Talonchick: On love, dinner, and adapting to change

As for many other couples, Adrienne Rowsome's first Valentine's Day with husband Ryan Carter was celebrated with a nice dinner out--albeit one with last minute frantic reservations made--but that had not been the plan. Like many other romantics before him, Ryan had planned to prepare an intimate dinner at home, complete with scallops and other delicacies, for his bride on that first Valentine's together. But this one went awry at the last moment.

Team Online's Adrienne (or "talonchick," as she's known online) recounts the story:

"That first Valentine's Day we had together, Ryan headed out into the Edmonton snow and cold to buy the ingredients for a romantic dinner." The journey to the store was a success, and Ryan soon returned with the supplies for their romantic dinner. But here the story takes an unlucky turn, which, as even the best poker players will tell you, is often inevitable. After arriving safely home from the snow and cold, he made one simple mistake. "He put the scallops and other meats in the oven to thaw, rather than on the countertop," Adrienne recalls. "They were still in there, still in their packaging, when he decided to preheat the oven."

The result, as Adrienne tells us, was not pretty (or appetizing, we can imagine). "Needless to say, we headed out for a last minute restaurant dinner." It was a surprising turn for the couple, but one that morphed into a funny story, in the way that so many romantic encounters do.

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This year, the couple, who married in July of 2012, will have another great story to tell, but they are happily anticipating this event coming their way. Adrienne announced earlier this year that they are expecting a baby in May or early June. Since both she and Ryan are serious poker players and have each been playing for 10 years or more, it will mean some changes for them, but they will have to play it as it goes. "Life will certainly change when the baby arrives; however, from all the advice we have received, it seems like they're changes that can't be anticipated!"

The couple, who met in Las Vegas at the WSOP, is in the happy process of acquiring things for the baby. They hope however, to take a simple approach to acquiring all the necessary accouterments. "Generally, we are trying to have all the necessities covered, from diapers to car seats, and otherwise taking a more minimalist approach to all the stuff you can accumulate. We will see if the grandparents go along with that plan or not!"

Being an accomplished cash game player makes the upcoming changes easier to deal with for Adrienne. "I expect to still be playing poker after the baby is born. I will get maternity leave from the hospital (where she works as an occupational therapist) so won't have those obligations to worry about. I'm sure my time will be more compromised, but hopefully, I will still get a couple of hours a day to play some cash games. I'm sure it would be much more challenging if I was a tournament specialist."

For Ryan, who plays mostly online, the changes will be manageable as well. "Ryan plays mostly NL Hold'Em, at this point focusing on heads-up sit-and-gos. But he played cash and MTTs for a number of years prior to that." It appears however, that Adrienne's mixed-game strategy has rubbed off a bit on him as well. "Over the years, I've drawn him into some mixed game action, too. His approach to poker is really admirable. He works very hard at studying and improving himself."

The flexibility they have in their professions will be an asset in helping to smooth the way through the changes in the months to come. Since Adrienne works a flexible schedule as an occupational therapist, and she and Ryan both play primarily online, they have the ability to travel together and pursue their commitment to poker from home or on the road. This flexibility will allow adding a new addition to their work and travel plans to be an easier adjustment.

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Lots of changes are coming her way, and with Adrienne's characteristically calm and positive approach, she takes time to send good luck wishes to her female fans and followers. "I certainly wish all the PokerStars Women out there some Valentine's Day love from the poker gods," she adds in closing.

We couldn't have said it better ourselves, as we look forward to celebrating the day with some lucky PokerStars Women players. To read more about Adrienne, see her PokerStars Team Online bio, and to be up to date on all the upcoming promotions and news for female players, see our home page.

Good luck to all of you at the tables, and best wishes for a happy Valentine's Day!

Rebekah Mercer
@PokerStars in PS Women