Last week I wrote about "Ways to Love and Save a Marriage" (LINK), this week, as we approach Valentines Day I thought I would look at "keeping the romance going" — not just on Valentines Day, but every day of the year.
When we are tired or weary, it can be hard work to almost impossible being romantic — the house is looking messy, dust is everywhere, the kids are noisy, the bills are piling up, dinner has to cooked, washing to do and don't mention the dishes . . . feeling grumpy, overweight and unattractive and husband is oblivious to it all. I think we have all been in this space more times that we want to admit during our marriage.
But . . . its not a space we want to be in for long as it is not healthy for us and nor is it good for our marriage.
We need to pull ourselves together and get romantic because part of maintaining a healthy loving marriage is the romances. And we don't want to be another statistic.
Firstly—go to your quiet place and prayer for guidances and encouragement from God, you need His help to put the sparkle back into your marriage —you can't do it on your own.
Secondly — get your act together — tidy the house and do those dishes — it really does make things feel so much better when there is order in the home. It doesn't need to be perfect, but some level of tidiness make a home far more inviting and one that your husband will love to come home too.
Thirdly —sorting out the children may not be quite so easy — but it is important to bring romance back into the house so the children do need to do their part. They need to see what a healthy marriage looks like and you are their role model. Your children don't come first (this can be hard for some mothers to get their heads around), they come after dad and this is something they need to understand. Tell the children that by the time daddy is home the house needs to be cosy and comfortable for him and mummy needs lots of help. Its also important for children to understand that mum and dad have time together that doesn't involve them and they should learn this from an early age.
Fourthly — have a shower, put on a nice dress, do the hair, a splash on some perfume, a little makeup and some jewellery and you will feel like a new woman. And your husband will notice!
Take some advice from the Danish and their concept of Hygge — and burn a candle or two, remember that your house doesn't need to be perfect, it just needs to be a cosy cocoon for your family.
So the house is in order, you are looking gorgeous, the candles are lit, now we need something romanic to do — here are some ideas, I am sure you have plenty more to add!! Some of these ideas will require a baby sitter or an early night for the children, some can involve the children too!
- Watch a romantic movie together whilst eating popcorn!
- Go for a romantic walk to watch the sunrise or sunset
- Write a poem for your spouse and frame it
- Gather up your favourite photos and create a collage to hang in the bedroom
- Make a book about why you love your husband and why you are thankful for him
- Candlelight dinner for two with the best china
- Family picnic on the rug in the living room (if cold) or outside if sunny and warm
- Make the entire day full of his favourites: the breakfast of his dreams, the dinner of his dreams, TV that is his favourite, his music, etc. Don’t say anything about it, surprise him all day long
- Learn how to dance together — this can be great fun (for some!!)
- Create a CD with songs that make you think of your sweetheart, and give it to your husband
- Turn off the TV and lay a boardgames on the floor surrounded by nibbles and lots of pillows and candles
- Leave little notes in his lunchbox so when he opens it at work he finds these beautiful notes.
- Choose specialty foods, such as wine, cheese, fresh bread/dessert from a favourite bakery and enjoy in front of your warm fireplace
- Write a “Top 10 Reasons Why I Love You” list.
- Create your own bookclub of two —choose a book in which you are both interested, fiction or nonfiction. Read a new chapter each night before bed. This cozy tradition will allow you to spend some quality time together and often makes for thought provoking breakfast conversations.
- Bring homemade cookies or brownies to his office
- Stash a love note in his shoe, on the steering wheel in the car, on the bathroom mirror
- Write a love letter and post it to your husband
- Share a bath
- Make a homemade gift
- Treat your husband to a massage
- Go for a drive, buy an ice-cream and go for a short walk together
- Take you husband on a mystery day out and take a picnic lunch with you.
with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.