. Wake up, pull on warm, comfy clothes, pad my way downstairs, take a vitamin, pour a cup of coffee. Maybe let the dog out. Sit on the sofa in the living room. Wait for Mr. Musky to join me.

He always does.

Read email, the weather report, news headlines, Facebook. Sip coffee.

Talk to husband.

We rarely vary from this routine. The occasional request to be driven to school or the bus stop may throw a momentary glitch into things, but we immediately settle back in for at least 1/2 hour to spend some time together before starting our day. And while this may sound impossible to some, I assure you it is not. We've been doing this for years...even when I had to rush off to a corporate desk job. Yes, some days we must forego our little ritual, but more often than not we make it a priority to start our day off together.

Earlier this week, as I attempted to warm my hands around a thick mug filled with coffee, lounging in flannel pjs topped off with a gnarly bedheaded hairdo, my lovely husband asked me out on a date.

"Will you join me for lunch Thursday to watch the USA Women take on Canada?"

Guys who might just happen to read this nonsense occasionally, please tune in. We want to be asked out on a date. Even after we've birthed two children and have wrinkles where we shouldn't mention. Just pretend we are still teenagers once in awhile and ask us out properly. It makes us feel giddy.

Obviously I jumped at the offer. Yesterday we went to a little Italian restaurant called Capri Sogno in downtown Plainfield. We love it there. Deep, dark mahogany interior with classic Italian music piped in and a simple but delicious and fresh menu.

I started off with the pineapple infused martini. I'm a freaking sucker for those giant vessels of vodka sitting on the bar with floating chunks of O'ahu. As long a there's no Smirnoff in there, I'm in. And I love it straight up.

He, of course, opted for a predictable Sapphire with water on the rocks. And a lemon twist, because he's really fancy.

We ordered the baked clams and the calamari Capri. Clearly neither of these are Paleo. But when your women's national hockey team is taking on those pesky (code: freaking diligent, talented and deserved of the gold medal) Canadiens, then indulgence is permissible. We even ate warm, crusty bread fresh from the oven dipped in the reserved sauce on the appetizers. Divine goodness on a plate. We both commented that if we're going to indulge, it's going to be on really awesome stuff.
There is something hopelessly romantic about bellying up to a cool, marble-topped bar wearing nicer-than-normal clothes at noon on a Thursday afternoon. It feels very old school. So much so, that I ordered a bottle of wine to sip while we watched the women in a valiant effort against their arch rivals.

I also watched him. The man I met at 18 years old, and married at 22. Had our first child with at 25, our second at 27. I giggled as he ran out to the truck to get some cheaters in order to read the menu. And commented on how hot he is with them on. For real. He still makes my heart go pitter patter.

I genuinely speak here. And yes...there have been times when I've not liked him so well. But for 99.99% of the time, I love him with every fiber of my being, and not just because he still asks me out on dates.

Because he looks around the restaurant in approval, acknowledging it's just as he likes it. With nobody near him.

Because as we slopped up the buttery goodness from the baked clams, he identified the taste as reminiscent of caramel. And he was spot on with his assessment of the ingredients in that dish.

Because during intermission, he said he wasn't going back to the office and said he wanted to make deep dish pizza that night for the kids.

Because after our date, we stopped at Meyer, and he picked up a package of basil, blindly threw it over his shoulder, and it landed in the grocery cart.

Because as I write this, he whistles for me to come join him while he makes dinner.

He makes me laugh, just by being him.

The kids knew we dated yesterday. While we all gathered around the pizza-making maestro, I advised  my son to ask his 41 year old wife out to lunch on a Thursday someday.

You're welcome, future daughter-in-law.

XOXO,
Jen

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