And, In Other News

Today marks the 43rd year of my marriage to Studly Doright. Guess who forgot? Not Studly.

He called me early Tuesday morning on his way home from Orlando, and in response to my “hello,” he said, “happy anniversary,” prompting a quick glance at my calendar. Sure enough, July 30. Well, how about that.

Up until today I’d never forgotten the date of the day we said “I do” in a small Baptist church in Dumas, Texas. After 43 years maybe he’ll cut me some slack.

Time sure flies when you’re married to your best friend.

Peace, people.

Peaceful Snapshots from Panama City

Studly Doright and I enjoyed a quiet dinner at Uncle Ernie’s on the bay near Panama City, Florida, on Sunday evening. We were celebrating our anniversary a day early while awaiting our Texas grandkids’ arrival at the local airport. I took just a few photos at the restaurant, knowing I’d be in need of blog fodder this week.

What is it about the coast and surrounding area that makes me so happy? Wish I could bottle the feeling.

The kids made it just fine; although, their plane was delayed a bit. I might have been worried before I saw their sweet faces appear in the baggage claim area. Now, we’re thoroughly enjoying the giggles and general hilarity. Today we’re going to Wakulla Springs for a gator safari. Good times!

Peace, people.

38 Reasons Why, Plus 4 More

July 30, 2018, marks the 42nd anniversary of the day Studly Doright and I were married. We said our “I do’s” in a small Baptist Church in Dumas, Texas, where we were surrounded by family and friends. Our exciting honeymoon was a long weekend spent in Amarillo, Texas, a whopping 45 miles from Dumas.

Most of those friends and family didn’t expect that we’d remain married a year, let alone 42 years, after all, we were just barely adults. Yet here we are, more than four decades into this experiment called marriage. We’ve had some outstanding moments of couplehood and some really rotten times, as well. We’ve managed to survive through a lot of hard work, love, and forgiveness.

Four years ago on this date I published a piece titled “38 Reasons Why” in tribute to Studly. I even followed it up with a piece the next year. But today I give you 42 reasons why I love this man, and how we’ve made this whole marriage thing work.

1. He thinks I’m smart.

2. His sense of humor. It’s corny and quick and keeps me on my toes.

3. He’s a great mechanic. That ability has been ridiculously valuable throughout our 38 years together. No matter how broke we were we’ve always had reliable transportation.

4. He is handsome. Much better looking than I deserve.

5. He’s honest in his dealings with others. His golf buddies refer to him as the Boy Scout. He never cheats. Never.

6. He can admit when he’s wrong.

7. He isn’t afraid to show emotion.

8. He loves our kids fiercely.

9. The grand kids have compared him to a jungle gym. And he would do anything in his power to make them happy.

10. He is loyal, sometimes to a fault.

11. He treats his mother like a queen.

12. He is generous and big-hearted.

13. His laugh. Oh, wow, his laugh. Sitting through a funny movie with Studly is one of the best mood lifters in the world. I highly recommend it.

14. He is a really good kisser.

15. He is an incredible leader.

16. Have I mentioned how smart he is?

17. He will dance with me if he has had enough to drink.

18. He is a good driver.

19. He taught me to ride a motorcycle without wringing my neck.

20. He likes to hold hands.

21. He does everything in his power to make sure I’m happy.

22. Studly loves our cats as much as I do.

23. He is consistent. That might sound boring, but he’s the perfect counterpoint to my Inconsistency.

24. Punctuality is important to him.

25. He makes kick ass obstacle courses.

26. He is a decent amateur auctioneer for our family reunion fund raisers. What he lacks in speed he makes up for in witty repartee.

27. He is really good at mental math. I never need a calculator when he’s around.

28. My parents loved him.

29. He insisted that Daddy move in with us so we could care for him after Mom passed away. The two years we had with Dad before he died were some of the best of our lives.

30. He never lets me take myself too seriously.

31. He doesn’t worry.

32. He respects my opinion and listens to my points of view.

33. He sees me as an equal partner in our marriage.

34. He can cook much better than I can.

35. He can laugh at himself.

36. Studly has a stellar work ethic.

37. He knows how to enjoy life.

38. And, he loves me. He really, really loves me.

39. No matter how crazy his work becomes, he seldom brings it home.

40. He’s taken me places outside of his comfort zone because he knows how much I love to travel.

41. Studly supports my need for adventure even when he doesn’t want to join in.

42. He can still surprise me even after all these years together.

I made it! Truth is I could’ve gone on, but I probably lost most of my readers half way through. That’s ok. This one’s for my husband.

Peace, People.

Opposites Attract

Forty-one years ago Studly Doright and I exchanged wedding vows in a small Baptist church in Dumas, Texas. We were young, dumb, and totally in love. We were also poor, a fact I didn't fully comprehend until I began counting the funds we had remaining after spending a quick honeymoon in the dubious luxury of the Camelot Inn in Amarillo, Texas. 

We'd gotten married on July 30, 1976, and I remember turning to Studly on our 45 mile drive back to Dumas, Texas, and the rental home we'd signed a six month lease agreement on and saying, "This can't be right. We only have a hundred dollars left and you won't get paid again until the 15th." 

Thus began my understanding that my life had changed forever. No longer was I under the financial protection of my mom and dad. I was now a partner in a brand new relationship that extended beyond romance and into the arena of money. I was woefully unprepared for this new reality.

Thankfully, Studly was barely more prepared than I had been. Did I mention how dumb we were? The difference between the two of us was that he never doubted his ability to provide. I worried, but he never did. 

Somehow, we always managed to scrape enough money together to pay the rent and buy groceries.

Nowadays, the money isn't as tight. I still worry, though. Studly still doesn't. I guess that's the whole opposites attract theory in action. We've made it this far and that's no small feat. I think we'll shoot for at least another twenty years.

Peace, people.

Break Out the Champagne!

Thanks to all of my readers and followers for providing the encouragement that keeps me going. I might not be the world’s greatest blogger, but I’m fortunate to have the world’s greatest followers. 

Kisses and champagne for all. 

Yours truly,

Leslie Noyes

Rainy Days and Vacations Always Get Me Down.

Rain is our friend, right? Along with sunshine and good soil rain helps our gardens grow. But this forecast is bringing me down, man.

  
I’m especially bummed about the forecast for the Tampa area. Studly Doright and I have booked a beachfront suite at a resort in Clearwater, FL, for next week in celebration of our 40th anniversary. Their ten day forecast is as depressing as ours. 

Hopefully this whole mess will clear out by next Thursday. If not, Studly and I have to figure out how to have fun in a hotel room for five days. I should probably bring a deck of cards. And wine. Lots of wine.

Maybe Karen Carpenter can sing me out of my funk:

http://youtu.be/PjFoQxjgbrs
  
Peace, people!

My Husband is no Poet

Married young
my high school love
nearly forty years ago

Romantic novels
formed expectations
of how our lives should go:

Every day a poem
written in honor of
my beauty and my style,

Long conversations
about my attributes
all to make me smile.

Instead I got
this grounded man
no poetry in his soul

Who works so hard
to care for me, my
well-being is his goal

And if that isn’t
poetry of a sort, I reckon
it should be

The poetry of keeping
one’s hands on the wheel for
his woman’s sake

The verse of tending
to her every physical need in
sickness and in health

Maybe this man is the
poet I longed for in days
long past

Or perhaps he’s the muse
who fills my pages with tales
enough to last.

Happy anniversary Studly!