A Recipe and a Love Story for Valentine’s Day

Hey y’all, with Valentine’s Day approaching in the middle of the work week, I woke up this morning with a game plan. After getting a ton of Saturday to-dos out of the way, I got busy searching for something super chocolatey to make for my man! Here’s the finished product:

Here’s the recipe:

Chocolate Caramel Sweetheart Brownies

6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

one cup butter

1 cup white sugar

1 cup all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

2 eggs

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Melt cocoa and butter on low. Transfer to a mixing bowl and cream together with sugar. Gradually blend in eggs one at a time. In separate bowl sift flour, baking powder and salt. Stir into chocolate mix. Add nuts and vanilla extract. Stir gently. Spread into greased 8″ square pan and bake at 350 degrees for twenty minutes. Top with scoops of ice cream and swirl with chocolate and caramel syrup. Yum!

And here’s that love story I promised…

I was midway through my senior year of high school, counting the days until I could start what I considered my real life in an out-of-state college. I planned to study broadcast journalism and travel the world telling important life changing stories. I remember telling my mother that I’d never marry a farmer and I’d never live in our small town. (As a farmer’s daughter who was weary of praying for it to start raining and then praying for it to stop raining, I was bent on marrying a nine-t0-fiver and living some place else, any place else.) Mama cautioned me not to be so adamant about what I wouldn’t do because I might end up eating my words. I laughed. Mama laughed last.

I write these words from my home in that same small town, the wife of one hard-working farmer. At any given time of the farming season you can find me praying for it to start raining or stop raining– and I would do it all over again. But to tell that story, we’ll have to go back to that senior year and the girl who fell in crazy, instant got-to-be-with-this-one-forever love with a college boy who had graduated mid-term and came home to join his dad on the family farm.

The Blond caught my eye driving around town in his blue pick-up truck. Who was this?! Soon I was circling a few extra times after cheerleader practice with my eyes peeled for his vehicle. I may have even begun stalking him, but no one has ever produced proof on that.

One night shortly thereafter I was warming up before a basketball game when one of my classmates told me The Blond was coming to watch me play. Me! Somehow he had gotten wind of my interest. Imagine that. I accused my buddy of lying just to aggravate me. (There was plenty of precedent.) He assured me that he wasn’t. I dismissed him but I couldn’t dismiss the thought, which is why I continued to scan the crowd during the game. It’s also why I managed to catch a glimpse of The Blond standing at the gym entrance while I was dribbling down the court! By now I had the scoop on my mystery man. I knew his name. I knew his life story. I knew he had graduated from my own alma mater as a multi-sport star athlete. This was my moment. I would shine, I would score, (the goal people, the goal), I would dribble the ball off of my own foot and watch it roll slowly, embarrassingly straight towards The Blond. Sigh.

The rest is history we’re still writing. The Blond and I have had to overcome our share of hurdles, beginning with my parents’ early resistance to an Older Man wanting to date their baby daughter– remind me to tell you how he charmed their socks off, too. It wasn’t the last hurdle in our relationship, of course, but thirty years into this thing we’ve gotten better at clearing ’em.

I’m not a famous journalist but through the unwavering, loving support of The Blond, I have found a way to tell my stories, and the last few years I’ve done a whole lot of traveling while I’m at it. Dreams do come true. Sometimes our job is just to recognize when it happens.

Hugs, Shellie

Have any of your dreams come true?


About Shellie Rushing Tomlinson

Known as The Belle of All Things Southern, Shellie Rushing Tomlinson is a national best-selling author, speaker, radio host, and columnist from Louisiana.
This entry was posted in All Things Southern, Friends & Family and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A Recipe and a Love Story for Valentine’s Day

  1. Hope Mills says:

    I’m so glad the Blonde won your heart! Our same town wouldn’t be as warm of a place with out you and the Blonde. We love you Both!

  2. What an incredibly sweet thing to say, Hope. Thank you! LOVE YOU LOTS!

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