This past weekend Rachel and I celebrated our 5 year wedding anniversary. It both feels like it was only yesterday, and a lifetime ago. I guess there is truth to both those feelings though, in that it was more than a lifetime ago for our little guy(s), but for Rachel and I-we still feel like newlyweds.
I consider myself extremely lucky to have Rachel. Not because I’m hard to live with – I’m not (or so I like to think!). I always put the seat down, I cook and clean, and I buy her flowers randomly just because – but because it was luck that I met her. She lived down the hall from me freshman year of college. And even though we shared a few of the same classes, who knows if we ever would have talked if not for her living just a few doors away.
I’m also thankful to have her, and for her patience. After we graduated I left for Japan to teach English for a year while she continued onto her Master’s. Living on the other side of the world brings a whole new meaning, and challenge, to a long distance relationship. But she stuck with me. Even when I almost got her lost in Japan when she came to visit.
“Just get off at the Tsuiki train stop” I told her when she came to visit me. I had to work one morning, but we were going to meet up after. “I don’t know Japanese, how do I know what stop to get off at?” she asked. “Just get off at 築城町” I said, starting to write it down as if it was no big deal. It was. Rachel does not read Japanese. Yet somehow I didn’t lose her in Japan. And when she returned home after our too short one week visit, I realized I didn’t ever want to lose her. I made up my mind, there in Japan, to finish my one year contract and return home to marry her. And I did.
Now, 5 years later, we have a beautiful Baby Boy and another on the way. We do those cheesy “married couple” things like occasionally finishing each others sentences, or saying the same thing. (Like playfully telling Baby Boy the lobsters will bite his bottom while with him at the grocery store – we apparently both do this. Poor kid!) And we very much prefer an evening home on the couch with each other over being out.
I never thought I wanted to get married, or have kids. I never thought I would want any of what I have now. But now that I have it I can’t ever imagine life without – without her or my boys.
We spent our anniversary weekend doing what we enjoy most, spending time with each other and Baby Boy. We had a delicious meal out (thanks for babysitting Lola!), but we also did a lot of good cooking at home.
For lunch we made this Asian Chicken & Cabbage Salad as part of our Secret Recipe Club assignment. It comes from Mellissa, from A Fit and Spicy Life, our secret foodie assignment. Mellissa says she never cooks the same dish twice. I hope she makes exceptions, because this salad is well worth making again. It is, as Rachel said, “so much more exciting than a lettuce salad”.
Two types of fresh cabbage, snow peas, carrots, scallions, and mandarin oranges mixed with an Asian sesame dressing – delish. We topped with some chow mein noodles for a little extra crunch, though we bet some sliced almonds would also be pretty good.
We’ll be making this dish again. A great addition to the cookbook. Thanks Mellissa!
Recipe from: A Fit and Spicy Life
Note: We used leftover Asian Grilled Chicken by Rachel Cooks that we had made a few days ago, or reference Mellissa’s original post for her Asian Chicken recipe – or as alternative, just grab a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken from the store.