Category Archives: Mr. ShuGar


we black

My two-year wedding anniversary is only a few months away. I can’t believe how fast the time has passed. I have so many things I’d like to discuss about marriage on my blog.  I have learned so much and I know I have still much more to learn. I do not proclaim to be any kind of expert at all.  Nevertheless, I would love to use my blog as a platform to explore my marriage journey with my lovely readers and also hear from others and their experiences.

Something important I try to remember in my marriage: “we” does not replace “I”, although people may advise you otherwise.  This does not mean that at times the “we” must supersede the “I.” After all, compromise is key to any healthy relationship. With Mr. ShuGar, this is sort of a non-issue since we both encourage and support each other’s personal endeavors. I want him to spend time with his friends without me. I want him to pursue his art, even if it takes up quality time from “we” on the weekends.  He wants me to go to Zumba. He wants me to blog.  However, I have to continually remind myself of this because I sometimes feel guilty when I take time for myself. I shouldn’t since this guilt is self-imposed, but I do on occasion. In our ShuGar world, the “I” is the foundation of any healthy “we.”

Just the other day, I had a revealing “we” moment with Mr. ShuGar. We were in a rush to eat dinner after work because we were going to a screening of Lost in Translation with none other than Sofia Coppola in person. You can read about my Sofia obsession here.  After we parked and started walking a few blocks to the restaurant, I realized I had forgotten the movie tickets in my car. Instead of wasting time with both of us running back to the car, we decided to split up.  I would get us a table at the restaurant and Mr. ShuGar would grab our tickets.

And then it happened. He quickly said, ”Just order me something you think I would like. Surprise me.” My jaw nearly dropped to the sidewalk. I was at a loss for words. I didn’t know Mr. ShuGar trusted me THAT much to order his meal. That’s a lot of responsibility and pressure to get it right. I should know; I am ultra picky when it comes to food. If I am hungry, if I eat crappy Mexican food, or if I don’t like the taste of anything, I get in my infamous food mood. Warning! Stay Away.

Yet, without any hesitation, Mr. ShuGar entrusted me with his dinner and off he went to fetch our tickets.  I quickly got to the restaurant and ordered for “we.” When Mr. ShuGar finally came back, he told me to keep his order a secret until the server would bring his food. He wanted to truly be surprised! Amazing! I don’t think I could handle such a surprise. I am such a control freak with my food. It’s too personal. Not for Mr. ShuGar. He believed 100% that I knew what he wanted in that very moment.

I admit I was a little nervous the whole time, waiting for the food to come, as I wondered if I had made the right choice. Did he really want that? Well, the server brought his BLT and corn on the cob and Mr. ShuGar was in food heaven. I did well. I ordered exactly what he really wanted. In that moment, I felt proud. Proud not only to have made him happy, but proud that we have reached an intimate level in our marriage. I know his heart and he knows mine. I listen to his wants because I value who he is.  The same is true when it comes to me.  I admire the type of “we” we have become.  It has sometimes been a jagged road to get to this point, but we are here.

In marriage, if you cherish the “I’s” in the relationship, the depth of “we” will naturally grow.  I look forward to discovering more about the sweetheart I married.

What have you learned about the “we” and “I” in your relationship?


Mrs. ShuGAr Signature1

Bottom photo credit: Ashley Rose Photography

My Pocket

Nene Pocket

Photo credit: Ashley Rose Photography

I am really silly with Mr. ShuGar.  The only other people I ever act like this with are my family. I sing to Mr. ShuGar random songs I make up in the moment; I do these funny dances right in front of him; I make up funny words or nicknames. All of this to get his attention and to just act playful in front of him. It’s a part of me I give to him for “his eyes” only.  These bursts of silliness are little parts of me that I give to him.

One of the silly phrases I frequently tell Mr. ShuGar  is this:

I’m going to put you in my pocket and take you with me all day.

It may sound cheesy, but I do literally want to insert Mr. ShuGar into my pocket and have him “be” with me all day.  So much of my day is spent without him. So much of my day is spent with people I cannot be silly with because I need to be “professional.”

I daydream for a mini-Mr. ShuGar in my pocket because I want to carry that love with me throughout the day.  I am constantly amazed at how cold and, frankly, how mean certain people can be.  Our daily interactions with people can be jarring and sometimes upsetting when stress and conflict are involved. Whenever I want to escape any difficult situation, I fantasize pulling Mr. ShuGar from my pocket so that he can give me a hug and tell me, “Don’t worry. Everything is going to be ok.  Remember, I love you.”

That’s all. Is there anything more special than that? In an instant, he can make everything all better.

I heard a song on the radio the other day that reminded me of this silly pocket phrase I tell Mr. ShuGar.


The song is called “Penny” by Hanni El Khatib and he sings about a penny he wants to keep in his pocket and never lose. Hanni repeats throughout the song, “You’re my perfect little penny. So please shine on.”

Mr. ShuGar is “my perfect little penny.” If only I could sneak him into my pocket so I could face life’s daily challenges with him by my side. He would be my little pocket secret. But for now, coming home after a long day of work to receive a hug and a kiss is as close to heaven as I am going to get.

Spoon Me

Spoon Me

Ugh. Tomorrow is Monday – another week jammed with deadlines, responsibilities, pressure, meetings, and emails. Don’t get me wrong – I am grateful for having a job I love.  But working full time inevitably takes me away from the person I adore most in this world – Mr. ShuGar.

When I think of the amount of time spent at work versus the amount of time spent at home, it makes me miss Mr. ShuGar, even on this Sunday when he is steps away from me in the other room. Yet, I rarely think of this during the week because my job doesn’t give me much time to reflect.

Marriage is comprised of mundane events – washing and folding the clothes, cooking a quick, easy meal, taking out the trash every night, paying the bills, sweeping the kitchen, cleaning the countertops, food shopping for the week.  The beauty in marriage is cherishing these every day events that you share with your love. They are the moments you are together – only me and him. It’s our universe and I value it above all else.

Among the weekly routine, there is a time at the end of my day that trumps all others.  Gone are all the obligations from 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. What is left is Mr. ShuGar and I in bed with no noise from the outside world but our souls lying side by side. And then it happens  – Mr. ShuGar tells me he loves me and spoons me. Heaven on earth.

No matter how stressful my day is, I always have the night carved out for Mr. ShuGar and I. Nothing soothes me more than feeling the warmth of his embrace under the covers. I am his; he is mine. The world is ours.

So, actually, my marriage is comprised of a series of daily spooning nights that get me through the work day.  I would cross the ocean just to be spooned by Mr. ShuGar. I do daily and I forever will.

My (Sort of) First Year of Marriage

ShuGar Wedding


Do not do as I did. I started an intense Master’s program a few days before I got married. Yes, that means I was busy planning a wedding AND applying to graduate school. I sometimes look back and wonder how I did it.

Wedding planning is not for the faint of heart; I know everyone says enjoy it and cherish the moments, but when you are in the thick of planning your dream wedding you are utterly consumed. Ultimately, what matters most is saying, “I do” to the person you chose to love forever in front of your closest family and friends. The table settings, the favors, the drama with your bridesmaids, the cold chicken – all of it is forgettable!

I love the picture above because it shows the “behind the scenes” of my wedding day. It is a rushed experience that flies by in a blink of an eye. You and your partner don’t have many moments alone because there  is so much to accomplish in less than 24 hours. In the picture, Mr. ShuGar and I are being attended by his groomsman (brother) and my maid of honor (sister), while our photographer (the talented Ashley Rose) gets ready to take her shots. I’m so happy my bridesmaid captured this photo because it reminds me how chaotically beautiful that day was. If I could, I would relive every moment all over again.

I like to consider my second year as my first year of marriage because the first year was a blur of studying, writing papers, going to class and working. I felt like I hardly saw Mr. ShuGar, except during our meal times and bed times. But I think I’d like to reconsider my first year experience.

During my year at graduate school (our first year of marriage), Mr. ShuGar quietly made my lunches (turkey & cheese sandwiches), did the laundry (lots of it), went shopping (to TJ’s multiple times a week), stayed home watching movies, tv & sports (while I studied in the other room), listened to me whine and complain (more than once) and never once reproached me. I do remember one time he said he missed me, even though I was always in the other room.

I missed him too; I was consumed with guilt because in order to excel in my studies I had to be second best as a wife. It broke my heart. I would hardly consider our first year our “honeymoon” year, but I do consider it a testament of our love. Even before we got married, we had struggles during the engagement year with the stress of applying to graduate school made even more challenging by health complications I faced during that time. Through it all, he was there by my side, holding my hand and telling me he loved me.

I don’t claim to profess I have the perfect marriage; far from it. In fact, I want to write about the realities of marriage and how beautifully complicated and wonderfully challenging it can be. We are still in the “adjustment’ phase of our honeymoon years. I know there are things that get on his nerves about me – i.e. my tendency to crash on the couch and not want to wake up to go to bed (He says getting me up to walk to the bed is like pulling teeth) – and vice versa – he insists on doing his crossword puzzles and reading his books late night (I would rather cuddle).

I cringe when people say their partner is their other half – really? I was a whole person, with a whole lot of complexities and problems when I met Mr. ShuGar. He was too. That’s one of the things I fell in love with – he was his own individual and wasn’t looking for a co-dependent relationship. We want to be better people because of our love – we are works-in-progress.

I do know one thing: What I have with Mr. ShuGar is Real Love. Not because of what he said on our wedding day, but because of what he did every day before that day and every day after it.

(Photo credit: Angela Kim)