Once a month I open up, give you a life update, and share my heart with you. I wish I could sit down and have coffee with each one of you, and we could have a good long chat in person. This is the next best thing! So, In the spirit of those old SNL “Coffee Talk” skits with Mike Myers as Linda Richman, let’s have cawfee, and let’s tawk! This month I talked Bob into letting me share a little about him, and our marriage. I’m pulling back the curtain on our relationship, and telling you how we’re spending the next few weeks! Here’s what’s on my heart this month.
This year, Bob and I will celebrate our 31st wedding anniversary. Bob is a CPA, and he loves numbers, so by the numbers, that’s three kids, one daughter-in-law, three houses, ten cars, and five schools. But, it’s also one beloved dog (now gone), two miscarriages, three car accidents, and four tough diagnoses. I think one of the most beautiful things about a long marriage is how the joys and the challenges merge into one hot mess. 🙂 When we got married, my dad gave us some great advice. He said, “When things get tough, always choose to turn toward each other. Never turn away.” Although that advice has been difficult to follow at times, we have always tried to abide by it. Through all the ups and downs, the constants have been love, prayer, gratitude, and commitment.
Bob and I got married when we were 22. We feel like we grew up together over the years. We waited five years to have our first child, and when we did, I saw a whole new side of my husband. I think I fell in love with him all over again! He’s been an incredible father to our children, and they all adore him. Becoming empty nesters has reawakened our flirty, adventurous side, and we’ve cherished the sweetness of our mature relationship. (And, yes, we’ve kinda fallen in love again!)
Like most couples, we’re opposites in many ways. I’m the extrovert. Bob’s the introvert. I’m excitable. Bob’s steady and calm. Recently, I heard a relationship expert talk about the one word that says a relationship is meant to be. The word? Easy. As in low drama, easy flow, and acceptance. I shared recently that when our kids were younger, we used the word picture of a coin to teach them about relationships. We told them that the “heads” side of the coin represents a person’s strengths, while the “tails” side represents their negative qualities. You fall in love with a person’s strengths, but eventually, you realize you’re married to their weaknesses! What you begin to understand is that weaknesses are simply strengths taken to the extreme. Over the years, Bob and I came to realize that the differences in the way we see and approach things are primarily a matter of temperament and personality type, and we can make a choice to focus on heads rather than tails in our marriage. I’ve come to appreciate his strengths, which are my weaknesses. The beautiful thing? The longer we’ve been married, the more the edges of our coins have softened. I’ve grown in my areas of weakness, in direct proportion to how much I’ve grown to value and appreciate his strengths. He says the same.
We try to take lots of little trips throughout the year because we love the adventure of getting away together and out of our routine. But every year we try to take a big trip to truly celebrate our marriage. We use the time to pause, reflect, and thank the Lord for our relationship. We also talk about our marriage goals for the upcoming year. This year, we’re going on an Alaskan cruise! We’re leaving on Wednesday, spending a few days in Seattle, and then boarding our ship on Friday. We’ll be doing all of the usual stops for Alaskan cruises, including Juneau, Sitka, and Haines. We’ll also be cruising the Inside Passage, the Outside Passage, and the Hubbard Glacier. We’re so excited! We have lots of crazy excursions planned, from bear watching and glacier hiking to mountain cycling and four-wheeling. Yikes! #prayforme
I love what I do, but as a blogger, I never really take time off. When I’m not writing, photographing, or researching posts, I’m posting on social media, updating the website, answering emails, blog, and social media comments. I even do it on the weekends, on holidays, and when we’re on vacation! As I’ve said many times before, it’s important to me to be authentic and to let you in on my life. That means I share a lot of myself (and my family) with you. This blog isn’t just a brand, it’s ME, and your support means so much. My husband has been so supportive of me, and of everything related to Empty Nest Blessed, and I am so grateful to him! He’s a pretty private guy, and yet he’s graciously allowed me to open up to you about everything from his fashion choices and food preferences to our marriage and family.
I want to honor him by giving him lots of attention while we’re gone! That means that for the next few weeks, I won’t be writing any blog posts. I’ll miss you all, but you can rest assured that I will be taking good notes for an upcoming travel post about our trip, and (of course) posting plenty of pictures to Instagram and Facebook. (Especially my Instastory and Facebook Story!) I hope you’ll follow our Alaskan adventure!
While we’re gone, I hope you’ll take the time to catch up on some recent posts that you may have missed! Here are some of your favorites over the past few months:
10 Essential Life Skills for College Students | Equip Them for Success
(Consider sharing this with friends who are sending students off to college for the first time.)
Five Things No One Tells You About the Empty Nest
(Consider sharing this with friends who are about to become empty nesters.)
Do you and your husband take the time to celebrate your marriage and all you’ve been through together? Do you talk about your goals for the future and how you can strengthen your bond? I’d love to know how you do it, and what you do! Please share your good suggestions with me in the comments!
SHOP BOB’S LOOK
(Bob’s shirt is similar, but not the exact one he’s wearing.)
SHOP SUZY’S LOOK
My sheer KUT From The Kloth Jasmine top comes in a whopping 18 color and pattern choices! It requires a cami underneath, but it’s the perfect cool summer top if you want to cover your upper arms! #hallelujah
Click here to check out the entire line.
Photo by Megan Weaver.
P.S. I will be publishing one more post before I sign off! Watch for my How to Shop the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale post on Wednesday (that’s the day before the sale opens to cardholders) to learn all of my insider tips and trick for shopping the sale without getting completely overwhelmed! (It’s easy to get freaked out (!), but I’ll give you advice that will have you breezing through it, making wise purchases, and not over-spending.) I don’t want you to miss out, so you might want to sign up for my email list if you haven’t already. xoxo