The Universe - in all of its’ infinite wisdom - brought Annie and I together some time ago, and while she is many things to many people, for liability purposes, I should tell y’all that in my book, she’s known to me as “Jon Snow: My Long-Lost-North-of-the-Mason-Dixon-Line Sister”. My theory is that the storks (not Starks) got mixed up regarding the details of the drops, etc., but luckily, fate brought us together and because sometimes we’re in the right place at the right time (Dr. John, anyone?), we’ve never looked back.
When Annie and Ryan entrusted me with this blog post (and as a celebrity editor of sorts), my mind began racing 1,000 mph - so many topics I feel I should cover! There’s so much y’all need to understand about this bagel-loving, latke-eating, smoked-salmon-on-a-sunday-morning family, and the first is that none of those things happen unless there is a predetermined family gathering involving the in-laws and the world’s ugliest pug (apologies - I stand corrected - he is, in fact, a Boston Terrier named Lincoln*).
Taking my unpaid work more seriously than most, while reviewing this website for the hundredth time, it dawned on me that my first post MUST serve as attestation of sorts to the claims Annie and Ryan are making (I hear y’all - how is this true?!), so consider the following a completely unbiased, genuine annotation of the empire they are building:
Unpopular Opinion: The “one” does not exist. Yup - despite what the Hallmark cards say, I genuinely believe “the one” is a comfort measure concocted by humans to deter loneliness. The truth is, the soul invites love in and thoughtful effort makes it want to stay. Ryan and Annie were not “meant to be” by any stretch of the imagination. Their lives did not initially align regarding a multitude of facets - and in their respective worlds, two weeks “initially” felt like ten months.
For many intentional, soul-grasping reasons, Annie and Ryan consistently chose to work through the “hard” stuff - the circumstances that sought to divide them - and focused their collective and individual energy on seeking the larger faces of connectivity. They later sifted through shallow waters and found a true understanding and genuine appreciate for each other, their children, their histories, and their vision for the future.
They worked hard and hustled for their current relationship, and the product of that dedication is physically represented here. Sauce was a dream - something they knew was always there, inherently requiring attention - demanding to be weeded and watered in order to foster an environment of success and love and hope that on a much smaller scale, serves as a wonderfully honest anecdote to the family unit they’ve worked even harder to embrace.
Sauce is a lush, thriving garden based entirely on their love for each other, and quite frankly, it quenches me.
I consider it a privilege to know and love not only Annie and Ryan, but also their four children, gaggle of parental figures, and every second of the chaotic life of which I’m lucky enough be a small part.
*To Nadine: I’m so sorry and also so simultaneously terrified of the ramifications I could potentially face by calling your dog-child ugly, but please forgive me and know I’ll fix you a large platter of my world-famous** 72-hr-pickle-brined-cast-iron-fried-chicken which might not mean anything to you, but I promise will change your life.
**”World-famous” is admittedly a matter of opinion, but just saying, no one has ever said anything bad about it because they were too busy getting second helpings.