May 28, 2014
Annette and Dale Get Married
Someday, You’ll Look Back on This and Laugh
Someday, you’ll look back on this and laugh!
Isn’t it wonderful how we have been given the innate ability to look back on those particular, not-so-perfect, circumstances of our past, and remember them later with a smile on our face and even a possible giggle? After 36 years, Dale and I can NOW look back fondly upon the first couple weeks of our marital union and see the humor in a series of not so picture perfect moments…
A Brief Prologue
To say that it was a busy weekend is an understatement!
Saturday, May 27, 1978
Dale, my future husband, graduated from Iowa State University.
Our wedding rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.
Sunday, May 28, 1978
We began our drive to Estes Park, Colorado for our 4-day honeymoon, stopping in
Omaha, Nebraska for our wedding night.
(After our honeymoon, we would be moving to South Carolina, where Dale would begin his new job,
and I would be transferring to The University of South Carolina.)
Seasickness Without the Sea
I felt calm and happy about my upcoming nuptials, I really did. It was my stomach that begged to differ, reminding me that a whole lot of changes were swirling around me in a short amount of time*. Two days prior to the wedding, my internal revolt began. Like seasickness, without the sea, food I’d eaten, suddenly and violently refused to stay in place. To make matters worse, it felt that I had pulled a few stomach muscles in this involuntary purging process.
I prayed that I would just be able to stand up straight, and be relatively pain-free at my own wedding, being able to nibble a bit of my own wedding cake without negative repercussions. Waking up the morning of my wedding day, I happily found that my plea had been answered. All symptoms of the previous two days had ceased, allowing me to stand up straight in my wedding dress, walk down the aisle upright and without pain, and enjoying the sweet taste of our wedding cake afterwards.
*To read about how stress can make you ill, see the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale below
It was our wedding night. We had driven the two and a half hours from Ames, Iowa to Omaha, Nebraska with the newlywed glow about us, anticipating the honeymoon suite that we had reserved for the occasion. That honeymoon suite, we soon discovered, had a beautiful view overlooking a parking lot. Undaunted, Mr. and Mrs. Hoffman headed downstairs to enjoy a peaceful, romantic, wedding evening dinner. No sooner had our dinner been set before us when the sirens began to bellow, the tornado sirens. (In the Midwest, tornados are taken very seriously. Omaha was no exception, having been the site of the deadly 1975 tornado, three years before.) We were hurriedly ushered into the bowels of the hotel food storage area. Still in my post-wedding “going away” suit, I looked around. Among our fellow tornado fleers, a youngster next to me, having just been plucked out of the pool, shivering and dripping wet, and a maid, along with a cook in chef’s attire, stood across from me in silence. This, I thought to myself, is my wedding night! I began to hash over the various scenarios that might befall us, from being hit by an F5 tornado, to having to spend the entire night in our subterranean shelter. After about 45 minutes, the all clear was given, and we were released from the hotel lair to find our, now, cold food awaiting us, but, thankfully, we were safe.
To see a clip about the 1975 tornado and hear the sirens, please click on the link below
Wine, Lobster, and Estes Park
We arrived the next day at The Fall River Motor Inn of Estes Park, Colorado, our destination. The Fall River gently flowed just outside our idyllic little honeymoon cabin, just beyond the entrance of Rocky Mountain National Park. (In 1982, a dam broke, creating a major flood that would destroy a large piece of this area, including part of Fall River Motor Inn, now known as Inn on the Fall River.)
To celebrate our new marriage, and make up for the “tornado meal” from the night before, we decided to splurge and “go out on the town” to one of the nicer restaurants in Estes Park. Dressed in our finest, we settled in at our table at the restaurant of choice, ready to enjoy our celebratory meal. Having chosen a nice glass of white wine for each of us (Normally, I am an unsweetened iced tea gal, but, hey, tonight we were celebrating!), and deciding on that night’s special, two for the price of one lobsters. (In hindsight, an odd offering for a meal in the Rocky Mountains.) We relaxed, toasting our marriage, sipping our wine in quiet conversation. Our brief respite was interrupted by the return of our server. He requested our ID’s. I was 20. Dale was 22. In 1978, the legal drinking age in Iowa was 18, but the legal drinking age in Colorado, unbeknownst to us until that moment, was 21. This meant that my 22-year-old husband could keep his wine, but I could not. In front of the entire restaurant, they took away my glass of wine. Embarrassing? YES! While still attempting to recover from the sting of my wine confiscation, our lobster dinners arrived, all four of them. Having ordered the two for one lobster special, our server mistook us for wanting two lobsters apiece!
After two disastrous meals in a row, Dale and I began to believe that there must be some sort of honeymoon restaurant “curse” upon us. It was at that point that we agreed that we would prepare the remainder of our honeymoon meals at our cute riverside cabin. It was a wise decision. I can still remember the wonderful steaks that we prepared on the grill, as delicious.
To read about Inn on the Fall River, please click on the link below.
To read about the Flood of 1982, due to a dam break, please click on the links below.
The Horseback Ride
There is much to do around Estes Park. We drove, hiked, and enjoyed the scenery of Rocky Mountain National Park. We shopped in town, buying brown matching “Rocky Mountain High” sweatshirts, (having neglected to pack jackets for our trip), and enjoyed scoping out the rest of Estes Park. And… one day we decided to go horseback riding. Earlier we had discovered a place near town that was a large fenced in area, and one could ride a rent-a-horse anywhere on the hilly area. It was a beautiful sunny day and Dale and I set off to rent horses and explore the area. While riding along we met another young couple, and we stopped our horses to chat. The next thing that I knew was that my new husband was flying through air. To this day, Dale insists that he jumped off. (I think that he actually got thrown, but wanted to save face with his new bride.) Dale says that the horse that he was on, and the horse of the other guy, were kicking each other, and that he/Dale jumped off to get out of the way. Okay, right. All that I know for sure is, that one minute Dale was on a horse, and the next minute, he wasn’t. Thankfully, my new husband escaped unharmed!
It has been 36 years since Dale and I married and embarked on that memorable honeymoon trip. So on this anniversary, #36, I thank my husband, Dale, for loving me, marrying me, and being my best friend. If by some strange turn of events, I had the chance to go back in time, I would choose you all over again.
Happy Anniversary, Dale!
For Dale, click on the link below!!!!
(The rest of you are more than welcome to take a peek, too!)
Today I share with you one of my earliest and favorite recipes. The original recipe (I have made a few changes over the years.) came from The Better Homes and Garden Ground Meat Cook Book, a wedding shower gift from my Aunt Helen.
3 medium green, or red peppers variety-halved
1 lb. ground beef
¼-1/3 cup chopped onion
1-2 (16 oz.) can stewed tomatoes, cut up
½ cup uncooked, long-grain white rice
½ cup water
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 cup Velveeta Cheese
Grated Parmesan cheese-optional
Slice peppers in half lengthwise. Remove and discard insides.
Brown meat with onion. Drain off any fat.
Add dash salt and pepper.
Stir in tomatoes, rice, ½ cup water, and Worcestershire.
Cover. Simmer for 15 minutes.
Stir in cheese, and heat until melted.
Stuff peppers and place in a 9 x 13 casserole dish.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, or until very hot.
Garnish with Parmesan cheese, if desired.
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