Author: Stacey

5 Successful Ways to Manage Expectations in Your Marriage

5 Successful Ways to Manage Expectations in Your Marriage

A lot of marital issues come from unmet expectations. It’s inevitable that when two people come together, there will be disappointment when it comes to building a life together.  Often times though, the pain of unmet expectations can be prevented. Let go of your assumptions and unrealistic expectations in a marriage by following these five helpful tips. 1. Communicate! The number one reason why there are so many let down expectations is due to lack of communication. If you can really grasp how to communicate with your partner, you’ll see an immediate increase in met expectations. 2. Needs versus wants This is a great question to ask yourself before or during the moment you feel your expectations aren’t being met. What do you really need versus what do you really want? Draw a line for yourself in between these two. For example, if you and your partner are going on vacation, make a list of things you need to make you happy. Mine is a nice place to stay with good service, a pool and …

Sexy Easter Egg Hunt - Add a Spark to Your Marriage!

Sexy Easter Egg Hunt – Add a Spark to Your Marriage!

This date night idea is not for those who blush easily. If you’re looking to add a spark to your marriage, we have a fun, spring themed activity to get the engines of romance revving. This is an adult, married couple Easter egg hunt that does not include jelly beans! Put the kiddos to bed and let the hunt begin.   Instructions Download, print, and cut out the PDF or write these ideas on stickies. If there’s any that make you feel uncomfortable, you don’t need to include them. Download here Purchase 3 of 12 packs of empty plastic Easter eggs. Stuff the Easter eggs with the sexy ideas. Put the kids to bed or find a baby sitter! Toss the eggs around the bedroom, living room, and dining room. Ready, set, go! It’s time for your spouse and you to collect as many as possible. Open your eggs when your ready to use them and follow the instructions on the papers in the eggs. I recommend both you and your spouse opening a few …

San Pedro, Belize

Everything You Need to Know for a Week in San Pedro, Belize

If you have been following us on Instagram, you’ve seen us post some dreamy, tropical photos lately. After a few months of hard work at our day jobs while balancing the blog and home life, Eric and I were in desperate need of a getaway. With that, we met Eric’s family for some good, ol’ fashioned R and R in the sunshine and aqua ocean of San Pedro, Belize. I think the main lesson for me during this vacation was to unplug! I’m a web designer by trade so I am constantly plugged in. The good news was internet connectivity was spotty. Just what I needed! Though it was tempting at first, I soon found myself only needing my phone to take a million, dreamy summer pictures. I even stopped paying attention to the time and what day it was. I call that a success! I was really able to finally relax for once and engulf myself in the tropical paradise of San Pedro. This being my first real international trip (Mexico and Canada don’t …

Antique Store Scavenger Hunt Date Night

Antique Store Scavenger Hunt Date Night – with Free PDF Download

A scavenger hunt at an antique store is the perfect winter date idea for those rainy or snowy nights when you want to leave the house and do something other than the age old dinner and a movie. It’s fun to dig through the past finding a few treasures but mostly trash. It’s also a great budget date night! And who knows, you might find a sweet deal on an item or a fun trinket to commemorate the night. Here’s a list of thirty items to find. Split up and race each other if you’re the competitive type. Don’t forget to take photos for proof! Or find the items together, laughing at all of the odd novelties along the way. Download the scavenger hunt list here. Print and check off the items as you find them. Child’s highchair Glass chandelier Tea set Suitcase Copper teapot Sowing machine Toy car Child’s doll Type writer Globe Tea tin Cook book Gaudy broach Fur coat Hand mixer Candelabra Jacket with shoulder pads Turquoise jewelry Apron Clock Sequined dress …

What can rest do for your marriage?

9 Effective Ways to Stop Stress from Hurting Your Marriage

We’re living in a world where everything is instant, households require two working parents, and stress/anxiety are a quickly growing psychological struggle for the masses. It’s so easy to get caught up in the trials of daily life without realizing the lasting impact it may have on your health and relationships. I’ve admittedly been a busy bee for the past couple of months. My nose has been in the laptop or a phone for far too long and I haven’t been enjoying the small things. In the grips of working 70 hours a week in my day job, running a blog part time, serving at church, and domestic duties, I have been stressed and consumed with everything I need to do. So much so, that it affects my physical health and my attitude in relationships. My husband on the other hand is really good at rest. He can shut off the stress of to-do lists and immediately switch to having fun playing a video game or relaxing on the couch with me. All the while, …

30 ways to respect your husband

30 Ways to Respect and Honor Your Husband

“Men are from Mars and women are from Venus” couldn’t be a truer cultural statement, especially when it comes to communication and meeting each others expectations. According to one of my favorite marriage books, Love and Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs, men thrive in a marriage when they feel respected and women thrive when they feel loved. My husband and I have applied this theory to our own marriage and it’s helped us through the good, bad, and ugly. Here’s a list of practical ideas that you can apply to your relationship with your husband to help make your marriage flourish: Engage in conversation with him by being responsive with more than an “uh-huh” or “uh-uh”, open body language, and eye contact. Never threaten him with divorce. Take initiative and try to be the first to apologize, no matter how hard it is. Don’t nag, even if you think he’s ignoring you. Remind him often of how proud of him you are. Ask him what his pet peeves are and try your hardest not to …

Valentine's Day ideas: Re-create your very first date night

Valentine’s Day Ideas: Re-Create Your First Date

Recreating your very first date night is the perfect date night for a special occasion, anniversary, or Valentine’s Day. Reminisce about funny memories, simpler times, memorable moments, and how far you’ve come over the years. Bring back those feelings of excitement – minus the awkwardness, uncertainty, and nervousness – and spend a night walking down memory lane together. Here are a few things to think about as you go about re-planning your first date night: What time of the day was it? Was it in the morning, afternoon, or night? Try to plan it around the same time. What were you wearing? How did you do your hair? Don’t do the ultimate tbt and bring back fashion that should remain in the past but do find something similar. Were you wearing a summer dress? Casual? Dressy? Where did you go? Plan ahead and make reservations. What did you do? Think back to every detail of that night and how you can replicate it. Were there flowers, chocolates, or other small gifts? What conversations did you …

DIY Valentine's Day ideas: Hide handwritten cards around the house

DIY Valentine’s Day Ideas: Hide Cards Around the House

Hiding cards around the house is the perfect Valentine’s Day, and even Anniversary or birthday idea. It’s a great way to remind your partner how much you think of them, how thankful you are for them, and how much you love them. Forget the traditional Hallmark card and do something that will be a simple and sweet gesture for your special occasion. This is one of my favorite February 14th ideas my husband has done. It was thoughtful, creative, but not too over-the-top cheesy — my kind of Valentine’s Day. Here’s how to pull off this cute Valentine’s Day idea: Buy simple and small cards. You’ll want something that has a Valentine’s cover but are blank on the inside. Plan what you’ll write in the cards. Remember, you’ll be hiding quite a few around the house. You want to be careful of rambling and you want them all to be meaningful. Choosing a theme makes it easy. Here are examples of themes you can write about: Reasons why you’re thankful for your partner Reasons why …

DIY date night ideas: Time capsule with questions and free PDF templates

Time Capsule Date Night – With Free Downloadable Templates

Time capsules are a fun community, school, or family activity. But they also make a really fun date night activity. Who doesn’t like dreaming and reminiscing together? It’s also a simple and easy idea that costs $5 or less to make, and can be made any time of the year. It’s fun to create together and even more fun to open at a later date.   What you’ll need 1 mason jar with lid (we recommend a wide rim so it’s easier to fit your hands inside) 2 pens 1 printed photo of the two of you from this year Front page of today’s newspaper Print the Date Night Time Capsule PDF template. It includes: “Don’t Open Until…” Label Goals and Predictions Guide This Year’s Events Guide 2 Letterheads   Instructions Download the Date Night Time Capsule PDF. Choose a date to open and write it on the label. Then tape the label inside the mason jar with the label facing out so you can read the date. This prevents any future weather or other wear …

7 fun New Years resolutions for marriage

7 Fun New Years Resolutions for Marriage

Who said resolutions had to be painful? Here are seven easy (and did I mention fun?) marriage resolutions you and your boo can do now. Here’s to a year of building your marriage and having fun too! 1. Schedule a date night once a week Setting aside some time for a date every week will transform your marriage. That’s the whole reason why we’re doing this blog! Sit down with your honey and choose one night per week. Marking it on the calendar or choosing a specific day of the week really makes date night feel intentional and special. Need ideas? We have hundreds of them! 2. Find a hobby you can do together You married your best friend after all! Finding a hobby you can do together will bring the fun back into your marriage and build a stronger bond between the two of you. Find something you both like to do and be more intentional about doing it. If you or your spouse already have a hobby you individually enjoy doing, do it …

The Ugly Sweater Date Night Hunt

Christmas is a time to get cute, cozy, and tacky. If you and your other don’t already have an ugly sweater, it’s time to go shopping! The name of this game is to find the ugliest Christmas sweater for your partner. This date night is sure to bring lots of laughs (and a little cringing too). We headed to the mall together and found a sweet little shop that definitely has some cringe-worthy sweaters. I scored “A Christmas Story” leg lamp sweater for my husband. He some how found an ugly knit with a Chihuahua and decorated cactus, paying homage to my high school years living in Southern California’s deserts. We not only had a lot of laughs, but we’ll be ready for the next ugly Christmas sweater party that comes our way. The Ugly Sweater Date Night Hunt Rules: Download and fill out the Ugly Sweater card and swap with your partner. Then head to your local thrift shops, vintage boutiques, or mall together to find the ugliest Christmas sweater for your significant other. …

The Mall Gift Swap Challenge Date Night

The Mall Gift Swap Challenge Date Night

Around the holidays, the mall may be for gift shopping but it can also provide the backdrop to an epic date night. Get into the spirit of the holidays with this traditional and fun group game of gift swapping that can be played as a couple too! The rules for the The Mall Gift Challenge Date Night are simple: The Rules Decide on a cash amount. Put the cash in an envelope. You CAN NOT spend over that amount. Head to the mall or a local shopping center with a variety of retail stores to choose from. Split up for 30 minutes and find the best gifts possible. Bonus round: Wrap your gift before meeting. Meet at the food court or nearby restaurant for dinner and exchange your gifts. Download the free PDF printable instructions We’ve played this Christmas gift giving game with friends quite a few times before we were dating. We had so many fun memories with this game that we decided to take a throwback holiday tradition and give it a try as …

Homemade Spiced Apple Cider Recipe

Homemade Apple Cider Recipe to Spice Up Your Date Night

Get into the holiday mood with this delicious (and easy) spiced apple cider recipe. Why make it a date night activity? It takes 10 minutes to prep and while it’s cooking for three hours, you can enjoy dinner and a movie on the couch while the smells of spiced apples and oranges fill your house. More of the outdoorsy type? Go apple picking and use the apples you gather for the recipe. Homemade Apple Cider Recipe 12 cups of water 10 apples of the sweet variety (Fuji or Gala apples are great choices) 7 cinnamon sticks 1 orange 1/2 cup of maple syrup 1 tablespoon of whole all spice 1 tablespoon of whole cloves 3 tablespoons of light brown sugar 1 tablespoon of cinnamon powder A package of cheese cloth to help strain the apple mixture Wash and cut your apples into eighths and cut the orange into fourths. It’s fine to keep the skin on both fruits as you will be boiling, straining, and discarding them . Put all of your sliced apples, apple …

How You Can Use Myers-Briggs to Better Your Marriage

How You Can Use Myers-Briggs to Better Your Marriage

Have you ever taken the Myers-Brigs test before? If you haven’t, it’s time to understand you and your spouse a little better. I believe that if you can understand the cause of what makes people make the decisions they do, you can really understand how to thrive with in your relationship with them.  With this free worksheet, learn how to communicate, motivate, protect, and care for your spouse. Don’t know what the Myers-Briggs test is? In short, it’s a test to give you accurate results of your psychological indicator type (I’m an INFJ and Eric is an ESTJ). Remember that everyone is unique and with 16 categories, there may be a couple traits that might not be exactly you. But it does gives you a deep understanding of who you are and what motivates the decisions you make. This test is used by psychologists and counselors helping clients to understand their complex personality, and even large corporations helping their employees thrive in their work environment. I’m sure you’ve taken Facebook quizzes before, but this is …

Halloween inpsired date night: carve pumpkins and listen to spooky podcasts.

Halloween Inspired Date Night: Pumpkins and Podcasts

Get into a spooky mood with this really fun and imaginative date night idea. Find a local PYO pumpkin patch and pick out your perfect pumpkins together. Then head home, turn down the lights, light up the candles and listen to spooky podcasts (check out the list of spooky and creative podcasts below!) while you carve pumpkins. It’s the best of both worlds for the Halloween season – scary stories and ghoulish pumpkins. What you’ll need: Pumpkin carving kit Newspapers or trash bag to cover your working area Pumpkin carving stencils Candles to create a witchy mood A podcast from the list below Recommended Rhode Island Pumpkin Patches: We have two favorites. The first one is Sweet Berry Farm in Middleton, Rhode Island. Why do we love it? Not only can you find a plethora of pumpkins to pick, they also have a store where they bake fresh pies, serve up ice cream and also have tasty cider to warm up with. Fair warning: it is a favorite for a lot of Rhode Islanders, so …