Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Year of Romance - January!


Wow! It's finally here!

Since December, I have been, and I am hoping YOU have been,
thinking about what romance means to you.
And what form of romance do you and your mate gravitate towards?

If you haven't had time to think about it...don't stress about it.

You can start now...

the biggest thing I hope we will all do,
is not let the pressures of life
cause us to put it on cruise control.


Think about it, the people I have met on-line,
care about their kids,
and maintaining a home that provides warmth, love, and stability.

People who work to make a home that is a refuge
and that people feel welcome in.

We also seem to understand that our finances won't take care of themselves,
and neither will our bodies, and neither will those dishes,
or the oil change that is due for the car.

We have to bring that same attitude to marriage.

Marriage is such a gift and a wonderful blessing,
and everyone of us knows that.

But, it's just so stinkin' easy to put off
the things we can do to enrich and maintain it,
because we think it's a luxury item to spend that extra $20-40,
or take that extra time away
from all that needs doing, and the children.
Or worse, we think, "oh, we'll do it next week, or next month..."

At least we do when we are under time pressures,
and or financial pressures.

What's on my heart is, for myself and anyone else who is interested in joining me,
working to change that mindset.

We have been as guilty of it as anybody.
Our problem is we are really good at doing the simple things,
and it's real easy to 'rest on those laurels',
if you know what I mean.

So, enough about that whys, I am going to to tell you a little of
what my romancing has been looking like since December 19th!

If you haven't read that post, just click here.

On my anniversary, as I was pondering,
I felt the Lord impress on my heart, in very light-hearted way,
that this would be The Year of Romance.

Now, to put it in perspective, the previous year had a theme also,
but that's for another time! :)

I felt impressed, that there were 12 months,
and that was room for at least 12 different occassions,
that my Honey and I would connect in a fresh way,
out of the normal routine.
And our marriage would be the sweeter for it,
and so would the fruit of our marriage,
because that is what a good marriage should do.

Well, people who really know me, know I am not romantic,
but I DO adore romance! It's a weird combination, but it's true!

To be honest, romance is so much something I NEVER thought about,
that I didn't know that about myself until that day, December 19th 2007.
I just didn't think about it!
What I discovered during these past 4 weeks, as I looked back over our marriage, is
My Honey was always the one who took the initiative at the romantic area.
Now, I am really good at acts of service and purchases,
gifts, words, and such, to show love...

but, to break out of the routine,
and make the purpose be just to focus on each other,
for a little while.
Not so good at that.

So, that said, I immediately (being the task oriented person I am)
conjured up the "perfect date" for the first month!
First, let me share a scripture with you:
"Many plans are in a man's mind,
but it is the Lord's purpose for him that will stand."
Proverbs 19:21

I have to laugh looking back, because in typical Maria fashion,
even though he didn't seem all that thrilled with the choice,
I "KNEW" that's what he would really like to do,
because we had spoken of doing it many times!
In just a little while he would certainly realize that!

(Ya'll, we think we are not control freaks,
but I promise you, it hides in us!
It is disguised!)

At first, as the days went by,
and he really sort of dug in his heels over my choice,
in that indirect way, that a good man can.
I was completely stumped, and puzzled...

"Lord? Isn't this what you said do-focus on romance,
take time for each other?
This isn't like him, he always has been interested in this."

And I just felt to wait and be at peace. Here's what happened,
and its really several little things, and I am really SO tickeled,
because I KNOW the Lord is teaching me
about myself, about us, and just life!

These things are going to seem very mundane and simple,
but that's where we are at,

and it really has blessed us so far...
it's a process, a progression, not a destination.

1) First of all, we did not go on my "perfect & simple date"!

2) He did take me out to a simple dinner at Crispers,
(I could have chosen something more extravagent, didn't want to)
just the two of us, twice in the last month.
We talked, flirted, one time we went shopping afterwards,
and one time went for a drive.

3) What God showed me is: Honey, well, he likes to initiate in regards to this!
And in this area, I am very passive,
so this will make the next months interesting,
as we focus on this topic!

4) We have started doing the tread mill almost every day,
first him, then me.

We flirt, giggle, make jokes and generally act like teenagers...
who are dreadfully out of shape! :)

5) I will tell you this little anecdote,
just to show you how simple it can be,
to make them the focus, not Abby or Gabby!
Not the mortage or drum practice, not blogging, but them!

My husband LOVES cauliflower. My youngest thinks it's an alien plague!
Recently, I purchased some cauliflower,
and planned a meal that would have items my husband would expect,
and that would feed my youngest.

And as a surprise made the cauliflower, on the side.

He didn't know until he sat down to dinner.
Our youngest was off, skating with friends.
My Honey was so surprised and appreciatitve,

well, we had to go have a celebration after dinner!

I have made him cauliflower plenty of times, Ya'll!
But this time, there was mystery, surprise, and he was the clear focus.

Now we joke that cauliflower is more of an aphrodisiac than oysters!
Like I have said before, I am not aiming to set the world on fire,
just to keep the homefires burning, Ya'll!
Keep the fun, the mystery, the freshness of
getting to share life together!
And it is my equal hope that it will encourage and inspire you!

I am so hopeful that I will get to learn with you all!
I can't wait for the good things, Ya'll will have to inspire with
& that we can maybe laugh together about!

I mean, cauliflower, Ya'll!! Really?

If you are interested in posting your own journey into The Year of Romance,
feel free to sign Mr Linky, grab the button
(sorry - I don't know how to put text on the button),


Sharon said...

This is great!
I so heard the same lessons God has been teaching me this past year echoed in your post.
Romance and passion are so very important to a marriage. Romance and passion that do not always have to lead know.
I will post on this either Sunday or Monday since I have posted twice today already.
THis is good and truthful.
It would be great if you could find someone who could put the words on the picture and also make it into a button so that when I put it in my sidebar someone can click on it and be sent to you.
Good stuff girl!!

Heidi @ GGIP said...

Who else would have thought of cauliflower? :)

Regina said...

This is an awesome post! And I am sure it is so needed. You are right; out of all of the blogs that I have read since I started blogging in October (100 or more) only two or three of them mention spousal love/romance on a regular consistant basis! Very interesting concept!
I pray that your year of romance brings you the results that you want!

luvmy4sons said...

You go cauliflower woman you! Loved it!

Irritable Mother said...

I have been thinking about this issue, too. You're right on, Maria!
Thanks for encouraging all of us to focus on our marriages.

Karen said...

Thank you for starting this Maria. You are right on the money. May 2008 be a year of great romance!!!

Mel's World said...

Maria, SERIOUSLY...cauliflower???

I love it! I love that you have taken the proverbial bull by the horns here and declared that MARRIAGE is important and also something that should be (I'll say it again, SHOULD BE) cultivated.

Good job! I can't wait to see all the great things that are going to happen throughout the YEAR OF ROMANCE!

Well done...

freetofly said...

Sharon, Phew! That's always what you hope for, striking that common chord with others. I'm pretty sure that we can all relate in some measure. Thanks for your kind words. Looking forward to hearing from your neck of the Bayou!

re: the button- I am praying & hoping that I will be able to find some sort of tutorial on-line tommorrow & teach myself...I really wanted to get that figured out by now...but, hopefully soon!

Heidi, LOL! I know! It was a a bit beyond my expectations! But, what a hoot! The inside joke btwn us is almost as good as the "celebration"!

Thanks, Regina! I am hopeful & prayer is ALWAYS good! :)

Leslie, that's right! My secret weapon...cauliflower! :)

Karen, Thanks!

Thanks, Karen! 2008 is looking very intimate!

Mel, Yes, it's true! Who knew?

Thanks so much, Ya'll! Have a great evening! Thanks!

Sharon said...

I'm up!

Nicki said...

This is so awesome!!! I love it! I will post my thoughts tonight on this! Thanks for this!!

Joyful Days said...

Thanks, Maria for the reminder to focus on our marriages. You are so very encouraging.



What Does it Mean Anyway? "Free to Fly"...

Well, it's like this: Here are some of the Webster's Dictionary definitions of Free: a : having the legal and political rights of a citizen b : enjoying civil and political liberty c : enjoying political independence or freedom from outside domination d : enjoying personal freedom : not subject to the control or domination of another2 a : not determined by anything beyond its own nature or being : choosing or capable of choosing for itself...having a scope not restricted by qualification 7 a : not obstructed, restricted, or impeded ...Now, here are some of the Webster's Dictionary definitions of Fly:1 a : to move in or pass through the air with wings b : to move through the air or before the wind or through outer space c : to float, wave, or soar in the air ... a : to take flight ...6 : to work successfully ...Examples which apply from Websters: fly high : to be elated - fly in the face of or fly in the teeth of : to stand or act forthrightly or brazenly in defiance or contradiction of

What does this mean in my life? This means that in life we are meant to be free. While historically mankind has not always enjoyed the opportunity to fully appreciate what that means, we are so indescribably fortunate as to live in a time of the greatest spiritual, physical, financial and political freedom ever known. Freedom doesn't come cheap, nor does it come easy. But the best things in life don't come that way do they? As I write this I am struck by how this sounds like a political statement, and for me this is much more of a spiritual thing, but, same goes for that (political that is). Freedom doesn't come easy. And it's worth whatever fight you have to make to overcome in your life in order to live a life that succeeds. Now the questions is - what is success for you? What is your standard? In my mind what is needed is a definite target - because you can't hit and maintain a moving target. A stable, rock-solid, anchor with no variable, yet multi-faceted. Something pure, just and worthy. If you look at any web page of news you can see that our society is certainly lacking in this area. What a great time to live as a rebel! Nowadays to be a rebel, all you have to do is be willing to engage in the battle of life, while anchored to Christ!