Category Archives: Encouraging Your Husband

New Ways to Speak the Five Love Languages

This post is sponsored by Groupon. All opinions are my own! Affiliate links may be included; thanks for reading to support this site. 

I need a translator. Stat.

For the sake of my marriage, someone please tell me how to speak nailguns and caulk and lawnmower repair.

Early in our marriage, I had a predominant love language called “gifts”. I enjoyed giving things to people, and I enjoyed receiving them as well.

My husband’s love languages were words of affirmation and touch. Obviously, I’m not very good at those. (That’s the rule about love languages, don’t you know: you can’t be great at your spouse’s.) My husband failed in the gift department, but at least we were square.

new ways to speak the five love languages

Somewhere along the way (ahem, kids), my love language morphed into acts of service. My husband still spoke words of affirmation and I still stank at that, but he has tried his best to become a physical servant…

And he’s excelling at it! So much so that I was thinking my husband wanted to work on a project to avoid me. Well, true to womanly form, I like to change my mind, and I think my love language is saying, “I give up on how clean the house is; just sit down and spend some time with me!”

His love languages haven’t changed. 😀

As I was browsing the Groupon Goods page, I noticed that you can actually find ways to speak every love language with the products there. No, not just gifts!!

When I browsed I noticed:

Gifts: Duh. There are gifts upon gifts upon gifts for every kind of person. PB2, anyone?

Acts of Service: Does your husband’s love language involve a home-cooked meal or a clean home? I saw pots and pans sets and tons of organizational products that will help you translate your love to his ears.

Quality Time:  My favorite way to spend time with my husband is by doing something fun and new, preferably outdoors. The main Groupon site is a great place to buy adventure tickets, but I also think it’s easy to make your own adventure! Grab a hydration pack for your fun day or take a hammock to the park for something more low key.

new ways to speak the five love languages

Touch: OK, so this one should be easy, but let’s spice things up!! Make sure to spray the poopouri and put on something special (both items are sold on Groupon Goods!) to make intimacy a priority.

Words of Affirmation: Use the Love Talk journal my husband and I have used in the past – especially if words are not your specialty. Basically, you trade a journal back and forth with a note to each other. Great for the busy couple. I saw this beautiful leather journal my husband would love.

new ways to speak the five love languages

Maybe I’m alone as a woman – does your love language change like mine seems to? My husband, so sure and steady, just has to keep up with me haha! Making him feel loved should be easy, but it’s certainly not my mother tongue. I always need fresh translation tools like this. Do you see any other Groupon good you would add to the list?

Find more info about Groupon Goods here:

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My Husband is Obsessed with Caulk and Tires

My husband is addicted to caulk and tires. And I love it….let me explain.

Anytime a free couple of hours comes around at our house, I hear phrases such as, “The car needs new tires because blablabla.” <–I lack interpretation skills here.

Or, “I need to go to Lowe’s to get caulk for the repair on the trim.”

Umm… what is trim? Why does something that looks exactly as it should need repair? What is this caulk that you speak of!?

When that “caulk” thingie and “trim” thingie involves me planning out something pretty, like built-ins for our living room, I all of a sudden can speak in home repair lingo like the best of them. Pretty + function = happy. Functional gluey paste that costs money and time but doesn’t give me a visual boost = why do we need this?

Am I alone??

My Husband is Obsessed with Caulk

Photo Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/navfac/

There are times when I even get extreme in my questioning of my husband’s affinity for caulk. Sometimes, I get angry, thinking he just wants something to do to avoid us.

Then, I was reading in Ecclesiastes…

If a man is lazy, the rafters sag;

if his hands are idle, the house leaks. (Ecc. 10:18, NIV)

My thoughts went straight to my husband’s attention to caulk lines and cracks in our walls. I thought, Well, he sure is not lazy, and our house does not leak, praise God!

if a man is lazy the rafters sag

Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/andrewbain/

But this passage is about so much more than that. Ecclesiastes has many proverbs-like passages, which makes sense considering the writer is one and the same. But in this book, they are mostly in larger contexts communicating broader messages… which means they’re quite confusing to me, and I have to pull out the Walvoord and Zuck commentary (affiliate link)… plus a dictionary to figure out what their big words mean ha.

After all of that, I see that verses 16-19 contrast the difference between a state run by a wise king and a state run by a foolish king, wisdom being a synonym for righteousness and folly being a synonym for unrighteousness in this case.

We see that the wise king is self-controlled (v. 17) and by contrast with the foolish king, the wise king takes care of his kingdom and does not believe bribery or shortcuts will gain anything positive.

Kingdom with a good king

Source: CreationSwap

Considering that the whole book aims to teach that being fully connected to God is the most enjoyable act of life, the righteous king would also “remember his creator in his youth” (12:1).

My husband could be spending his time doing any number of things – he’s still young! We’ve spent half of our life together now, so I won’t say how young, but he’s young enough that he could commit to sports hobbies 10 hours/week or dude nights twice a week or fun weekends away every month. But he doesn’t. He spends his time taking care of the family God has blessed him with, like a wise and righteous king managing his state.

This passage also reminds me of our Great King – King Jesus. We have no fear that he will ever let the rafters sag or the roof leak. He never took a shortcut to His mission on the road to the cross. He bravely and with self-control took on the full burden of our consequence, taking no bribe nor succumbing to temptation. Wielding the supernatural caulk and tires that only the God-man can.

Homemade Father’s Day Gift

(Pssst – Brad, you’re not allowed to read!) 😉

Does the homemade Father’s Day gift elude you? Maybe your husband is like mine: he doesn’t spend all of his time golfing or fishing, and he never wears a tie.

But – he has a sentimental heart, and he prefers words of affirmation to tangible gifts. The kids and I made him something special as part of our Intentional June series. We’re pairing this with two tangible gifts we know he will love as well.

Homemade Christian Father's Day Gift

In June, I am picking a relevant scripture each week to focus on. My conversations with my kids will be about the verses, and bonus! – I’ve picked a craft to help us (and you!) talk through spiritual things.

Don’t forget – you’re the primary influencer in your kids’ lives, so be intentional about sharing God’s truths with them! I’d love to hear if you have success with these. Share in the comments!

Week 2 – Follow Daddy as he follows Christ

Father’s Day is this coming Sunday! There are so many wonderful “daddy” oriented things we could talk about – God is our heavenly father. We are adopted into God’s kingdom through Jesus. Honor your father. So many!! Please choose your own intentional way to spend Father’s Day.

For us, we’re making our good earthly daddy a gift to show him how we see him striving to follow Jesus, our Savior. He encourages us to press harder into our faith! For our daddy, there could be no greater compliment.

And who doesn’t love kiddo footprints?? Nobody. Nuff said.

How to Make a Homemade Christian Father’s Day Gift from Children

Homemade Christian Father's Day Gift

  • Choose a heavyweight paper, such as cardstock. You may also use an artist’s canvas. We will probably store ours at some point, so I wanted to make it flat.
  • Examine your husband’s shoe tread (haha!). Choose a pair of shoes with a “good looking” tread, but don’t choose his running shoes or work boots – you don’t want to ruin the stickiness of his shoes! I used acrilyc paint, which is water based and probably fine, but I certainly didn’t want to take a chance.
  • Don’t dip the shoe in paint! Instead, use a foam brush to brush the paint only on the tread you want covered. Notice, we left the arch blank on purpose.
  • Create the daddy footprints by rolling the shoe from heel to toe on the page, and let dry. The drying takes about 30-45 minutes.
  • In lighter paint, brush paint on your kiddo’s foot. Be sure to decide whether you’re doing a left or right foot before you paint.
  • Support them and help them step and press their foot onto the page.
  • Repeat with 3 kids, including a baby in a bouncer seat. Ha!
  • After drying, choose the scripture focus for your dad. John 3:16 is a great alternative to the one we used. Add the verses to the page.

The verse we focused on is:

 Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ. (1 Corinthians 11:1, NIV)

That’s what our daddy does – he sets a great example of a humble man following Christ! And we want to follow in his footprints.

Marriage: It’s Not a Competition

I talked my sister-from-another-mister Chrissy into sharing some wisdom on the blog today while I’m on vacation! God bless you sis for putting it out there for us! I love her teachable heart – we can all learn something from this post. Give her some social media love and check out her blog about being a merchant marine wife!
I’m not a competitive person by nature but I’ve found myself competing with my husband. It started after I gave birth to our oldest daughter. I would get angry anytime he would call and complain that he was tired or worked hard that day.

“He has no clue!”
“At least he gets to sleep in peace every night!”
“How dare he call and dump all of his problems on me…he clearly has no idea how worn out I am!”

When we had our second child it only got worse. I became more bitter. I found myself angry at him but yearning to connect with him at the same time.

Marriage is not a competition
Thankfully God gave me some gentle nudging toward how selfish and wrong I was! I took a year long course called Biblical Womanhood this past year and my biggest takeaway was that my husband and I were created differently with different roles in mind.

Nurturing is in my DNA. I don’t have to try very hard to love my kids. It comes naturally. Those daily tasks I want to complain about so much… the middle of the night nursing, the endless laundry, the toddler tantrums, the same bedtime routine every night, the exhaustion… it’s just part of the package. In truth, my dream package. I’ve never had more fulfilling work than being a mother. Yes, it’s work, but it comes with a deep satisfaction.

Now my husband on the other hand. He has this huge weight of being the only provider for our family. Our entire livelihood hangs on his decisions every day. One wrong move or bad call and he will probably end up without a job (best case scenario) in jail or even dead. He sometimes works 24 hour days on a steel deck in blizzards and 15 ft seas. He goes without eating or sleeping if the job requires it. He is away from his entire support system for weeks at a time.

So when he calls to unload or tell me how tired he is, why am I angry?! Don’t I want to be that person for him? Would I rather he call someone else to vent about his day?

Instead of competing with my husband for who had the hardest day, who got the least amount of sleep, who works harder/longer. I want to help him up. I want to appreciate what he does for us. He showers me with appreciation. I get messages like this all day long:

“I don’t know how you do it. You’re amazing! Our girls are so lucky to have you!”
“I’m praying for you babe! I hope you get some good sleep tonight.”
“How was your night? I have a long day ahead but I will call as soon as I can!”

And he does.

So when that call comes, I want to love him, encourage him, respect him. I want to listen to what he went through. I still share my struggles but it looks less like a competition and more like two best friends catching up.

Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor. If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
Chrissy DoucetChrissy is a Stay-at-Home mom of two and wife to Merchant Marine. She sporadically updates her blog with posts on family life, healthy living, fitness and the occasional recipe.

Two Verses that will Change Your View of Your Husband

I don’t often think about how my husband views me; in fact, I’m confident in his love for me.

Maybe so confident that I neglect him. So confident that I don’t think about the temptations that surround him. Confident enough to shut my eyes and ears to how he serves me.
Change How You View Your Husband

I was literally startled when I read these verses in the Bible.

Like a lily among thorns
is my darling among the young women.

Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest
is my beloved among the young men. (Song of Solomon 2:2-3, NIV)

Am I like a lily among thorns to my husband?

That was the immediate question. And I knew the answer: I might be more like a thorn among thorns. 

Am I more like a thorn?

My husband is already in a patch of thorns!

  • the world’s troubles (John 16:33)
  • the curse of difficult work (Genesis 3:17)
  • bearing others’ burdens (Galatians 6:2)
  • his own sin nature (Romans 3:23)
  • among others!

When he sees me, does he see a lily? Am I:

  • a rare treat?
  • refreshing his eyes and soul?
  • soft and gentle?
  • lovely?

I long to be as a lily to my husband

To be perfectly honest, this verse is comparing Solomon’s bride to other women. My husband, like many, is surrounded by other women all the time! While I completely trust him, I want to be the woman that stands out from the crowd. 

What if I am more like a thorn among lilies?

Yes, he has a responsibility to serve and love me no matter what, but my marriage will be markedly more wonderful if I’m committed to making that responsibility a joy and a treasure.

Do I see my husband as a gift?

Imagine you’re walking through a forest, thick with huge trees. Vines, brambles, and shrubs cover the trunks of the trees and the ground on which you’re treading. Bugs are everywhere. Ducking under a branch, you wipe cobwebs from your face, and look up to see a clearing. In the middle of the clearing is one, single, random apple tree.

That’s the way I need to view my husband. Not random haha. No, he’s a find!

In fact, the bride says of her husband:

  • I feel safe with him and trust that he is capable (“I delight to sit in his shade.”)
  • Having sex with him is a sweet delight to me (“His fruit is sweet to my taste.”)
  • When we’re together in public, I’m happy to see how he treasures me (“Let him lead me to the banquet hall.”)

Can I say those things? Or instead, do I think:

  • My husband is like a child and truly needs my help. I can’t trust him to do anything right.
  • He disgusts me. OR, being intimate with my husband is the last thing I want to do.
  • I take every chance to belittle and tease my husband when we’re among others. If he pays me a compliment, I turn it back into an attack on him.

These two tiny verses are challenging me to see my husband as the gift that he is and to strive to be a lily among thorns for him!

Did these verses challenge you to view your husband differently?

 

The One Thing You Must Do to Enjoy Your Date Night

Enjoy Your Date Night

You wake up Friday morning, excited. You have a hot date tonight! With your man!

You confirm with the sitter. Make sure the kids have an appropriate dinner (i.e., something frozen). Get the Important Numbers list out. You and your husband are texting all day about the date, either making plans or excitedly anticipating the plans you’ve already made.

After a little thumb twiddling, you let the kids watch a movie so you can play dress up (and actually wear perfume!). He swoops in and sweeps you off your feet. And there you go!

Yayyyy…..

….

yyyy…

Hmmm… huh.

Meh.

As you go to bed that night, you think back on the date.

It wasn’t bad. But it wasn’t great. You went to one of your favorite restaurants – yay! You ordered an appetizer and ate it s.l.o.w.l.y. while you were talking about that thing that happened at the office on Monday.

Boy, that was tasty, you think as the handsome guy across from you is giving you the update on soccer practices and art previews from school this week.

The dessert is even better than the food… and the conversation, which is now centered on that issue with your uncle from forever ago. Humph.

Oh well. The conversation wasn’t that great, but we needed that time to catch up!

Your plan for after dinner was to go hear some live music and walk through the botanical gardens that are open at night, but you’re so tired, you both agree to go see the newest Bourne movie. (Good choice, by the way.)

Later you think, where did we go wrong? How did we not feel more – connected? Romantic? Flirtatious? Alive?

Here’s the one thing you must do if you want to actually enjoy your date night

Hold that thought (cruel, right?).

You might think I’m about to tell you to quit talking about the kids and school on your date, right? But you need to go back a little further than that.

To actually enjoy your date night, you must have a “catch up” time every day.

Yes. Every day.

As a couple, build into your routine a time each day that’s set aside just to listen to each other. Pour out any “business” (school and work) from the day. Lay out big decisions or worries you’re wrestling with. Pray together.

This might sound scary to you, or it might sound dreamy to you.

It might sound scary because it sounds like it takes a long time! It will at first, like most new rhythms. But once you’ve built it in, you’ll find that sometimes it only takes 10 minutes. Other times, it does take about an hour to really hear each other and care and pray for each other.

Plus, you actually have to hold off on turning on the TV… I know!

It might sound dreamy because it’s something you desire, but it would be difficult for your spouse to be on board with it. Let them know at a happy time (not during a fight) that having a certain time to be heard is important to you and makes you feel loved. Pray that God would make your spouse receptive and committed.

When you’re spending this kind of quality time together every day, you both expect it, you fight for it, and then when you have a date night planned, you can really have fun and converse just the two of you and re-learn all about each other!

And here’s one little bonus tip, especially for the tired and exhausted marriage couple:

Order coffee or tea at the beginning of your date

This sounds a little counterintuitive, maybe – don’t you want to sleep later? But, when we’re in those tired, tired seasons with littles, the first thing I do on a date is order a cappuccino.

If we’re paying for a sitter and spending time and money and energy to work at our marriage, then I want to give him my best – and my best comes with a shot of espresso! At this stage of my life, my caffeine sensitivity has been buried with months of no sleep, so I don’t have a sleepless night later, but even if I did, it would be worth it to build in special bonding time with my man.

And then I might feel more up to that music and garden tour instead of the movie I’d sleep through!

Thanks to my husband, whose sermon on Song of Solomon inspired this post!

Why am I Angry at My Husband?

Why am I Angry at my Husband

Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/kelvynskee/ (changes mine)

I have good intentions. Really, I do – and I bet you do too!

While my husband is at work, I think of ways to bless him. I might send him a cute text or a snap. A dinner he will love is on the plan. I’m thinking of what stresses he might be dealing with today.

My thoughts wander to when he will be coming home and how I will look him right in the eyes and give him a great big kiss.

“How was your day at work?” I will ask, and he will expound while I actually pause and listen.

Then we will enjoy the kids’ laughter while we get the food on the table and sit down for our favorite parts of the day.

Except it’s not the evening yet. It’s 3:30pm, which is the new witching hour now that we have one kiddo in school full time, a threenager, and a 5-month old.

The eldest child is an angel at school, so he puts all that aside when he gets home and lets all the chaos loose. The threenager is now having attention split 3 ways, and that baby must be held again once it’s time to chop the onions.

The frustration of not having things my way – not being in control – is starting to fizz a little inside, much like a cold Diet Coke. One child disrespects while the other has a physical crisis (read: bathroom issue or pain issue). I’m trying to be consistent in my discipline to nip the disrespect in the bud, but everything is blowing up in my face.

My control freak crashes the party and throws a mentos in and BOOM.

I’m angry.

Just flat out angry at the lack of control.

The butterflies and flowers in my thought bubble pop, and in comes a storm cloud aimed right at… my husband.

I’m not sure when he entered into this mess, but he sure is the target now.

“How can he do this to me?”

“He has no idea what I’m dealing with right now!”

“He’s only home for the fun stuff.”

“Why does he choose today to be late?”

These rapid-fire thoughts are only a sample – I have quite a few more for him.

You see, the reason I’m angry at my husband is:

I’m choosing to be.

Much like you’re the ugliest to your mama (bless her soul!), you decide he’s to blame.

I want him to rescue me because of my need for security, and he’s not there, so I decide he’s incapable. I’m on my own. Again.

Thus, it’s his fault.

Do you see how the lies play into this?

I’m choosing to believe he’s at fault. I’m choosing to be angry at him. I can’t be angry at the kids – that’s what a bad mom would do, and I’m not a bad mom. I can’t be angry at myself – this is obviously not my fault.

I make a choice.

Lately, I’ve been working on making a choice for truth. When that unfound (or maybe misplaced timing?) anger rises up against my husband, I’m combatting the lies with truth.

“My husband has nothing to do with what’s going on right now.”

“My husband is for me and would absolutely help me if he were here.”

“My husband is with me in that he’s on my side, and we’ve made plans for how to handle difficult situations with the kids.”

“He’s at work, which is exactly what he’s supposed to be doing right now.”

“I’m choosing to be angry at him.” <– This one right here is the one that usually throws the water on the fire. Once I realize I have made the choice to be angry at him, I can usually be free of that malice. I still have to deal with the present situation, but my daggers are now back in their sheaths, ready to fight the real battles we face.

Do you agree with me? Have you found freedom from these lies? If so, how?

Year of Fun Pledge – Free Printable!

Since the previous 2 years were rough, we’ve declared 2016 the year of fun! I decided to make a list of vows for the year. Some of these were really hard to write. Some of them might not make sense to everyone, but I still think we should all have something like this on our radar.

I’ve made a free printable of these vows, too! However, they are simplified so that they could work for most couples. 😀

year of fun pledge

 

All you have to do to get the free printable is sign up for my email list here.

And now, my own personal vows for fun!

1. I vow to laugh, especially at myself, with every opportunity.

2. I vow to say “Yes!” to spontaneous plans, rather than be my boring, comfortable, No-saying self.

3. I vow to teach our children that life can be enjoyable, regardless of our circumstances.

4. I vow to not get frustrated when I do something poorly, casting off perfectionism.

5. I vow to have more sex…because covenantal marriage is fun.

6. I vow to nurture our friendship by holding hands, looking into your eyes, and letting you in on my elusive thoughts.

7. I vow to pull as many pranks as I can think of. Be ready.

8. I vow to quit convincing myself you’re judging me for my performance and just be who I am.

9. I vow to let the wind mess up my hair.

10. I vow to kiss you every day until we fall off a mountain together.

That last one may seem strange – it’s an inside joke and totally appropriate for us. Don’t worry – the printable doesn’t include that part. 😉

The App I’m using to Flirt with My Husband

snapchat candidpw

Follow me – candidpw

I don’t know how it’s possible, but I’m on snapchat, the app that confounds me.

The ghost truly haunts me, saying You don’t understand me. You’re getting ooooooooold. These kids updating their life in snaps? They’re going to change your bedpan sooooooooooooon!

Eek. I’m scared.

However. I have found it be a great flirting tool for my marriage – go figure!

Why? Well, I guess because it’s fun, and that’s what we’re focusing on in our 13th year of marriage. We’ve had plenty of tired years, years to suffer, years of conflict, painful years, boring years. It’s time for some fun ladies and gents!

So if I want to send a pic of me throwing up a rainbow to my husband to make him smile, I guess a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.

If I need to snap a video singing a random song with the wrong lyrics, that’s what is going to happen.

Show him what I’m truly dealing with in the moment, especially if it’s poop, so we can laugh at it later – yes ma’am.

Mostly I just send random videos of myself to him, and it’s helping me feel more connected during the day.

Have you tried this in your marriage? I want to know if you like it! And what’s your handle, so I can follow you and see what the youngins are up to?