All posts tagged: christian

Eric and Stacey

21 Things You Didn’t Know About Us

We spend a lot of time sharing date ideas, marriage resources, and recipes for two with you so we thought it was time we’d share a little about ourselves. Hope you get to know us a little better! Stacey: I have an obsession with sharks, especially great whites. I think they get a bad rap and great white attacks are because of confusion or curiosity. I do fear bull sharks though due to their territorial behavior. I actually had an encounter with one on the shores of South Carolina and was nudged in the leg a couple of times. I took it as a warning and Jesus-lizarded (is that a word?) across the water. My bucket list is swim with a Whale Shark. Eric: I don’t have an acute fear of spiders but I would safely say they are probably one of my least favorite animals on the planet. Eight legs just ain’t right and there is no way you can convince me otherwise. Stacey: Eric and I actually first met at church. It was …

8 ways support your spouse when they lose their job

8 Ways Support Your Spouse When They Lose Their Job

This month, we’ve been faced with something we’re never been through. A layoff from work. If you’re a seasoned human being, I’m sure you’ve been through it. It happens to many of us. But this is our first time. And it’s rough. If you’re going through a job loss with your spouse, we’re here to encourage you. We want to lift you up in this time of trial because trust us, it can be trying on a marriage. So as we’re going through this as a family, I thought why not share some valuable lessons we’ve learned on this journey. 1. Have a “it’s not the end of the world” mindset Really, it’s not. It’s a job. It’s not who you or your spouse are as individuals. It’s actually temporary if you look at the entire span of your life. Okay, I might be getting a little too deep a little too quick, but a job really is a season, not a lifetime. 2. Be constructive, not destructive This is not the time to grill …

Our Top Ten 2017 Posts for Marriage Resources and Date Ideas

Our Top Ten 2017 Posts for Marriage Resources and Date Ideas

We’ve successfully reached a second year in blogging and we have a lot to celebrate. We have an ever growing and amazing community of 5,000+ readers, we’ve written 94 posts, and have spent countless hours planning, researching, writing, photographing, and learning. We’ve even started a monthly newsletter, and have collaborated with fellow relationship bloggers and date night worthy products and services. The long hours haven’t been easy but it’s certainly been worth it! So in celebration of our two year blogiversary, here’s a round up of the top ten articles that became everyone’s favorite over the past year. If you’re not a weekly reader or if this is your first time here, this is a great way to get to know us. We invite you read and join the community. 1. 50 Questions to Really Get to Know Your Spouse Maybe you’ve been married for a while and the conversation has run dry. Maybe you’re newly married or engaged and want to know your partner on a deeper level. Or maybe you two are so …

10 Ways to Become an Expert Communicator in Your Marriage

10 Ways to Become an Expert Communicator in Your Marriage

Most marriage conflicts are caused by one issue: miscommunication. Communication seems simple. You talk, then your spouse talks, then you’re good! Right? Communication is a complex topic. Not only do people communicate differently but there are also multiple ways to communicate such as intention, tone, frequency, verbalization, and even physical. We have issues that every other marriage couple faces: in-laws, both families living on the other side of the country on opposite ends (always a touchy conversation regarding splitting the holidays), financial issues, heath problems, you name it. But we’ve resolved every single one of our fights within one hour or less through intentional communication in our marriage. We’ve simplified communication in marriage and compiled our experience into 10 easy-to-accomplish ways to become a pro-communicator with your spouse. 1. Replace nagging with encouragement Nagging doesn’t get you anywhere. It’s negative and belittles your spouse. When you change your nagging to encouragement, your spouse will be happier to respond and will feel respected. Start finding things your spouse does around the house that makes you happy …

20 Ways to Appreciate Your Spouse and Stop Complacency From Damaging Your Marriage

Complacency is a nasty little thing. It’s a dangerous habit in marriage that’s easy to fall into and  can result in taking your significant other for granted. Time slips by and so do jobs, bills, kids, house, and family responsibilities. Before you know it, you and your spouse have no time to connect and you’re putting your relationship on auto-pilot. The best way to fight complacency in marriage is through appreciation. Here are 20 easy actions you can do to appreciate your spouse and stop complacency dead in its tracks. Bring your spouse flowers. Send your spouse appreciative text messages. Leave Post-It notes on the bathroom mirror telling your spouse how you appreciate them. Leave a letter of appreciation in your spouse’s car. Pack a note of appreciation into your spouse’s lunch box. Make your spouse a special dinner just because. Remember to say thank you when your spouse does something small for you. Remember to be appreciative if your spouse does something big for you. Buy your spouse a small gift to show them …

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 …

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, …

25 ways to love your wife

25 Ways to Love Your Wife

If you’ve been married for a minute, you may have heard of the book “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman. If not, it is a must read for anyone looking to win at the game of marriage, meaning everyone who aspires to live life with their best friend! My wife and I have found this to be a very useful tool in identifying how each of us prefers to be loved. Not sure what you or your spouses love languages are? Take the quiz! As the title of the book suggests, there are 5 love languages: gift giving, quality time, words of affirmation, acts of service, and physical touch. The titles are fairly self-explanatory; however, the book describes the implications of how the reader can adjust to their partners specific love language. On the flip side, the book offers you the opportunity to determine your own language and help you communicate that to your partner. The 5 love languages go both ways and here at Tonight’s Better Together, we wanted to give you simple …

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 …

Sundae Football Date Night - Over 60 Ice Cream Topping Ideas

The Ultimate Sundae Football Date Night with Over 60 Ice Cream Topping Ideas

Sure the fall leaves are beautiful, the hot cider warms the soul and the apple cider donuts are deliciously delightful, but the best part of fall is football season! Football is a big deal in our house. Eric is from Washington so he’s a Seattle Seahawks fan and being from the golden state of California, I’m a 49er’s fan. We’re usually “that cute couple”. However, when a football game is on – especially when our teams are playing – we are (in the most loving way) a house divided. Some call it a rivalry, we call it flirting and team pride. So in celebration of fall and football season, we’ve come up with an awesome idea if you and your boo love football. Sweeten up your football date night with creative ice cream sundaes. It’s super simple and fun too! Choose any combination of the list of ice cream toppings below and enjoy with vanilla ice cream, your honey and football.  Remember to grab your toppings in your team’s colors and waffle cone bowls! Over …

Holiday donation ideas you can do together

Date Night with a Purpose: 5 Easy Holiday Donation Ideas You Can Do Together

With the rush of the holidays, we tend to get wrapped up in our own agendas and needs that we forget about the needs of others that might not be in our circle of family and friends. Helping and giving to others feels great. Helping and giving to others as a couple is even better. My husband and I have had many great memories of volunteering together or doing something for community members in need. In fact, volunteering at church is how we met and it even led to our marriage. I fell in love with some Christmas cookies he baked for a production at our church and it was all downhill from there. We’ve put together some holiday specific activities to help members in need in your community that you and your spouse can do together, anytime and anywhere. All of these can be done within a couple of hours, are stress free and easy to do. Choose one (or more if you’d like!), download the available PDF’s and have fun getting generous together. …

8 Ways to Prevent Long Commutes from Ruining Your Marriage

8 Ways to Prevent Long Commutes from Ruining Your Marriage

Chances of divorce and infidelity can happen when one or both spouses are commuting long distances. Based on a 10 year study in Sweden,  couples that have commutes 45 minutes or more have an increased chance of divorce by 40%. Not only are there these statics, but there are an overwhelming amount of infographs on Pinterest and headlines on popular sites that read “Couples with Long Commutes are More Likely to Divorce ” and “The Rise of the Super Commuter and the Fall of the Marriage”. It’s enough to make any commuting couple, with a healthy or strained marriage, fear for their relationship. We’ve been in a celebration mood for the last couple months, partly because of my husband’s successful completion of his MBA and partially because he had a job as soon as the diploma was in hand. However, a reality has recently set in on the arrival of his dream job. He commutes an hour to work and an hour back home. Sometimes more depending on traffic. Plus business trips. Uh oh. More …

10 ways to have a great relationship with your mother-in-law

How to Have a Great Relationship with Your Mother-In-Law

Mother-in-laws. A combination of words that can strike fear, anxiety or even anger in a marriage. In the average household, the mother-in-law can be seen as the equivalent to a Disney princess stepmother. Why Disney never capitalized on mother-in-law villains beats me. But while we all smirk at the stereotypical mother-in-law figure that has been painted by culture and media, we also need to be the change to restore those stereotypes, the family unit and even our marriage. My mother-in-law and I have a great relationship. We even call each other just to talk. Gasp! I know. This is almost unheard of but at the same time, she and I have worked very hard to develop a healthy relationship. That’s why I want to share with you what I’ve learned interacting with my mother-in-law as well as watching my mother and mother-in-law deal with their mother-in-laws. Even if you’re in a situation where you don’t think your mother-in-law will want to reciprocate the work in restoring the relationship, the change has to start somewhere. Might …

Attitude of gratitude marriage challenge

The Attitude of Gratitude Marriage Challenge

What Is Gratitude? I love that the word gratitude has part of the word attitude in it. It’s so fitting. Merriam Webster dictionary technically defines gratitude as “a state of being grateful”. Being in a state of gratefulness can really change your perspective and even be contagious. When applied to your marriage, having gratitude for each other can bring joy and positivity into your marriage. I was really inspired to make this conscious effort to be more thankful because I personally lost sight of gratitude. I got so caught up in the busyness and stress of life, that my unthankfulness made me irritable and even changed my perspective of how my husband interacted with me. I lost my creativity, my ability to laugh at small things and find joy in tasks that I once enjoyed. As soon as I shifted my mind into that state of gratefulness, my perspective changed. The depression and anxiety lifted. I had more energy and excitement to do the things I enjoy and my husband noticed my change of outlook. …

10 Ways to Cope with Busy Schedules in Marriage

10 Ways to Cope with Busy Schedules in Marriage

We know from experience how hectic and busy schedules can not only put a strain on your physical and emotional state, but it can also stress your marriage and your partner. My husband is a full time MBA student who also works part time in varying internships. I have a full time job. On top of that, we are bloggers (obviously!) and volunteer regularly at our local church. We’ve learned a lot about how to organize our days to better optimize our time spent together. Here’s how we do it: 1. Make Time for Each Other Being intentional with each other on a busy schedule is the key to a healthy relationship during time of extreme stress and busy schedules. Being intentional with your actual time is part of that as well. As weird and Type A as it sounds, looking at your schedules and finding gaps of free time can open the doors to quality time spent together. Remember, you’re not roommates, you’re married! For example, my husband goes to school at night. I …