Category Archives: Marriage Monday

Because your spouse matters

Take Time to Relate

This weekend Michael and I went out for a few hours. We still have some of those restaurant gift certificates I bought us for Christmas a few years ago, so we picked one (Olive Garden) and headed out.

You might think that it would be difficult to eat low-carb at Olive Garden (a pasta restaurant) of all places, but I’d heard that they offer zoodles (zucchini spirals) or you can ask for your chosen sauce/dish be put over broccoli. I was optimistic and if it didn’t work out, I just planned to enjoy myself on this rare day out with my honey. :)

They sat us in a very chilly spot, mostly because they had a couple of very large parties coming in, I’m guessing. If I’m chilly, it’s pretty  chilly. ;)

We had a very nice waiter who was obviously pretty busy elsewhere in the restaurant because we didn’t see him often but he did check on use several times regardless. I asked him if they had zoodles; they seemed to have a particular dish with zoodles, so we gave it a try. Zoodles Primavera with grilled chicken.

Michael likes his food really really hot and wished this was a bit warmer. I like my veggies really really done, so I would have preferred them a bit less al dente. But all that aside, it was really good and filling. We got the house salad to go along with it. I did eat a bite or two of the breadsticks, just to see if they were very good but I definitely could have gone without it. If we ever go again, we’ll definitely ask them to hold the bread. ;)

I realized as we drove into town and actually had time to just talk, just the two of us, that we don’t really have much time to do that. It takes a little priming to actually get to talking/communicating. At first Michael thought I had some issue I was trying to bring up. I explained that I was just conversing and he gradually relaxed and we communicated. :)

So my encouragement for today, try to find a time to have a real conversation with your hubby at some point throughout the day at best or at least once a week. Make this conversation one where you don’t talk about the children or to-do lists or issues, you know what the touchy subjects are . . . think about the things you talked about before you were married, hobbies, or some tidbit you picked up. (Here’s a post I wrote a few weeks ago that gives some more ideas.)

All this to say, conversation helps you feel closer and builds your relationship. Don’t forget to converse with God too, because He really helps you in all aspects of your life. :)

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Hard Work

I’ve heard that a few more couples that I have known for a long time have separated or divorced. It always bothers me when I hear that a couple has given up. I wonder what went wrong; what happened. I’m not a nosy person. I just like to learn from others’ experiences, what not to do, so to speak.

I made some mistakes (about priorities and such) in our marriage when the children were young. Thus when the children were all in their teens, I was reaping the results of those mistakes. Things were difficult and frustrating much of the time. That’s when I diligently sought out helpful resources.

I learned that I could not change anyone but myself. This meant that although I thought Michael should stop or start doing such and such, I could not change him; I could only change how I reacted or responded when faced with frustrating things.

For a time period it seems that I was constantly hearing “you can only change you” from a variety of resources. No one else is responsible for your attitudes and actions or reactions and you are not responsible for any one else’s.

As I’ve been contemplating this post, I’ve been hit anew with some frustrations with my beloved and once again realizing that I can only change how I react or respond. Of course that doesn’t mean that we should discuss these frustrating situations; it just means that I don’t have a right to behaving inappropriately, no matter how frustrated I become.

I wish Michael and I were one of those couples that seem to be perpetually in love with each other, all goo-goo eyed and gushy but we’re not. Thus we have to be more intentional. We use the Love Nudge app to give us reminders. It helps a lot to remember things like “leave a note” or “give a gift” or whatever you tell it to remind you. ;)

Last week I’d folded a pile of my clothes and was sorting them on the bed before Michael got ready for work. Later, after he’d left for work I went in the bedroom to do something and saw a note left on top of my folded clothes. It was just a short little note but it made me smile and feel loved! I felt like I’d won the lottery marrying him.

Of course, we are not always like that. There are days, like the last few, where we just can’t seem to get on the same page, where we just seem to be rubbing each other the wrong way with every move we make or word spoken. Those are the times that I have to be VERY intentional and very cautious with my actions and words, so that I don’t add to the frustrations. Even when it feels like I can’t speak my mind, there is a way to do it and be heard. That’s when I turn to prayerfully writing a letter to him. Many times when I write a letter, God won’t let me say what I want to say but rather apologize or something; it always turns out to be what is needed at the moment. I’m able to say what I want to say and feel heard, even if he doesn’t really read it. :D At least I tried and prayed about it.

I hope this can be an encouragement to you to keep trying and take responsibility for your attitudes rather than telling him what he should or shouldn’t do/say and above all, PRAY. :)

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº


Husbands Want/Need to Hear

The Generous Wife, Lori Byerly, shared a couple great links this past week. The first is a post from Scott of Heaven Made Marriage, where he shared what husbands need to hear.

I have to admit, I was aware of a most of them but not necessarily as things that needed to be said. However, I really appreciated his insight on what respect looked like!!!

And for those men out there, he wrote one about women too. I have to say that I agree with what he has to say, especially the first three. :)

The other that I really liked was one from A Wife Like Me where she talked about when being right is wrong. It goes right along with something I learned long ago, namely to give  up my right to be right. In it she shares how allowing your husband to have your support and going along with him without doing your own research and simply supporting him.

I hope these articles are an encouragement to you today.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Pray . . .

Yes, I know that we all know to do this but this is the one thing that is sooo easily overlooked, even by me.

I’m making it a point to ask God what I can do to better my marriage today. :) It doesn’t have to be something big, it may be something as small as laughing at his joke, that wasn’t even funny. True story!

One morning at the breakfast table Michael said, Sean pass me the Parm-e-Sean.

It seemed as if he thought this was so ingenious and hilarious. Of course none of the rest of us thought it was that funny but it was cute.

I was at the refrigerator getting out items to make their lunches and started fake laughing, saying Par-me-Sean!!! HAHAHAHA I really played it up for a good little while.

Well, this got him to laughing so hard his eyes started watering. It was great!

Instead of saying anything to demean his pun, I made it a situation that really encouraged him and brightened his morning. (It brightened mine too because even as I type this I have a smile on my face remembering it.) And it strengthened our bond rather than tearing him or us down.

The thing God has me do may be to make sure his work clothes are washed and folded, so they don’t get wrinkled and he doesn’t have to wash them himself. (He gets impatient waiting for me to do his work laundry, wanting to only wear the same two pairs of painter’s pants all week long and thus requiring laundering several times in one week. I’m happy to wash and dry his clothes but wear more than just two pairs so that I don’t have to be constantly washing them . . . thus he will wash them if he wants certain ones. ;) )

Or maybe it is to make sure that the favorite towels are freshly laundered and put on the rack before he gets home from work. Maybe it is make him a dessert or special snack. It could be anything but the point is that I ask God what to do and then do it. ;)

What simple thing has God had you do for your hubby lately?

Michele ºÜº

Is He Really a Big Part of Your Life?

I challenge you today to stop and look at your social media posts or even your journal entries and see how often you talk about your spouse (in a kind way)? Do you share about your children? your pets? your work?

I have connected with friends from long ago through facebook and sometimes wonder if they’re still married. Noticing this had made me very aware of what and how I say things (I’m sure I still get it wrong a lot too ;) ) and have made an effort to say “our son,” or “our car” instead of “my son,” or “my car.”

It’s perfectly natural to write about my this and my that and you don’t want to be that person that is always shoving your spouse in other people’s faces but what I’m thinking about today is that my words show where I’m at and what I’m thinking about. If it is always me and my, then maybe I need to change my thought process a little bit and include hubby. We are living life together; hopefully not just “two singles together.” ;) (Fringe quote) Have you really become one flesh or are you more like room mates with benefits?

Sometimes it can be difficult to see the good; the frustrating things are much more obvious and easier to focus on. Maybe it is time to make it a point to write down (in a journal or bullet journal or even a sticky note) one good thing about your spouse and/or your relationship each day.

There’s an old contemporary Christian song* that said, If you were arrested for being a Christian, would they have enough evidence to convict you? This has been going through my mind but with the thought of marriage: is there enough evidence in how I live, act, and speak that proves I am married and actually love my spouse?

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

* At first I just wrote that as old Christian song but then realized it was a contemporary Christian song but it was probably in the 70s. :D So definitely old and Christian but not really contemporary but it was contemporary Christian at the time . . . oh my, so confusing. :D


Last week Lori of The Generous Wife shared an older post from her website about communicating with your husband. It was quite interesting and got me thinking about how most of the time I don’t have much to talk about except normal every day home happenings and that can get very boring and monotonous.

Lori says she became intentional with conversation, looking for things to talk about with her hubby. This has stuck with me and I intend to attempt to find something new to talk about with my hubby each day. It may be a bit difficult in the beginning but I think it is important. If you still have children at home, it can even include good things they said or did.

Do you talk about interesting things with your hubby or do you tend to whine, complain, or nag him? I encourage you to join me in upping your conversation game with your hubby.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Compliment Him

It can be so easy to see things that are wrong or could be improved but speaking these things do not bring joy, generally speaking.

I’m making an effort to compliment my hubby more frequently. It is so nice to see him get a big toothy smile on his face when I do.

I wish I had done it more in the past but I cannot change the past. I can, however, change the present and the future. So I’m working at just complimenting some, a few times each week. Then once I’ve gotten a little compliment “muscle,” I’ll attempt a real compliment a day.

Words are not his main love language but everyone likes to hear good things about themselves or when they do something well or they are appreciated.

So I encourage you to make an effort to increase the positive words you are saying to your hubby and see how it blesses him. :)

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

When There’s Trouble

Years ago, when I worked outside of the home, I took some managerial workshops. One of the things I learned and tried to make apart of my life was to confront situations by saying things like “I feel . . . when you . . .” kind of statements. By doing so, it doesn’t make the individual as defensive and a bit more open to seeing things in another way.

I read an article not long ago that shared some of the same ideas in communicating with you spouse. I think it is a very good idea. Of course, it is difficult to stop in the heat of a discussion and think clearly to communicate this way but it can be very helpful.

I hope you will find the article helpful to you and your marriage.

Until next time,


Nurturing Your Marriage Relationship

I talked about relationships on Friday and I just thought I’d carry that over to today’s post because your marriage is one of the most crucial relationships you can have. Along those same lines, it is important to communicate with your hubby. Now, I’m not talking about telling him things that you need done. I’m talking about really talking to him about what he is dealing with at work and with his friends. What is on his mind? What has he been learning?

Okay, let’s get basic. What did you talk about when you were dating? For some of us, that seems forever ago and we may not remember, so don’t wait so long to relate with your hubby that you forget how to relate to one another.

It is easy to slip into the mundane things of every day life and things that need to get done but it is important to continue to know each other. This means that you have to take some time in your day to communicate with each other. And for that, you have to be considerate of his time and what he is doing. If you are ready to go to bed before he seems to have the time for this communication, ask him when a good time would be. Explain that you don’t want to lose the closeness that you shared before you got married or when you first got married. Be inquisitive about him and what he is interested in. Who knows, you might find more things that you share in common. :)

I hope this encourages you to keep the lines of communication open and nurture your marriage relationship.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Going to Bed Together

For the majority of our marriage I have gone to bed at the same time as Michael. I am more of a night owl by nature and he is more of an early bird. Until the kids were grown, I forced myself to go to bed when he did. (Of course, I had limits–I couldn’t go to bed before 9:30 unless I was sick or I’d gotten up extremely early.)

Lately though, he’s had a bit of trouble sleeping and frequently gets up way too early (4 and 5 am). Thankfully, he doesn’t wake me up but this means that he is tired earlier and goes to bed before my requisite 10pm. Consequently, since I’m going to bed after he’s already in bed and asleep anyway, I’ve taken to going to bed a bit later some times (anywhere from 10:30pm to 1:45am). If I’m involved in a good book, I’ll keep reading for a bit.

While this has been fun for me, it has taken away some cuddle time and closeness with my hubby. Now, this really can’t be helped under the current situation but is not optimal for the long term.

Sheila Gregoire wrote a post that mentions this as well. Her hubby has a cute saying about it but I’ll let you click over and read it for yourself. It’s a good article, so I’ll keep this short so you can read their take on it. :) And she wrote a whole article about adult bedtimes here; I hope you’ll click over and give it a read too. :)

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº