Monday, August 8, 2011

Why I Believe in Dating my Spouse

My church is all about the family.  While I enjoy spending time with my family, my love for my husband has grown deeper through the years because we spend quality time together, just the two of us.  I think as a mom, I sometimes feel like I am being selfish to leave the children with a sitter, even if it is a friend or a grandparent.  I absolutely believe it is a selfish necessity to my marriage and I would argue that it is one of the reasons my marriage is so strong 20 years later.

When the kids were smaller, I remember tinges of guilt when I got a sitter so we could go on a date.  When we were broke and in the military, we would share a big soda and sit under the runway and watch the jets take off and land.  We didn't have much money to pay the sitter for very long, but knew the sacrifice would pay off in the end.  Sometimes we swapped babysitting with a friend so we could go out to eat somewhere nice, but mostly our dates were simple and inexpensive.

Later, when we had 4 kids and Ben worked out of town, I can remember the feeling of needing to be rescued by the time Friday rolled around.  I was so grateful he would shower them with kisses and hugs while I picked up the sitter and then he would take me out.  He made me feel special and because of those times, I knew I was absolutely the most important thing in his life.  It didn't hurt that those dates restored my sanity and ability to be a better mother when I got home.

Since then, our dates have remained vital to our relationship.  It's not so much the date itself, as the feeling of importance that I get from being singled out of everyone in the household as the one he would most like to be with at any given moment.  Sometimes, it is a visit to our favorite QT for a soda, going on a hike or taking long car drives together, but mostly we are a dinner and a movie kind of couple.
Ben and I on a hike in the San Tan Mountains Spring 2011

My sweet friends Don and Jen have compiled a list of 101 Ways to Spice Up Your Marriage.  If you want a complete list, e-mail me at stacy@becauseihadchildren.com and I'll send it to you.  Otherwise, here are a few of my ideas and some from the list.

1.  Attend the temple and do sealings
2.  Go on a hike, run, bike ride, walk, etc.
3.  Do the dishes together...get wet.
4.  Watch a play ( professional, community theater, high school production).
5.  Explore a new restaurant and try a new food.

Now I want to hear from you.  What are some of your favorite activities you do with your spouse?  What is it that he/she does to make you feel special or important?  Tell us how long you have been married too:)

6 comments:

  1. I just had to say I love your blog design! School has done you good!!!

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  2. I love when we set on a goal and work hard to obtain it - like running a half marathon together. That was so awesome to do it together! We love to go bicycling along the river here in town. We love to just hold hands and talk, laugh, share. We love to serve together, sing together, dance together, cook together. I've been very blessed to have someone who has opened my door for 18+ years now. He also does small things that remind me throughout the day out of the blue that he is thinking of me, vice versa. I have no doubt that I am loved and that I am his number one in everything in his life. We also never have kids sit between us at church. We celebrate 17 years next month!

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  3. Thanks Michelle!

    Jen, Don is a great example of a devoted husband and you are a wonderful wife and I often think of you two when I think chivalry is dead.

    Ben and I set a goal to run a triathalon a few years ago and it was some of the best dating we ever did. I love the no kids between you at church. Our stake president has asked us to do that for years and up until they put Ben in the bishopric, we did that. Now I just make googly eyes at him while he is up there and he tries not to laugh. Good times.

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  4. There is something special and bonding about setting goals together (big and small) and working towards them with the baby steps. The moment you accomplish it is very incredible. For us, crossing that finish line represented much more than finishing a race... We are working on another half marathon this fall. Looking forward to the training again!

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  5. Hee hee hee Husbands like "googly eyes." lol

    By the way, that "101 Ways..." list was compiled from a blind survey of the women's and men's organization of our congregation. EVERYONE should get that list from Stacey! There is some fun stuff in there!

    For me, it is the sweet smiles for no apparent reason, or the hand squeeze that tells me she's thinking of me (just a hint: you have to be holding hands to do that part) Butterfly kisses are the best too. I like that she lets me open her doors for her. I dated a girl that got offended at that ... huh?? It gives me one more opportunity to serve her and show her she's special to me.

    But I think it touches me the most when she snuggles into my arms, sighs, and then shares her deepest feelings, yes even fears, with me. I would stand between the world and my Jen; not at all because she can't, but only because she shouldn't have to.

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  6. Don, you are making some men out there look bad:) You are awesome.

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