I’m pretty sure my husband is laughing as he sees this topic because he knows how hard it is for me to find time for him with all the things, and little people, that are pulling me in a million different directions. In our home, while we only have one child, I play with her a lot; I am her play mate! She definitely keeps me busy. We also have our own businesses – and let’s not forget the chickens, dogs, cats and plenty of other things that demand our attention. It can be so easy to let the relationship with my husband look more like a business partnership rather than a loving marriage. It takes intentionality on my part to pursue quality time with him, and of course it goes both ways! Many weeks we fail. But many weeks we get it right. I find that the weeks we do well are the weeks we get along better. A good, healthy relationship must include time spent together. Modeling this for your children is an excellent way to teach them the importance of prioritizing their spouse as they grow into adults. Here are a few simple ways where we have found time to spend together.
Evening TV Time
After our daughter goes to bed, we love watching tv together. Even though we aren’t talking, we are still doing something together. I look forward to this every night! It’s simple but effective. Many times it might be easier to finish the dishes or some other task that didn’t get finished, but I would encourage you to skip it occasionally. Our spouses will will remember the effort we put into quality time together more than the effort we put in cleaning a dirty kitchen!
For those of you who have children at school during the day, this is a great way to connect with your spouse! Go to breakfast or lunch together. If a full meal isn’t possible, just grab a quick coffee. I remember we did this on our daughter’s first day of kindergarten. It was so weird, but so good!
This one is hard because we are different people. We like different things! I don’t always WANT to be interested in what he likes. However, showing an interest in his hobbies has been a great way to connect. This isn’t just listening to him talk about his interests. I mean we need to jump all in! Go to a store to see what he loves; visit the gun range with him, go golfing, or watch a race at the dirt track. You may feel completely uncomfortable at first…like you’re pretending. Maybe you are! But with time, this will feel more genuine. And showing an interest in something you would never be interested in prior will speak volumes to your spouse.
Coffee Shop Date at Home
Put the kids to bed, grab some Starbucks to go (or any favorite coffee shop like Common Grounds or Dichotomy), and have a date at home! Pretend! Sit at the table and talk like you would at a coffee shop. We did this when our daughter was very young because we didn’t have family in town to help babysit. We were so desperate for a night out together so we could reconnect! This simple idea really revived us.
Whatever you choose, remember the key to a healthy relationship is the amount of time spent together. Make time for your spouse. It is the best gift you can give to your children.