I always thought that I’d enjoy cooking for and feeding my husband. And don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate cooking for him. But during the work week, I’m finding it a challenge to feel anywhere near enthused about it. I get up at 5:30 and by 6:15 am on the road to start work at 7 o’clock. I put in a 9 hour day (1 hour lunch break) and finally punch out at 5 PM. Another 40 minute drive home and by the time I walk into the apartment and get changed, it’s 6 PM and I’m struggling to find my second – no, wait, third wind.
(That would be why I found myself sputtering and resisting the urge to sink down on the kitchen stairs for a good cry the other night when I spilled spaghetti sauce down the side of the stove and across the kitchen floor – murder scene anyone?!)
So generally, my cooking experiences tend to consist of me standing in the kitchen for a good ten minutes staring at the contents of the fridge and cupboard, asking myself, “What on earth am I going to make for supper?” Then as I finally settle on something and begin throwing it together, I start muttering things like, “What on earth am I doing here? I’m not a good cook. Man, I am so not good at this, good grief, THAT was brilliant, just burn the garlic now, nice going, Ace… Why is it so hard to cook for just two?! Good grief, I know how much spaghetti to make for 12, why is it so hard to judge how much for TWO?!”
And, I get to do this every day.
It’s at right about this time that I start thinking that as much as mice aren’t my favorite creature on earth and as much as I hate having my hair pulled, it would be amazing to have a little chef residing in the non-existent chapeau on my head. Gusteau in Rattatoulle says “Anyone can cook!” and okay, I’d agree that overall, it is true. Anyone can cook, but I don’t think it comes easily to everyone, especially the insecure perfectionists that don’t find playing in the kitchen second nature (sorry, my husband’s family are all foodies and can throw together a delicious meal out of nothing without batting an eye, so it’s hard for me not to play the comparison game in my head!).
So. Cooking for us is an experience.
It’s not until after the meal is cooked and set on the table when I realize how much I like being able to cook for my man. When I’m in the apartment alone, ready to throw my apron up over my head (I try to wear cute aprons in hope of finding myself inspired – I’ll let you know when the cuteness finally kicks inspiration’s butt into commission), I think: I HATE COOKING.
Until I call him, that is, and tell him that supper is ready. “Supper’s ready?” he says, “Oh boy!” Even over the phone, his enthusiasm is catching. And then when he walks in the door and smells dinner, sees it on the table, it gets even better. “Oh, honey, that looks AMAZING.”
(The man has a knack for cooking himself and an ability to throw ingredients together and make something delicious, an ability that doesn’t come easily to me. And yet, he thinks I’m the most amazing cook EVEH. Oh how it warms the cockles of me heart. Newlywed bliss, yup.)
But, it’s not until we’re both sitting next to each other at the dining room table (the one he made by hand himself), eating dinner (that I made) together, trading stories about our work days and laughing about silly things like my boss’s story about smelt and the books I got at the library…it’s then that I think, yeah, maybe this cooking thing isn’t so bad, especially with end results like these. Just two weeks ago, we were living 40 minutes away from each other and eating and sleeping apart from each other. And now? I get to cook for my husband and eat dinner with him every night. That, definitely, I love.
(I also love it when he volunteers to do the dishes afterwards. 🙂 There’s nothing more attractive than a guy who helps out around the house and doesn’t see it as beneath his dignity!)