Appreciate Love: How To Nurture Your Marriage

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Louis and Char enjoying a picnic
Louis and Char enjoy a picnic together.

What is Love?

Love is something to be cherished and measured in moments, counted by minutes of smiles, laughter, sights, sounds and warm embraces.  Whether life is rocky or smooth, as long as we have each other then we have a chance to love more today than yesterday and even more tomorrow.

Let me begin by publicly shouting…  I LOVE LOUIS MAGNIFICO!!! He is an AMAZING HUSBAND and an AWESOME DADDY to our 3 beautiful children. I could not imagine life without him! I LOVE YOU SO MUCH, SWEETHEART!!!

Louis is truly my BEST FRIEND!  I am a very blessed woman. We are a very blessed couple. It is so incredible to be his wife, his lover, and his best friend.

How can we nurture our marriages and truly show appreciation? Let me begin by sharing some helpful advice.

 

Louis and Char praying at thier wedding
Louis and Char praying at thier wedding

FAITH/PRAYER: As Christians, our Lord, Jesus Christ, inspires us more than anyone or anything. God is the BASE of our marriage!! We began our new life together with a firm foundation, with our lives centered around God and our children. God brought us together and we thank Him. We desire to live more Christ-like daily. We desire to LOVE like HE Loves.  God helps us to walk humbly, to encourage others, to be a better wife or husband, a better momma or daddy, a better friend, and a better person.  Jesus is our Rock.  He strengthens us when we are weak. He lifts us up when we are down. He pushes us through the most struggling moments. We can’t imagine a day without our Heavenly Father.

Prayer is a part of our daily lives. We pray together, separately, and corporately alongside other fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.  We know this life can be full of challenges but we are faithful that God has shown us many times in our lives that He is with us always and watching over our loved ones.

COMMUNICATE: We love each other even if it is possible that we could “potentially” get on each others “nerds”.  *grin*   He swears that “never” happens. I swear that “never” happens. You swear we must be lying!  LOL  We actually don’t get on each others “nerds”….. we simply don’t allow little things to become an issue. We communicate…. as I say we use our “communication stations”…. our hearts first, minds second and words after. Meaning, when something seems as if it can become an issue, think about how much you LOVE your spouse! Then use your mind to come up with LOVING ways to express your heart…. and finally, begin looking one another in the eyes and talking in love.  Wouldn’t the world be a much better place if everyone learned how to properly communicate instead of jumping on one another in an argumentative nature and fighting to “win” against our spouse?

 

Arm Wrestling
When Char says play competitively, she means it!

PLAY: Seriously. Life is full of responsibilities, commitments, challenges, and stress! Learn to PLAY with your spouse and you will not regret it. Play fair, play competitively, play hard. Louis and I can do anything together. Some things  he is better at than I am and vice versa. (OK, I’m hesitantly stating this but I must admit it’s true *grin*)  That’s what makes it all the more fun!  Why should playing only be good for children? In fact, the more you play with your spouse, the happier you will become and the happier the whole family is. Children LOVE to see their parents have fun together, laugh together and love each other. Our children say we are crazy fun!  LOL

LEARN: Learn everything you can about your spouse. I desire to know every adorable freckle, every laugh line, every scar, every talent, every challenge, every experience, every desire, every passion, every DIS-like, every favorite food,  every hobby, every habit, every “quirk”, and every interest of my husband.  Everyday I learn something new. Everyday we share another “bit of ourselves”. It could be a small thing that really has little to no significance or it can be a big thing that has helped make ourselves who we are today.

 

Char and Louis share some laughs at a VIntage gig
Char and Louis share some laughs between sets at a Vintage gig.

LAUGH: My life motto is “Live, Love, Laugh”  I have been wearing that saying around my neck for almost 20 years…way before it “got so popular”.  Scripture clearly states that laughter is Good Medicine.  It’s true. One of us could have had a very difficult work day and when we get back together after our work hours are complete we KNOW that we will be smiling and laughing within minutes of walking through the door. Nobody can make me laugh like Louis. He is HILARIOUS! He “crackers me up” like nobody’s business!  Laughing together helps a couple get closer. Laughing creates a stronger, healthier, happier marriage.  Sometimes work can get the best of us but when we walk through that door as we enter into our home we leave all the stress of the day behind and walk into the “House of Peace and Love”.  We greet one another with a big hug, a kiss and a smile and allow ourselves to be freed from any stress and embrace the laughter of a loving home. And, by the way, PLAYING creates much more LAUGHTER!  All of these things work together to form a complete heart.

COMMIT: This is pretty simple. In this world full of extra-marital affairs of the physical and/or the heart this may sound trite.  Honestly, to Louis and I this is one of the most important parts of our relationship. We are COMMITTED to ONE ANOTHER in EVERY WAY!  Neither of us take marriage lightly. We wrote and read our personal vows to one another at our wedding and we meant every word. I am his, He is mine.  We are committed to be one another’s spouse, lover, best friend… and nobody could ever come between us. So many people don’t take the commitment of marriage seriously. People get hurt. Scars are had. Healing takes time.  We have both experienced severe levels of marital pain in our past marriages.  Why get married if you are not willing to commit to only your spouse?  Commitment needs to be both in action and in words. Gawking at, lusting over, day dreaming about, and having an “intimate friendship where you talk about your personal issues” (especially private matters of your marriage) to another person is just as bad as having physical intimacy with anyone other than your spouse. If you are not ready to be fully committed than you should seriously consider waiting to be married.

 

Love
In Love

CARE: Nurture your relationship. How, you ask? It’s quite simple really. Take care of yourself so you are better able to care for your spouse and your children.  Take time to nurture your spouse. Think about him/her throughout the day and ask yourself what you can do to make your spouses day a little brighter. When we think of others before ourselves we find ourselves being happier and when both spouses are happier SPARKS HAPPEN!!! Get it? Want more in your marriage? CARE more for your spouse! Seriously….. two happy spouses who learn to care and love and nurture one another have “many flames burning” and the marriage gets stronger, flames burn brighter,  steam gets hotter, and LIFE IS AMAZING!!  *insert big wide grin and wink*  Give it a try! Everyday focus on what you LOVE about your spouse. ENCOURAGE your spouse daily. Hug your spouse. Kiss your spouse. Laugh with your spouse. You’ll be amazed at how this “extra special attention” transforms your marriage! You will NOT regret it. You will be doing the *happy-happy-joy-joy dance*!

GIFTS: “What,” you say. I should buy my spouse gifts?  Well, not exactly. I mean, you can if you want to but it’s not “monetary” gifts I am speaking of. I am speaking about “gifts from the heart”.  Listen, perhaps picking some wildflowers on the way home would make your wife smile. Would you take the few moments and gather them or are you always in a rush to get home to the game?  Or, say your husband has had a hard day at work … why not plan a little something special for him when he arrives home? A simple baked cookie, a cold glass of iced tea, or maybe even just having the house in order and relaxing for him. Simple things. Would you take a few minutes or are you always in a rush to move on to the next thing? Or how about even writing a little note and sticking it on the bathroom mirror to surprise your spouse? It doesn’t take money to give a gift. A simple, “Hi, Honey. I’m so glad you’re home. I really missed you”…with a great big hug and kiss would do perfectly well. And I’m sure doing such a thing would bring great pleasure to you both again later on. *wink*

 

Louis and Char sneak a kiss at a Vintage gig
Louis and Char sneak a kiss at a Vintage gig

APPRECIATE: What do you LOVE about your spouse? What does he/she do that makes you smile? What does he/she do to take care of you and your loved ones.  My husband works. My husband shares hobbies with me. My husband is an AMAZING daddy! My husband makes coffee with love every morning and awakens me with a nice hot cup prepared perfectly. That smile, that coffee and his handsome face is the BEST way to wake up!  When I open my eyes in the morning the first thing I see is his smiling face bringing me his freshly brewed delicious coffee that he made with love.  He makes me desire to be awake in the morning! That is a HUGE thing! I’m more like Garfield…. I never naturally “did mornings”.  Until now…….  Louis finds ways to make me laugh. I could go on and on about Louis but instead I am going to tell him how much I appreciate him and why in person. Now it’s YOUR turn to think about what YOU appreciate in your own spouse. I beseech you……. go and tell him/her. I bet you make your spouse a VERY happy person. Or make them question WHY you are doing so simply because it’s so out of character. If this is the case, tell them you are turning over a new leaf and desire to show more of the LOVE you have deep within.  Bet you’ll enjoy the rest of your evening!

Louis and I can complete each others sentences. We can play together, be serious together, have FUN together, and GROW together (both spiritually and in age  … although I still claim I am turning 25 years old for the 15th time). Words can not express my adoration and love for Louis.

Follow these tips and get a smile on your face, too!
Follow these tips and get a smile on your face, too!

Ladies…….. a little word to you. Find out what makes your husband tick. What makes him incredibly happy? Does he prefer you in cute dresses vs. jeans and a sloppy t-shirt? Does he like long hair? What does HE find attractive? Is it a smiling face that greets him at the door when he gets home after a long and hard day at work? Is it a nice home cooked meal made with love? A romantic surprise awaiting him while the kids are at a friends?  *wink*

Men, I implore you to do the same. You are NOT off the hook! You are just as responsible to love, nurture, care for, and PLAY with your spouse! Enjoy her!  Enjoy your LIFE with HER!  What are you waiting for?

We will be writing about how we “create sparks within our marriage” in the near future. Until then…… go enjoy your loved one . I’m outta here. Time to enjoy mine!  😉


“To Be One With Each Other” written by George Eliot (this is an excerpt we used in our wedding)

What greater thing is there for two human souls than to feel that they are joined together to strengthen each other in all labor, to minister to each other in all sorrow, to share with each other in all gladness, to be one with each other in the silent unspoken memories?

“The Master Speed” written by Robert Frost (this is an excerpt we used in our wedding)

Two such as you with such a master speed

Cannot be parted not be swept away from one another once you are agreed

That life is only life forevermore wing to wing and oar to oar.

LIVE

LAUGH

LOVE

9 thoughts on “Appreciate Love: How To Nurture Your Marriage

  • April 14, 2010 at 3:36 am
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    Sweetheart…… I am a grateful woman who is honored to be your wife and best friend! You have made my life complete. Thank YOU for being such an amazing husband. I really love you with all of my heart.

  • April 14, 2010 at 11:00 am
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    what an amazing couple!

  • April 15, 2010 at 2:23 am
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    Awwwwww, thanks Jenny! 🙂

  • April 19, 2010 at 5:11 pm
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    what an amazing couple!

  • April 19, 2010 at 6:13 pm
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    Michelle, thanks! Our hope and prayer is that other couples see these posts and then commit to being one another’s best friends. Too many marriages suffer when one or both partners pay more attention to everyone and everything else in the world at the expense of their own relationship. Marriage is a special bond and deserves our daily dedication. I love Char with all my heart and whether we are facing the amazing task and privilege of raising children, going on romantic getaways (and blogging about them, of course!), or tackling mundane tasks at home (or tackling each other at home!)… we do it all to the fullest and give our all to each other. Marriage is too important not to! Thank you for reading!

  • April 24, 2010 at 2:20 pm
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    What an encouraging website! You are such an inspiring couple to read about and the love you have for each other jumps off the screen! I wish you continued happiness as you travel through life together.

  • April 24, 2010 at 2:38 pm
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    Thanks so much, NK. We are humbled (and very grateful) that this site and our relationship is encouraging others in their own marriages. Char’s article here is so true! Water the garden of your marriage and you will harvest an abundant crop.

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