Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiieeee! We’re back! And what a wonderful time we’ve had! Oh friends, I have SO much to share! But before I start recapping our wonderful NYC trip, I want to acknowledge the end of our 30 days. Yesterday was the last day of this 30 day period. It has been absolutely wonderful (with the brief exception of the whole food poisoning thing, that is, ha!).
It has been so wonderful to just stop and breathe. And just be together. To relax together, to play together, to adventure together. It was exactly what we needed. One of the big things we’ve decided during this time is that we really need to make “us time” a higher priority. Because we spend so much time side-by-side in service, doing house projects, or with social life, we forget that we need time for us to hang out alone with no to-do list. Just us. These 30 days have given us an awesome taste of that and we’re not ready to let it go. So here’s our (hopeful) plan. 🙂
Every Day: at least 1 hour of just us time. This should be simple to continue. Even in our crazy busy times, we still made this happen.
Every Week: at least 1 date night. This is what we’ve always tried to do, but it can be easy to sacrifice this night when things come up. We are going to try to prevent losing this night by not filling up every single night of the week.
Every Month: at least 1 full day with no responsibilities or house projects – just fun together. I think this will be the hardest one because these days we will most likely still be here in Memphis and I know how hard it is for us to have free time on our hands and not fill it with house projects (which we love!). We just really need time for fun as well.
Every Quarter: at least 1 weekend together. This actually tends to happen anyway because we travel so much, but we want to make sure that we are intentionally spending at least 4 weekends a year with no responsibilities. We’d like for these weekends to be trips every time because it’s easier to not worry about the to-do list when we’re not home, but if for whatever reason we can’t travel every quarter, we’ll be sure to take a weekend at home for just us.
Every Year: at least 1 week-long trip together. This is another one that should be easy for us simply because we always take a trip for our anniversary every year.
Every Other Year: 30 days together. Last week someone mentioned how great it will be to look back on these 30 days someday. And it made me realize that I don’t want this to be a one time only thing. Christopher and I talked about it and decided that this break would have been so beneficial a couple of years ago when we were facing burnout with a ministry we were involved with. So we decided that we should make it happen at least every other year (and if it happens more than that, then that’s totally okay!)
So where do future kids fit into all of this? Well, during future 30 day periods, our kids will be involved in that. I don’t know how practical it will be to continue doing this with teenagers in the house (with multiple busy schedules), but it’s a culture that we want to begin in our family. That we take sabbaticals. A time of rest. A time to be restored. A time away from the busy-ness of life. So this may only continue while we have small kids in the home or it might be something we can continue even as our kids grow up. I don’t know for sure. I just know that this is where we are now. We need to be better about self care and we want to raise our kiddos in an environment where they see that.
As for the rest of it, that’s all us time only. So those date nights and weekends away… just for us. Even after we have kids. I’m not saying that we’ll leave our 2 week old at home while we go on a week long vacation – obviously there will be exceptions, but this is the culture we want to build in our family… before we even have kids. We want our kids to grow up seeing an example of parents who prioritize and care for each other and our marriage. And of course, we’d like to take family vacations as well. So as long as we are able to take a week for just us and a week with the family, we will. If that’s not possible, we can cross that bridge when we get there. This is just the plan for now to help build this culture in our marriage and family. 🙂
This was a big reason that we wanted to take these 30 days. Yes, we needed a break from life, but we also needed to figure out how to make “us” a priority. If we’re bad about filling up our schedule now, then we’re afraid that when we have kids, we will just stay with the status quo and not make time for only us.
I make it sound like we never spend time together. We really do. Like I said before, we’re together all the time. We are just together all the time while doing something else. Not a lot of time just to relax or play together. So we’re making strides to correct that. 🙂
I know this was forever long so thanks for sticking with me. People have been asking about how our 30 days has been and I thought this was a good start to answering that question. 🙂 Coming up soon, NYC recap!