One of my favorite quotes of Tommy Nelson is: "I am a strong believer in long dating, long courtship, and a brief engagement. Once the decision is made to marry, it is very difficult to restrain passion. Plan the wedding and get on with the marriage!"
But once we get married, how fast does that passion dwindle down? How fast do the dates stop? We have to work to keep our marriages happy and ongoing and fresh!
1. Set aside at least 1 night a month as date night...just like when you were dating! Do this whether you are just married, have kids, or empty nesters. Keep those butterflies flying. Remember the anticipation of getting ready for a date? And the kiss goodnight?
- Find a quaint bed-and-breakfast in your town or in a neighboring community.
- Look into staying at a rustic lodge at a national park or national monument.
- Forsake the "friendly skies" and take a train trip to another city for a night or two.
- If you live in the country, spend a weekend in the city and enjoy the lights. If you live in the city, spend a weekend in the country and enjoy the stars! (all get-a-ways courtesy of Dr. Dobson's book Love for a Lifetime)
4. Arrange a date called "Old Haunts," in which you and your spouse revisit the restaurants, theaters, or school settings that were favorites during your courtship. (idea courtesy of Dr. Dobson's book Love for a Lifetime)
5. Break out the old wedding album or video and relive that moment that you were so much in love and realize that now you love each more today than on that day.
6. Right that love note we talked about the other day, or get a card or some flowers (even pick them out of your yard) or make a special meal that you know your spouse loves....just because.
7. DON'T ever worry about being corny....your spouse will appreciate the effort.
8. ALWAYS say I love you before leaving each other and before going to sleep each night. Always kiss each other at those same times. And don't forget, do the same when you first see each other.
9. There are many more ideas out there that I am sure you can each come up with and I would love to hear them. Please do share your ideas!
10. And finally.....
JUST DANCE! Even if it is in the kitchen and the two of you are close, grab each other and start swaying...you don't even need music. JUST DANCE and enjoy the love you share!
Love unlocks doors and opens windows that weren't even there before.