Georgia Nicolette Clark ~
✿ June 15 - Welcome to Wildflower Estates! Today, to welcome everyone to the neighborhood, we're throwing a casual barbecue as a greet-your-neighbor event. It'll be out in the middle of the quad, so sunscreen up - you're in for a day of fun in the sun! ✿
“Baby, have you seen my earrings?” I called out of the bathroom.
“Which ones?” Tony called back. “You’ve got a million out here, Gigi.”
“The pink ones you got me for my twenty-first birthday.”
“Babe, I’ve bought you a lot of pink earrings.”
I sighed, and finished pinning my hair up to the side. “You’re so annoying,” I said, rolling my eyes as I left the bathroom and found the earrings within seconds. As I pushed one into my ear, Tony’s arms wrapped around my waist, resting on the top of my eight-months-pregnant stomach.
“I know, but you love me anyway.”
I rolled my eyes again, but laughed. “I guess it’s true that you can’t choose who you love.” I turned around to kiss him, but stopped short and crinkles my nose. “Because if you could choose, I’d definitely choose someone who was actually able to dress himself.”
“What?” Tony said defensively, taking a step back. “I have pants on. I have a shirt on. That’s dressed where I come from.”
“We come from the same place, dingbat!” I said, punching his arm. Sometimes it felt like we were back in high school, flirting our way until I asked him to homecoming. If I had waited for him to get up the courage, we probably wouldn’t even be married now. Though he did propose without any prompting from me. I can’t say that his sister Ana didn’t do any pushing, however. I loved my husband to death, but there was no way he had the ability to pick out the ring and set up a whole, elaborately decorated picnic dinner in a secluded section in the park on his own. He was perfectly romantic when it was spontaneous, but planned romantics made him incredibly nervous. My dad had to pin my corsage on for homecoming each year, and for his prom and mine three years later. It was a disaster – and I knew for a fact that his mom had picked out the corsages, too. “And baby, you can’t wear paint splattered jeans and a ratty college sweatshirt to a neighborhood barbecue.”
He stuck his arms out. “This sweatshirt isn’t ratty! It’s my favorite one! And it’s cold out!”
In response, I walked over to his closet. “Here. Take this blue striped button down, you can wear the pale pink tie to match my dress, and these dark wash jeans. I won’t make you wear khakis.”
Tony came and kissed me on the cheek. “I don’t know what I’d do without you, Gigi.”
I kissed him back, wrapping my arms around his neck. “I know. That’s why you married me.”
I felt him grin against my mouth. “That’s not the only reason,” he said in what can only be described as a growl against my throat as he wrapped his arms around my waist and pulled me closer to him.
I let myself get swept up for a moment before I swatted his shoulder. “Stop it, Tony. At this rate we’ll both have to get dressed twice. Go into the bathroom and change.”
“Cause you don’t think you’ll be able to resist my body?” Anthony grinned.
I sighed. “As much as I hate admitting you’re right, you’re right. Now please hurry up – you told that friend of yours you’d meet her and her husband at 12:30. You have ten minutes.”
Tony sighed dramatically, but grinned. “God I’m whipped.” Before he got up from the bed, he wrapped his arms around me one more time and gently nibbled on my ear. “By the way, G – you look beautiful.”
I blushed. I couldn’t help it. He might describe himself as whipped, but I was still as hopelessly head over heels for him as I was the day I met him. “So tell me again about this girl we’re meeting?”
“Honestly, I don’t know that much about her. We moved away when I was nine and she was six, so we’ve both done a lot of growing up. Our mom’s were best friends, though, so there was always a younger kid in the house for me to play with while Ana was out chasing boys from age six on. Which of course was when I was born. So really, what I’m saying is there was never a time when Ana wasn’t either getting her heartbroken or breaking someone’s heart that I can remember.”
“Oh, she means well.”
“Yeah, for the first two weeks anyway.”
“You’re just jealous you didn’t get to pal around as much as she did. Let’s face it, you were in love with me as soon as you set foot in Ashfield.”
“But of course. It doesn’t matter that we didn’t actually meet until nine years later.”
“Whatever. Small town.” I smoothed my dress over my stomach, and came to lean in the doorway of the bathroom. “But seriously. I need something to grab onto to make conversation with.”
“Babe, you’re the queen of conversation. You weren’t prom queen for nothing.” I just glared at him. “Seriously Georgia, the only thing I remember is that she liked making my G.I. Joes marry her Barbies in the sandbox in my backyard. And she’d try to throw sand in my face when I told her that G.I. Joes didn’t marry Barbies, they were too busy fighting off the bad guys. Oh, and she got in trouble on the first day of kindergarten because she kicked a kid who made fun of her name and pulled her hair.”
I smiled. “Sounds like my kinda lady, always putting you in our place.”
It was Anthony’s turn to roll his eyes. “What can I say, there are a lot of strong women in my life.”
“And don’t you forget it!” I said, wagging my finger at him, unable to keep from giggling.
He smiled back, and grabbed me behind the waist, pulling me closer to him. “What can I say, nothing turns me on more than a woman taking charge.”
“Stop it! We have four minutes before we have to leave.”
He grinned unashamed. “Can I help it that there’s nothing sexier than my wife pregnant with our first kid?”
“No, but have a little impulse control!” I swatted him again. “If I have to push you into a cold shower I will, but then your clothes will get wet and I will be very upset with you. Now, tell me about... Karen’s?... husband.”
“Good job. Her name is Karen. And honestly, I don’t know anything about him. She called him Banks when we were on the phone. I never really got to know him – I was three years older than them, and the only reason Karenina came over is because our mother’s were such good friends. From what she said on the phone, it seems like their story isn’t all that different from ours. She’s pregnant, too, only she’s about five months behind you. They’re having a girl. From what my mom told me, it was kind of a scandal back in the town. I guess she got knocked up before they were officially married, though no one has been able to actually definitively prove it. It’s just rumors. But that didn’t stop it from scandalizing every old Polish, Russian and Italian grandmothers in the place.”
“Oh, really,” I tsked. “It’s not that big a deal anymore! A marriage certificate is just a piece of paper. If people love each other it doesn’t matter.”
“Alright, you can explain that to Nonni at the next family reunion.”
“No thank you. She still scares me. Ever since she asked me if I supported the Germans. Blonde hair and blue eyes do not make me a Nazi!”
As he always did when I brought this up, Tony laughed. “Oh, come on, Georgia. That was funny and you know it.”
I bristled. “I do not!” The pregnancy hormones were about to kick in, and Anthony seemed to be able to sense it.
“You’re right, it wasn’t funny. Never was. I shouldn’t have laughed. Hey, look! If we leave now we’ll be two minutes early. Let’s go. I’m ready.” He grabbed my purse and my hand and led me out the door. “Look! Free food! And I think that’s Karen! Look honey, you can go bond with her about being pregnant! Let’s go!”
Despite my previous mood, I laughed, and shook my head. “You’re such a goofball, do you know that?”
He smiled. “Yeah, well. That is why you love me, right?”