45 Reasons My Parents Still “Do!”

 *This is a RE-Post from Last October.

Today is my parents’ 45th Anniversary! I loved writing this little fun list about the couple that inspires me daily when it comes to dedication, devotion, and friendship in marriage! I added #44 today to share why I look up to them! Because they truly live out their vows, and we’re kicking it up a notch and celebrating in style on October 27th with friends and family! Yikes, that’s only a couple weeks away! Stay tuned for a romantic blog down lover’s lane that week! 
  1. Mom loves Dad.
  2. Dad Loves Mom.
  3. Mom cooks.
  4. Dad eats. Continue reading

Sleepless in New York

“I need to make an appointment with you on Friday morning. At 5:30AM. Are you busy?”
I laugh out loud at hubby’s question. “If you mean busy by sleeping. Yes, I’m busy. But other than sleep, I don’t have any other  commitments.”

“Okay then. See you Friday morning. [The day is Monday.] Actually, make it 4:45AM. So we can be there by 5:30.” 

“4:45??!!” My eyes feel heavy thinking ahead to the loss of sleep I’ll experience four days from now.  Continue reading

The Dirty Dancing of Marriage

Waking up at Gunstock Moutain Resort in New Hampshire for our first full day of vacation, all I can think is, where is the coffee? The 11:30PM arrival the night before which involved some not-so-nice words exchanged while the GPS evaded us, seasoned the RV air with the perfect ingredients for sweet dreams. Not. I went to bed, exhausted from packing the day before and my heart sinking for the weeks that lie ahead. If this is how we’re starting our vacation, angry and miscommunicating, I just want to quit now. Hide under the covers and wake up when it’s time to go home. That’s how I think when I feel desperate. Inadequate. Hopeless. And just genuinely messed up. 

It was just a fight over directions, I try to convince myself. But under ever petty argument lies a deeper issue. When you’ve been married for more than a decade, you know each other too well to know when something is just a tif or a tip. As in the tip of the iceberg of abandoned issues. I tell him he doesn’t trust me. He tells me I don’t respect him. Tempers flare. Words fly. And in the small confines of the RV, every sound is heard. By everyone.  Continue reading

Friday Knight Movie-Tale

Ventured out to the theater to see The Dark Knight Rises on Friday night, only hours after we heard of the tragedy in Aurora, Colorado. My hubby is the rebellious type. He refuses to live by fear. 

We did a similar thing on the ten year anniversary of 9/11. We took the subway into Manhattan with our girls, had lunch, and played at a city park with New Yorkers. It made perfect sense to hubs. He wanted us to be close to those who were hurting, because we were hurting too. A decade later, and the memories of 9/11 still get me teared up. Hub’s story of where he stood when the second tower came down is a memory that surfaces yearly every September. Sigh. 

So he wanted to teach our girls to we continue to live. And if and when someone ever decides to attack NYC again, we’re not going to sit inside our homes behind locked doors in a basement bunker. That’s just not our style. Because if you live like that, you give fear power over you. Continue reading

Paulus Perils of Power

So these last few days have been a powerful *pun intended, reminder that electricity is highly useful. And highly missed when it doesn’t come through. 


Power outage situation #1 happened when we realized that the RV fridge and radio refuse to turn on. Hubby, being the Mr. Fix-it guy that he is, has been troubleshooting for the last week. His electrically-minded cousin and his electrical engineer father-in-law would be so proud. Or yell at him for trying things he’s not trained for. The jury’s still out on their reactions. They don’t know. Yet.  Continue reading

Sushi, Stomp, & Something Sweet

Love walking around the City! Shake Shack,
we’ll come back for you next tme…fo sho! 

So we started out our NYC Operation Birthday Date by driving into the city, and during our hour plus commute from Locust Valley to Manhattan, we debrief and deflate, one of the gifts of marrying your best friend. I still remember my high school English teacher Mr. Quick referring to this human gift as a “sounding board,” surely a reference to some famous poem or literature. [Will look it up when my energy supply rises back to normal levels.]

Earlier in the day, I simply asked hubby to please cooperate with tonight’s plans. It was my “Follow the Leader” after all. And after a fashion crisis (yes, guys have those too,) changing from casual to less casual shirt, and then from his runners back to his dress shoes, we are on the road, in our Honda Accord with no a.c. Hubs tried to fix it, but there must be another leak since the freon only lasted a day or two. Nothing like natural cooling with the windows rolled down and the wind blowing through your hair and the scents of New York floating into your air space.  You know—that familiar combination—smog of taxi cabs, cigarette smoke of pedestrians, and ethnic food of all sorts.  Continue reading

My Niagara-Sized Love Story… Page One


Photo Credit: Phombo

I grew up in Canada. Windsor, Ontario to be exact. And when I moved to Michigan, senior year in high school and continued my education over in Evanston, IL, not to far from where I met my future hubby in Chicago, I never knew that my Canadian roots would play a part in my love story or my career path as a writer. 

Found out today that my little story on how hubby and I began our love story in the mist of Niagara Falls is published online at MaClean’s Magazine. Who-hoo! The link is below. Enjoy! And “Ohhh Canada! My Home and Native land…” Thanks for remembering me! :)

How about you? Have you ever visited Niagara Falls? Where do you call home away from home?

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Living: An Extreme Sport

A Room with a View…
Two years ago, hubby and I ventured over to Catalina Island in mid February. Just the two of us.
On the one hour boat ride over to Catalina, we enjoy the wind blowing through our hair and the words, “It never rains in Southern California” seem ominously untrue with the dark clouds looming above. But it doesn’t actually rain. Much. By the time the boat pulls into the docks, the sun is beaming and we are on our way to four days of Operation Anniversary Adventure, Take 12. In three months, we’ll be married twelve years. We are celebrating a little early this year. 
After we check into our spacious villa that overlooks the ocean, we venture down to the waterfront in our golf cart [hubby’s first time driving one] for a late lunch/early dinner and some grocery shopping. We figure we’ll cook some of our meals to offset the cost of the nicer accommodations, and when you’re only feeding two mouths—cheese, crackers, fruit and cold cuts count as a meal.  Continue reading

Life Lessons From Under the Hood

Fight for the things in life worth holding on to…

Left my bat cave [the basement where I write] Saturday evening when hubby asked for a little help on the car. He’s been outside fixing, replacing, and tuning up the car since the sun rose for Monday’s inspection, the sticker that is technically 11 days overdue. We’re crossing our fingers and hoping we can get through another inspection without any big surprises.

Remember last year? “Sure Mrs. Paulus, your car will pass, after we replace all four wheels, the axle, the brakes, the engine, and that tiny little fuse that can only be reached after taking the entire car apart.”

“How many hours are we talking? What kind of loan should I take out? Will a kidney suffice?”

“The entire job, if we do it right, requires at least 52 hours of labor and yes, we do accept high functioning organs. But to be on the safe side, I’d plan for two.”

“Two thousand?”

“Two kidneys.” Mechanic with grease smeared across his forehead does not flinch. Laugh. Or wink. “Just in case.”

“For that,” I have a bright idea. “Don’t do it right. Just fix it enough to pass. I’m not looking to drive to Alaska. I just need to buy a little time, say a year, before I buy a new car. Work with me here. I’m not a doctor, but I think the last guy on ER that gave up both kidneys…Yeah, I don’t think that’ll work.”

“Well then, we can’t pass your car.”

Wahhhhh! Continue reading