Tag Archives: quality time with spouse

Are you chasing time or cherishing time?

This time of the summer each year I become a little melancholy due to the marking of time by my kids birthdays and my own, as well as nearing another school year. I’ve often struggled with looking back far too often, lamenting the lost time, rather than enjoying the present.

You may have noticed fewer posts this summer, and that’s due to me wanting to cherish more family time while my kids are off for summer break. Yet even though we share many hours a day and most of our meals together, I still feel time is passing faster each year. Do you feel that way? My dear grandmother, who is sadly not long for this world, says each year got faster and faster for her, clear into her 90s when seasons would pass in the blink of an eye.

I am especially grateful for a long history with my husband that allows us to reminisce our travel days before kids, and the infant days of no sleep, and many memories with extended families. Sharing memories with him somehow makes them seem more permanent and important.

The point of this post, other than rambling on about life being short, is that we all aim to live each day in a way that we will look back with fondness. Making time for our husband or wife, spending fun time with family and friends–these are treasures we won’t regret. It’s only through spending time together that we can keep our connection strong.

On the other hand, juggling too-busy schedules with too many activities doesn’t leave time for spontaneous memories. It isn’t enough to schedule a great two-week vacation each year if  your life is otherwise chaotic and stressful. Particularly in marriage, we need regular intervals to relax and reconnect, to breathe and appreciate the present.

What about you? Do you often dream of the future? Spend your time thinking of the past? If you are good about living in the present, please share your tips for the rest of us.

Special note: My grandmother passed away the day after this post and is now at peace. She had a wonderful way of treasuring time with family.

Lori Lowe is the founder of Marriage Gems and author of First Kiss to Lasting Bliss: Hope & Inspiration for Your Marriage. It tells the inspiring, true stories of couples who used adversity to improve their marriages–from overcoming drug addiction to cancer, infidelity, religious differences, family interference and infertility, among many others. It’s available at Amazon.com and in all e-book formats at www.LoriDLowe.com. Note: Amazon has First Kiss to Lasting Bliss currently discounted at $13.95 for a hard copy and $8.19 for the Kindle edition! A pdf is available for $7.99.

Photo by Winnond courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

Make Over Your Marriage in 15 Minutes a Day

Some time ago, I shared a strategy I read in Dr. Bill Doherty’s book, Take Back Your Marriage. He suggests a variety of rituals to maintain a strong marriage. One of them was to spend just 15 minutes a day together as a couple—no kids, no talk of chores, no nagging. It’s a time to reconnect, and it sends a message to your partner that, “You’re more important right now than the laundry or changing the oil in the car.” He and his wife have found over decades that this short time a day has tremendously boosted their marriage.

This idea of spending 1% of our day together has been gaining strength in many blog circles, including at the blogs Simple Marriage and Engaged Marriage. I think the reason the idea keeps coming back around is that it’s a good one, but the nugget of the idea also needs a successful implementation. The first obstacle is making the time, and the second obstacle is making it a positive experience. I can say I’ve had a hard time maintaining the daily priority. Some days we spend hours together, and some days we are in different cities, and we hardly spend five minutes on the phone.

Can you find 15 minutes a day that works for both of you? Empty nesters may find first time in the morning or at breakfast is a great time to chat, while those with young children may need to wait until the kids are in bed. If your children are somewhere in the middle, it sends a strong message to tell them Mom and Dad have 15 minutes a day during which they shouldn’t be interrupted.

If you’re wondering why you need to have 15 minutes together, or if you don’t have any idea what you would talk about if kids, schedules and chores are off limits, I would recommend a new e-book that is just being released today from Dustin Reichmann of Engaged Marriage. It’s called the 15-Minute Marriage Makeover: Refresh Your Relationship, Add Sizzle to Your Sex Life and Be Happier in Just Minutes a Day.

The book takes the guess work about how to get started, outlining 28 days of what to discuss or do during your 15 minutes each day to maximize the effect and make it a positive habit for your marriage. It includes many creative strategies for reconnecting. Even more importantly, it guides you so that the topics don’t turn into criticisms or hurt feelings. One week is devoted to developing intimacy and improving your sex life. There are also tips for building romance. And, because finances can be problematic for many couples, there’s a section devoted to getting control over that part of your life. I think the book is ideal for couples who in general get along well, and who don’t have major differences to work through. If you would like to be more intentional about your life and marriage, and you would like a boost in your romantic life and to feel more connected, then this is a tool that if used as outlined may help bring your marriage to a new level of satisfaction.

Because Dustin is a friend to Marriage Gems, he is offering my readers a limited-time discount, and he will provide some of the proceeds back to this blog. This is the first time I’ve offered an affiliate link, and I wanted to be up front about the fact that this blog would benefit from sales if you buy through this site. If you’re interested in learning more about the 15-Minute Makeover, visit this page. He’s offering the book for $17 from now until Friday. After that time, the price will increase to $27. So, if you’re interested, check it out before Friday! You can check out the table of contents at the link. Dustin offers a money-back guarantee.

Win a Free Copy This Week!
If you would like to be considered for a drawing on Wednesday for a free copy, please add a short comment below. I will draw the name Wednesday at noon EST. Good luck!