*Mike and Davina while dating in 1993
Once upon a time there was a boy and a girl.
The boy saw the girl playing in a creek with her friends and realized right then and there that he would have to get to know her. He tried to be nice to her and she didn’t notice until one day after a party that she had hosted. She looked around and saw that he was the only one still there. He was washing dishes.
Over soapy water they started talking, he asked the usual questions about her college courses and she asked about where he had grown up. When the dishes were done, they sat at the kitchen table in her college apartment, surrounded by cinder block walls, terrible lighting, and other college students running up and down corridors and shouting over the balconies. Conversation was easy, everything and everyone melted away.
From that day on the girl looked forward to every conversation, every walk to their college campus, every dinner, every time he touched her arm or sat close to her. Nothing was real until she had shared it with him. And every moment that she was with him was better than all of the ones without him. Their friendship grew.
There was the anticipated and amazing first kiss on an ice cold winter evening.
He wrote love notes. She hid paper hearts in his room. They sang songs together. And even though they didn’t have a car, it didn’t feel like it mattered because they had each other.
They would look past the little annoyances and celebrate the wonderful bits they saw in each other. To anyone who would listen, they would sing the other’s praises.
Their life went on this way.
They eventually got married and lived happily ever after.
The thing is…all of the good and really interesting stuff started happening after the happily ever after.
Their first anniversary in an studio apartment that was 20′x15′, graduating from college together, coming sooo close to their dream job and not getting it, nights on their knees crying together, finding out they were going to have our first baby, getting the dream job, giving birth to their first child, being caregivers for a sweet, sweet lady with Alzheimer’s, living with 90 year old awesome Sylvan to make sure he wouldn’t be lonely, buying their first home, starting a photography business, the deeply sad disappointment of having to face the possibility of no more children, fertility issues, more prayers offered, discouragement of debt, having twin girls, late nights, long days with little sleep, disappointments, birthdays, moving to a new home, Grace coming to their family, making the trek across the country to South Carolina, new friends, new schools, prayers, starting a business in a new place, more disappointment, the stress of parenting, happy adventures together, visiting family, talks at the dinner table, nights talking with their teenager on our bed, laughing fits, and elephant fort building…
And our story is just in the middle…
All of these happy and difficult moments are what have bound us together. The big things and the little things are what make our marriage matter to us.
The little things are what have kept us close. Over the years we knew that if we weren’t doing the little things then it would be extremely difficult to manage the big things; like not getting the dream job, debt, twin girls, moving across the country.
As life gets busier and as families grow and kids get older the little things begin to slip. And when the little things start to fall away the big things lose their foundation.
That’s when marriages begin to falter.
It’s never too late to do the little things, though.
Because Happily Ever After is in the everyday.
This month’s theme is: Marriage
This week’s adventure:
Everyday say at least 5 nice things about (or to) your spouse.
To help you out Mike and I have got a plan! We’d love for you to join us in our Year of Familyness adventure #1.
What you’ll need:
2 post-it notepads with equal amounts of paper on them
How to play:
Each of you gets one of the post it pads. Through out the week you each write love notes on the post it notes and hide them all around the house for your spouse to find. Each note needs to say one of the following:
*tell them an attribute they have that you love and why
*say thank you for something
*notice something about how they look today
*compliment him on the way he parents
*share a favorite memory
*why you are proud of her
*what makes you love him
*why you can’t live without her
*mention why they make your heart leap
*use words like: adore, beloved, love you forever, sunshine, dearest, heart
Whoever writes and hides all of their notes first through out the week gets to pick your date activity for the weekend, the movie on Saturday, or whatever you, as a couple, decide should be the reward for being the first person done with your post it note pad.
Every time you find a note meant for you, find your spouse, kiss them, or send them a text.
So, who’s in? Tell us in the comments if you’re up for the challenge! (We’d also love to hear what rewards you come up with…)
Make marriage fun!
*Did you miss what A Year of Familyness is all about? Click here to find out.
Make sure to sign up for all of the super fun stuff I send from the Familyness Fort!