Enduring All Things

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Never Stop Learning About Your Spouse

This post first appeared on the Young Wives Club website (which doesn't exist anymore).

So often I hear about people who's marriages have become stagnant. There is no spontaneity, no mystery, no surprises. People feel stuck. They feel like they're in a rut.

I get it. When you've been with your partner for a long time, it can feel like you know everything there is to know about them. And when you live in the same house and sleep in the same bed, you may think there are no more surprises.
But I want you to know that there are more surprises! People are always changing. We experience life. We mature and grow. Our opinions change. Our wants and needs change. We react to the ever evolving world around us. We go through different stages of life.

This is natural. It's healthy. If we're truly experiencing life and keeping an open mind, we should constantly be changing. But what does this mean for our marriage?

It means we will either change together as a couple, or we'll change separately and grow apart.

I'm not saying our thoughts, opinions, wants, and needs should be exactly the same as our spouse's. I'm not saying we have to change in the same way at the same time, nor am I saying our reactions to the world around us need to be identical. That would make for a boring marriage and is a whole other story!

What I am saying is that we should always be learning about the other person. There is always more to learn. Constantly. We can't just assume because our partner felt a certain way about a specific issue when we first got married that they still feel that way today. This is where we start getting into trouble.

The same concept is true for any part of a marriage. Maybe your hobbies have changed. Or maybe your preferences in the bedroom have changed. Something you enjoyed in the past might not sound like fun anymore. This is something you need to constantly learn about each other!

I can't tell you how many times my husband has gotten mad at me because I assumed I knew exactly what was going on in his head. He'd be lost in thought or upset about something and I assumed it was the same old thoughts he seems to have. So I'd either ignore it or roll my eyes at it and he would, understandably, get irritated because I just assumed I was inside his head. I wasn't.

So how do we continue to learn about our spouse?

Through Communication: 

Of course, the first way to learn about your spouse is to communicate with them. Have conversations. Ask them questions that delve deeper than just "How was your day?" and "What time do the kids need to be at such-and-such?" Here are some questions to get started.

You can also benefit from a weekly couples meeting (or "couple check-in" as I like to call them). You set aside a specific time per week where you sit down and talk. You'll talk about your schedules for the coming week, as well as how you're each doing mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. And lastly, you'll discuss your relationship and how you can be doing better as a couple.

And finally, you can take a personality test together like the Meyers-Briggs test. Or better yet, take the 5 Love Languages quiz. Then read through each of your results and discuss them. Different people have different personalities and different ways in which they show love. And these things can change over time so it helps to take the quizzes at different stages in life and learn about yourself and your spouse.

Through Observation: 

The next way to learn about your spouse is through observation. If we simply pay attention to the words and actions of our partner, we can learn so much. How did they react to the problem they had at work last week? How are they handling the bad news their mom called with this morning? How are they responding to your acts of love?

Have their actions changed over the years? Was something they did or said recently surprising to you? Again, people change. When your spouse does or says something you weren't expecting, take note. Learn their emotions. And after observing this, maybe even ask them about it.

By Listening: 

Of course you can't learn about your spouse if you don't listen to them. I think listening is a lost art in our society today. We're always so distracted. We have so much on our minds. I know there are times when my husband talks to me but I'm thinking about my blog or social media or what I need to do for dinner etc. Even if I don't have my phone with me and the TV isn't on, I'm still not all there.

But listening to our partner is so important! As I mentioned earlier, sometimes I assume I know what's going on in my husband's head. But he wants me to listen to what he's going through anyway. Even if I was right about it, it's important to him for me to listen.

So put everything else out of your mind when you talk with your spouse. And listen to empathize, not to argue or counteract. The point is to learn about their thoughts and emotions and to understand where they're coming from. Not to correct them or shame them for feeling a certain way.

By Applying: 

And lastly, apply what you learn. When you're arguing or when your spouse is having a bad day, think about what you've learned and use that to comfort them. Likewise, next time you notice your partner is in a really good mood, think about why this is and try to recreate the atmosphere as much as possible.

The other day, my husband came home in a bad mood because of something that happened at work. In response to this, I tried to stay out of his way and started making his lunch for the next day. Then I remembered that his primary love language is Physical Touch, not Acts of Service. So I abandoned my post in the kitchen and went to cuddle with him on the couch. Before I knew it, his mood had changed and we had a much more enjoyable evening!

Never stop learning about your spouse. The benefits are endless. Personally, I like to believe that I'm constantly working toward a PhD in my husband. It can be hard work to study so much but I enjoy every little piece of information I learn about that wonderful man!

What have you learned about your spouse lately?
Thanks for reading!

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Friday, November 9, 2018

Modern Marriage Struggles

Hey guys, I have another guest post for you today. Jade from The Worsley Centre brings us a great article. I would be lying if I said my marriage hasn't suffered from any of these struggles. Read what Jade has to say then let me know which one you've struggled with the most in the comments. My answer would be either "Social Media" or "Texting not Talking" for sure.

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Modern marriages have modern struggles. Whilst some may look back at more traditional marriages and think they had it easier, this is not necessarily true. We have new challenges but with these in mind, can we help avoid them affecting our marriages?

High Expectations

Movies and programmes have romanticised marriage to the point that expectations have become unrealistic. Everybody looks for romance, passion, love and an emotional connection in a marriage. As well as this, we also look for economic stability and social acceptance. All of these expectations form an unhealthy expectation that is not always met.

Having such high expectation means that it can become nearly impossible for one person to fulfil all of them. This is when modern marriages suffer. People sometimes look for one person to be everything. When the expectations are not met, the marriage becomes difficult.

Gender Roles

Traditionally, women were expected to take care of all household responsibilities. This meant that women were not allowed to peruse any ambitions or dreams they may have had.

Luckily we have moved away from such strict gender roles and women are now more equal to men. In situations such as pay, there is still often a pay gap between genders which suggests there is still inequality.

Women are allowed to peruse their dreams and ambitions even after marriage in today’s society. Both genders earn money and they both make family decisions. It has been know that this can cause disagreements and conflict within modern marriages.

Whilst we are closer towards equality, for some this does not sit comfortably.

Social Media

Looking through your timeline in the company of your husband wife may seem rude but it has become a normal thing that we all do. While checking your social media may seem harmless, it is actually cause’s massive issues in modern marriages.

Social media has become intrusive as it takes away time together and interaction. This lack of interaction leads to people feeling disconnected.

Partners can become resentful of social media because they feel as though it is more important than they are. If you’d rather spend your time sitting on your phone rather than spend time with them, it’s easy to see how that can be hurtful.

We also compare ourselves and our marriages to others on social media. When comparing the realities of one’s marriage to another’s marriage on social media, it’s easy to forget what’s behind their filter. After a while, it can cause people to see their marriage in a negative light.

Texting not Talking

Technology has become a massive part of our lives, relationships and marriages. We text more than we talk to each other. Smartphone’s enable us stay connected but it can also stops us from having meaningful interaction and conversations.

Instant messaging means that although we have less meaningful conversations, we actually talk more. Most people talk all day which means they have nothing to speak about when their home face to face with their husband or wife.

Materialism

We live in a materialistic society. A study by LeBaron (2017) discovered that materialism and marriage are not compatible. If one spouse (regardless of their gender) places a high value on money and possessions – both are less likely to be satisfied with their marriage.

Materialism leads to poor money management, which can also lead to debt and strain on a marriage. It can also cause the other party to feel like they don’t live up, or satisfy them as much as the possessions do.

We hope that with these external challenges in mind, you can focus on fighting against these forces. Just remember what’s important. Making time for your husband or wife and accepting that it will not be perfect could just save your marriage.


Jade works for The Worsley Centre, a psychotherapy and counselling service in Manchester. They enjoy writing articles so that they can spread their advice further a field and help those who may not always have access.
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Thursday, November 1, 2018

Monthly Goals for November {2018}

November. Can you believe it? I know I say that every month but seriously. Two more months of 2018! Only eight more Fridays until Christmas! I can't believe it! I need time to slow down. But for now, lets just get on with my goals for the month, shall we?

How I did in October:

Spiritual:

Physical:

Mental:

Marriage:

Blog:

  • Implement the 10 Day Marriage Challenge I've been planning.
  • Post 2 blog posts per week
  • Share on my Disney Instagram account at least twice per week

Home:

  • Put up curtains
  • Put my gallery wall back up above my desk
  • Actually make a meal plan every week (Whether we stick to it or not)
  • Get rid of our old couch (Yes it's still in our guest room)
  • Sell most of the clothes in my Postmark closet
So... not so great! haha I'm sort of getting tired of not doing well on my goals. So I'm changing these a little bit this month as we head into the holidays and end of the year. So lets see, shall we?

Resetting in November:

Spiritual:

  • Post three things I'm thankful for every day on Instagram Stories.
  • Keep up with the homework for the weekly ladies Bible class I go to

Physical:

  • Eat intuitively.
  • Do push-ups every night before bed
  • Drink 80 ounces of water every day
  • Do some kind of movement every day (yoga, weights, walk, hike, etc) - I am still exercising intuitively because I'm not going to make a plan and will still do whatever I feel like doing that day, but I need to make a goal to motivate myself. I want to exercise because it makes me feel good physically and mentally, not because I think I need to loose weight. But I still need a little motivation to do it sometimes. 

Mental:

Marriage:

  • One intentional date per week.
  • Continue implementing "Yes Means Yes" in our marriage.

Blog:

  • Finish all the tasks I need to do this month (that I don't want to share here)
  • Share on my Disney Instagram account at least twice per week

Home:

I'm excited to hit the ground running for these last two months of 2018!

Do you set monthly goals? Share your link in the comments or just tell me a few of your goals! Let's support each other!
Thanks for reading!

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Wednesday, October 31, 2018

What I've been Reading, Watching, and Listening To {October 2018}

Every time I sit down to write this post I wish I had written reviews throughout the month as I read, watched and listened to all this great content. And I also realize just how much I read, watch and listen to. Yikes! Anyway, full disclosure: I'm writing this intro on November 5th. So yeah. I didn't get this post written on the last day of the month but I am back-dating it so it looks like I did. And that's not the first time I've done that with this kind of post.

But anyway, let's get on to my October reviews, shall we?

Books:

Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone by JK Rowling - 5/5 stars

So I really don't feel the need to write a review for HP because I've read them all 3-4 times and I don't think it's a secret that they're my favorite. But I did want to mention that I really enjoyed reading it this time because it's been a while. I have seen the movies a lot since the last time I read them and it was certainly interesting to see all the differences. I always thought the first movie was the closest to the book, but I didn't realize there were still a lot of discrepancies. I also thought it was pretty comical that some of the discrepancies I noticed were so minimal. Like, in Snapes opening monologue for the first potions lesson, in the book he ends with "...or even stopper death." But I know, plain as day, that Alan Rickman says in his creepy voice "...or even put a stopper in death." Isn't funny how you remember those things. 

Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis - 3/5 stars

Ok I wasn't really impressed with this book. And I feel like that's a very uncommon opinion. It's even more uncommon for me to say that. I love books and I love reading and I'll be the first to admit that I'm probably way to easy when reviewing most books. I give everything 5/5. And I also generally love non-fiction, self-help types of books. But I just wasn't feeling this one.

Admittedly, my opinion of Rachel's book may have been influenced by the fact that I'm just not a Rachel Hollis fan. I don't necessarily dislike her or anything she does or says. I've just never really gotten the hype. She's not on my list of "big bloggers/influencers that you have to follow." And that list is pretty big and not exclusive!

So anyway, I struggled through it. It was due back at the library and I hadn't even gotten through half so I made myself speed read it and I just didn't love it. And I practically skipped over the motherhood chapters. Don't get me wrong, there were some great insights, I just think it didn't match the hype. It was a bit of a disappointment because I had such high expectations.

Blog Posts/Articles:

TV Shows:

I just want to say first that I am watching several shows that I don't want to review until I get a few more episodes in. So I'm only talking about one this month because Pearson and I binged it in one weekend!

The Haunting of Hill House - 5/5 stars

Y'all! The Haunting of Hill House was absolutely amazing! So of course it's a bit scary, but there aren't to many jump scares. It's the kind that makes you think. It goes back and forth between the past and the present, kinda like This is Us. And I absolutely love all the symbolism and representation of mental health. It's very similar to The Babadook on Netflix which I absolutely loved too. Like I said, we binged all 10 episodes in one weekend because we kept needing to know what happened next! There were some jaw dropping and aha moments. I just can't give it enough praise!

Movies:

Venom - 5/5 stars

You guys. This movie was so much better than I ever expected. Like, I don't know why but I was kinda expecting it to either be silly and hokey (like Sony's Spider Man attempts) or super scary. But it was so freaking good! I definitely recommend it to anybody and everybody. It honestly didn't get too much more scary than any other comic book movies out there. In fact, I think it was less dark than the whole Fox/DC universe tends to be. It has some language and a lot of violence.

Into the Dark: The Body - 3/5 stars

So Hulu is doing this thing called "Into the Dark" where, starting in October, they're releasing a scary "movie" (about an hour and a half long) at the beginning of every month for a year. Each month's movie will have to do with that month. So Octobers episode, "The Body," was about Halloween and November's episode, "Flesh & Blood" (which is already available to watch as I write this on 11/5), takes place on Thanksgiving.

Anyway, to be honest, I wasn't impressed with "The Body." It was sort creepy, but I feel like they could have done so much more with Halloween. For most of the episode I just kept waiting for something to happen. And the ending was also pretty predictable. I do plan to watch all the others just because it's only 90 minutes per month and they don't have anything to do with each other. I think the concept is fun and I hope some of the others are better.

The Ninth Gate - 4/5 stars

We watched this thriller staring Johnny Depp the weekend before Halloween. I was intrigued because I love Johnny Depp and I loved The Secret Window which seemed to be the same type of movie as this one. Well, that turned out to be true. The movie was slow to get started, but I think I've been conditioned to want lots of action right off the bat with all the blockbuster movies we have these days. But I'm trying to get myself to slow down and enjoy some old classics. Anyway, this one as all about books with some suspense so what's not to love!

Hocus Pocus - 5/5 stars

I feel like I don't really need to review Hocus Pocus either. But let me just say that I loved it as much as ever this year. There's just something about the cheesiness and the production that made it an instant classic and you just can't go wrong! I have to watch it every October!

Specials:

A Very Wicked Halloween: Celebrating 15 Years on Broadway - 5/5 stars

You guys I thought this special was perfect! I loved that it was only an hour long, yet they sang all the most important songs, showed some behind the scenes action, paid tribute to the show around the world and even had some fun trivia here and there. I thought the guests they had on the show were perfect (including Pentatonix and Ariana Grande). I loved that Idina and Kristin got to sing their most popular (pun intended) songs. And Kristin's was hilarious. And I LOVED that they had all the Glindas and Elphabas from Broadway join them for "For Good." Basically the entire thing was perfect and I cried.

Hocus Pocus 25th Anniversary Halloween Bash - 2/5

In stark contrast to the Wicked special, the Hocus Pocus one was quite a let down. It was too long. Mary (Kathy Najimy) was the only Sanderson sister represented in person. I guess Sarah Jessica Parker and Bette Midler were too busy. The kids and Billy were represented by their respective actor, of course. But the whole thing just seemed awkward with jokes that didn't land and some standing around. There was a costume competition that went on for way too long. There were so many costumes it took three segments to get through them all. I did like the behind-the-scenes documentary-style stuff. But most of the rest just seemed overdone and like they tried too hard.

YouTube:

Potter Puppet Pals - 5/5

You guys! Pearson and I rediscovered Potter Puppet Pals this month! Do you remember the original video from like 2007? "'Snape, Snape, Severus Snape...' 'DUMBLEDORE' 'Snape, snape, Severus Snape...' 'DUMBLEDORE' 'Ron' 'Snape' 'Ron' 'Snape' 'Ron Weasley' 'Severus Snape'..." Hopefully you do remember or else everything I just typed is just jibberish. If not, watch below.

Anyway, we discovered that there is an entire YouTube channel of ridiculious videos staring these Harry Potter character puppets and they are hilarious! Basically, the creators have taken all the characters' personalities and just exaggerated them a lot. The result is really funny!

Podcasts:

SHE Podcast - 5/5

You guys probably know that I love Jordan Dooley from Soul ScriptsThe SHE Refined Project and Bible Study Bootcamp. I joined The SHE Refined Project back in the summer and am LOVING IT! Anyway, Jordan started a podcast this month and it is gold just like everything else she does. She talks about all kinds of things that women face today. Some are deep and spiritual and some are somewhat silly and fun. My favorite episodes so far have been "Practical Ways to Stay Active with a Crazy Schedule" and "Overcoming Imposter Syndrom"

Music:

Mannheim Steamroller Halloween Music

You guys, I love Mannheim Steamroller. If you don't know them, they're an "American Neoclassical new-age music group" and they're known for "blending classical music with elements of new age and rock." I think their Christmas music is probably the most popular. They're a lot like Trans-Siberian Orchestra but a little weirder. Anyway, they have 4 Halloween albums and I basically listened to them all month! They're great!

My Halloween Playlist

And lastly, was my Halloween playlist. I spent a while creating this play list a few years ago and I love listening to it every October!


What have you been reading, watching, and listening to lately? Have any recommendations for me? Let me know in the comments!
Thanks for reading!

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All opinions are my own.
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Friday, October 19, 2018

Fall Bucket List {& Some Fall Date Articles you need to Read}

Happy Friday, Friends! Well, we're more than half way through October. And that means, while not technically true, it feels like we're more than half way through autumn. Ugh. This is my FAVORITE season and I haven't done a while lot to celebrate. We went to the Oregon coast twice in September and were busy with a lot of other things, but we haven't done much of anything outside the house in October. Why???

So I sat down and did a little research to make a bucket list. We may not get to everything on this bucket list this year just because it's already so late in the season. But regardless, I wanted to share my fall bucket list with you as well as some of the great articles I got ideas from!
Fall is such a fun season with a ton of activities to do. Especially on a date. I've compiled a bucket list of autumn date ideas I want to do with my husband. I've also shared a round-up of articles all about fall activities that you don't want to miss out on this season!

Date Ideas

First I want to share with you some articles that I found all about fall date ideas. I'll be honest, some of the ideas are a bit redundant. They're things Pearson and I have done before and they're listed on every fall date idea list out there. But when you're in a rut, sometimes you just need to be reminded of things you already love to do.

Snuggle Up for a Little Autumn Romance by A Prioritized Marriage
Fall Date Night Outfit + 10 Fall Date Night Ideas by Living the Sweet Wife
30 Romantic Fall Date Ideas by Coming Up Roses
10 Fall Dates That Cost Zero: Date Night Ideas That Fit Tight Budgets by Snail Pace Transformations
50 Fall Date Ideas by Domestically Blissful
25 Fall Date Ideas to make the Most of Fall by Friday We're in Love

Bucket Lists

Here are some fall bucket lists from around the web. Or more accurately, from around my spear of the web. These aren't as redundant as the date ideas. They're all super fun!

My October Bucket List by Modwife.co
Autumn Bucket List 2014 (and What I Wore) by Belle Brita
Have the Best Autumn EVER With Our Ultimate Fall Bucket List by PopSugar

My Own Blog

Here are some blog posts from my own blog. One is a list of date ideas, but the other two have great ideas too! Oh and the first one in this list is a great guest post so check it out!

Sweater Weather Couple’s Activities
How to Enjoy the Beautiful Fall Season Outside
Fall Date Ideas

Specific to the Portland Area


Crescent

Another great thing to do if you're in a rut and looking for fun activities in your area is to schedule a date with Date Crescent! They're a dating concierge service for couples. You just have to sign up for their service and tell them a little about your likes and dislikes and then your availability and budget etc. Then they do all the research for you and come up with a unique date idea in your area! They have different price tiers so you can have them do all the bookings and everything or just have them find something for you. We did a beer festival with them back in June and it was awesome!

You can use this code for 50% off a date proposal: 12B85AAA49

If you don't want to schedule a date with them just yet, you can check out their blog to see if they have suggestions of what to do in your area this time of year. They're really good about updaating that!


My Bucket List

Ok on to my bucket list! Most of these I would like to do as a date with Pearson but I didn't really consult him for all of these so I'm calling it my bucket list instead of our bucket list.
  1. Take a long drive among the fall foliage.
  2. Go apple/pumpkin picking.
  3. Do some baking with those apples and/or pumpkins.
  4. Do a cider tasting.
  5. Go to a fall/harvest festival complete with a hay ride. Bonus points for a corn maze.
  6. Go to a bonfire complete with roasting marshmallows. Unfortunately we can't really host one because we live in an apartment. One day!
  7. Go to a football game. Even if it's just high school.
  8. Have a picnic and throw football in the park.
  9. Have a scary movie marathon
  10. Have a "silly" Halloween movie marathon. We'll watch Hocus Pocus, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Halloweentown and anything else we find and have access to.
  11. Have a Harry Potter Marathon. I don't know why the Harry Potter movies (and books) are better in the fall.
  12. Create a blanket fort in our living room (perhaps to watch any of the marathons listed above)
  13. Create our Halloween costumes and decorations for trick-or-treating. We will pass out candy to kids in our community at our Church building. I think we're gonna be pirates!
  14. Have a coffee shop date.
  15. Do either a haunted house, escape room (I've always wanted to do that but never gotten to), haunted ghost tour, and/or Haunted Pub Tour
So I'm really hoping all this research and creating this list will get my butt in gear and I'll be excited for fall! I think this weekend we may actually cross several things off this list! Particularly, numbers 2, 3, 5, and 14!

Have you created a fall bucket list? What's on your list? What do I need to add to mine?
Thanks for reading!

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Posts on this blog may contain affiliate links. 
If you click on a link and make a purchase, I might get a little money. 
All opinions are my own.
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