relationship resolution: make date night a priority

Since Hus and I had our twins in May 2009, "date nights" have been few and far between for a few reasons. First, we lived 11 hours away from all of our family and most of our friends for the first 15 months of the twins' lives. This made it very difficult for us to find someone who we thought was capable of watching both kiddos and to pay that person (unfortunately, two kids tend to cost more than just one). And, when we did find a few capable individuals, we were much more likely to have them watch the twins so that one or both of us could get some work done instead of go out on a date. Second, Hus and I could barely keep our eyes open for the first year or so. We were (and often times still are) tired all of the time. Any chance where we might have had time to go out, we decided to sleep instead. And lastly, our focus (and especially my focus) shifted when the twins were born. We didn't really think about going out anymore. We were too busy making sure that these two little humans stayed alive, comfortable, and healthy. Like many first-time moms, I gave all of my attention to our twins and devoted little time and energy to maintaining my marriage. This was a problem.

we met online: 3 predictors of relationship satisfaction for individuals involved in online romances

The Internet has allowed people who would not normally meet one another in their everyday lives to connect and actually start meaningful relationships together. In fact, there are more and more people using the World Wide Web (and you may be one of them) to start and maintain romantic relationships completely online, without meeting their partners face-to-face and sometimes, without even speaking to their new mates on the phone or engaging in video-chatting. Yes, you read that last sentence correctly- some people maintain romantic relationships completely through chat rooms, instant-messaging, facebook-posting, and emails. These non-traditional relationships confuse many people and some of us may wonder if they are able to last. Early research went as far as claiming that online relationships were "inauthentic" (e.g., Chenault, 1998). But more recently, researchers have claimed that online communication between partners can allow for greater levels of closeness than we once thought.

relationship resolution: say "i love you" more

One of my relationship resolution suggestions for 2011 was to say "I love you" at least once every single day. This may seem a bit trivial to some, but telling your mate that you love him or her every single day can make your partner feel appreciated, significant, and loved. To help get you started, here are 12 ways to profess your love.

12 Ways to Say “I Love You”

book i LOVE: project happily ever after

Project Happily Ever After: Saving Your Marriage When the Fairytale Falters by the amazingly eloquent Alisa Bowman is one of the best books I have read in a very, very long time. I know, it seems like I say that I love books a lot (and I do), but this one is different. Seriously. This is going on my 10-relationship-books-you-should-read-before-you-die list. Yep, I went there. Now are you ready to take me seriously?

Many of you might be thinking: "I have a great relationship, why would I need to read this book?" That's actually the mindset I was in when it arrived on my doorstep. And then I quickly realized that this is not just a save-your-failing-marriage book. No sir. I mean, don't get me wrong- this is a wonderfully insightful book for individuals who need a little or a ton of help with their marriages, but it's also a love story; an incredibly inspirational love story. And, the best part is that this love story is being told to you by your new BFF, Alisa Bowman. I say that because that's how she makes you feel as a reader. Somehow, she understands what you're going through in your own relationship- the good, the bad, and the ugly- and she tells you intimate details about her own relationship. Alisa let's you into her world and it's shocking how similar the two of you are. Her perception of marriage is spot-on to what I (and many of you) have felt or will feel as you navigate through love, marriage, and child-raising.

The book reads like a really interesting story from your favorite fairytale with chapters that tell Alisa's voyage from being a single fair maiden, meeting her prince, having her prince turn into an inconsiderate frog, starting a project, and having her frog turn back into a prince. As the book description states, "It bravely tells the story of how [Alisa] went from wishing her husband dead to renewing her wedding vows." It truly is a happily ever after story.

The way that Alisa candidly discusses her last-ditch effort at saving her marriage and allows you to intimately peak into her thoughts during the process makes her book incredibly captivating (I think I might have read the first 5 chapters in one day). She's open, genuine, sincere, and pretty darn funny too.

There were several aspects of this book that either deeply moved me, made me take a step back and think for a minute (or ten), caused me to laugh out loud, or intrigued me to continue reading. Project Happily Ever After is definitely a book I LOVE. You will also love this book. Yes, each and every one of you. I'm certain of it. So, get in a comfy chair, relax, and enjoy the journey- Alisa's journey.


Want some more information?
  • Click HERE to learn more about the author Alisa Bowman.
  • Click HERE to watch the book's trailer and read more about the book.
  • Click HERE to buy the book on

relationship resolution: 10 reasons why i love my husband

Remember when I said that I was going to make a love list this year? (I said that I wanted to do it and then later I suggested that you all do it for your New Year's resolution) Well, I started my list. And here is some of that list.

10. I love Hus because he listens to me ramble on and on and on (and on) about anything and everything. Hus is an amazing listener and he always has been. He will listen to me talk about my never-ending dissertation, my friends, my family, my lesson failures and creative ideas, my ridiculously ridiculous dreams (I remember my dreams almost every morning; and I usually tell him about them when I wake up), my favorite television shows, my gossip, and anything else I feel like talking about. Hus (and many other people in my life for that matter) has been known to ask me, "Jennie, did you know that you were thinking out loud?" I usually respond with, "What? Do you want me to be quiet?" To which he almost always says something to the effect of, "Nope, I love listening to you."

9. I love Hus because he is willing to do anything to make me feel better. For example, Hus will rub my legs after a long day in heels or get me medicine when I don't feel good. When I was pregnant, I had a headache every single afternoon for 4 months straight. Hus would give me a head massage on a daily basis.

8. I love Hus because he takes out the garbage and deals with any and all things related to the cars (i.e. insurance, titling, tags, oil changes, repairs, etc.). I hate doing both of those things, so I'm glad Hus is willing.

7. I love Hus because other people notice that Hus loves me. My friends and family have said on many occasions over the last 10 plus years, "He looks at you like you're still teenagers." They're right. He does.

6. I love Hus because he has a special relationship with both of our children. He has his own nicknames for them, little games that only he can play with them, and special voices that he uses to make them squeal in laughter. He does things with them that I don't think about or that I just don't want to do. For instance, Hus taught our 19-month-old twins how to shake hands whenever he says, "Hi, how ya doing?" It's adorable. He also takes them outside to run around like maniacs when he has them for the day. It's clear that he loves being their Dada; and I love that about him.

5. I love Hus because he is supportive of my goals and aspirations. Hus is my biggest cheerleader. Hus has moved from the East Coast, to the South, to the Midwest with me so that I could go to graduate school and although he has definitely complained a little bit from time to time, in the end, he has always stood by our decisions to move from place to place. He encourages me to continue with things when I feel like I can't and he compliments me when I read him something I've written. I couldn't ask for a more supportive partner.

4. I love Hus because he writes me little love notes. And, he has done this on a consistent basis since we began dating over 10 years ago. For instance, I currently have a piece of ripped paper taped to the inside of my sun visor in my car that reads, "I heart you Dream Girl." I love him for that.

3. I love Hus because he changes diapers (sometimes more often than me) and never complains about it. Enough said.

2. I love Hus because he held my mom's hand during my dad's memorial service four years ago. And, he held her hand for most of the day, even in the car. He probably doesn't realize this, but it significantly affected my mom in an extremely positive way. I love that he does stuff like that.

1. But most of all, I love Hus because I know that he adores me more than anyone else on this planet. I know this because of the way he acts around me, talks to me, and touches me. I only hope that he knows how much I love him too.

As 2011 begins, think about why you love your partner. Write this list down. And, don't just make the list. Share it with your partner. Remember it throughout the year as you go through the ebbs and flows of your relationship. And, add to it whenever your mate does something that reaffirms your love or makes you love him/her even more. Then share it again.

Don't have a New Year's resolution yet? Become a list-maker for 2011.

To get you started, think about one reason right now. Go ahead, you can do it. If you're willing, I'd love to know one of your reasons. Leave a comment with one of your reasons by clicking on the "Tell me what you think" or "Post a comment" link at the bottom of this post and leaving an anonymous comment.

Happy New Year!!!

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