Nothing says love like milk and barrels

Nothing says love quite like a quart of special milk for the lactose intolerant.

It ended up being one of my four gifts to Better Half for the 2013 installment of Valentine’s Day.

The second gift was a box of Multigrain Cheerios.

The third, a box of ice cream cones – the sugar kind, not the waffles.

The fourth, a quart of chocolate peanut butter ice cream.

That probably doesn’t seem very romantic for a day when Cupid is supposed to be out there flying around shooting love arrows and all, but my husband is a practical man with a predictable p.m. diet.

And he appreciates that I’m observant enough to notice that an evening snack amounts to a bowl of Multigrain Cheerios followed up with a chocolate peanut butter ice cream cone – two scoops, thank you very much.

Present those four things in what in the Kiaski household we affectionately call “Polish gift wrap” – newspaper or a plastic grocery bag – and you have a happy camper on Feb. 14, or any day for that matter.

A no-fuss, hold-the-ribbon-and-gift-wrap-kind-of-guy my Better Half is.

And for heaven’s sake, get something that will be used, be practical and not need returned, which explains why in years past I have received a shovel because he “digs” me, a broom because I “swept” him off his feet and an electric pencil sharpener to make a “point” about our love.

Forget all that mushy hearts and flower and diamond stuff.

My gift this year you couldn’t wrap so easy. Well, you could, but it would have called for a lot of newspapers or a lot of plastic grocery bags.

How many wives come home to discover that their husbands have something for them on the back porch – a gift bigger than a breadbox, but smaller than a refrigerator, so the clue-giving goes as you’re led blindfolded to the present presentation area.

And, budda-bing, budda-bang – there they are.

Every woman’s dream – three big plastic barrels.

I was in awe, literally, my initial thought being “Oh, honey, you shouldn’t have” and really meaning it.

But then it occurred to me – no horsing around here – these were barrels for barrel racing with a horse, not barrels to catch rain water, not barrels to harbor monkeys.

The sign near it – you “barrel” me over – was better than any Hallmark card I ever hoped to get.

So now I might actually have to put my money where my mouth is – all those years of whining if I ever get a horse, I’m going to learn to barrel race.

Well, I got a horse.

Time to ride around the barrels. Time to give it a go.

And have a “barrel” of fun, to “milk” it for all that it’s worth.

(Kiaski, a resident of Steubenville, is a staff columnist and features writer for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and community editor for the Herald-Star. She can be contacted at