Category Archives: Marriage Monday

Because your spouse matters

Change What You are Thinking

I’ve said it before, you cannot change your husband; you can only change you (or your reaction). I stand by this statement but am going to share a post that has a completely different title :D , 8 Thoughts that will Change your Husband.

The article is over on The Not So Excellent Wife by Sheila Qualls. I believe this is the first time I’ve been on her site and probably came from a link shared by The Generous Wife ;) ; she shares such good stuff.

At any rate, Sheila shares some quick ideas to help see positive changes in your spouse. I know that when I’m even slightly frustrated, the people in my house can “feel” or “sense” my frustration. Likewise, if I’m excited, they can feel that too. As our thoughts go, there goes the rest of us.

I hope you’ll jump over to Sheila’s article and that it will be an encouragement to you, even if it is a challenge.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

PS. Just a quick reminder that I now have a page set up with Patreon.

Great Marriage Advice Link

I’m going to keep it short today because I have another link to share with you (that I found through The Generous Wife).  The link today is about how to “Grow Back Together” with your spouse.

The author makes a really great analogy to preparing for a marathon. Check out the article; it’s a really good read.

Odds are that you married your spouse because you were happy and in love. You can probably get those feelings back with just a little bit of work.  Seriously, you need to go check it out.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Physical Touch/Contact

I have noticed that when Michael comes up behind me when I am making dinner and lightly rubs or scratches my back or gives me a quick kiss on the neck that it completely lifts my attitude up a notch. It makes me feel loved and cherished. :) All it takes is once a day or so.

I try to reciprocate because I know how much I like it. But I do try to do something he likes, like scratch his back or rub his foot as I pass by (or go out of my way to rub his foot ;) )

I am seriously surprised how much something so little can make such a huge impact on how I feel.

Sometimes things get busy, it gets uncomfortably hot, or some other such thing and we have gone a couple of days without those extra moments. I don’t think we really realize what kind of impact it makes, especially if tensions have risen or their have been harsh words spoken. But just a few seconds of touch, in a loving manner, when it isn’t expected or when it is clear that there is not some underlying motive, really knits us back together.

I hope this encourages you to take a few seconds and give that extra touch that doesn’t really seem all that important. If after a while of doing so doesn’t illicit some reciprocation, it would be worth kindly mentioning that you’d like the same small attention.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Giving and Requesting Help

Lori Byerly shared some good thoughts about requesting help from your spouse, but it can certainly be applied to any situation in which you need to request help. I think her suggestions are very helpful and will attempt to put it into practice.

One thing I’ll add is that sometimes I need to remind my hubby to do a task. He gets so busy and it is easy for things to slip the mind–I know it happens to me too. ;) But when I need to remind him of something, I try not to do it very close together. I try to let an appropriate amount of time, days or even weeks, if possible, pass before reminding him about the thing that I’ve requested.

This is one reason why her suggestion about giving a time frame was such a good idea to me. So many times we ask for something to be done and we really want it done right now but he cannot stop what he is doing and do said thing immediately. Here again, it is a lack of communication but Lori’s ideas help communicate better.

The last thing that really stuck out to me from her post was to model what you would like to receive. Put another way, practice what you preach. ;) This is true in raising children as well; if you want to have children that read, don’t expect them to pick up a book if you don’t. But that’s a topic for Thursdays. :D

I hope you’ll hop on over to Lori’s site and read the thoughtful post there. It’s a quick read. Also, please comment below if you already follow or subscribe to Lori’s posts (either on her blog or facebook). I know I refer to her a lot because she is such a great resource and super encourager but don’t really want to just be a repeat in your life.

I’ll run for now,

Michele ºÜº

 

Better Conversation Starters

When Michael comes home from a day at work, I generally ask him how his day was. This does not generally elicit much real conversation. It is usually later, when he has been home for a bit and unwound a little that he actually tells us specifics of his day.

I read this post that had some good suggestions of other ways start a good conversation. :) 14 Alternatives to “How Are You?”

I’ll just keep this short so that you can jump over there and read it too.

I hope this is a benefit to you and your family,

Michele ºÜº

Marriage Thoughts from One Married Over 50 Years

On a recent post my mom, who has been married for 57 years–yes! 57 years–shared this comment:

There was a popular Christian song years called Love’s Not A Feeling. This is so true. When the first twinges of love start and you get married and then life begins to enter into the equation, we need to have just more than those first feelings of love.

Love is more than feelings. It is commitment and long suffering and forgiveness and being able to put things aside, so bitterness and strife do not destroy what made you fall in love in the first place. And friendship, indeed, is important.

I’m so thankful for my parents commitment to God and each other. I hope her words are an encouragement to you today.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

P.S. My daughter and I started a youtube channel.

Learning From the Experience of Others

Thanksgiving and Big Stuff ~ Lifeofjoy.me For the rest of this month, in honor of Christmas in July, Tiffany is putting her book on sale! If you’d like to read a fun cozy murder mystery (that reads like a romantic comedy at Christmas time), go check out my daughter’s first book, Murder Mystery and the Gingerbread Cookies available on Amazon (and a few other places I can’t recall right now ;) ). She started writing it when she was 12 years old. We published a few years ago in ebook and finally jumped through all the hoops to get it into paperback this past February. If you like ebooks, grab that as it is a better deal for both you and her. ;)


This week my cousin had an interesting conversation on his facebook account about marriage. One person had a really good comment that I agreed with and wanted to share with you.

I will say this about marriage….it’s hard, it’s beautiful, it’s painful, it’s a blessing, it’s draining and it’s fulfilling. It is hard, really hard at times and then it is great, really great at other times.

Christians seem to be too proud, or too ashamed to admit that sometimes their marriages just stink. But it’s normal. It is normal to go through those times yet we present a blissfully happy existence together because we are applying the Biblical principles. And yes, those principles alone can keep a marriage going strong and if we were perfect we would apply those principles every single moment of every single day and live in constant harmony with each other. But we aren’t perfect and we hurt each other…and sometimes we hurt each other badly.

Forgiveness is the biggest factor I believe in saving a marriage and keeping it strong. I truly feel we need to be more truthful and “real” presenting marriage to young adults.

Another person commented that “commitment” is another word that is missing from the dialogue.

I so agree with this. I even wrote about forgiveness recently. I think realizing that we cannot change anyone but ourselves is another key. Sometimes the only thing we can do is change our reaction to situations. Not saying that is easy, but sometimes that is all that can be done.

I believe that it can be encouraging to know that you are not alone. It is an encouragement to me to know that many relationships go through frustrations and differences of opinion but that it is possible to stay together as a couple/family and have happy times as well. It is also encouraging to me to understand how others deal with situations, so that I can learn from their experiences.

I try to present real marriage here on Marriage Mondays and be an encouragement in the process.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Long Time Marriage

My parents celebrated 57 years together recently. What an accomplishment! Of course like most couples, they could have chosen to give up at any point, as I’m sure most couples could. They are committed to each other.

They’ve been retired for several years and are enjoying spending time with each other. Daddy always worked hard and long hours, so Momma was frequently alone. But now they are able to be together all the time. It’s a good thing they are best friends. :)

People are often amazed that my kids can have a big disagreement but can end it without hard feelings and still talking to each other and even still being friends. I dare say, it is true of this good marriage as well; I know it is true of my own marriage.

The way I see it, forgiveness, commitment, and and being friends with your spouse are three big keys to a long and happy marriage. It’s what I’ve seen in my parents and what I’ve experienced in my own 32-marriage as well.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

The Right Way to Ask Questions about His Decision

The Generous Wife, Lori Byerly, shared an article from Shaunti Feldhahn (author of For Women Only) that really made me think about how I converse with my husband. I think I need to talk to him about this article and see if it resonates with him. I’ve learned that just because many or even a majority of men think a certain way does not mean MY man does. So while this is good food for thought, it is not necessarily spot on with everyone’s spouse.

So the article was an answer to a message that Shaunti got from a relatively new bride about how it seemed that her husband didn’t like her inquisitiveness after they got married and this bothered her. Shaunti shared how most men work through a problem and how her inquisitive nature could be making the husband feel she didn’t trust/respect him.

In reading Shaunti’s response, I realized that I can be that kind of person and that I do not speak my agreement with Michael nearly enough. Since then, I have made an effort to begin my part of the conversation on something Michael’s shared by stating my agreement with something he’s said. (Yeah, that was real wordy but I hope it was clear.) I noticed in doing this that he is not as defensive and we are relating a bit better. :)

So, I’ve rambled enough. I hope you’ll click on over and give the post a read. It is always enlightening to see how most men process things. ;)

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

More Marriage Advice from Fiction

I mentioned that I finished reading Black by Ted Dekker last week. In it he talks about The Great Romance and some parallels can be made to marriage. Here is the first:

“You give a flower to a maiden, why? Because she needs nourishment? No, because she wants it.” (page 121)

This just resonated with me! For Michael and my anniversary last week I mentioned that I hadn’t gotten any flowers, to which he replied that the weekend was not yet over. :) The next day he came home with a pretty bouquet and they are still bringing me joy a week later. But had I not mentioned that I’d like to have some flowers, he probably wouldn’t have gotten them.

This line from the book got me to thinking about what I do for Michael. He recently told me that he loves to receive something little when I’ve gone to the store (I generally only go once a week). I’m trying to be mindful of this and pick him up something. Why? Because it would make him happy, a.k.a he wants it.

Now of course neither of us would go off the deep end and go buy a brand new car for the other, just because they wanted it because we are not in a position to do that. But doing the little things that bring them joy is worthwhile.

“We woo our women every day.” (pg 124)

This was another line that resonated with me. I should tend to my marriage daily. Intentionally.

I know this is easier to say than do. AND it is much easier in my season of life than when I had young children. But there has to be a way to be intentional with your spouse on a daily basis no matter what season of life you are in.

It can range from picking up a treat that he enjoys but doesn’t usually get. Maybe it is taking a shower with him. Maybe it is making his favorite meal or a special dessert. Or maybe just simply having dessert. ;) Maybe it is scratching his back, rubbing his shoulders, taking a shower with him ;), or just giving him thirty minutes of peace and quiet. It all depends on what he likes, you can agree to, and fits in your budget.

I guess the bottom line is that I’m not just going to sit around. I’m going to actively woo him, in subtle ways frequently. Oh, I’m not going to be naive and say it will be daily, although that is the goal, but definitely several times each week. And I’m going to keep changing it up so that he doesn’t come to expect the little thing, so it is always a pleasant surprise. Hmmm, maybe I should make a page in my bullet journal to write down some ideas, so that I do a variety and not rely on the same ones over and over again. ;)

I hope this sparks some ideas for you. I recommend reading Black, by Ted Dekker; his thoughts and ideas are interesting and it is a good story.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº