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It’s called a davenport

When asked about what we like to do in our spare time, my husband and I mostly look at each other and laugh. I usually ask the well-meaning person if they mean hobbies, and if so I spout off the norms of reading, garage sales or driving the back roads to get lost. Sometimes I’ll get a head nod, and sometimes I’ll get a “no, I mean what are some activities you like to partake in?”

And I reply, “Well, mainly we like to sit on the couch and take in some TV or movies, maybe go out to eat and see a matinee.”

There’ll be a slight cock of the head and a “you mean you don’t like hiking? Biking? Golf? Playing softball? Basketball?”

I see where this is going and say, “We love soccer. We’ve always been a soccer family.”

Then comes the “Ohhh, I see. I don’t know much about soccer.”

Then we laugh awkwardly and move on.

We’ve always been a soccer family, brought on by my husband’s love and skill in the game. My kids took to it, played it ferociously, and I learned to love and become a crazed fan of it. But soccer isn’t the main topic here because the topic is what our favorite activities are.

I’ll name them in order: watching TV, cooking good foods, watching movies, traveling frugally and relaxing.

I said it. We are pros at relaxing. In my life I’ve never seen anyone as intentional at resting his body as my husband. When he goes to work, he works faster than anyone I’ve ever seen. He’s been self-employed for 24 years, and you don’t get anywhere if you don’t do the job correctly. He’s a blur of motion and professionalism, but when he comes home, it’s time to rest.

When my dad would come home from work, I would see him outside cutting the grass, spreading mulch or doing something in the woodshop. He never stopped to sit down unless it was after supper in the winter and he was watching the news and reading the paper. Maybe working outside was his relaxation, or maybe he came from a different time when relaxing — except on Sundays — was frowned upon. That idle hands thing. I appreciate my heritage, but friends, resting is good for the soul.

I love the way my husband will come home, take off his shoes and sit down to drink coffee with me. We get a good supper on the table and continue the conversation, each forkful with a different tidbit of his and my own day for good measure. Then we will retreat to our living room, where he will fluff his pillows and settle in for some good home-improvement shows.

We have our work days where I’m mowing the lawn or working in the garden and he’s doing repair work on the house. Owning a home doesn’t let you neglect those duties, but it also shouldn’t overtake your life to the point where you pass each other tiredly in the hallway at night as you fall into bed, at least not every single day.

If he’s shown me anything in our many years together, it’s to let your body rest. It’s to feel your bones sink into the sofa with a good book or in his case a stack of magazines by his side as he lets the day drain away.

There are some people who can’t sit still, and that wouldn’t be us. We’re not hikers or club-joiners, nor are we meeting-goers or sports fanatics. We spend lots of time together doing things we enjoy, like discovering small diners, finding roads less traveled, drinking craft brews and local wines, viewing lots of movies, and sitting on the couch (or davenport as my grandma Stutzman would say) beside each other.

We’re not that into activities, but we are pretty into each other. And that’s an activity I can get behind.

Published: April 3, 2017
New Article ID: 2017704039989