Major Announcement!

We are two people who absolutely LOVE marriage!  Who else loves marriage?

We are so happy to be entering a new season in our marriage.  Throughout our engagement three years ago we made a commitment to build a resource for married couples – newlyweds, remarried couples, and veteran married couples of 15-25-35+ and even those who are engaged.  We have heard from so many couples that there are too few places they can go to invest in and build a resilient marriage.

So here we are today with a MAJOR announcement!  We are SO excited to announce the first of it’s kind marriage event right here in New Hampshire!

One of the top marriage experts in America, Ron Deal, is coming to Jaffrey, New Hampshire for a marriage conference.  Come to the conference for the day or come for the weekend for a bonus session.

Check it out hereFree childcare too – so hopefully there is no reason to miss it!

New Hampshire has not had a marriage conference like this in recent memory so PLEASE take advantage of it!

We met Ron Deal one year ago and at that time decided to arrange for his visit to New Hampshire.  We know first hand how he can impact marriages.  He has such a unique gift and we guarantee that you and your spouse will be enriched by this event.

Please join us!

Goldilocks – Part Two

Here we go again on our quest for restful sleep.  You may not know that our search for a mattress has been a long and painful (literally) journey since the day we were married two years ago.

In fact, one of our very first posts outlined our rather ridiculous story in the first few months of our marriage.

So after sticking with our third mattress, we ended up getting a 3 inch memory foam topper for the bed as well.  Keep in mind that our firmness levels are totally opposite (Michael soft for his miserably achy shoulders and Joya firm).

Neither of us have slept great in our two years and given the tremendous importance of sleep in our sometimes chaotic lives, we decided to renew the search.

This time, we went online rather than in person.  Continue reading “Goldilocks – Part Two”

2nd Anniversary

You wouldn’t think these low numbered milestones are very important.  But given the chaos we have gone through in our first two years of marriage, we are here to tell you that it is a BIG ONE for us!

Some days, it seems like we’ve been married for 5, 7 or even 10 years.  We have gone through more difficult experiences than any “typical” honeymoon couple would go through.

Most “typical” honeymoon couples go through issues of money, sex, and leaving the cap off the toothpaste! We are happy to say those haven’t been our issues.

However, as a remarried couple and one working on blending a family, our issues have been: ex- spouses, parenting styles, health issues and putting each other, and our marriage, first when we were both used to putting our children first for so many years during our divorce.

Here’s where we are today. Continue reading “2nd Anniversary”

It’s Time To Speak Up At Church

So many of us look for guidance, help, shelter, comfort and advice from our churches.  But we sometimes fail to appreciate and recognize that, just like us, churches aren’t perfect.

Churches try to serve as many as they can in their congregation with different programs and ministries.  But, after all, they will never fully know the needs of their congregation unless we tell them straight up what WE need.  Or unless they ask and we answer honestly and openly.

According a survey by LifeWay Research and Focus on the Family, 75% of Pastors say they are doing enough in their church to help marriages.  Yet only 69% of churches have an ongoing ministry.  That’s a mighty big disconnect.  (In New Hampshire it is more like 95% of churches that don’t have a marriage ministry).  Great article here about the challenges Pastors face with marriage ministries.

When we entered the marriage ministry one year ago, we were somewhat critical of  churches for not prioritizing and focusing on what we believe to be the overarching issue in the breakdown of our families across America.  We believe that is marriage.  And we believe that marriage should be the priority of every church.  But we are just two people who don’t have a say – which is why we are here writing. Continue reading “It’s Time To Speak Up At Church”

Summer Mood – Research – It Makes Sense!

Two things we have in common – for better or worse – is the temperature our bodies feel!  That means in the winter we are freezing cold and in the summer we start to warm up – just a little!  So we struggle to keep our bodies warm during the winter and REALLY look forward to the summer.

New Hampshire has had one of the coolest and wettest springs on record – and that hasn’t been good for our psyche – or our bodies.  But this past week – PRAISE THE LORD – has finally hit the 80s!

Seriously – we usually have a couple of rogue 90 degree days in May and several 90 degree days in June but we have barely even hit the 80s until this week!

Why do we tell you this?  Well there just happens to some science behind the fact that warmer temperatures increase our mood.  And when our mood increases our relations are even better with our spouse!

This is from a study by the University of Michigan: Continue reading “Summer Mood – Research – It Makes Sense!”

Here’s A Question: What Is Marriage?

Ask that question and everyone will have a different marriage:

“Marrying your best friend”

“Living life with your soulmate”

“Not being able to live without your partner”

We just finished the Love & Respect video series and cannot even begin to tell you how much we learned about marriage, relationships, men and women, and most importantly the role of God in our marriage.

As we all know, dealing with conflict in marriage is the 800 pound gorilla.  Continue reading “Here’s A Question: What Is Marriage?”

A Text or Two a Day

For us middle aged folk, we might be able to learn something from the younger crowd  with respect to technology and relationships.

Regardless of your age, how often do you communicate with your spouse during the day?  One time – two times – NO times?

Would you believe that, according to Pew Research, 85% of young people expect to hear from their partner at least once a day.  35% expect to hear every few hours!  Thankfully only 11% expect it every hour.  Phew…

Another interesting stat among the 18-25 year old crowd Continue reading “A Text or Two a Day”

Listening, Sharing, Cheering, Dreaming and…Dying

Guys – Do you listen closely to your woman?  Or do you immediately jump to wanting to fix the issue she is having?

Women – Do you cheer your man on at work and in his recreational activities?  Or do you not think about it?

Guys – Do you share your feelings with your wife?  We can hear you laughing!  But seriously, the love of your life wants to know how and what you are feeling – at least occasionally!

Women – Do you talk to your husband about what his dreams are?  And encourage him in his dreams?  When he talks about his dreams do you react positively or just say “oh that’s interesting”?

We know that God made men to want to fix things and most men have to consciously go out of their way to just listen to their spouse.  Continue reading “Listening, Sharing, Cheering, Dreaming and…Dying”

It’s Just Another Day?

Joya and I usually write posts together but I’m taking this one solo.

Father’s Day has taken on a much different tone since my divorce. For several years now I have not had my children on Father’s Day. I try to convince myself it’s not really a big deal. I’ll see them in a few more days and we’ll do something special together.

Probably the hardest thing is that everyone else makes a big deal about Father’s Day (understandably) starting first thing in the morning at church. So when churches ask Dad’s to stand, I don’t get to thank God for my kids and look at them at the same time. As much as I try to escape everyone else’s focus on it – it’s just plain hard to avoid and pretend that it’s just another day. Continue reading “It’s Just Another Day?”

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