Remember When?

photo (20)

So, I don’t want to brag, but I hit the in-law jackpot.

Exhibit A: several months ago, my sweet in-laws emailed me to take us up on our offer [read: plea] for them to come visit us. Casually, as though this sort of thing happens every day, they asked if Kellan and I might be interested in them taking us to a Bed and Breakfast for the weekend.

Well. Twist my arm.

I screeched, and hollered the good news across our little apartment to my unimpressed husband, who could not for the life of him understand why we would drive half an hour to sleep in a strange bed when we had a perfectly good mattress laying on our apartment floor.

Calmly, I looked him dead in the eyes, and informed that handsome man that if he needed me that weekend, he could find me at the Bed and Breakfast.

The whole plan was flawless, until I had a minor break with reality upon the startling realization that our upcoming staycation meant that my mother in law was going to see my house.


Y’all. I have spent TWO Thanksgivings at Gina Dickens’ house, and have never once seen even the teensiest mess in her kitchen. I can’t so much as pour a bowl of CEREAL without wreaking havoc in my kitchen, and when I get through with Thanksgiving it looks like some sort of natural disaster struck around the stove and the Red Cross failed to respond. Her house is immaculate, she is the sweetest human being that I have ever met AND shephoto (18) has a file for everything in life.

[Let’s just talk about the “conversation” that Kellan and I had when he asked me why I didn’t have a file for our house hunting adventures. OH NO YOU DIDN’T.]

Long story short? My mother in law is perfection personified, and I will never manage to be quite like her. As I pictured her walking through my front door, I broke into a cold sweat because DEAR HEAVENS WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME THAT I DUSTED?!


Horrified at the prospect of my husband’s mother finding her first-born son living in squalor and filth, I armed myself with a can of pledge and made every faux-wooden surface in my house SHINE.

Friday night found me in my kitchen covered from head to toe in powdered sugar as I made key lime pie, grinding my teeth to bloody stumps because KELLAN YOU CAN’T USE THAT BATHROOM. I may or may not have offered my saintly husband an extensive lecture on proper towel-folding etiquette, which I’m certain that he appreciated. Nevertheless, he scrubbed and folded and consoled like a champ, all the while knowing that his parents could care less whether or not our apartment is dusted.

But still. You marry a Mama’s little boy, and you kind of want her to know that you’re not going to kill him.

At least not on purpose.

photo (21)Of course, given that as we’ve already covered she is the SWEETEST HUMAN ON THE PLANET, Gina waltzed in on Saturday morning armed with a pumpkin candle and fall décor, and both she and Russ positively gushed over how very beautiful everything was.

Even our mattress on the floor.

And I love them forever for it.

After lunch [during which I served the aforementioned key lime pie garnished with just a SMIDGE of my grated thumb], the four of us took off for the most darling B&B of all time. We spent the weekend eating incredible food, wandering around an adorable historic town, and picking my real-estate savvy Father in law’s brain on what sort of house we should buy. Fall is out in splendid force in upstate New York, and the burned oranges and golden reds lacing the trees make it look like the world is on fire. We spent hours on the sweetest wraparound porch drinking wine and watching the sun set, and I found myself wishing that I could bottle it all up and store it forever. I just knew that one day, years from now, the four of us would find ourselves sitting around a kitchen table somewhere “remembering when”. You don’t always know when something is going to become a “remember when”, but somehow I knew this (17)

I’m so grateful for “remember when” moments, and for extravagantly generous parents-in-law that treat me just like another daughter.

Also, I am very confused as to why pancakes and eggs were not waiting for me when I got out of bed this morning…


Filed under Family, My favorite people, The daily grind

4 responses to “Remember When?

  1. Jamie C. Warren

    What a gift you have, dear Ashley! Miss you!

  2. Veronica


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