I’ve been spending every spare minute I’ve had working on Christmas presents. A combination of factors has led to this burst of creativity: the flush of success after completing Charlotte’s owl costume, an excess of time spent scouring Pinterest for gift ideas, and listening to Dave Ramsey preach the evils of “plastic stuff” and marketing companies. All of these experiences led me to make the dubious decision to make the majority of my Christmas gifts this year. I made my list, matched up people to projects, and set a timeline to be finished by my birthday weekend. It’s going well, but has clearly eaten into my blogging time. I can’t even show you my completed projects, since most of the recipients are (I believe) among my faithful readers :).
All that is to say that I find myself lacking subject matter and inspiration for blog topics. However, since today is the 19th of the month, I thought I’d share a tradition my husband and I have developed. I think I’ve mentioned before that we try to celebrate on the 19th of every month by doing something special together. My sweet hubby began this ritual when we were dating by bringing me roses on the 5th of every month (we started officially dating on July 5th), one rose for every month we’d been together. He switched to the 19th after we got married (our anniversary is July 19th) and changed from roses to daisies, which last longer (they are also my favorite flower, and much cheaper than roses). We also go out to dinner and sometimes a movie.
We’ve had to adapt this tradition a bit since having Little Britches, but I tried to keep the romance alive by giving my sweetheart a book of unique dates for our anniversary this year. I was inspired by this pin, and will fully admit to copying many of her date ideas. Naturally since we live in the real world and not Fantasyland most of the dates had to be adapted to fit the circumstances. For example, in August we were supposed to have ice cream sundaes in the backyard while we counted the fireflies that meandered around us. It turned out to be unseasonably cold and rainy on August 19th this year, so we ended up eating our ice cream on the couch and watching a Firefly rerun on the Science channel (ok, I don’t think we actually watched that, but it would have been clever, huh?) In September we were supposed to make a Shutterfly book out of our beach vacation photos. Unfortunately Charlotte was having a hard time adjusting to her crib again after the trip, so we had to complete the project while listening to our precious baby scream her lungs out until she was finally able to fall asleep. Our October date of decorating pumpkins actually went mostly according to plan, even though we picked out the gourds at Wally World instead of a pumpkin patch and had to celebrate two days late because we had company.
This month the date card read “Enjoy a wine and cheese(cake) carpet picnic in front of a roaring fire while we list our many blessings.” We decided to celebrate last night, since we have Financial Peace University tonight. We had dinner at a new restaurant (we were even adventurous and split an order of scallops and risotto…in my opinion ordering seafood while land-locked is always risky business). After we got home and put the little one down Chris got out the book and read the card. He didn’t seem to enthusiastic about the idea of sitting on the floor, and was even less excited about starting a fire (we have a gas fireplace that we’ve never used…not even once). So we ended up curled up on the couch in front of a crackling TV fireplace that we found on Netflix. We had chosen a bottle of port for our wine tasting, since it was touted as pairing well with chocolate (Chris had picked out a Hershey chocolate bar cheesecake) but since the alcohol content is so much higher we didn’t dare have more than a few sips. Even so we were both feeling rather drowsy as we reached the “count your blessings” portion of the evening. It felt a little awkward and cheesy at first, but ended up sparking a great conversation. That is until the rich food and a touch of the stomach bug I’d been fighting all week got the best of my hubby.
Oh well. For the most part we had a lovely evening. It wasn’t exactly the way I’d pictured in my head, but that’s not the point. The point is we were intentional about spending time together outside of the normal eat dinner on the couch while trying to keep Charlotte from grabbing the food off our plates and watching NCIS until Charlotte is ready for bed routine. It’s so easy in this stage of life to let conversations turn route and for every evening to be exactly the same. I think my husband and I have a wonderful marriage, but throwing an infant into the mix definitely makes it easy to take each other for granted. At least one night a month, we make it about us. Hey, it’s better than nothing, right? How do you make time for your marriage in the midst of life’s craziness?