The one thing that can bring married people to their knees it appears is how they place a toilet paper roll on the holder and how they squeeze the toothpaste tube.  Today on this Thursday I am ever so glad to let you know that I do have the answers to both of these queries!

I find it so very interesting that two simple items can undo undying love.  When we pledge our love to one another we say “for better for worse for richer for poorer”.  There is no mention anywhere in the marriage process of the mundane.  It is the ethereal forever and ever AMEN!   Having been married for 46 years and working in a marriage ministry for over 26 yrs I can tell you it is the little things that can make or break this deal.  Especially if it is only contractual and not a covenant marriage.

Let me take these items one at a time.  The toilet paper roll is hung so that the paper drapes over the top of the roll and pulls down.  How do I know this?  In one of my incarnations as a worker bee I was a chamber maid.  The toilet paper pulls down!  How else would one be able to make it look attractive and welcoming with the folded “V” in it if it did not pull down.  Enough said on that.

To the toothpaste tube.  In this household we have entered the fray of this issue.  For 46 years we have been squeezing and flattening and smoothing out the same tube of toothpaste.  One in this household is a ‘mangler’ and the other in this household is a smooth and flat toothpaste user.  Most recently, we though happenstance, solved this issue by having two separate tubes of toothpaste.  It was not planned it simply happened as we were apart and both wanted clean teeth so the second tube was purchased.  It has created much calm and less angst in our bathroom.

Here are the tubes.  You decide which one belongs to which resident of this house.  I will describe us both and you can assign the tubes to each.193194
One resident of this house is fastidious.  When going out one could assign the word polished to them.  Everything is in the right place.  There is a look of confidence and sophistication on the surface.  In project work this person is methodical.  This person carefully considers options and how to create the best outcome for projects or situations. Both projects and situations carefully considered are successful. This person is welcoming and reserved.  In the Barbara Walters reference world if this person was a tree they would be a tall strong sleek Cedar.

The other resident of this house hold likes things in order.  When going out this person looks put together though leaves one to ponder how long it took.  There is confidence in this person though lack of sophistication.  In project work this person has many ideas and shares them readily.  With the project itself one is left to wonder the method as items are all over the place.  While success may be the end result one is left to wonder how it happened. This  person is out-going and welcoming.  As for the tree reference this person would be a messy weeping Willow flying all over the place in the breeze.

Which tube belongs to the Cedar and which belongs to the Willow?

By the way – The answer to the toothpaste question is definitely individual tubes.






I keep a notebook or pad of paper (or try to) and pen by the spot where I sit while watching TV as sometimes I hear something I want to retain.  It ‘used to be’ that if I heard it I remembered it.  Now I need a little more help.  I also like to know the sources so I can check it later if I choose.  Not sure why, if or when I will use the info and yet I have it.  It at lest is important at the moment. In the last couple of weeks I wrote three statements on Dr. Oz’s face in a magazine as the notebook was missing.  I saw them as I was getting ready to toss the magazine to the recycling. 

The first line was from the movie “The Vow” and the character said, ‘We don’t speak to each other that way.’

The second line I noted was from “Barney’s Version” and the character said, “Have I not loved you enough today?”

The third line was from “Bottle Shock” and the character said, “We’re all a little stronger in the broken places.”

I wrote them down casually and separately.  I found it interesting that they all ended up in the same space.  My thinking after looking at them all together is, “Aren’t these statements a story of a love life even a marriage?”

As we are dating we come together and like twins each couple finds their own language, their patter, their uniqueness if you will.  I have observed some couples being very formal with each other.  I might judge the actions as courteous and cool and wonder what they see in each other if I were prone to do so.  Other couples have casualness about them as they fawn over each other and create a space where one might feel uncomfortable with their public displays of affections. Other couples have a combination of the two.  The fact is that every couple loves differently. 

Older couples married for years have been noted to come to look like each other.  Certainly their mannerisms are familiar to one another.  Watch a couple at a wedding that have been married for years dance.  They do so with the relaxed knowledge of the familiar and absolutely know what is coming next and they look like one unit gliding across the floor.  It is beautiful.  They are speaking their own language.

I would guess that married couples that look like this have ‘loved each other enough’ on most days.  I know from my life, as I paraphrase Rod McKuen a favorite poet of mine, that ‘every day is not shiny and bright, every night is not something to remember’.   I believe any marriage, any REAL marriage, is full of highs and lows and ups and downs.  This brings me to the last quote.

I believe we are all ‘stronger in the broken places’.  To think that we live a life without hurt is to think that Utopia is real.  While I do believe that when things are very very good in our lives we may be very close to this mythical place, the reality is that we love and hurt and forgive and heal.  We fix the broken places with tenderness and caring day in and day out.  Living a life with each other, being responsible to each other, being the best we can be – that is what makes our marriages wonderful in their own uniqueness.

Years ago the poet Judith Viorst wrote a book of poems entitled ‘Married is Better”.  I believe that marriage in not for everyone and there is a call to singleness as well.  For those who choose it I believe marriages have to ‘speak’ their own language and ‘love enough’ to ‘fix the broken parts’.

I love movies!!!  Who says they are a waste of time???





I have been waiting to hear Ann Romney speak.  I wondered what would she have to say about her husband.  I had no doubt that her speech would be positive and uplifting as I believe that is the kind of lady she is in her ‘real’ life.  She comes across to me as genuine.  She surprised me though.  That was the most kind, inclusive speech I have ever heard.  One ‘pundit’ made similar remarks about how good it was.

I am sure if there had been a picture of me listening I would have appeared ridiculous as I believe I had a smile on my face the whole time.  When she began I was a bit nervous about what was to come.  While she was genuine she seemed to be a little shaky beginning until she found her stride.  I loved her reference to a story book marriage versus a real marriage.  That is something I know about having worked with my husband in a marriage ministry for over 24 years.  What I see in them is exactly what she said.  Their marriage is real.  The love and kindness that is in each of their eyes when they look at each other cannot be faked.  Real is visible.  The Skin Horse had it best in the Velveteen Rabbit.

“Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When [someone] loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.”

“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit.

“Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”

“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”

“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t often happen to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept.

“Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand… once you are Real you can’t become unreal again. It lasts for always.”

Margery Williams, The Velveteen Rabbit or How Toys Become Real

I was going to use only the first answer and then it seemed so important to put the full quote in especially in light of Mrs. Romney having MS and breast cancer.  According to these parameters I believe they have a real marriage and I like how it looks.

 Ann Romney allowed me once again to feel pride in my career choice.  I have had experiences with others who believe that a stay it home mom is not a career.  Last night Ann Romney shared her love of her ‘job’.  Ann Romney included ‘single, married, widowed’.  I was happy to hear that inclusive language unlike that of NOW or other feminists. 

I had a small sense of superiority when she said that they ate on an ironing board and had a door on sawhorses for a desk!   We at least had a $60 Salvation Army maple table with matching chairs and yard sale $100 mahogany knee hole desk.  It was nice to hear her stories of how they met and married.  I was not aware they married while still in college.  Tough choice!  

Her honesty was disarming.  Her love was on her red sleeve.  She loves her husband, her family and this country and loved speaking.  In the end it looked like she was having a really good time at the podium.  Then again once anyone gets passionate about something they love it is an easy job to share their thoughts and feelings.  What is the saying about a job?  Find your passion and you’ll never work a day in your life!  Ann Romney was not talking about her husband and his ability to do the job.  She was sharing her passion for a man who lives his life with a passion to do well and succeed.  I found her inspiring.

Not to be outdone the diversity that was on the Republican Stage last night was breathtaking.  I did not hear Mia Love in total and still found her inspiring.  I did hear Niki Haley and loved what she had to say.  She is a dynamite speaker and strong Governor.

Ann Romney has been dubbed Mrs. America on the Drudge Report.  If she is Mrs. America then the other two female speakers certainly are Ladies of the Court.  Their voices and diverse ethnic backgrounds gave a wonderful face to our party as the door of the Republican convention was opened and America invited in with a warm welcome.