Archive for February, 2014

We Think It’s Time We Start Dating Again . . .

San and I spent a lot of time thinking about our relationship and how our marriage has gone for the past two and a half years.  We decided it is time we start dating again . . .

Wait a second.  Isn’t this blog called MARITAL Glue?  You might be thinking we had better change the name if we are going to be dating.  However, I never did say we are going to be dating other people.  Nope, we are still head-over-heels for each other and have been for eight years!  What has changed since we got married is the focus on time for just us.  You know, doing spontaneous things, reveling in our time together, not being glued to our phones or our pup (thought we do love her so).  That was what our relationship was like before we got married.  Now that we see each other a lot, we have gotten away from really spending quality time together.  Even when we go out to eat, we are typically focused more on the food than each other.  That’s gotta stop!

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I definitely did not come up with this idea on my own, but the way we implemented it is different than what I have seen on the web.  I originally got the idea from Shannon Brown’s blog Find Joy in the Journey when I perusing Pinterest a few months ago.  I was instantly inspired!  But, as I got to thinking about planning twelve dates, I became overwhelmed.  I wanted to do this for San for Christmas, but we have never in the history of our relationship given each other Christmas gifts.  Why?  Because our dating anniversary falls on New Year’s Eve and San’s birthday is in December, so when we were in high school and college, it was just too much money to be spending for three important dates.  We decided Christmas is sweet enough just having each other nearby, so eight years in, we have never officially given each other a Christmas gift.  I felt like I might feel a little let down putting SO much work into a gift for San with nothing from him.  That might be selfish, but I wanted to make sure the gift wasn’t a curse in disguise.  So, I talked to San about the idea and we decided to each plan six dates on our own!

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I actually think this idea is so much better than one of us planning all the dates.  Two heads are better than one, right?  That way we both have a say in what we are doing (so San isn’t going on dates that only I want to do and vice versa) and we were able to get really creative since we only had six dates to plan.  So often, we talk about things we want to do together, but we rarely implement these ideas, so planning these dates was an opportunity to finally do some fun stuff we had been dreaming of!

San planned the following months: January, March, May, July, September, and November

I planned these: February, April, June, August, October, and December

I decided to make it easier on San by giving myself the more anticipated dates (my birthday in June, our anniversary in August, and Christmas/San’s birthday in December).  He was relieved!

We seriously had a blast making these!  I created a template in Photoshop that we were both able to just open up and fill in.  San’s definitely not very familiar with Photoshop, but when I showed him the template and handed him my computer, he had no problem filling it out and printing it.

Here is what the template looks like:

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I thought it would be nice to share the template with you if you are interested!  It is a Photoshop file (.psd), so you can only edit it if you have Photoshop or Photoshop Elements.  I wish I knew a different way to edit them for anyone without Photoshop, but I don’t!  You can download the Year of Dates template here.  The fonts I used are: Hand Shop Typography, Sail, and Champagne and Limousines.  Feel free to use this template however you want!  I just ask that you don’t distribute them (instead, send someone a link to this post if they want a copy).

On January 1st, we opened the one San created for January!

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January

A lot of them have little clipart images along the bottom if we ran out of things to say about the date.  I was so excited for this date!  I am obsessed with the movie Funny Girl.  I watched it for the first time in college and was so inspired by Fanny Brice’s rise to stardom as someone who had the odds against her.  I also loved the powerful message in “Don’t Rain on My Parade.”  I tend to be a tad subservient at times, so I pump myself up by listening to that song.

About three years ago, Minnesota was hit with a HUGE blizzard.  I was trapped at San’s apartment and we had to get creative with entertainment that he had in his apartment.  He had Netflix, so I suggested we watch Funny Girl.  I told him he would LOVE it because it is the best movie ever!  The blizzard made the streaming less than ideal, so it took forever to load the movie.  In the first five minutes, Barbra Streisand utters the famous line, “Hello Gorgeous.”  When that part came up, I turned to San who hadn’t been paying attention, and said, “This line is so famous!”  He didn’t know what line I was talking about, so I made him rewind it.  It took a good fifteen minutes to rewind it because of the super slow internet from the storm, and when we finally got it cued up and he saw what line I was talking about, he said, “All of that for THAT line???  That’s so dumb!”  To say that he had a bad perception of the movie from the beginning would be putting it mildly.  He could barely sit through it!

So, opening the January envelope and seeing that we could watch Funny Girl with no snide comments or complaints AND that I got to choose the meal was music to my ears!  The “don’t say whatever” he added to the line about dinner being my choice is because I’m severely indecisive when it comes to choosing food because I love so many foods!

I have to admit that choosing the meal was hard, seeing as I started a 30-day “detox” in early January that had me completely eliminate gluten and dairy.  What meal would I have chosen if I could choose anything? Probably a cheesy, creamy, amazing pasta dish and some buttery bread.  On the detox, that was not an option!  So, since San was given six steaks as a reward for hitting a goal at his work (the luxuries of being a chef), I told him to go crazy with something gluten and dairy-free that uses steak.

We planned the date for a Friday night when he had the day off, and I honestly was just expecting to clear off the dining room table (that we also use as our office of sorts), eat, pop in the movie, and probably fall asleep (which I have a tendency to do whenever I make contact with some comfy cushions).  I was so wrong!  I walked in and the house was completely tidied and the song “My Girl” was playing!  He had set the table, lit some candles, and dinner was ready the second I walked through the door.  I seriously could not wipe the smile off of my face!

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He made steak with carmelized onions and bacon as a topping, roasted potatoes, and glazed carrots.  Oh my goodness, people, it was amazing!!!  After starving myself of anything I consider delicious for almost thirty days, the steak reawakened my taste buds!  It was that good!  I’m a lucky woman!

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And how could I forget the root beer, which was the only pop I had all month!  It was the perfect date to start the year off with a bang!

After dinner, we opened the February date, and this is what we are up for (can you tell who is the rambling spouse by how much I wrote on the description of my date?):

February

 

I had a tendency to list a couple things we could do related to the theme so that way it created more than one date (with one easy thing and one thing that takes more planning). We will fill you in on this date in late February/early March.  I can’t wait!

I would love to know if this inspired you, if you have done a thoughtful gift like this before, and what dates you would go on if you were able to create one!

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Convenience or Variety?

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Time.  It seems like in today’s time, time is such a valuable thing to have. It’s time with your kids. Time with your friends. Time doing the things you want to do the most. Of course time does also play a factor in your health and fitness goals too.

Within the past few years, I’ve come to really appreciate not just being able to drive down to my local gym, but being able to workout at home as well.  There are always pros and cons when it comes to both but I think I’ve come up with a conclusion: I love them both.

We all have our own reasons for why each is better than the other. Some may say that driving down to the Y is better than watching a DVD. Some say being at home is better just for convenience. Well friends, why not love them both?

Going To The Gym/Fitness Facility/YMCA/etc.

The Good:

I love going the gym.  I feel at peace with myself and my world when I’m there.  There’s something about getting that bicep pump or that sensation you get when you shatter a PR (personal record).  It’s you versus you there.  You have the ability to shut off the world there and focus on your health, mentally and physically. The different machines, weights, and racks there keep each and every workout interesting and challenging as well.

The Bad:

Sometimes it’s hard to find the appropriate gym for your budget and lifestyle. Are you going to have kids soon? Do you like to swim and play basketball? Finding the right place can be a challenge, especially if you have only so much to spend per month on a membership. Another reason gyms may not be your cup of tea is probably the peak occupancy times.  There has been too many occasions where I will have to alter my workout or change what time I choose to go because of how many people can be there sweating away the pounds.

The Ugly:

Not only does the price tag go up with what amenities you want out of your establishment, but dealing with scumbag gym-goers. The one’s who never rerack their weights. The people who refuse to share the equipment/hog it for long periods of time just talking to their buddies. The gym rat with loads of advice that you don’t really want to hear or even need. The list can go on, but you get the idea.

Working Out From Home:

The Good:

A little obvious, but you don’t have to go anywhere. During the frigid winters of Minnesota, I find myself really dreading the drive to my iron church. It’s nice to be able to pop in a homework out DVD (like Insanity, P9oX, or what have you) and just grind out the exercise in the privacy of your own home without feeling self-conscious about yourself.  The fact that you are able to go at your own pace and not have someone pestering you is an added bonus. I also love the fact that I’m able to play music as loud as I want and make as much noise as I want without people giving me the stink eye.

The Bad:

Some times you need space big enough for your home workout.  Some DVD’s require  you to also have some equipment as well (like a stability ball, dumbbells, etc) that you may not have space or money for.  I know from first-hand experience, that it’s a hell of a lot easier to get distracted at  home too.  If people start calling you, if your dog starts bugging you, or if someone unexpectedly comes over, it can totally throw you off your rhythm and you can easily loose focus.

The Ugly:

Although it would be awesome to just axe the gym membership all together, it would cost a fortune to have a home-gym set up the way I want it. There is also a limited amount of exercises that I can do at home without the proper equipment to hit the proper muscle group too(with the appropriate weight I might add).

Conclusion:

In a nutshell, although I do love going to the gym, I do also really like that fact that I don’t have to go anywhere to get a decent workout in.  Some days when our pup would be home for a very long period of time (without going out or eating), I’m still able to get some exercise in without having to leave her behind.  On the flip side though, the high after completely an intense gym session is unmatched.  I love feeling accomplished and somewhat defeated after giving it my all at the gym.

What are your favorite things about working out at home? Do you find that you have better workouts at the gym or in your humble abode?