Like all good partnerships, marriage takes teamwork, compromise, dedication, and commitment. Add kids (and four pets) to the mix and you have a whole new set of parameters that move around like a dart board when you’ve had too much to drink.
Life is constantly changing and so do the rules, which are usually interpreted differently by each of us. Sure, we’ve always had lots of love and respect for each other, but complications abound with work, schedules, school, illnesses, and the occasional “what the hell just happened crazy from out of nowhere stuff”.
How do we communicate or find time to be a couple when life is a moving target and our four kids want or need something from the time we wake in the morning until after we’ve gone to bed at night? How do we find time alone together amongst the stress of work, doctor’s appointments and the endless day to day tasks that keep us overwhelmingly occupied?
It’s not easy!
But thankfully I have a good friend that let us in on a little secret that she and her husband were using to stay connected. 😉
Love by the letters: My husband and I began Alphabet Dating last year.
Starting with the letter A and working our way through the alphabet, we alternate the duty of planning a date centered around our assigned letter. Thought has to go into each night out, both to meet the letter requirement and to do something our spouse will like. It also spreads out the responsibility while keeping one of us accountable for the next planned evening together.
Not only does this force us to make time for ourselves, but puts us outside of our comfort zone and trying new things together. Oh, the other catch, you don’t tell your partner what you’re doing. You can instruct your significant other on what kind of clothes to wear, but most of the time the other is clueless about the final destination until we arrive.
And even though they don’t get to tag-a-long, the kids love it! The younger guys are always asking who has the next date and whispering ideas in our ears.
For our first date, I took my husband to the Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse to see the classic movie Airplane. It was a great start because we went somewhere we never would have thought of going or treating ourselves to. Since then, we’ve been to the opera (not my husband’s favorite), done a Historic Hike of Fairfax, Virginia, been line dancing, seen a musical and participated in a murder mystery dinner theater.
I’ve loved them all, but my favorite so far would have to be when my husband took me to Frozen on ice, then we went to Fat Tuesdays (Yay! Cajun food) and watched Ole Miss Football in the bar. Of course we don’t always do something so elaborate. Earlier this month, I took him out for Mexican and a movie. The point is just spending time together, not spending all our money. 🙂
I’m always looking for new ways to stay connected with my soulmate. Any other suggestions? What do you do to keep your Happily Ever After?
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