Posts Tagged ‘Love’
Let’s face it, Valentines Day is nice on the years you remember to make it special, but it can be even more meaningful when you randomly do something nice for your spouse on the other 364 days in the year. Life gets busy and we change. Our appetites change, our bodies change, and our moods change. There are seasons where “love” flows out nice and easy, and then there are seasons where it’s like checking something off your to-do list. Either way, no matter how easy or hard it might feel, it’s important to pursue your spouse’s heart everyday–not JUST on Valentines Day.
Below are a few practical tips I’ve personally been working on to show Cale why he’s still my best friend, that I still know his heart and love him, and that ultimately I still wanna jump his bones.
1. A Few of His Favorite Things: If your household is anything like ours, the woman is typically the one pushing for the more “healthy” eating habits. Most of the time the man cruses along to the beat of her drum, but every once in a while it’s really fun to surprise him with one of his favorite treats. For Cale that could be chocolate chips for cookies, beef jerky (I know seriously?!), or picking up a six pack of the original A&W Root Beer (not the cheap diet kind!). I promise, your man will be a lot more willing to go along with your new lifestyle changes knowing you haven’t totally forgotten about his old favorite treats.
2. Be His #1 Fan: There have been seasons where Cale is working really late hours for weeks, sometimes even months at a time. It can be hard on our family and our relationship. I used to get onto him about being late, adding another stress factor to an already stressful season at work. I’ve learned that if I focus on applauding the hard work he’s putting in and ask for ways I can help encourage him in reaching his goals, then the problem becomes something we can approach as a team instead of it feeling like it’s him vs. me. Our relationship is a lot more enjoyable when he knows I’m for him and not against him.
3. Initiate intimacy: No really! So many women get offended because their husbands don’t initiate sex as much as they “used to”. Well, do you?! Sometimes the guy is just tired of always being the one to turn up the heat. Men are like women in the sense that they too need to feel sexy and pursued. Regardless of if your man is buff or has a gut, he still needs to know he’s the only man for you. Don’t forget to remind him that he’s still got it!
4. Household Splurges: Now ladies, I’m not talking about that honey do project YOU’VE been waiting for him to get on! This is something he has been wanting for the house, his shop, or even the car? I tend to put Cale’s requests for things off because they are not always top priority, but they mean something to him. Even if we set a budget and allocate an amount every paycheck until we can afford that special purchase, it let’s him know that I notice and appreciate all the hard work he’s putting into financially supporting our family.
Speaking of… I really need to look into buying that wall mount for our new flat screen! :/
5. Warm the Heart: They say the best way to a man’s heart is through his stomach and I’ve found this especially to be true in our relationship! I’m always looking for ways to make meals healthier, but it’s fun to surprise Cale with one of his favorite hearty meals on a random weeknight. Usually if I stop and actually listen he’ll drop hints and mini requests throughout the week. For example, on a cold night I might hear him say; “Potato soup and homemade bread sound so good right now!” Making the meal the way HE likes it–NOT the healthier version–shows that I notice his opinions, however big or small, and that means a lot!
6. Encourage the Small Things: As women we tend to be naggers (WHAT?!). We try our best, but man it is hard sometimes. When you find yourself focusing on all the things he’s doing wrong try and look for ONE thing that he is doing right and encourage him in that area. If he helps with the dishes, puts the kids to bed, changes a diaper, takes out the trash, says “I love you”, or even shares his feelings without being asked, all those things are tiny examples that mean A LOT! When I take the time to acknowledge and thank him for helping me I’ve found it reinforces that particular behavior and naturally produces more of it!
After being married for almost six years we’ve learned that a little bit of planning and intentional pursuit really does go a long ways. It’s not always about the big fancy trips or a night on the town–although those are all wonderful when they DO happen! Capturing your spouses heart is really about the daily nods that say; “I still love you and haven’t forgotten about you–amongst all the work deadlines, errands to run, dishes to clean, and kids to be shuffled around.”
What is your favorite way to love your man outside of Valentines Day?
Let’s make it last all year long! Happy Valentines Day everyone.
From The Farm
It’s that time of year again boys. The day when we are expected to woo and wow our ladies, with our amazing romanticism and sensitivity…
But the reality is that the wooing and wowing should go on all year around. For Meg and I it’s more about the moments you live everyday than one big event in the year. Don’t get me wrong I’m still planning a V-day moment to match all the others, it just might not be the moment we talk about 2 or 3 years from now. So today I’m going to share a few moments that Meg and I still talk about today. Hopefully they wow and woo your inspiration.
1. Seize the Day: Spontaneity is such a powerful element in Meg and I’s relationship. The willingness to take a moment, to grab it and run with it is something that has made our life a never-ending adventure. One night we had to go to a big awards ceremony for Meg’s work. She actually ended up accepting one of the top awards of the night. But the best part of the evening was when the event was over we decided on a whim to run home pack a bag and come back to the hotel that hosted the event. We stayed a night and just enjoyed the moment, drank deep of the celebration, and took full advantage of the evening.
2. Getting Lucky: So we all know those days when you just need a little boost, a little push to keep going. That’s how I picture flowers at the door just because. On those days when I’m feeling extra happy, I finished a big report or I got a promotion, or heck just a day when all hell didn’t break loose at 8:15am. Those days I like to invite Meg into the celebration that I’m feeling by bringing home flowers or candy, something she loves but doesn’t always have.
3. Mister Home Maker: OK every guy has one of these stories, at least every married guy. But it works… what am I talking about, I’m talking about doing the dishes, folding the laundry, those stories. The phrase “it’s the thought that counts” was coined around these stories. When I do the dishes, Meg doesn’t always find the pots and pans until the next week. I tend to organize the flat ware a little differently. But Meg loves it just the same, the idea that I acknowledge what she does so many times to keep our house clean and our little guy happy, and that I step into that place and take that moment to give her the break means a lot!
4. Open letter: Something we guys don’t often think about when it comes to romance is sharing our hearts. Sometimes we get so caught up in doing something for our ladies that we forget to just invite them into our lives. One of the ways I do this is through little letters. I’ll leave the letters on the bathroom mirror, on her pillow, or on the bar where she’ll find it when she gets up. These notes tell her how much she means to me, or what I’ve been battling through that week and how she’s helped me without even knowing it. These letters connect Meg to me during those busy weeks when long walks aren’t an option and long talks are hard to come by.
5. The Warm Up: In Oklahoma it can get cold, this winter was particularly chilly. So when it’s minus 9 degrees outside and she’s trying to get ready to go to a meeting, or meet a friend, I’ll slip out the door and start the car, clean off the windshield and make sure the heater is turned up nice and hot. It’s not a big deal but in that moment Meg knows I’m thinking about her.
6. A Good Book: This is one that we’ve just started, but I really enjoy it. Pick a good book, one that she’s wanted to read. I started with ‘Anthem’ by Ayn Rand, a great classic with lots of great discussion points. I would read a chapter each night aloud to Meg and then we would talk about what we liked, or didn’t about the story. This is much better and more involved than sharing a favorite TV show.
So this week as you plan your Valentines moment, remember that its the other 364 days that bring the spice to that moment!
Look for Meg’s top 6 post later this week, and feel free to share your ideas for daily romance in the comments.
Here is the 2nd desktop we designed with some of our favorite sayings about love. We say these to each other throughout the year and thought it would be fun to make wallpapers out of them.
Our version of a digital valentine, surprise your loved ones desktop, iPhone, or iPad as a unique way to say “I Love You”.
Cale and I love, love. We love hearing stories about how other couples met along with romantic dates, kisses, and the kind of cute annoying stuff that makes you want to throw up a little. After being married for nearly five years we’ve learned a thing or two about celebrating love. Sometimes it’s not about the BIG date night or how much money you can spend, sometimes it truly is the thought that counts.
When I was little my dad once told me this…
“Small minded people talk about other people.
Medium minded people talk about things.
Big minded people talk about ideas”
So the question stands how are we thinking? I think it’s amazing how we can so quickly get caught up in what people think, or what is the hot new item right now. As we come into the Holiday season I just wanted to pause for a second and ask a simple question. What size is your thinking?
Recently we went camping with Meg’s family and as we were driving away I remember thinking, what have we talked about? I mean we’ve just spent 48 hours with people we love; what did we say? What did we do? How often do we spend time with people we love and when we leave we realize that the sum total of our time was spent talking about the new iphone, or latest gadget, or how bad someone’s style was in the booth next to us. Don’t get me wrong, mumu’s were never meant to be worn in public. But what I am getting at is how quickly we lose the quality of our time.
Go on, throw that pizza dough! Considering that neither one of us is an Italian pizza pro, our homemade dinner-in adventure was an entertaining release of creativity. Each having our own canvas of dough, we pulled out from the fridge/freezer anything we had that might make a tasty topping, and we were off! Though we searched for some romantic Italiano music for atmosphere, we settled for something we had on hand we both liked. Once our creations were in the oven we built our relationship through the age-old method of laboring side by side… with the added bonus that there would be no mess at the end of our night! And since many hands make light work, we had plenty of time to segue into a most important time of relationship building… communication! The topic: what is it that we would love to do? You see, we’ve recently started getting paid to save the world by bringing our recyclables to a hungry machine that, in return, spits out a receipt good for cash (it takes more time and effort than just dumping them in a big blue bin for someone else to deal with, but our efforts will soon pay off). So with all these pennies and dimes flowing in, we saw an opportunity to make a dream happen. We talked about stuff varying from going to a show (Les Miserables or Wicked), Disney World (for when kids inevitably arrive as a result from our date nights), and a Netflix subscription, to hang gliding, parasailing, and an Alaska adventure tour. We won’t spoil it by telling you what we decided our recycling paybacks would achieve for us… you’ll have to come up with your own. And before you know it, while you’re dreaming and scheming of fun times ahead, your yummy dinner will be ready for consumption. So dish it up and settle yourselves in for a cuddle and a movie (we picked one from that everlasting list of “I’ve always wanted to see that”).
Our date of choice this month covered several romantic points all in one evening:
1. Homemade pizza party
2. Those who clean together stay together
3. Saving the world
4. Connecting and Scheming/Dreaming
5. Romantic dinner in: eat, watch and be merry
So we’re off!! Off on another great adventure of love, romance, nature and… COMPETITION! Hopefully you and the love of your life fit somewhere comfortably between “competitive” and “laid-back”… up for a little gaming action, but not so serious about winning that you can’t enjoy a small loss.
We decided to start off this date as a team, spurring each other on in the beautiful surrounds of early summer. A nice bike ride down the local trail inspired us on the beauty of life and gave us a time to unwind from a busy week. Not to be overlooked in this set of events, is the infamous “stop to smell the roses”. Or in our case, the California Poppies. There really is just something about breaking in the middle of a mission to stop and take in the bountiful beauty around us. We continued on to our special destination… a picnic table. Not only did this table provide a nice place to eat our packed lunch, but it provided our entertainment of choice: Checkers!
Bike ride = free
If you don’t own bikes and have nobody to borrow them from, a stroll along a trail or through a park should give you a similar experience.
Packed Lunch = $5
(Apples and cheese, nuts, PB&Js and plenty of water!)