Editor’s Note: This is a guest post from Teri Lynne Underwood of www.thoughtsandponderings.blogspot.com
Just last week my sweet man and I celebrated our anniversary.  He is truly the happily in my ever after (even wrote a whole long blog about how amazing he is.)  But, after thirteen years of marriage I can honestly say there are a lot of things I am still uncertain about.
I still can’t tell when my sweet husband is being exceptionally quiet because he’s mad about something or worried or just plain tired.  I am consistently unsure of what to get him for his birthday, Christmas and Father’s Day.  I  often feel like I’m in his way when I am trying to help him.  And for the life of me, I have no clue why he finds certain shows and movies funny!
Lest anyone think I pay no attention to my husband, I have learned a few lessons.  He does not want to talk to me about what happened at work – at least not right when he walks in the door.  He is not motivated to do work around the house simply because I am up doing it.  He would rather I sit in the same room with him doing something different than for us to be in separate rooms.  And it doesn’t bother him when I go to bed two hours earlier than he does – he rather likes the quiet!
Marriage is hard … and it takes a lot of work.  But, I’m learning that much of the work to be done is based on very simple things.  For me, I’m working to keep four things at the priority …

  1. Keep it SIMPLE! Focus on what really matters.  Sure I’d like the trash taken out the night before because I’m a planner. But, as long as it’s out before the trash truck comes – does it really matter how long the can has been sitting at the curb?  Nope, not a bit!  So, instead of focusing on WHEN the trash goes out, I’m learning to focus on being thankful that my husband takes care of that chore.
  2. Keep it SILLY! Laugh together every day .  Learning to see the humor in life has been the best lesson my husband has taught me.  Often we laugh at me – I’m pretty quirky and there’s lots to find amusing.  But it seems that when we laugh we are more connected and at peace.
  3. Keep it SEXY! Kiss, hug, touch, often.   We never leave the house and rarely leave the room without kissing each other.  We hold hands during prayers at church.  We curl up together to watch TV.  And we hug each other often … especially in front of our daughter.  Touch is so important and leads to more touch.  I enjoy being touched by my husband and I love to touch him.
  4. Keep it SWEET! Say nice things to and about each other – daily.  Being purposeful about seeing and saying the wonderful attributes of our spouses brings great strength to marriage.  We all enjoy being complimented.  Making time to be intentional about encouraging and uplifting our spouses is an important component to a strong marriage.

Both my husband and I are blessed to be in families where our grandparents have celebrated their 50th anniversaries and beyond.  We have a legacy of long and healthy marriages.  But we know those marriages don’t happen by chance.  Solid marriages are not simple … they require much effort and sacrifice.  But, oh, the rewards!

MAKE the time to keep your marriage simple – focus on what really matters!
TAKE time to keep you marriage silly – laugh together!
ENJOY time to keep your marriage sexy – touch and do it often!
CHERISH time to keep your marriage sweet – share kind words with your spouse.

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