The secret of a successful marriage

What is marriage all about? Based upon my personal research, experimentation, and analysis, I have the answers to your questions.

This is for all you young’uns who’re on the cusp of searching for a mate or for the older and hopefully wiser female who perhaps wants to dip a toe back into the dating pond.

Where’s Harry? A Wet Republic pool party in full swing

Do you want a life partner with whom to share your laughs, your tears, your bout with intestinal flu, your pillow and cat-laden bed, and to assist in the breeding of your offspring?

What’s the secret to my long lasting (twenty-two years together, nineteen married) relationship?

The secret is…COMPROMISE. 

Not really. I’m only messing with your head.

What works around here is torture and retaliation.

That’s it. Simple. Torture and retaliation.

It works like magic.

Case in point: My tugboat man goes out to sea for quite a while-usually two months or so at at time. When he returns, all he can think about (other than THAT) is surfing. Yes, he’s a big old surfer baby. Right now there are big winter waves pounding our coast.


This is not my captain because he’s not a dick dragger. That is NOT my term. I didn’t think of it but I wish I had. It’s what the young folks call a boogie boarder. Very descriptive, right? Think about it…


This isn’t him, either. He’s not that cute but thank goodness, he’s less hairy.


This isn’t him either, but this is how big the waves were at Sunset Cliffs.

A couple days ago he left at 5:30 a.m. to surf in La Jolla. In case you’re a surfer yourself, waves were mostly six feet with an occasional eight foot set. I was just about on my last nerve with this surf obsesh, so I blocked the driveway with sawhorses and trash cans so he couldn’t pull in the driveway.  Hee hee.sawhorse2C11TrashCanOld.jpg2F5B174A-5A60-43AB-8E0F6CCF2434E2ED.jpgLargerHe had to get out of his truck, move the obstacles, and then pull in.

After that, I used my wiles to torture him into building four more shelves for my lovely collection of shells and rocks.

And that brings us to today. Sunday. I guess the honeymoon’s over.

I was out in the garage chatting up the hubs about tonight’s dinner menu: freshly baked French bread, Caesar salad with my signature dressing, and thought I’d make some Frico at the same time that I make the croutons. I asked him:

“Have you ever had Frico? Do you know what it is?”

“Yeah, I know what a Frico is, I’m married to one.”


This is Frico, I am not Frico.

This is Frico, I am not Frico.

I was being the  best wife ever; I brought him lunch on  a tray while he was working on restoring his rowboat and building yet another shelf (I love shelves, OK?) and THIS is the attitude I have to deal with!? After I brought him a wheatgrass smoothie, fresh pear cut in half and filled with nonfat cottage cheese dusted with cinnamon–blueberry-smiley-face-berries-pixmac-photo-75642785and to make it extra-special, a smiley face out of fresh blueberries–he retaliates with a comment like that? Oh, he’ll pay all right, oh yes he will. We’ll see who’s FREAKY when he takes me to South Coast Plaza tomorrow. We’ll test the limits of his stamina and endurance throughout the huge shopping center. We’ll whet our whistle at one end with Bloomingdales as we march determinedly toward my personal holy grail, (do you hear the trumpets sounding?) as we round the corner to….Chanel–Chanel, the holder of my bliss.

Torture and retaliation-the stuff of which great marriages are made.

Frico, not Freako

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Using largest holes on a 4-sided grater, coarsely shred enough cheese to measure 1 cup. Line a large baking sheet with nonstick liner. Stir together cheese, flour, and pepper. Arrange tablespoons of cheese 4 inches apart on liner, stirring cheese in bowl between tablespoons to keep flour evenly distributed. Flatten each mound slightly with a metal spatula to form a 3-inch round.Bake frico in middle of oven until golden, about 10 minutes. Cool 2 minutes on sheet on a rack, then carefully transfer each crisp (they are very delicate) with metal spatula to rack to cool completely.

46 thoughts on “The secret of a successful marriage

  1. Love this! And I know this wasn’t the point of the post, but that dog on the boogie board was so cool!

    Sometimes I wish my husband would go away for 2 months at a time… In a good way though. Absence makes the heart grow fonder and all that.

    Grew up in Chula Vista / Bonita… Loved to visit the Cliffs. Loved everything about the area! Nice to have found you here.


    • Yeah, a native! Welcome! Glad you liked the dog pic, I did too! People always say they wish their hubs went away like mine but it’s more difficult than you think, adjusting to being dual after being single, and they just can’t come home if they feel like it, or any reason but a true emergency!

      On Mon, Jan 7, 2013 at 8:25 AM, Enchanted Seashells…Confessions of a Tugbo


      • Yeah, I thought about that after I posted the comment; I hope that didn’t come out as insensitive. My dad was Navy and went out for 6 months at a time. It had a lot more cons than pros, and that adjustment period on both sides isn’t much fun for any party involved.

        Oh! What may I call you? Shelly? 🙂


      • Of course I didn’t think you were being insensitive, maybe I need to do another post explaining how it’s always an adjustment when they come back from being deployed or on assignment. 6 months is just too long esp if you have young children. I don’t think this would work if we still had kids at home. as it is, he was in russia when my son got his phd and couldn’t come to the commencement with me so i went with my son’s biodad.

        On Mon, Jan 7, 2013 at 8:50 AM, Enchanted Seashells…Confessions of a Tugbo


  2. Not married but my “domestic partner” (because calling him my boyfriend is starting to seem silly and weird) will do things like ignore me so he can do techy computery things and get cranky even though I make him roasts and stews and meaty dishes that I could care less about eating…and then I convince him that we should go to Florida.


  3. Another awesome post! Thanks for the big laugh I got at your hubs very courageous (aka stupid?) comment of being married to a Frico! Lordy be. Please keep up these great shares, and yummy recipes. Every visit here gets me charged up! Cheers, Gina


  4. I’m just single…maybe one day I’ll paint that toenail and dip it in the the meantime I’ll just go make some Fricos


  5. I never did get that marriage thing right….again and again and again and again..well you get the idea but I love my friends and family that have. One thing I noticed in all is that they are best friends. May not always like each other but learn to laugh at themselves (and sometimes each other)!


    • Hubs is not usually so witty, I was surprised by the swiftness of his snarky response, but I admired the skill. I retaliated, don’t you worry about that. 🙂

      On Tue, Jan 8, 2013 at 10:50 AM, Enchanted Seashells…Confessions of a Tugbo


    • YOU?? You’re not supposed to be tortured, I’m not married to you, ha ha! What have I done?? Please tell me quick cos you’re mentioned in my post for today and I need to know!! You are part of my storyline for today, don’t tell me I’ve done you harm???!! Girl, NO!

      On Wed, Jan 9, 2013 at 1:06 PM, Enchanted Seashells…Confessions of a Tugbo


      • I meant with this blog,Frico! (Of which I had never heard before this!) This was a riot! Torture and retaliation! Maybe not retaliation to me, but this was torture!
        (I’ll have to check out today’s…me? Really? With Hillary, again?LOL!)


      • You’re in good company with FurFiles and PetitChocolatier. All good, my friend, all good. Right now I have a moment to myself while he’s outside with his rowboat restoration project. We’re supposed to have rain tomorrow so this is an outside day for us. I was doing yardwork.

        On Wed, Jan 9, 2013 at 1:54 PM, Enchanted Seashells…Confessions of a Tugbo


  6. Me -16 years together & 12 married later this year. We still natter at each other all the time. When people first get to know us they think we’re arguing. Hubby is fond of saying you can tell when we’re arguing – everything is quiet, it’s the only time we don’t talk! 🙂


  7. I just found your blog! love it! My husband and I have been married for a year he is a mate on a tugboat! its nice to hear someone who lives the same type of life as we do! he surfs as well!


      • Well.. we have a 4 m old baby he takes up most of my time when my hubs is gone! and i get my shop on! He works 3 weeks on and 3 weeks off! its so nice to have the time together when he is home.


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