Who Is In Your Church?

We read a quote and statistic today that was eye-catching to say the least!

40% of families in your church and community are blended families.

– FamilyLife

Yup – that’s us!  We are in the growing statistic of couples who got married, had kids, got divorced and then remarried.  And our kids are still under 18 so they are living with us part-time.

There was a time, which seemed not too long ago, when our churches and communities were mostly filled with the “traditional” family – meaning married once with kids.

But, as we all know, over the last couple of decades blended family living has been on the rapid increase.

In fact, approximately 33% of all weddings today will form step-families. Continue reading “Who Is In Your Church?”

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Pillow Talk

This is good.  First of all, who doesn’t love their pillow?  Second, adding the comfort of your pillow to the love of your spouse and you get a magical combination!  Unless, of course, you have a pillow problem – which we have had – but we’ll save that for another day.  Let’s assume for this post that everyone is comfortable with their pillow!

We have four kids between 10-17 who have tons of activities, and we each have our own careers.  There are days when finding time to connect are downright impossible!  Then we find ourselves falling asleep on the couch as we begin to wind down our day after the kids go to bed.

Now, we all know the importance of connecting with our spouse each day, and at a minimum, we should find 10-15 minutes to just talk one-on-one.  “Pillow talk” may be that one opportunity to connect so let’s dig in to this a little deeper.

This definition of “pillow talk” in the urban dictionary is perfect: for two people to enjoy each other’s presence through conversation, in a somewhat spontaneous way, but in a way that will let both parties go to bed with clear heads. Continue reading “Pillow Talk”

What language are you speaking?

Have you heard of the 5 Love Languages? Before we read the book and watched the video series, we had heard about it but didn’t know much detail.

You’ll be surprised to know that it’s really a pretty simple and easy to understand formula for marital harmony. We have found it to be extremely helpful in understanding what our spouse needs and possibly even when they need it.

In a nutshell, according to Gary Chapman there are 5 Love Languages:

  1. Acts of Service – Doing things for our spouse like chores or cooking dinner.
  2. Quality Time – Focusing all your energy on your spouse.
  3. Words of Affirmation – Verbal appreciation and compliments.
  4. Receiving Gifts – Visual symbols of love.
  5. Physical Touch – Physical contact like holding hands, usually not sexual.

Continue reading “What language are you speaking?”

1-2-3…STOP!

The Crazy Cycle.  It can start at any moment without a single warning.

What is the crazy cycle?  We have been watching a video series called Love & Respect and according to Emerson Eggerichs, the crazy cycle is the time when we react negatively to each other.  When she feels unloved, she reacts without respect.  When he feels disrespected, he reacts without love.

This crazy cycle will continue until you both stomp your feet in utter anger and leave the room.  OR…one of you puts a stop to it because you are now consciously aware of what is happening.

The crazy cycle hit us just the other day.  One overreaction struck and we continued to  respond to the other negatively.  Continue reading “1-2-3…STOP!”

It IS A Good Friday!

What is “Good Friday” to you?  Good Health?  Good Weekend?  Good Job?  Good Family?  Good Marriage?  Good Kids?  Good Future?  Well if it isn’t it can be!

For Christians and followers of Jesus Christ, it is one of the most important days of the year.  It is the day Jesus was crucified and died on the cross.  And he did that to save us from our sins – which we struggle with daily.

We’ll be the first to tell you that we face down sin every single day!  Whew!  Some days are a LOT harder than others.  But we know that Jesus suffered so that we don’t have to.

For those who don’t follow Jesus Christ, GOOD Friday can be GOOD for plenty of reasons! You can celebrate your blessings and successes with family and friends! And you can be proud to show your love for your spouse and others because it is a GOOD Friday!

And if you are struggling in any area of life, today can be a GOOD Friday to start looking at things a different way!  You are breathing air into your lungs.  You have friends or family somewhere around.  Today can be the day you start looking at the glass half FULL!

Your relationship is broken?  Continue reading “It IS A Good Friday!”

Spring Clean Your Marriage!

It was 70 degrees this weekend so naturally we are thinking about SPRING CLEANING!

Below are some key excerpts from a fabulous post titled ‘9 Tips On How To Spring Clean Your Marriage’ at the great marriage blog, The Romantic Vineyard.  Hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

 

 

  1. Clean the windows — make sure you are being transparent with your spouse about, well — everything!  There should be no secrets.  Open the windows and let the fresh air in.  Do you welcome outside inspiration from friends, teachings or books?
  2. Move the furniture and clean underneath — is there anything in your marriage you’ve lost and forgotten?  Ways you used to romance each other.  Kindnesses you used to show before life got so busy?  Plan to elevate these things back into your life.  You will be reminded how much you enjoyed them before they got shoved unknowingly under the couch.
  3. Sanitize the bathrooms — there is no more intimate or private room in the home than the bathroom.  And it is the one room that should be cleaned the deepest and the most often.  So too, with our sexual intimacy.  (yes, I’m really comparing our sex life to the bathroom.  lol)  Pay close attention to your ways and keep the marriage bed pure.  Make love often and watch your relationship shine!
  4. Polish the furniture — Dust reveals places no one has touched recently.  If dust is accumulating on the furniture, it is one of the first things guests notice in a home.  May your marriages be dust-free.

Read the full post and the other 5 tips at The Romantic Vineyard!

 

Fun Fact Friday! 83% and 72%

So we have been going through the Love and Respect video series.  If you haven’t done it, it’s worth taking a look or reading the book.  So good.

Here is a couple of pretty unbelievable statistics.  7,000 people were asked this question – yes 7,000! – When you are in conflict with your spouse or significant other, do you feel unloved at that moment or disrespected.

83% of the men said they feel disrespected.  72% of the women said they feel unloved.

Those are some pretty heavy stats!  They are important to know, because, while men and women both need love and respect equally, during conflict a wife leans toward love and a husband toward respect.

This continues to show how different men and women are and how we can often be misunderstood.

“God made us male and female.  Thus, a husband is not wrong for needing respect, just different from his wife.  A wife is not wrong for needing love, just different from her husband.  A wise person sees the differences and celebrates them.”

– Emerson Eggerichs

Have a great weekend!

Pink & blue sunglasses

Have you ever been in a discussion with your spouse where you are saying one thing that seems simple and to the point, and your spouse is saying something back that seems equally simple and to the point?  All of the sudden you see your spouse’s attitude change instantly.  And your reaction is: “WHAT?  What did I say?  What did I do?”

We just started working through the Love and Respect series which has been SO eye opening to us.  Emerson Eggerichs is brilliant and hits the nail on the head!  He explains that many times in conflict, the issue doesn’t seem to be the the issue.  “What is the issue when the issue isn’t the issue?,” he says.

Watch Emerson Eggerichs explain “the issue”.Screenshot 2019-04-09 17.16.34

You think your spouse should understand you because your comments, on the surface, appear to be straightforward.  Continue reading “Pink & blue sunglasses”

A couple that does yard work together…

How does that old saying go?  “A couple that does yard work together…stays together.”  Or maybe we are remembering a twist on an old saying.  Anyway, last week we had to have our two last trees in the front yard taken down because of the dreaded Ash Bore which is destroying Ash trees all over New Hampshire.  They were once beautiful trees, and after counting the rings on the stump they were exactly 80 years old.

As we all know taking trees down isn’t cheap.  We were fortunate to find a wonderful father and father-in-law team to taken them down the old fashioned way and at an extremely reasonable price.  But to save some money, and some firewood, we asked them to stack the logs in 10 foot sections and pile up the brush for us to take care of ourselves.  They did an amazing job doing that for us.  There are two more brush piles in not in the picture below.

IMG_2615

The picture really doesn’t do the task ahead justice. Continue reading “A couple that does yard work together…”

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