I always used to think that buying a gift for a woman was so easy. Clothes! Jewelry! Chocolate! But the longer I’ve been with my husband, the more I’ve come to sympathize with guys who try to find that perfect thing for their significant other. Truth be told we’re kind of a fickle bunch. My husband’s idea of what I look good in and mine are two very different things. And do I love salted caramels? YES. Do I want them anywhere near me tempting me with their evilness? NO. And most women I know could easily complain about not getting to the gym enough one day and be REALLY offended at a gym gift card the next. You see what I mean? Tricky business!
Now don’t get me wrong. I love me some sparkly things. But I was thinking this week about things that I really appreciate or that I consider a luxury and how that’s changed since becoming a mom. Here’s my Top 5 indulgences that I would gladly take over jewelry or flowers or chocolates any day.
5. Girl time: I live in a house of boys. I know more things about cars, trucks, trains, Star Wars, predatory animals, legos and how to make good explosion noises than I ever thought possible. I have made it a point to have “non stereotypical boy toys” in our house like games and art supplies but… they like what they like and at this point, I’m somewhat resigned. So an evening with some girl friends to talk about stupid TV, work, clothes, parenting and in general each others’ lives always leaves me refreshed. The best part is the price of admission is just a bottle of wine!
4. Shopping! Alone!: I love shopping. So much so that my husband started employing a very smart tactic. He would insist on me taking at least one of the boys. Which usually results in going directly in for the thing I came for and leaving. And to me, that’s not shopping. That’s an errand. I want to loiter along the sales rack, test new lip glosses, actually try something on! Husband’s approach is good for the budget. Bad for mom and her love of shoes.
3. Impromptu dates: I organize a lot of stuff for my job – information, programs, meetings, events. Planning a date with my husband can feel like work. When he takes the time to do this or better yet surprises me with a “I have the dinner reservation and babysitter booked” he’s instantly better looking. And five times more likely to get lucky. Just sayin…
2. Sleeping In: I have a confession. When my boys bound out of bed at Oh-Dark-Thirty on the weekends I curse their gorgeous little curly heads. As far as I’m concerned, the weekend should not start until 8am. Each time my husband takes them downstairs, gives them breakfast, and gives me an extra hour of sleep, he is the most perfect man on the planet.
1. A clean house. That I didn’t clean: Having someone clean the house every other week is about the most decadent thing I indulge in. It is beyond a treat and not necessarily budget friendly but I will tell you that every other Tuesday when I get home from work, I’m pretty sure my face looks the way my boys’ do when they come downstairs on Christmas morning to find the presents magically stacked under the tree. I swear I’ve heard angels sing an, “Ahhhhhhh!” when the door swings open and there’s not a dish on the counter nor toy on the floor. Sure it lasts for approximately 8 minutes but those 8 minutes are REALLY great.
So those are mine. What are yours?
Annemarie: A native Seattleite, Annemarie is a busy working mom of two busy boys – Gavin (born 2006 Halloween baby) and Greyson (born February 2009 heartbreaker). She works fulltime for Microsoft doing media and analyst relations and continuously finds new challenges, rewards, perspectives and motivations from working in a corporate culture that expects employees to find what makes them passionate about their jobs and channel that into excellence. When she’s running late for daycare pickups or feels guilty for skipping a few words in her least favorite Thomas the Tank Engine bedtime story, she finds comfort in a quote from author Jill Churchill, “The most important thing she’d learned over the years was that there was no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a great one.”
She and her husband are college sweethearts and enjoy great wine, good food, Husky football and traveling as much as two kids, two jobs, a dog and a budget will allow. You can follow her on Twitter @annecalla.
*Photo Credits: Wine Glasses: http://www.telegraph.co.uk (Getty)/Cleaning: http://www.glamour.com/health-fitness/blogs (iStock)