Growing Together Instead of Apart

A lot of the things that we've gone through together could have easily pushed us apart. We could have let the stress, frustrations and disagreements get to us, but instead we used them to make us a stronger and better couple. The journey that we've been on together encouraged me to make my marriage more of a priority and has taught me not to take the little moments and the things that my husband does for me for granted.

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Five Conversations to Have Before You Get Married

When we were preparing to get married, we talked about a lot of things. Our lives were busy with work, school, and wedding plans. Most of what we talked about was related to the wedding or our lives together immediately afterward. We had conversations about some far future topics, but there are a lot of things that we've talked about since or situations that we've gone through together that I wish were part of our discussions before we were in the moment and before we got married. As I've watched other couples around me get married, I can't help but think about these topics even more, so I decided to put together this post as a point of reference for engaged couples.

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How to Support Your Spouse While They're in School

A lot of people are talking about back to school right now and back to school preparations seem to be the focus of every store in the area. College students are going back to school in September as well and married college students are cramming in a lot of quality time before homework takes over their evenings. If you our your spouse will be heading back to college this coming semester, this post is for you. Seven tips for supporting your spouse through school, and I’m not talking about working to pay for tuition. These tips will help you be there for your spouse mentally, emotionally and physically as they work to finish their degree.

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Spouse Speed Dating - At Home Date Night Idea

This at home date night idea is perfect for couples in every stage of life. Newlyweds, new parents, parents of teenagers, empty nesters and couples in retirement. Get to know your spouse on a new level or get to know your spouse again with this fun speed dating activity. No matter how much you think you know about each other, there is always something new to learn. Strengthen your marriage with this quick date night at home. Free printables included!

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Six Things That Help Me Find Daily Balance and Routine as a Wife and Mother

When I quit my full time job to stay at home full time with my kids earlier this year, I knew that I was going to have to make a lot of adjustments. I've been working to find a daily routine that works well for our family and I think that I finally have a good thing going. Every day isn't perfect and there are still a lot of days when I feel like life defeats me. But the days when I do these seven things, I notice that I'm happier and so is my family. These are the things that have helped make me a better wife and mom.

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Viewing Debt as 'Ours' vs. 'Mine' and 'Yours' in Marriage

I hear about so many couples combining their finances when they get married but keeping their debts separate. If I'm being honest, I cringe every time I hear about one of those couples. It hurts me even more than when I hear that they keep all of their finances separate, but I'll save that topic for another post. If you share the same goals for what you want to spend your money on and what you are saving up to do in the future, but you are divided on getting rid of the payments that are keeping you from reaching those goals faster, it will divide the two of you as a couple as well.

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Free Drive In Movie Date At Home

One of my favorite summer traditions is going to the drive-in or checking out the local movies in the park series. Our current stage of life comes with few obstacles that keep us from enjoying those activities for date night as often as we'd like. So we've found fun ways to switch up our movie dates with this fun at home alternative. You don't have to have a projector or a fancy setup to enjoy this date. But if you choose to "go big or go home", that's ok too!

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The Breakfast Food That Makes Me a "Fun Mom"

Belgian Waffles with fruit, ice cream and Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce are more of a dessert, but because they're waffles, I justify eating them for dinner and even breakfast. This is one of my favorite foods from childhood and one that I always looked forward to introducing my future family to. This is a meal that can turn an ordinary day into a special occasion! I'd like to think that meals like this make me a "fun mom" in the eyes of my kids.

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A Text Message Service to Help You Prioritize Your Marriage

The Dating Divas have created a service that will help you and your spouse step up your game even more. It's simple and a great way to get your spouse on board with keeping the romance alive and finding ways to date each other on a daily basis. By joining the Divas' 10 Minute Marriage Challenge, you will be committing to connect with your spouse on a more regular basis and start being more intentional in your marriage.

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Raspberry Buttermilk Muffins

One of my mom's favorite summer foods would have to be raspberries and they've quickly become one of Bensen's as well. We eat them fresh, make jam with them and put them in a lot of different recipes. These muffins, or really any muffin she makes, usually disappear into our bellies before they even have the chance to cool off. Of all the muffins she makes, these are probably my favorite. They make the perfect addition to breakfast on our deck, a picnic at one of our favorite free summer activities, snack at the beach, etc. 

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Why You Should Take a Marriage Moon Together

You've heard of the honeymoon and the babymoon, but have you ever been on a marriagemoon? We have been on a lot but until now, we've never called them that. At least twice a year, we take a night or two and get away for a romantic weekend, or I guess a second honeymoon together. We usually stay close and we don't spend much money, but we make it special and we use the time to connect with each other. We've been doing this since the beginning of our marriage and it's always been a game changer.

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The Man I Didn't Even Know I Needed

In the seven years that I've been married to Joe, I've realized that there are things that I needed in a husband and didn't even know I needed. Joe is the perfect man for me. I fell in love with him for who he is and I fall more in love with him every year that we are married. He's the perfect match for me on every level. Whether we're out on a date laughing together or working our way through one of our trials in life, he compliments me and helps make us the good team that we are.

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The 5 Minute Marriage Challenge

I recently had a friend and marriage counselor share with me that she challenges couples to spend 15 minutes of uninterrupted time together daily. This time should be distraction free meaning no phones, TV, or other electronics and no personal or house projects. 15 minutes is totally doable and most days you could probably give your spouse more of your day than that. Today I'm only asking you to commit to five minutes a day, with the challenge to go above and beyond that time if you can.

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Are You Investing in Your Marriage?

When you plan for your future, you decide the age that you want to retire, what type of lifestyle you want to live after retirement, and how much money you'll need to live that way. From there you decide how much money you need to be investing now in order to reach your goal. The sooner you start investing for your future, the better off you will be when you get to that point. When I think about marriage as an investment, I view it in a similar way. I envision what I want my marriage to look like years from now and determine what I need to be doing every day to make sure that happens

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