16 Years and 16 Tips

This past Friday Adam and I celebrated 16 years of marriage! I’m sure most people thought we wouldn’t have made it this far since we were 18 when we met and we were engaged within 6 weeks of our first date and married 10 months after first meeting. But here we are still by each others side! Has it been easy? Oh heck no! There’s been plenty of times that I’m sure we were ready to walk away but that has never been an option for Adam and I’ve learned to have that same principle. Since we don’t give divorce an option we have had to learn how to communicate and work through these marital issues that try to divide us. Here are my top 16 ways to love my husband through out the year and not throw my hands up and say I’m done.

  1. Don’t let the little things get your panties in a wad! So he leaves his ice cream bowl in the bedroom each night or his socks are rolled up in a ball…who cares?!?! These are little things in life that honestly cause no harm unless we lash out over them.
  2. When he’s had a rough day at work I don’t ask him more then 2 or 3 questions. This is when we both get grumpy and in the end say something we both will regret. Let him come home to a peaceful place that he’s happy to walk into.
  3. If you know your husband is having a rough day make him his favorite supper or bake him his favorite chocolate chip cookies…its amazing how this little act of love and kindness can turn his rough day into a not as rough day!
  4. Learn how to compromise with each others pet peeves! I like to create piles and Adam likes to file stuff away which this has made for some interesting issues throughout our marriage! I’ve learned to only make one pile in one certain place in the kitchen and I’ve also learned how tall my pile can get before I need to take care of it. Adam has become okay with my one pile or at least okay enough not to mention it unless it does become out of control and a lot larger then what I even find acceptable!
  5. Continue to date each other! This is so important especially once you have children! It can become so easy to put all your focus on raising your kids and by the time they are grown and gone you don’t even know who this person is that shares a bed with you! When the kids were little and money was pretty much nonexistent we would put the kids to bed and then enjoy a candle lit dinner or a movie on the couch at least once a week. Times that we haven’t put “us” first  we can tell it in our attitudes toward each other. Now that the kids are older we strive for a weekly date night one way or another!
  6. Take weekend get-a-ways with your spouse! This is something that we try to do once a year and we’ve failed the last few years! I’m hoping to change that routine this year as we head off to Seattle later this summer for a wedding. These weekends away don’t have to be more then once a year and they can even be to your local hotel if needed! If you don’t have family around that are willing or able to help with your kids find a good friend that you trust and see if you can swap weekends with them so you each get a weekend get-a-way once a year!
  7. Don’t nag him about your do-to list…this is a sure fire way to get his blood rolling and how would you like it if you come home to someone nagging you all the time? It would make me furious and then I would most likely not touch anything on that list for a day or two. Maybe look at your list and see if there’s anything on that list that you could do for him!
  8. Have a habit that bothers him? Try and stop…Adam can’t stand when I eat out of a bag, the noise each time I stick my hand in about undoes him! So instead I’ve learned to dump some of my snack into a bowl 🙂
  9. If you are a stay at home mom have his laundry done as needed, the house clean and whatever other jobs you can do finished when he walks in! Our husbands work so hard to provide us the blessing of staying home its really something we can bless them with when they walk in and don’t have to work around the house doing things we are perfectly capable of doing! If you work at home or work outside the home I want to encourage you to find a good balance between both of you to get these chores done so one of you aren’t feeling like you’ve worked all day and then have to take care of the majority of the home chores each evening.
  10. Don’t turn him down for sex and don’t let him always ask for it…this can be hard for us ladies especially when the kids are young and we are exhausted! I want to encourage you to make time not only for him but also for you…maybe take a relaxing bubble bath, sneak off to a quiet place to read a few chapters or whatever it is that relaxes you so that way this won’t feel like one other “job” come evening time.
  11. Encourage him to hang out with his friends or find a hobby to help him de-stress during the year. I’m not saying its okay for him to be gone every night with his friends but just like we enjoy our girls only nights they also need this freedom!
  12. Learn how to communicate with each other! Maybe texting kind reminders works best or having a home command center where everyone can leave notes, talking about your day with each at the end of the evening or whatever else you find that works for both of you. Communication is key in a good relationship and something that I struggle greatly with! I didn’t grow up with this modeled well for me so it’s been not only an area of frustration but also has taken a great deal of me focusing to become better at it.
  13. Talk about your goals, dreams and wishes with each other…create a “team” like approach to help each other win and succeed. I’ve had to put aside some of my dreams because I knew that Adams were just as important and couldn’t be reached if I didn’t give some and vice versa with him. If you don’t know these things about each other and you’re each working towards your own goals by yourself instead of working as a team your success rate won’t be as high, plus you might also feel  that your husband isn’t on your side.
  14. Be submissive…I know that probably just made several of you roll your eyes but he is suppose to be the head of your home and in the end he is the one that has to answer to God, so we need to trust what he says is best. Even if its something we really, really don’t want to do. This took me a long time to really be okay with but I’ve realized it makes our marriage so much better and he’s yet to lead me down a path that wasn’t meant to be. Of course, if your husband is asking you to do something illegal or immoral you need to take that to the Lord in prayer because that’s not what submission should be.
  15. Respect him, not just in front of his friends and family but also in the quiets of your home.
  16. Tell him you love him, appreciate him and let him know you are proud of him and everything he has done for not only you but your family. Of course most of us know our husband loves us and appreciates everything we do on a day to day basis but just think how special and cared for you feel when those thoughts are voiced out loud! Every now and then maybe even surprise him with his favorite candy bar or drink at home or at work, surprise him with a date night or something with his friends. These are just a few ways to show them how much we really do love them when they aren’t expecting it at all!

Do I have all 16 things mastered on a daily basis? Of course not! But I do try to be the best wife everyday…some days I succeed and other days I fall flat on my face and have to come back asking for forgiveness. Our marriage has had many ups and downs these past years, I’m glad that we have worked things out, stayed together and have grown closer to each other and to God throughout everything that has come our way! If you feel that your marriage is falling apart know that there is hope in God to make it better then you ever thought possible.

Much Love,

Amy