At the risk of sounding precocious, I'll make the following statement:
Brittany and I have a fantastic marriage.
(To be honest, this is probably due more to her than to me.) But for what it's worth, I wanted to share a handful of ways that I specifically seek to care for my lovely wife. If you're married (or on your way there), maybe one or two of these can help you. (If you're not married, file these gems away for the future.)
- Dates: Brittany and I are religious about going out on a date once a month. (And I don't use the term 'religious' here loosely: I don't think we've missed a monthly date since we've started 'dating' over seven years ago.) We do have the advantage of having free quality babysitting from two sets of grandparents that live 15 minutes away. But even if we did not, I believe we would still be doing this. Spending two to three hours a month together and alone is priceless. (And really not that hard. If you're married, you should do it.)
- Sabbaths: Each week we do our best to set aside one day just for our family. I don't work for my work. I don't work for my house (and for good reason). I just spend time with God, my wife, and my kids. Brittany will tell you that this is huge for her sanity.
- An aside to this weekly Sabbath: I also put myself in charge of the main meal on those days. Which means that we eat an abnormally large amount of pizza on Saturdays. Papa Murphy's in Pekin is our favorite.
- Cleaning List: Now doesn't cleaning sound romantic on a Valentine's Day? Truthfully I don't clean that much, but I do pitch in as often as possible. I figure that if I make the mess (and I do), I should probably help clean it as well.
- Kids: If I'm home, I attempt to take the lead on any discipline or correction that is needed. This doesn't happen 100% of the time, but I'm working on it. If I have time in the morning I'll help get them ready for the day. And since they're boys, I pride myself in my ability to wrestle the energy out of them when needed. (Which is quite often).