When you grow up and get married, you have this moment where you realize that all families do things a little differently. The way you learned to fold t-shirts, load the dishwasher, squeeze the toothpaste, or plan a vacation is just different…it’s not worse or better. Just different. In order to make it work, it’s usually best to just pick one way as a new family and go with it.
I was reflecting on this while cleaning today. I opened my pantry to put away another empty reusable grocery bag. The sight is pretty scary.
After a quick look, I counted eleven, but I’m sure there are more hiding in the depths of this closet. That wouldn’t be so bad if I, in fact, used them for groceries. I never do. I think it’s a grand idea, and I buy more thinking I will follow through, but it never happens. That’s because I’m always using them for luggage.
See, in my family growing up we used grocery bags (the brown paper kind) when packing to go pretty much anywhere and everywhere. I think the only two times I didn’t use them were to summer camp and when flying on an airplane. Life (and packing for it) has only improved with the invention of the reusable fabric ones.
In many ways Jay has been able to win me over to his way of doing things. I now put cereal bowls on the bottom rack of the dishwasher. When we have mashed potatoes, we don’t use flakes. I try really hard to leave a few minutes early instead of waiting until the very last minute to go anywhere. I’ve won a few. For example, we keep the jelly in the refrigerator, thank-you-very-much. When we were dating, we had a very memorable disagreement over whether you spray the furniture cleaner on the cloth or the table when dusting. I think we determined no one would ever win that one, so we solved it by just not dusting. Pretty much ever.
So back to the grocery bags. He’s tried multiple times to convince me of the marvels of proper suitcases and duffle bags. His reasons are valid, including easier packing in the car and not looking like a ten year old while traveling. For whatever reason though, I just have yet to let them go. When we leave for vacation later this summer, he’ll pack his suitcase, and I’ll have a grocery bag (or three) each for Chica, Bubba, and myself. He’ll scowl while packing the car, and I’ll smile, reminding him how thankful I am that he lets me win once in a while.
After spending time at both grandparents’ houses this past week, I can’t help but wonder what it will be like when Chica and Bubba reach this stage in their lives. What will we have taught them as the “right” way to do something that they will have to negotiate with their spouses?
What about you? Win any lately?