Unfading Beauty and Strength

Finding Beauty and Strength in Your ExtraOrdinary Ordinary Life

Lessons from 10 years of marriage

Love, Laugher, and Needed Lessons from Ten years of Marriage

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We made it ten years! I cannot believe it! We have learned so many lessons from marriage, not always ones we wanted!

While I cannot always say it has been bliss, I can say I have always felt loved and cherished.

That being said, my husband and I are not very good at celebrations. We typically wait til the last minute or just do not do it at all. Gifts and dates are often the first things to get pushed to the back burner.

As a result, our marriage has admittedly suffered. We are in the process of making our marriage stronger. We are learning that dates and time together are most definitely important, even if we are not very good at following through right now. We are so far from perfect, we almost have to laugh at ourselves. Almost.

One of our first steps to make our marriage stronger is to go on more dates. So, our first marriage task of the year was to actually celebrate our wedding anniversary.

Our anniversary is in January, so it is something that we tend to push back, as it is so soon after Christmas. Then right after our anniversary is our daughter’s birthday in February.

This year, however, we prioritized getting away for a few days. After all, it was our tenth.

The Celebration:

For our ten year anniversary, I wanted it to be more then just going out to eat at a nice restaurant, which is our usual go to. Trust me, we can spend some money eating at a nice restaurant! We go the whole nine yards! Drinks, appetizer, entrรฉe, and let us not forget dessert! We know how to dine with the best!

But we needed more for our ten year, after all it is a big moment. An entire decade of marriage!

So, this year we decided to actually get out of town on a trip, with just the two of us. Now we do have two kids and I am only working part-time, so we are on a bit of a budget.

With that being the case, we decided to go to Blue Ridge, GA. I have some friends who live there, so we were able to stay with them free of charge.

Thank you, my friends! You know who you are!

Can I just say? I forgot how much I enjoyed just being with my husband!

We laughed and talked and gasp, kissed! We teased each other and cuddled in bed and again, gasp, held hands. It was like we were dating again. Why we waited so long to go on a date, I will never know. (We are already planning our upcoming dates.)

Not only did our trip reignite our likeness for each other, we learned some important lessons along the way.

3 Lessons Along the Way:

1. Put each other first. (after God, of course!)

Okay, I already kind of knew this one, but seriously, your kids will thank you. If you do not take care of yourself or your marriage, it will affect your kids.

What do I mean by putting each other first? Besides the obvious, do not forget the little things:

  • Pick up those nasty socks.
  • Do the job your partner usually does, occasionally.
  • Offer to bring them a drink when you get up.
  • Bring home their favorite ice cream. (If you are not sure, ask!)
  • Refill the water in the Keurig so it is ready for them. Better yet, if you are up at the same time, start brewing their coffee for them.
  • Etc.,Etc. Etc….Oh, let me count the ways and ideas! It could fill up another post!

2.Accept help and generosity.

If it had not been for our friends’ willingness for us to stay with them or my sister and brother-in-law being able to babysit, we would have just ended up doing what we usually do once the kids are in bed. Boring!

But more than the obvious help above, do not forget about help from pastors or counselors if you are struggling. It really is nothing to be ashamed of. Marriage is hard and our society deems it okay to just get divorced.

But the bigger problem, lies not with the acceptance by society of broken marriages, but rather the problem lies in the hurt and brokenness of those marriages. Because even though society declares it okay, it does not take away the pain and hurt of divorce, for you, and most definitely not for your children. I don’t think anybody would declare they had planned for divorce, no matter their religious or spiritual upbringings.

Even more then reaching out to trusted friends and counselors in a struggling relationship, let us not forget the greatest Counselor and put our marriage in God's hands. Click To Tweet

For he is before all things and in him all things hold together.

Colossians 1:17

Prayer and Reading the Word of God matter, even in marriage, especially in marriage!

Pray! Pray for each other and with each other and aloud together. Figure out how to build this habit into your marriage. (I’m preaching to the choir, so don’t worry, I’m right there with you!)

3. Be Intentional.

You…Have…To…Make…A…Plan! Trust me, take it from two people who never make a plan. If you do not plan it, it will not get done. So make a schedule, arrange what you need and stick to it.

I am all about habits, so look at your schedule and make a ten minute time to be intentional with your marriage. Heck, even if it’s five minutes, it’s a start!

What you do with five minutes is up to you. Pray, Read, Plan your dates, Hold hands, Stare or Kiss each other for five minutes, Tell each other nice things or what your are grateful for in each person, OR ALL of the Above!

For further reading on building intentional habits, read this post HERE!

Conclusion:

Make it Happen! Your marriage and your spouse, and your kids for that matter, will thank you!

I pray this post encouraged you today and helped inspire you to make your marriage stronger. We are stronger together, my friends. It truly takes a village and that saying applies to our marriages as well.

So, in conclusion, I would like to wish you a Happy Valentine’s Day, and that’s coming from a Valentine Scrooge. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I like the concept, I just prefer it to come without all the extra stress and really, shouldn’t every day be a day for love?

Keep scrolling for some great ideas and resources to keep your marriage strong!

Here’s a Quick Recap of Our Trip!

Day 1:

Winery and Brewery Tour:

  • Mercier Orchards: Oh, my goodness! This place was amazing!
  • Bear Claw Vineyards: Great vibe and they often have live music!
  • Serenberry Vineyards: Of the two vineyards, this was our personal favorite. Our tasting was filled with great stories to go with each wine. If you enjoy a quieter vibe, this would probably be the place to go.

Dinner with friends: So good! We felt like we were at a restaurant!

Day 2: We ate so much food this day!

This day we pretty much just checked out the different shops on the downtown strip of Blue Ridge. In spite of the downpour of rain, it was so fun to look without kids whining and tugging at you!

Buying each other a surprise: We gave ourselves a budget and then surprised each other with something we were interested in while shopping earlier. I got some beautiful earrings from Pezrok and my hubby received a Sasquatch shirt from Huck’s General Store. ๐Ÿ™‚ (This one would be a great store to take the kids!)

We also enjoyed some shared appetizers at Chester’s with our friends! This is definitely a restaurant I would return to often!

Official Anniversary Dinner at The Black Sheep.

Relaxation in the Hot tub. Is there anything much better then a hot tub on a cold winter day! And it was cold that day!

Day 3: Time to go Home

Slept in late. ๐Ÿ™‚

Returned to Mercier Orchards to pick up some goodies and treats for the house and thank you gifts!

Back to reality. ๐Ÿ™‚

As you can tell, we kept things pretty simple. Sometimes the simple can be the most lavish.

As always, Thanks for Reading! Don’t forget to Share! And keep scrolling for some great gifts and resources to make your marriage stronger!

Products and Resources to Make Your Marriage Stronger:

Marriage Prayer Sign: A beautiful reminder to hep keep you grounded.

Gratitude Prompts (Downloadable PDF): These beautiful sheets would be perfect for a gift, especially if your partner’s love language is words of affirmation. Not to mention writing down your gratitude is great habit to start, alone or together!

Scavenger Hunt Kit: This kit looks like so much fun and a great idea for a simple date night!

The above came from Etsy. There were so many more things to look at! If you click on one of the links, I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

The Gottman Institute has some great resources, as well as an app called Card Decks you can download. John Gottman also authors a book called The Seven Principles of Making Marriage Work. This one is on my must read list!

Local Resource: If you live in Chattanooga, make sure you check out First Things First. They offer some great resources, not only for marriage, but for parenting as well. My husband and I have participated in the Maximize Your Marriage class and found it to be of great value! I also find their articles right on point.

This page contains advertisements or affiliates, which may allow me to take home a small amount of income at no additional cost to you. For more information, go here.

6 thoughts on “3 Unexpected Lessons From a 10 Year Anniversary Trip

  1. Wonderful lessons. We took a much needed honeymoon on our 15th and getting away alone definitely teaches you some things. Also, love the ideas. I’m going to look into that Scavenger hunt. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Congratulations on 15! That’s amazing! We are hoping to go on a cruise in the near future. ๐Ÿ™‚ Let me know how the Scavenger Hunt goes if you think about it!

    1. Thank you! It was so much fun! Yes, nasty socks are my pet peeve sometimes. ๐Ÿ™‚ And really, hubby works in an office, so I’m sure they are not as nasty as they could be!

  2. What a great post. My husband and I are the same. We say we will go on a date and then end up staying home watching TV – but it is just so much better to take the time to leave the house and have some real conversations and laugh together.
    Also congratulations on being married 10 years! May the next 10 be filled with ever increasing joy.

    1. Oh, yes, We love our T.V.! We have definitely become too complacent with it though! Thank you! And thanks for sharing your kind words!

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