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Living in fantasy land

I'm in the back row, standing next to the male teacher. Yes. I'm the one with the afro. My little love is wearing stripes in the front row.

When I was third grader, there was a boy with whom I’d play house during recess. Just to be clear, I said house, not doctor. I wasn’t that sexually advanced. When I played doctor as a little girl, I actually pretended I was a doctor. Anyhow, “house” consisted mainly of my little boyfriend building things out of branches and rocks and me “cooking” by smashing acorns and mixing them up with grass. We lived off the land like pioneers for 30 minutes everyday after lunch. Then we went to our separate homerooms and wrote notes to each other on tiny folded pieces of paper:

[ ] YES
[ ] NO

We’d exchange the notes after school on our respective travels home. And we’d covertly return them to each at lunch the next day. Oddly enough, we never spoke to each other. Not a single word. But we were deeply in 8-year old love.

It seems I haven’t matured too much over the past 3 decades (OMG! 30 years! Where does the time go? Where’s my eye cream?!). While I lost touch with my first love, my current love and I still like to play house. Here’s the latest example: Do you watch the HGTV Dreamhome giveaway? I almost don’t want to mention it in case you don’t…because then you, too, might enter the contest and ruin my chances of winning a gorgeous house in Stowe, Vermont.

Stowe, Vermont: Where I’d be close to my family. And where I could be peaceful and happy with Jim and our cats in the mountains. Where we’ve already planned how we’d use each and every area of the home: from the outdoor hot tub to the dormitory-style guest area. Yes, friends and family, we have a very generous open door policy. I’ve even imagined our Sunday morning pancake breakfasts where I plan to make flapjacks (sans smashed acorns and grass) for everyone…even my gluten free companions.

Jim and I talk about our new home in Vermont as if we’re actually going to win. We’ve talked about what we’ll do for work in the mountains of New England, and even how we’d acclimate our cats to the new house. With the economy so tight we aren’t able to take a vacation this winter, it’s nice we can still take a free trip to Fantasy Land. There’s nothing quite as enjoyable for me as playing make-believe as a grownup. It’s so much more fun than dealing with the reality of bills, taxes, and the ever-growing list of costly repairs we have to make in our actual home. As long as I eventually deal with the dreary stuff, why not take time out to play?

Experts always tell us a rich fantasy life is important to keep things spicy in the bedroom. Shouldn’t the same advice apply in other rooms of the home?

We used to write each other little love notes all the time when we were dating, but Jim and I don’t pass them as often these days. (Although I’ve kept every single one in a special box and love reading them now and then). These days, our notes usually take place over email and there’s frequently a grocery list pasted at the bottom. Hey…I should write him an e-love note right now…with a link and a reminder to enter the HGTV home giveaway. Until the contest deadline, I’m keeping hope alive.

See you all in Stowe.

Your comments

  1. DGold says:

    I used to be “in love” with Jack Managano. This was a 5th grade thing but it was still a thing. We were square dancing partners. We also used to rate each other via passed note. I got a 10 with a smiley face and he got a 10+. One day he called my house and I was so panic stricken that I told my dad to take a message and I never talked to him after that. I was too scared. Wonder what he’s up to now…..

    Oh…and I don’t watch HGTV but if you want me to throw a Stowe house vote your way, I will.

    • Robyn Okrant says:

      OMG I love that. And I’m slightly jealous you had a male square dancing partner. As a tall girl, I was always the guy. Did wonders for my self-esteem.

      I think you should Google Jack.

  2. DGold says:

    Oh Robyn….I have tried….I have tried….

  3. Robyn Okrant says:

    i was convinced that brian and i were going to win last year’s home giveaway in new mexico. alas…

  4. Joy says:

    Such a great post. Loved the part about 8 year-old love. When I was six, I sat on the top of the monkey bars with a six year-old boy and he said he loved me. That night, my sister told my dad I had something important to say, and I told him I knew who I was going to marry. He was the son of a famous racing car driver but he left our school the next year and I never heard from him again. Almost 35 years later, my dental hygienist and I were swapping stories about old loves and it turned out he was one of her patients. “A very nice guy,” she said. By this time I was very happily married.

    • Robyn Okrant says:

      That is so funny Joy! What a small world. Are you curious at all? I’d totally stalk his next cleaning :)

      • Joy says:

        I neglected to mention that the conversation with my dental hygienist took place in California, more than 10 years ago! (I’d only been married for about a year at the time.)

        She even got out his picture; I could see that he’s very decent looking but I was too embarrassed to do more than a quick glance.) She was the sort of hygienist who tells you really interesting stories of her own, so you can’t help sharing.

  5. Hello!

    I live in Europe (Sweden) but was surfing on the internet and found this page through “Living Opera”.

    This is so great – and please keep writing ! It is what women want to read, need to read on a daily basis.

    Have a great sunday!
    Best regards,
    Lise (a Swedish blogger)

  6. I agree with you totally. Please write more.