Friday, March 29, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriage ~ Day27 & 28

I hope you are putting your finishing touches on your date night for this weekend. I have to run to the store and pick up a few supplies after our homeschool group gym class. I should have a fun night.

Today, is a very simple task. I just want you to e-mail or text your husband a quick note of how much you love him. Super simple, yet very important. It's good to send reminders every once in a while.

Day 27 & 28
Send an e-mail or text to your husband, telling him how much you love him.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

We Choose Virtues Review

When I found out that I was going to get to do a review for We Choose Virtues I was very excited. I've been looking at this curricula for quite some time, trying to decide if I wanted to invest about $100 to buy the Homeschool Kit. Now that I've had a chance to try some of it out I don't know if I want to invest that money.

I know that many, if not most of the other reviewers for Mosaic Reviews that have had the opportunity to review this product are going to give glowing reviews. I am unfortunately not one of them. Don't get me wrong, this product isn't all bad. There were many great aspects of this product, just not enough for me to want to spend the $100.

Pros of We Choose Virtues:
1. Very cute and colorful
2. My kids LOVED the coloring pages
3. The flashcards are eye catching and just the right size for me to display in a frame.
4. My kids did seem to remember the virtue we were working on and remind each other and me about it. 
5. User friendly. It was very easy for me to understand what I needed to do with everything and how to get started. 
6. Each virtue flashcard has a cute catchphrase to help the child remember what it means.

Cons of We Choose Virtues:
1. Uses a lot of guilt inducing terminology.
2. I had to choose different Scripture verses for each virtue as a result of this. 
3. Each virtue flashcard has an "I am NOT..." sentence to help the child remember what the virtue is not. In my opinion these don't always line up with what each virtue is about or not about.
4. The focus seems to be on behavior modification, not getting to the heart of the child. 

I would like to explain a bit more about why I don't like and/or agree with this curricula.

 Let me start by giving you an example of the flashcards; The "I am Obedient" flashcard says, "I am not argumentative, unwilling or slow and I don't refuse to do what I am told!" Yes, I will agree with most of that. I will not agree with the use of "slow" as an example of what not to be. Every one's definition of slow is going to be different. I don't want mindless drones of children that jump when I say jump. I want my children to think for themselves.

Like I said in point #4, the focus seems to be on behavior modification. This is needed at times, but should NEVER be the focus of a parent. The focus should be on the child's heart. This is much more than ensuring your child obeys your every command. I want my children to obey me because they love and obey God's commands. Not because they fear any punishment that I could give them. After all, I'm a sinner too. Who am I to put myself as judge, jury and executioner, when that is not my position? Oh my! I seem to have stepped onto my soapbox there. Sorry. Back on track. With the use of the character assessment charts given with this curricula, I feel it focuses too much on the behavior modification aspect. This may give you very well behaved children, but is there heart where it needs to be? 

That being said, I will continue to use the coloring pages and virtue topics. We have been working on one a week. That seems to be going well. Each week, I have put the flashcard in a frame and put it on top of a bookshelf in my living room. There, we can see it throughout the day. I have chosen different Bible verses for each virtue and we will continue to work on our Scripture memory each week.

If you do decide you would like to purchase this product, use the code VIRTUE15 for 15% off!

Want to read what others thought? Check out this post on Mosaic Reviews !

Thanks to Heather McMillan at We Choose Virtues for providing these products for me to review. 

40 Days to a Stonger Marriage ~ Day 27

So, how did it go with breakfast this morning? Were all of you able to make your husband breakfast before he left?

Today, we are going to focus on the weekend. We need the time to plan. We are going to plan a date night for this weekend. It doesn't matter if you leave the house or just put the kids to be early. It's the intention that matters. I've said it before, G.I. Joe and I don't go out on dates all that often. Our children are still small and don't really like to be left with a babysitter. We just put them all to bed a bit early on Friday nights so we can have some time to ourselves. As our children get older, we will be able to go out more. That's alright. Going out usually involves spending money anyway.

Today I want you to brainstorm some great date night in ideas. To get you started, here are just a few;
1. Movie & popcorn on the couch
2. Play board games
3. Have a special late candlelight dinner. Just the two of you.
4. Create a list of questions to ask your husband. (get to know him better)
5. Watch a new series on Netflix
6. Talk about the 5 most important milestones you've reached together and why they are so important to you. 
7. Create a list of all the things you find sexy about your husband and share it with him.
8. Have a theme night. You must dress, eat dinner and watch a movie, all with the same theme. 

The possibilities are endless. I have quite a few ideas pinned on my Romance board over at Pintrest. Make sure you go check it out. 

Day 27
Plan a date night for this weekend. Make sure to gather any supplies you may need before the day comes. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriage ~ Day 26

I am back! We still have the sickies in our house, but I finally have a clear head. Man that bug sure grabbed on tight. I apologize for being MIA for a whole week. I am on Facebook at Peace of the Prairies. I tried to stay active there at least. If you would, like my page over there, and we can at least stay connected should I not be blogging for some reason.

I know that we are technically on day 35 of Lent. I am just going to continue with day 26 and go from there. I will still post a full 40 days that way.

Today the challenge is to get up early and make breakfast for your husband. Some of you may already do this. I do not. I get up around 7:30 every morning. That is when G.I. Joe has to be at work. He has never cared about this. He makes his own breakfast and gets himself to work just fine. He doesn't need a mother, I am his wife.

That being said, I believe it would make his morning a bit easier if I were to make him breakfast. So, that is what I will plan on tomorrow. I will get up just a bit earlier and make him breakfast.

Day 26
Get up early and make your husband breakfast before he heads off to work.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriage ~ Day 25

Welcome back! We are on day 25 of our 40 day journey today. I am still so happy to be doing this for my marriage. Not everything gets a huge response, but I am seeing and feeling improvement. I consider this a success.

Today I want to talk about love letters. G.I. Joe and I wrote a lot of love letters to each other when we were in Iraq. There were times we were apart and just HAD to tell the other how we felt, so we wrote a letter and held onto it until we saw them next. I still have all of them. One day, one of my children will appreciate them. I still like to read some of them every once in a while.

So, today's challenge is just that. To write a love letter to your husband. Tell him how you feel. Tell him why you feel that way. Tell him how much you miss him during the day. It may be all gushy, but he will appreciate it on some level. After all, we all like to feel loved right?

Day 25
Write your husband a love letter.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriage ~ Day 24

We are over halfway to the end of our 40 day journey! How are things going so far? Have you been speaking your husbands love language? I am enjoying getting to know my husband a bit better through his "Love Language." I have seen great things happening, just by me making sure that I am showing him that I love him by speaking it in a way that he can understand.

Last night I was at a friends house all evening. I didn't get home until around 11:30! Not only did G.I. Joe get the kids fed and to bed on time, he had the whole house cleaned when I got home! I am so blessed to have such a wonderful husband! He didn't have to, but he knows that my love language is "Acts of Service," so he cleaned the house for me. To show me, in a way that I can understand, that he loves me. He spoke right to my heart!

Today, we are going to cook for our husbands. What is his favorite meal? The one that he would ask for as his last meal ever. You know the one. If you don't, ask. Then run to the store to get the supplies, and make it for him for dinner. Super simple, yet it will show him that you care.

Day 24
Make your husband's favorite meal for supper.

Monday, March 11, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriage ~ Days 21 - 23

I have gotten so busy lately, I totally forgot to come here and blog before the weekend. I remembered yesterday. Being it was Sunday, I just decided to wait until today. I figured those of you who are following me would understand.

Today, in keeping with the Love Language theme, I want you to ask your husband to list 3 things you can do that will help him feel loved. Three things that you can do each day for him. Or at least strive for. Some days, not a thing gets done because we are so busy with the kids and the house. Those days we just need to take a deep breath and try again tomorrow. As is said, so often, on a message board I frequent, "Grace is for mama's too!"

Once upon a time, my husbands list looked like this:
1. Make sure you pray throughout the day.
2. Make the bed.
3. Clear a path through the toys before I come home, so I don't have to worry about stepping on them.

Not too demanding. All three things didn't happen every day. He still knew that I loved him. On the days that they did all happen, he felt loved too.

I don't want your husband to write a list of three very demanding tasks. Just three simple things that can be done daily. This is not to make sure we "know our place in the home." This is just a simple task to find out more ways we can show our husbands how much we love them.

I think this particular task speaks to me because I am an "Acts of Service" person. That is my love language. Physical touch is my husbands, so I have to make sure to fill that too.  I make sure to give him lots of hugs. I also make sure to touch his arm as I walk by, or rub his back. It really is fairly simple.

"She watches over the activities of her household and is never idle." Proverbs 31:27
Picture, taken by me, at Oakwood Lakes State Park in South Dakota.

Days 21 - 23
Ask your husband to make a list of three (attainable) things that you can do each day to help him feel loved. Then strive to do them, each day.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriage ~ Day 20

Today is just a continuation of yesterday. Hopefully, you all learned what your husbands love language is. Today, I want you to commit to learning more about it.

My husbands love language is "physical touch." This never used to be a problem for me. I loved it to. I always wanted to be touching him in some way, holding hands, snuggling, etc. Well, then the kids came. Four kids 8 and under, kind of takes all the touch out of a person. This is something I will need to work on.

The Love Languages site has some information about each language. I encourage you to buy the book. I don't care where you get it, I don't make any money on your purchase. I just think it's a very good book for married couples to read and apply.
(Picture of a Beautiful South Hill Designs locket. You can contact me for more information on them or visit

Day 20
Learn more about your husbands love language and commit to speaking it to him every day.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriege ~ Day 19

We've spent 18 days talking about what we can do to create a stronger marriage. I started this as a way to help me organize my thoughts and to hold myself to my commitment. I am grateful for those of you who have decided to walk this journey with me. Most of our challenges have been very simple. That's part of the beauty of marriage. It's work, but if you put in the time to do the simple things, a great marriage will result!

Today, I want to talk a bit about "Love Languages." The 5 Love Languages book has been a wonderful help to me in my 8 years of marriage. The book states that there are 5 main "Love Languages" and we all speak one main language, with the rest trailing behind. There is one main way we show our love and feel loved by others.

It's important that we learn to speak our husbands "Love Language." We need to learn to show him love in a way that HE can understand and feel. The same way we would like him to speak our love language. I encourage you to have him go to the 5 Love Languages web page and take the quiz to discover his love language. Then, it becomes your responsibility to learn about that particular language and start speaking it to him.

Day 18
Learn your husbands "Love Language" and how to "speak" it to him. Then commit to speaking it to him for the rest of your life.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriage ~ Day 18

I hope every one's day went well yesterday. One thing I wanted to talk about today is consistency. It's easy to do most of these challenges in a day. The hard part comes when we commit to continuing them throughout the rest of our days. No, we don't have to do every single challenge, every single day. We do need to make sure we aren't just doing them once and checking them off the list, then never doing them again. That will not create a strong marriage.

So, to make it easy for you, here is a list of all of the challenges we've done so far. I will also place a tab at the top of my blog labeled "40 Days to a Stronger Marriage" sometime in the coming days.

1. Pray for your husband.
2. Tell your husband your intentions.
3. List 10 things you love and appreciate about your husband.
4. List 10 things you don't like about your husband, then throw it away.
5. Identify and area you need to improve on and get to work.
6. Set up a weekly date night.
7.  Tell your husband you love them, each day.
8. List 3 ways you are different from your husband and how they complete you.
9 & 10. Put your focus on God.
11 - 13. Create your lifetime honeymoon.
14. Commit your life and marriage to Christ.
15 & 16. Be spontaneous.
17.  Kiss your husband each day. Really kiss him.

It looks like a lot, and it is. Happily ever after doesn't just happen on it's own. We need to be intentional about it.

Now, for today, I want to talk about devotions. I read my Bible every day. I miss here and there, but not often anymore. I learned my lesson with that one. The days that I don't get into God's word, don't go as well as they should. With that said, I don't often read WITH my husband. We get caught up in life. We talk about God's word, and encourage one another, but we don't actually STUDY together. I believe this is important. That's why it is my challenge for day 18.

Day 18
Commit to reading God's word together daily. 
Find a good devotional for couples, read a psalm a day, etc. Whatever works for you and your husband. Just make sure you are getting into God's word. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriage ~ Day 17

Today, we get to talk about kissing. Yes, kissing! It can be so much fun! It can also easily be pushed to the wayside in a marriage.

In the early days of your relationship, how much did you long for your lips to meet? If you are anything like me, you thought about it all the time. Somewhere along the line of marriage, work, kids, cleaning, and laundry, that longing can get lost. I'm here today to tell you to revive that longing. I have read that the more you kiss, the more you want to kiss. I have to say that's right.

In case you need any convincing, lets talk a bit about what physically happens to your body when you kiss. According to, "A smooch may start out with a rush of dopamine and desire, but can lead to a sweet surge of oxytocin." Oxytocin is known as the "love" hormone. We can all use a little more of that right?

Scientific talk aside, kissing is just plain fun. Don't get sucked into the little peck on the lips or cheek before work routine. Give him something to rush home for! Tell him how much you missed him all day with your kiss, not your voice. Well, telling him with your voice is good too, but we are talking about kissing here.

Day 17
Commit to kissing your husband at LEAST once a day. I mean REALLY kissing him. 

Friday, March 1, 2013

40 Days to a Stronger Marriage ~ Day 15 & 16

WooHoo! It's Friday! I don't know about you, but I can't wait for this weekend. I am so looking forward to having G.I. Joe home, so we can all be together. It's been a whirlwind week around here and we all need the rest and relaxation.

Today, I want to talk about being spontaneous. This comes naturally for some, but not others. I believe it's one thing that we need to pay careful attention to. To much and we can create chaos, to little and there's no surprise in the relationship.

There are many ways to be spontaneous. Get a babysitter so the two of you can go out to dinner alone. Have the kids in bed before he gets home from work. Instead of hanging out at home all weekend, go do something fun as a family. If you routinely go out on Saturdays, stay in all weekend. You get the idea.
This picture was taken, by me, at the lake by our house. It's just a short walk to this beautiful area. We frequently load the kids up on their bikes and in the wagon, on a moments notice, to take a walk.
Day 15 & 16
Be spontaneous this weekend. Do something fun with your husband and create some great memories. 
Remember, it's about FUN. Don't stress over it. Just do what feels right in the moment.