Category Archives: Marriage Monday

Because your spouse matters

Holiday Planning

Nativity Blow Up ~ Lifeofjoy.meIt is hard to believe that Thanksgiving is next week here in the states. It is the earliest that it can possibly be because the first was on a Thursday and it is on the fourth Thursday. Consequently the 22nd is the earliest the 4th Thursday can fall.

With that in mind, I made my list of my “clean-up” Christmas gifts. That is the list where I write down each person and what I still need to purchase for them for Christmas. Normally I don’t get this list done until mid-December, so I’m doing good.

I’ve started planning what I want to do for my hubby. And now it is time to start talking to the family about what activities we want to make happen this year.

Last year we went to the Garden of Lights. Brian, Lauren, and Liam came and went with us. We gals have voted to go back to Rhema Lights this  year. We like that we can get out and walk around and enjoy the sights. And in the past we would get hot chocolate and funnel cakes. Of course now that we are sugar free, we won’t be doing that but we will probably take our own hot chocolate to enjoy.

The point of the post today is to remind you to start planning your holiday activities. We have enjoyed painting Christmas cookies, going and seeing light displays somewhere, going to a special movie together, going to the Christmas train, Zoolightful, homeschool Christmas parties, and church Christmas parties.

Now is the time to begin talking about what you’d like to do as a family. Maybe you want to make ornaments for the tree or go ice skating. Brainstorm with your hubby (and maybe include the family) about what you want to do and put it on the calendar. If we don’t write it down for a specific date, we don’t end up doing it.

Remember to keep some free time scheduled too, so you can just relax and enjoy being together. It is a wonderful time of year that does not have to be hectic. It is okay to NOT go to every party or activity that you are invited to attend. Make a plan to make the holidays what you want it to be.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Countdown to Christmas Preparation

Countdown to Christmas ~ Lifeofjoy.meSo, now is the time to begin thinking about what I want to do for Michael this year for the holidays. You see, I’ve done the Twelve Days of Christmas for him before starting on Christmas and ending on Epiphany which is January 6th. I’ve also given him a Twelve Days of Him around his birthday in October, since the reason that the first lady I saw do a twelve days for her hubby in December did it because his birthday was in December.

So now every year I think about what I want to do for my love to make him feel special. I saw that Aldi is having an advent calendar this year that has cheeses in it. :) Mmm mmm! I think I’m getting that for me.

Hmmm, I have some ideas but I better not share them here today because he does check my blog from time to time and it’d be just my luck that he’d check it and then there would be no surprise! :D I wrote about my ideas last year but am sad to say that I did not follow through. This year will be different. I’m going to write it down in my bullet journal and make a plan to get it done. :) If I do what I’m thinking of at the moment, then I can share it with you all in early December.

Oh this should be fun! :) I love making my hubby happy. What will you do to bring a smile to your dear one’s face this holiday season?

Here are some ideas I found for some advent kind of things, but be sure to check my post from last year because it’s got some GOOD links. :) Not all of the ideas listed in the links below are something I’d condone but you only need a dozen or two, so you just skip the ones that are not your thing.

Well, I hope that is enough to get you thinking about what you can do. I’m off to write down my plans. :)

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

 

Christmas is Coming

Our Christmas Tree ~ LifeOfJoy.meWell, it’s nearly the end of November and I have only begun my Christmas shopping. By now, I am usually at least half way finished, but not so this year. I really don’t have any one else to blame but myself. ;) But I’m ready to get it into gear. Of course, I was last week as well, and then Tiffany got ill. When she is not feeling well, I am affected (not sure I used the correct word here even after I looked it up on two different sites, which I think confused me even more =)) ) and don’t get as much accomplished as usual. Also, my ankle was acting up and I didn’t think it was a good idea to go on a long shopping day in its condition.

At any rate, I love to make good memories and give gifts to loved ones at Christmas. Do you remember me talking about this back in April? No, well, it may be too late for you to do this for the current year but consider saving back some money each pay period for Christmas next year. Check out the post from April to see how I do it. Because that is the reason I can easily and joyfully buy Christmas gifts without any financial arguments. :)

I start my Christmas savings the week after Thanksgiving this year for next Christmas. Now you may be wondering why. You see, I like to have all of my Christmas shopping done by Thanksgiving, so I need to have all the money available by then. It works for me. I also built in enough savings to cover my expanding family for the next several years, budgeting for my children’s spouses (they are all in their 20’s) and for several grandchildren, of which I currently only have one. :) This means that if things are tight at any point throughout the year, at this time, I have a bit of breathing room or I can use the extra money for a family outing or special things we want as a family. Or I can simply put it away to go towards vacation next year. ;)

So, if you haven’t already done a “Christmas Club” or savings, put pen to paper and figure out how and when to start it for next year. :) It really is a game changer! Michael and I used to have so many frustrations over our Christmas budget and I felt bad that I couldn’t give as I would love to. Now, I can because we talked about our budget and came to an agreement long ago. :) (I tell the story in that post back in April.)

I hope this encourages you to have a Christmas budget conversation with your hubby and establish some habits that will make the holiday season flow more smoothly. Now, I have to get busy and get some more of my shopping done. ;)

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Coming to Agreement through Prayer

Resolving Differences ~ Lifeofjoy.meWhen you and your hubby have a different view of a situation, don’t think that you have to continue talking it out to come to a resolution at that moment. When I was younger that’s what I did, which does not work out so well.

It works out so much better to agree to table it and pray about it. And I have found that it is good to pray for God to lead you to the correct answer. What I usually pray is, “God change him where he is wrong and change me where I am wrong.” Honestly, I usually start strong on the changing him part ;) and add the change me part as more of an afterthought, especially in the beginning. But this does help.

It doesn’t do to be hardheaded and stubborn and resistant to change either. It is so much better to acknowledge the other’s perspective and calmly share yours.

As the holidays approach, it is good to talk about them early to make them go as smoothly as possible. You want it to be an enjoyable time for all involved. And pray about it. It’s odd how something so simple is so easily overlooked.

Until next time, God bless,

 Michele ºÜº

Forgiveness is Important

Forgive ~ Lifeofjoy.meWhen your spouse does something that aggravates or frustrates you, be sure to be quick to get over it. This is not easy, especially if you are dealing with your own emotions.

Okay, so here’s what happened to me recently. I asked Michael to consider something and he immediately said no. This frustrated me and I tried to pray and get my attitude right. Then something else, I don’t even remember what, aggravated me and then even another something. I took some L-Theanine and finally decided I just needed to pull away from everyone and get alone with God for a few minutes. Because I’m the only person I can change. ;)

It would have been very easy, later on, when Michael was being nice to me, paying attention to me, to snub him or shrug away from him but that would not have helped anything. Instead, I leaned into it and embraced him, forgiving the earlier infractions.

Love doesn’t keep account of wrongs done. Love is quick to forgive (even when it is not requested). Love is kind. These are not easy things but they are good things.

Sometimes it seems as if there are waves of frustration going through our house. We have four adults living here and last weekend it seemed that we were all hit emotionally. It took a while for it to break. Mine may also have been chemical because it broke after I ate a bunch of sugar-free Lily’s chocolate chips. :D

It is good to operate out of love and forgiveness, not holding a grudge. Grudges are not profitable for anyone. Well, I won’t belabor the point any more. ;)

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Love is a Garden

Husband working my garden ~ Lifeofjoy.meIt may start with the excitement of what you will end up with and planting that seed with all the feels. Then there is the hard work of weeding and caring for the plants, keeping them from being overrun or plucked up by predators.

Our love gardens take care too. We need to do things for the other without expecting things in return but a well cared for garden is going to give a good return, as will a man who is loved on and showered with love and attention.

Short and sweet today friends but I didn’t want to belabor the point. ;)

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Everchanging Love

Everchanging Love ~ Lifeofjoy.meLove grows and changes. In the beginning it feels like butterflies, all warm and tingly. Then when you spend lots of time with that person, you begin to see some of their flaws. You grow  comfortable with each other. You are less surprised by things he does. Love matures and the butterflies are gone. Love has turned into a commitment to one another.

It is my opinion that people confuse those butterfly feelings with love. That is not love. Those tingly feelings are excitement, enjoyment in surprise, getting to know someone but be assured, those feelings are not love. Love really is a choice. You may start out with those tingly butterfly feelings but as you get to know each other the feelings grow, deepen, and change. Change is not bad, just ask a butterfly. ;)

The problem arises when you’ve been in a relationship for a while and it has grown into a life walk committed to one another . . . life happens . . . bills, children, families, friends, jobs . . . all have different demands and it is possible that you’ve even taken your spouse for granted. Now, what you do next is very important! Sometimes you meet someone knew that is your “type” and you can begin to feel those butterflies. STOP! This is not love! This is meeting someone that is interesting and possibly even someone that you could “connect” with and those feelings of spontaneity and wonder that you associate with being in love can begin to surface. Again, I’m warning you, this is not love!

You can make those same feelings arise with your mate. Honestly, you can! It just takes a little work. Feeling those butterflies with someone causes you to begin acting/doing things–this is not always bad, as you probably did it with your spouse when you met. So, to get those feelings back, start acting/doing things. Be spontaneous or deliberate. Put forth some effort into your relationship. You’ll be surprised how things start to turn out.

Now I have to warn you: don’t go into this doing things for your spouse with the ulterior motive of wanting him to do things for you. If you miss something he used to do, tell him or write him a note: Remember when . . . or I remember when you . . . It made me feel so loved and special.

Stop and think about when you first met the one you are with now. How did you act? What did you do? Did you talk together for hours? Well, spend a few minutes really connecting with your spouse now. A lot of our feelings we feel stem from our attitude. It is hard to feel love (and butterflies) when you are keeping your mind full of negativity and frustrations. Instead thing about his good traits and how much you love him and how sexy he is. ;) Getting your mind in the right place helps change your attitude and ultimately your feelings.

I hope this encourages you to think on good things and work towards feeling those loving feelings towards your mate once again. A good marriage is one where love is ever changing.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Make Time to be Wife

keep love alive ~ Lifeofjoy.meIn this life, it is easy to lose sight of who we are or what’s important. There are so many people and things pulling on us. But it is important to never lose sight of the fact that we are a person but also a wife.

As a person, it is important to have hobbies and pursuits–Mother Culture, which I wrote about previously here. But it is so easy to get lost in all the things that have to be done that it’s easy to forget to cultivate being a wife. I was a wife before I became a mother. It is imperative that I continue to cultivate my relationship with my husband. It’s hard to be focused and in the moment, to forget about the chores for a bit and remember why you fell in love and got married. Take time to be his girl. Let him know that you still love him and want to be with him. Take time to do things with him like before you were married.

Here is an interesting article that correlates to this post. I hope it serves to give you some ideas.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Bless and Bless Back

Bless Me Flowers ~ Lifeofjoy.meIt is a good practice in marriage to look for ways to bless your spouse. I do this by making him special treats. Okay, I make sure he has some kind of dessert, be it ice cream or cookies or popcorn, every night. My honey likes to end his day with some kind of treat/snack/sweet. I keep these treats healthy and sugar-free so that we can all enjoy them and not worry about gaining weight.

My honey blesses me by helping me with heavy or very hot objects (I have told you before that he is protective of me ;) ). He helps me do things so much that sometimes it makes me feel guilty, like he is doing my job and I’m not carrying my fair share. Actually, I used to get upset it he did his own laundry (he’s a painter and wears whites for work) feeling like he was having to do it because I didn’t get to it yet. But through the years I have learned from many discussions about this and other such topics that he doesn’t mind doing it and he knows I have lots of stuff I do get to. So I learned to not let it bother me and see it as him blessing me, taking something off of my long to do list. :)

Flowers ~ lifeofjoy.me
Ignore the sunflowers, they’re part of my fall decor and not a part of the bouquet :D

When I’d been to the chiropractor last time they did not have one of the supplements I needed. They called on Friday and said that it had arrived. Unfortunately Michael was already nearly home (30 minute drive to the chiropractor’s office). He walked in the door with a bouquet of flowers for me (such lovely colors)! He said simply that he thought they’d bless me.

I told him about my supplement arriving at the office and he said he’d pick it up on Monday. After a little bit, he realized I really needed it and decided to make the extra trip into town just to pick it up for me so that I wouldn’t have to wait until Monday for it.

He has over blessed me! Now I want to find something special to do for him. It’s not about owing something. It’s just about love and showing that love in tangible ways. It isn’t about doing something for someone because they do or can do something for you. It is just about love. Do it out of the love you have for him or if you are in a difficult season, do it out of the love you once felt. Love grows and changes but that’s a topic for another day. ;) For today I just want to encourage you to bless your spouse and when he blesses you, keep the cycle going by blessing him back.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

What is Your Goal in Marriage?

Marriage goal ~ Lifeofjoy.meI read this article recently where the author asked what the goal of marriage is. Wow, that is an interesting question. I’d never really thought about it before.

I guess that my goal of marriage was to have a life partner: someone to spend life with. Of course sex was a big goal of marriage since I am a Christian (and have been nearly all of my life) sex outside of marriage is a NO. Thus in order to experience this God-created activity, marriage is a must. ;)

I won’t share his answer; I’ll just give you the link and ask you to go over to his site and read it. It’s a quick read and quite thought provoking as well.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº