Posted By: Carl Marge and Carl - 12/09/07 02:21 AM
Today is our 12th anniversary. Our wedding was on December 8, 1995, one year to the date of our first date - December 8, 1994.

We went out for a gourmet seafood buffet and glass of reisling and then looking at holiday lights before watching Tim Tebow win the Heisman Trophy.

From the beginning, Marge and I have done things together, and we can talk. And she stirs my soul. And my blood.

We met from each of us posting a personal ad in the Tampa Tribune. It was the first time for both of us. We noticed that we both liked football and sports and music.

We talked on the phone, and I invited on a date. She met me at my favorite hangout - a piano bar called Armands in Brandon, Florida. The entertainers would call on some regulars to sing one or two.

When I spotted Marge at the entrance, I saw she was about my height, and perhaps a little taller, depending on her shoes. But that didn't concern me. And she was dressed elegantly, I thought. And a knock-out.

I went to her, and at the table, we saw that both of us enjoyed the music, and didn't need to talk all the time. And as we slow danced, I could tell. We meshed.

But our anniversary night is still in progress, so I'll resume later, guys.
Posted By: Anonymous Re: Marge and Carl - 12/09/07 03:53 AM
Happy 12th anniversary! Hope you are having a wonderful evening!
Posted By: Anonymous Re: Marge and Carl - 12/09/07 05:13 AM
happy anniversary :):):):)
Posted By: big bad momma Re: Marge and Carl - 12/09/07 05:30 AM
congrats to the two of you,may you celebrate many more.
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 12/09/07 06:20 PM
I hope you had a great anniversary congrats:)
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 12/10/07 01:04 AM
Thanks, everyone. During the course of the evening, we reminisced some about our first date.

As we sat, talked, and danced at Armands, we could see that we enjoyed each other's company. I was asked to sing, and the entertainer persuaded Marge to sing.

Let's put it like this - despite a lifetime of singing in a pretend voice, and having my kids beg me not to sing, I actually found out that I sing pretty good. Especially when I sing songs from the fifties and sixties, and slow songs since - particularly country and western. But while I'm good, Marge is great! Had her life been a little different, I could easily picture her having a singing career.

Marge (and her good friend, Connie) was impressed that instead of meeting Marge at a generic place, I had chosen a favorite stomping ground where I was known. And it was a pretty classy place.

For my part, she definitely did not detract from my image. On the contrary, she won the hearts of everyone there. And you could tell that people were glad that I had found someone special. People could tell that I was lonely for a special relationship. I wanted, not just a "romance," but a lifetime of romance.

As the piano bar wound down, Marge and I realized neither of us were ready for the evening to end. I came to realize that Marge's night shifts as a labor and delivery nurse made her more of a night person.

We decided to go to a nearby restaurant for an early breakfast. Years later, I can't recall exactly all that we talked about. It's impossible to really learn all a person's history, even in years and years, let alone a few hours. Yet, somehow we seemed to "know" each other. By the time our breakfast and several cups of coffee had been consumed, we saw it was about 4 in the morning. Not really a problem for either of us - I think this was a Saturday night, and I worked weekdays only, and Marge could sleep the day before her shift Sunday night.

Marge had mentioned, while we were still at the piano bar, that singing karaoke was much cheaper, and you got to sing more songs (if the rotation was reasonably small). She mentioned that she went to a place called Big Al's in Temple Terrace (a suburb of Tampa) on Monday nights for karaoke, and we made plans for me to meet her there on Monday week.

As we walked to our cars in the parking lot, I did not intend to try to kiss her, although the idea was certainly on my mind. Nonetheless, I didn't resist when she kissed me!

More later.
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 12/10/07 01:14 AM
Love the stories of you and Marge. Wish we lived in FL sounds like you two would be great to know.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 12/10/07 01:46 AM
Thanks, Pretty Bird. I notice that you and I are running neck and neck on numbers of posts. Not a chance we're going to come near to catching the others, though. <grin>

Not that we post to make the top posters list. But you do notice. I've liked reading and posting on Lisa's (and in my mind, PDM's) board.
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 12/10/07 01:57 AM
Funny you should mention that lol.
Most of my postings are in the bird section but as you have noticed I have been straying a little to the other sections.
I love that PDM put in a marriage topic as I have many funny stories that have happened over the years but I do have to pace myself plus I really need to pull myself away from this computer once in awhile especially this week as all my kids are coming home for Christmas this coming week-end and I'M NOT READY.
This Christmas is going to be fun we now have 3 grandchildren this year we went from 1 to 3. Drew our oldest is so funny he comes out with the craziest things now He turns 5 in Jan.
The other two (girls) were born this year. I was so excited finally some girls to buy fun things for (I had 2 sons).
I was not on the forum for some time as I was knitting like crazy and I now have a sweater project going for Drew but now that I got hooked back into the forum that has taken a little back seat. This is addicting.
Also for our anniversary my husband got me a new (music) keyboard so I have been spending lots of time on that the birds love it and Nacho (our tiel) has to sit right on my hand as I'm playing (Don't think that that isn't fun). He is a real hoot he bopps his head up and down to the beat of the music.
Well enough of my rambling.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 12/10/07 02:11 AM
Sounds like you have music in your soul, also!

And grandchildren are fun. Our youngest has spent a lot of time with us since his birth. He's now two. He'll be coming to visit us this coming Thursday for a few days. Marge got him a red wagon (and other toys).

I know what you mean about other projects. I have plenty, and am a househusband, also.
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 12/10/07 02:25 AM
Yes I love music. What is so funny though is that I took music lessons starting at 5 on the accordion of all things. Then went to the piano (did both together for a while) then in my teens went to organ. My mom and I fought all the time over practicing
(I hated it then).
Well now I can sit for literally hours playing the time just flies good thing my husband like to listen to me otherwise I would probably drive him crazy playing for so long.
He got me my first keyboard about 5 years ago and I have played just about every day since. Can't sing though (I really really can't) I do envey those who can.
And I'm not that great at playing thats why it all for fun and our enjoyment. My husband thinks I'm great so that's all that counts. I'm trying to teach Nacho rock around the clock.
He knows the notes only gets them sort of mixed up. I can't sing but I can whistle.
I learned how when I was pretty young and I think I drove everyone nuts when I first learned how. My grandpa use to call me a bird.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 12/10/07 02:44 AM
A pretty bird, I bet your Grandpa thought.

My first wife had a base accordion that she played.
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 12/10/07 02:51 AM
Yes he did teach me.
I will bet there were a lot of us in our generation that played the accordion.
Well its going on 9 here and these poor little birdies need to have lights out so have fun catching up to me lol.
If you post I'll answer tomorrow.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 12/11/07 01:30 AM
After our date, the next night I was again in Armands. During the course of the night, vendors came in with rose buds to sell. I bought one, deciding to drop over to the hospital where I knew Marge was working. I had no idea about if I would be allowed in the labor and delivery unit where Marge was an RN.

As I parked my car in the parking lot, and started walking toward the hospital, Marge called out, "Carl, is that you?" She had come outside for an infrequent smoke break.

The idea of karaoke - something I had never done before - was a little intimidating, so I decided to go get the lay of the land, you might say. Monday night, about an hour before karaoke would begin, I went into Big Al's and sat at the bar. As conversation began, I shared that my date had invited me to join her the following week, and I wanted to get kind of a head start.

"That must be Marge!" a woman exclaimed. Turns out she was the KJ (karaoke jockey) and a friend of Marge's.

Soon, I was at a table with other friends of Marge's, including her best friend, Connie. And Connie is a bit of a psychic. She wanted to read my palm. Connie wasn't specific in her comments, but led me to believe she was pulling for me! I think I recall her saying something about me being the one.

So, as I was looking through the books of the songs available, Marge showed up! We were both surprised.

I had a bit of a headache, so I had my doubts that I was really "wowing" anyone. But I picked a very old country song - from the late 40's, I think. Well, I found out really fast that some of those old songs had a faster tempo than you'd expect. The KJ had to help me. She picked up her microphone and sang with me until I settled down. And I did better on the next one.

Although it didn't seem like I was winning any prizes for romantic behavior, apparently I did well enough. Marge told me she was having some friends over on Friday night for Trivial Pursuit and chili, and invited me.

More later.
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 12/11/07 03:22 AM
We are waiting.
However it will have to be read tomorrow as its time for the little birdies to go to bed. Lights out.
Posted By: val313 Re: Marge and Carl - 12/11/07 04:03 PM
great story Carl. I love reading about you and your lady. Happy anniversary late.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 12/13/07 02:33 AM
Thanks, Val. Sorry, PB. I should have been clearer - by "later," I meant when I had time to post again.

The night of the trivial pursuit went well. Several of the guests were KJs and Marge's friend, Connie was there with her husband. Marge's chili was great (still is), and she makes a lot of mashed potatoes for a base (if wanted). And Marge is good at trivial pursuit. I'm not that good, but I was relaxed with the companionship, and felt I was one of the group.

And I had decided "faint heart" did not win the fair lady! As people left at the close of the party, I stood with Marge at the door saying farewell.

As we sat on the couch, Marge gave me the "let's go slow" speech. I remembered my Mother telling me about a guy who had been hearing about a competitor for her affections. She said that rather than getting upset or talking trash about the other guy, he just agreed that the other guy was nice.

In that spirit, I told Marge I understood what she was saying, but that I had a right to my feelings. And I felt I was falling in love with her.

In effect, we were never apart after that! Of course, Marge had to make the obligatory visit to my apartment to see how I kept house - and to see if there were signs of female residence. And she shook her head at my lack of Christmas decorations. But whether at her place or mine, we were together.

And soon, we moved my things in with hers. Over time, they have all become ours.

My first marriage lasted 21 years, and the split-up was quite painful for me. My second one lasted only about a year. We were better friends than mates. Been years since I've seen her, but I still feel we are friends.

Neither of Marge's first two marriages were very supportive of her as an individual and a woman. She pulled herself out of some unpleasant circumstances, worked, went to school, and got her RN license. And you could not find a more independent woman than Marge. As I've already said, she karaoked, and she would occasionally date what she called "boy toys."

So, even though Marge had posted the personals ad, she wasn't all that eager for any lifestyle change. She, like me, sensed a desire for a deeper relationship, but marriage was not in her future, she decided.

Nonetheless, I'm kind of a traditional guy in some ways. So during the year, I would keep asking her to make "an honest man" of me. And we had our first arguments. I learned that we could do so without it meaning that all was over. And we could still laugh and still love each other.

I can be a persistent guy! So, eventually Marge agreed to our getting married. As a matter of fact, after several proposals, I had warned her that she would have to ask me the next time. And she did.

Next time, I'll pick up with our wedding preparations.
Posted By: PDM Re: Marge and Carl - 12/13/07 01:32 PM
Originally Posted By: Carl
... Yet, somehow we seemed to "know" each other. ...

The number of times I've heard that!
~ When someone meets the 'right' person.

Belated congratulations on your wedding anniversary!!! smile
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 12/13/07 07:25 PM
My husband and I always think its funny when we say the same thing at the same time. We do this quite often actually.
Posted By: Argyll Re: Marge and Carl - 12/27/07 11:26 PM

Woof! Woof!!
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 01/03/08 12:23 AM
Hi, Mark! Hope the year goes great for you.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 01/05/08 04:06 AM
Sometime soon after New Year's of 1995, we moved my things into Marge's home. Marge was quite impressed with my thoroughness as we cleaned my apartment for termination of my rental. After dealing with which of our things we would use, which we would pass on or discard, and where to store things, we began to think of getting another place - closer to our work, larger, and perhaps more modern.

But as we viewed homes and the attendant prices, we began to see that it might be better to remodel her home. It was a concrete block home, just about a square, with a "Florida" room at the front of the house and louvered windows and screens. A perpendicular set of cabinets (to the usual ones above the stove and on either side of the sink) separated the kitchen from the dining room. The living room and master bedroom and master bathroom had been enlarged by an add-on to the house, with a sloped roof joined to the peaked one for the main part of the house.

I loved the paneling in the living room - real wood, not just laminate. To the rear of the living room a set of French doors opened to a screened in concrete deck that ran the length of the house and overlooked a back patio, a pool deck, and an above-ground oval pool.

We refinanced the house for remodeling money, and engaged a contractor to upgrade the kitchen, and extend the living room into the back "porch" area (reducing the porch area, but increasing the living room). I worked for a maintenance supply house which provided next day delivery to apartment complexes, so I could get at-cost appliances and many supplies for the remodel - new stove, refrigerator, a dish washer, and the like.

To this day we cannot understand those who leave a remodel in the hands of the contractor and go away on vacation. We saw that we needed to have interaction at all stages, and even then we had to adapt and solve problems.

I insisted on saving as much of the paneling from the living room as we could, and on the addition, it was re-used about half way up the wall.

Not to dwell on the remodel, but I decided to do the kitchen floor tiling myself, as I'd done it once before. It might have been okay, but I decided to remove all the old flooring, and had a tremendous amount of trouble in doing so. Then, I found problems with the flooring that the tile had simply covered!

Since this was the third marriage for each of us, we had little desire for a large, elaborate wedding, with so many wanting us to do this or that. We decided to have an extremely small, secret wedding, and then the next night have a karaoke party at a club we went to often. There, we'd announce our wedding.

Marge's sister, Rosanne, an artist and experienced in florist arrangements, did the flowers and Marge's boquet and my boutonniere. And she also did the pictures. A KJ friend of ours, Ray, was like me - a former minister. I liked his view of spirituality and we understood one another. I asked him to perform the cermemony (that I would write), and I asked my boss at work to use his Notary Public license to officiate and make the wedding legal.

One of the karaoke friends that we had played guitar and sang in a "olides but goodies" band. Jimmy had a golden voice, and melted many women's hearts when he sang, among other things, "Just A Gigolo." Unlike many professional musicians, he sincerely liked karaoke. And he had accepted my relationship with Marge from the beginning. I asked him to be my best man (since Ray would be the "minister"). And he brought another friend as his date.

Ray's date, Wendy, was also a KJ, and she was there also. And Marge asked Connie to be her Matron of Honor. She brought her husband, Rush. Rush was not into karaoke, but he and Connie were quite comfortable together.

So plans were made and invitations sent. We suggested in the invitation to the karaoke party that all our family and friends were strongly urged to attend, as we would make an important announcement.

The afternoon of the wedding, Marge and I were still in our grubbies - laying tile! To this day, we laugh about that, and we point to that as my lesson learned about not planning more than I can do. So we finished up, and hurriedly cleaned up and changed.

The ceremony was beautiful, we thought. Here is part of what I had written:

I. OPENING {No procession; background music}

A. Minister's remarks:

My friends, we are gathered here today as the special friends of Marge and Carl - to witness and share in their bonding in marriage. As they have already bonded their lives together, they believe this is the natural progression for them. Like me, Carl is a former minister. He believes God ahs brought Marge into his life to love and cherish. While this is not the first marriage for either Marge nor Carl, both realize the importance of this event and affirm that they are making a commitment that will affect the rest of their lives. {personal remarks - maybe your perceptions of us and our relationship and of our friendship} {Your informal charge to us}


{Music selected by Marge} {Informal pledges, from the heart, from each to the other}



A. Do you, Carl, take Marge to be your wedded wife, to love and respect her as an integral part of your life? {answer} Will you love her, support her, talk to her, remember the romance and trust and teamwork that you both know to be essential to a contented marriage? Will you, through all circumstances, remain faithful to her, your marriage, and your love? {answer}

B. Do you, Marge, take Carl to be your wedded husband, to love and respect him as an integral part of your life? {answer} Will you love him, support him, remember that he is just a man who will need your help? Will you, through all circumstances, remain faithful to him, your love, and your marriage? {answer}



A. Since I have heard you pledge your love and loyalty one to the other, have seen you exchange rings as a symbol of your marriage, and observed as you acknowledged that you indeed take each other as wedded mates, by the authority given to me by the state of Florida as a NOTARY PUBLIC, I now pronounce you Husband and Wife. May your marriage be long and happy!

B. You may kiss now. {background music}


Previously I had arranged for a special dinner for the wedding party at Steak and Ale, including wine. After dinner, we went to a lounge where Pat Cole Henry, the entertainer who had the piano bar duties the night of our first date, had a gig. Naturally, he called on each of us to sing. I sang, "Since I Met You Baby."

I had sent Malcolm Glazer, the new owner of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, an invitation to our announcement karaoke party (and explained what the announcement would be). He - of course - sent regrets, but he did send us two fifty-yard-line front-row tickets to the next home game.

Many of our children did not attend the karaoke party. And they were quite upset with us. They all thought we would merely announce our engagement. But they forgave us. And they missed a great party!
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 01/07/08 11:28 PM
Well, looks like my saga of "Life with Marge" is not attracting interest any more. But I think I might do some more chapters on my own, privately.
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 01/07/08 11:40 PM
Carl I'm reading it.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 01/07/08 11:42 PM
Good. Thanks. I didn't know if anyone saw the last chapter, as it kind of dropped below the radar.
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 01/07/08 11:52 PM
It's sort of funny lots of the posts don't seem to be getting to many responses lately.

Anyway sounds like you had a really nice wedding. My son and his wife had a small wedding (our youngest) and it was so nice it was really relaxing you felt like it was just a big party.
They got married at a lodge and was mostly family and a few friends. Anyway just about everyone who attended stayed there. They had these beautiful cabins that you could rent and it was right on the shore of Lake Superior. We all partied the night before the wedding at the cabin rented by my sons in-laws. Then the wedding the next day out doors and it did start to drizzle but was not to bad it was still beautiful with the lake as a back drop. Then after the wedding we all got back in our comfortable clothes and kept the party going again in the cabin.
The cabins were just beautiful very rustic even though you could tell they were fairly new. Each cabin slept 10 people and then there was the main lodge.
I have to say it was one of the nicest weddings I have been to I think just because it was so relaxing.
So for everyone out there that does not think they can aford a wedding you don't have to go large for it to be really nice.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 01/07/08 11:56 PM
Sounds like something I'd like. I like being close to the water. My wife grew up in Corning and Watkins Glen - in upstate NY (finishing high school in WG). I've been there several times with Marge, including a high school reunion. We went to the Seneca Lodge for dinner several times.
Posted By: PDM Re: Marge and Carl - 01/07/08 11:58 PM
It does sound lovely, but a shame that not all your family were there because they didn't realise what would be happening.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 01/08/08 12:09 AM
Yes, and if we had it to do over, perhaps we would do it differently. Maybe we can have a re-enactment (or re-commitment) at 20 years. Not that I'm looking at getting committed! <joking>
Posted By: PDM Re: Marge and Carl - 01/08/08 12:33 AM
Sounds like a plan!
Posted By: val313 Re: Marge and Carl - 01/12/08 08:39 PM
It is! I am reading it. Just being lazy and not posting. Sorry.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 01/13/08 02:30 PM
Good. I didn't mean to whine and try to drum up readers. Some had been interested in the first chapters, and since the "latest posts" digest only shows the most current posts, I had thought that the wedding chapter might not have been noticed.
Posted By: pretty bird Re: Marge and Carl - 01/22/08 08:19 PM
Well Carl anything new happening lately?
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 02/02/08 01:06 AM
I'll probably add to Life with Marge on our web site:

Carl and Marge Travels as Soul Mates
Posted By: BLR Re: Marge and Carl - 03/19/08 04:41 AM
Carl - thank you for a wonderful glimps of your life.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 03/20/08 02:23 AM
Thank you, Barbara (is that right?), for your interest.

I'm a lucky man.
Posted By: val313 Re: Marge and Carl - 03/25/08 02:57 AM
Wonderful site Carl. It was good insight into your wife condition. I had never heard of it before. My mother has Rheumatoid arthritis so she can relate to being at war with your own body. Love seeing all the pics. You look like you have a happy life.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 03/25/08 03:07 AM
Thanks, is it Val? I need to get the site updated. I post on a lupus and autoimmune board, as well as some ITP boards. People who deal with pain and fatigue and other debilitating and/or disorienting conditions display a realism and grit that speaks to us all. Life is now. It is too short to be unhappy. Not everything can ever be just as you like, but it is wondrous, just the same.
Posted By: val313 Re: Marge and Carl - 03/25/08 03:12 AM
Living for today is the best advice ever. Hard to follow sometimes especially when you are young. But so very important.
And yes it is val. Give your wife a big hug for me. Cheers
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 03/25/08 03:23 AM
Hard to follow at any stage of life, Val. I can be fairly calm about the large issues of life, and worry endlessly about routine projects. Marge pulls me into the "happening" of life. I'm never bored.

You bet, I'll be happy to pass on your hug.
Posted By: PDM Re: Marge and Carl - 03/25/08 04:27 PM
Feeling totally secure in the love of one's partner ~ and one's family ~ is a wonderful thing! smile
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 03/31/08 01:30 AM
Yes, I can tell you are well grounded in love also, PDM.
Posted By: Argyll Re: Marge and Carl - 04/04/08 03:02 AM
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 04/07/08 03:08 AM
Hi, Mark. Good to hear from you, Buddy. As soon as I can break free from deck construction that Marge has me on, I'll check out your blogspot.
Posted By: Carl Re: Marge and Carl - 08/26/08 05:01 PM
Always good to count one's blessings.
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