Pet Peeves in Marriage

Married Life // Pet Peeves Deux

Let’s be clear. I love my husband. I mean, loooooove. Crazy about the guy. And he’s, like, the best. As we speak, he’s outside mowing our lawn after having worked a…

Pet Peeves in Marriage

Let’s be clear. I love my husband. I mean, loooooove. Crazy about the guy. And he’s, like, the best. As we speak, he’s outside mowing our lawn after having worked a full day and watched Henry for a few hours so I could get some work done too. He’s a champ.

How-to-the-ever, you know that even in the most magnificent of relationships there are these leeeeeetle tiny things that just get under your skin. I’ve talked about it before right here, which was pretty cathartic and even more hilarious to read your responses. Lately Mr. Lovely and I have been a bit on edge, just with figuring out work schedules and baby schedules and life schedules, and when you’re on edge the little things that get under your skin can seem huge. So we decided to laugh about it instead of going crazy over it, and share it with you here. I present, in no particular order, the things my husband does that drive me promptly up the wall.

He holds his breath after he sneezes for, like, 20 seconds. It’s weird.
He pulls his t-shirts off inside out before he puts them in the laundry so I have to turn every single t-shirt right side out when I fold.
He walks just slightly faster than I do so I’m always a half step behind him.
Dirty dishes on the counter. Does it take that much longer to just put it in the dishwasher?!
He eats ice cream so. loudly. But just ice cream. Still haven’t figured out why.

And because it just wouldn’t be right to not let him have his say, here’s what I do that makes him crazy.

I pick at my nail polish. It totally grosses him out.
My hair is still shedding post-baby, and somehow it always ends up wrapped around Henry’s fingers or in his mouth. (To be fair, that one drives me crazy too. How do you stop it?!)
When he asks what I want for dinner the answer is always, “I dunno, what are the options?”
After I get out of the shower, I leave the showerhead pointed in such a way that it sprays his feet when he turns the shower on the next time.

I have to know if we’re normal! Leave a comment and tell me the weird things your spouse or partner does that just make ya nuts. xoxo

gummy bears

Married Life // Birthdays

Now that we’re old married people, I almost can’t even remember how we used to celebrate each other’s birthdays when we started dating. Oh wait! Yes I do. We were living…

gummy bears

Now that we’re old married people, I almost can’t even remember how we used to celebrate each other’s birthdays when we started dating. Oh wait! Yes I do. We were living in NYC and every birthday was a shindig out at a bar or restaurant, where whoever’s birthday it wasn’t did all the planning and inviting and paying for drinks. I remember one year my birthday there was this huge snowstorm in the city and I was so stressed and sad because I thought no one would venture out in that weather. Mr. Lovely did lots of calling and texting and put together one of my favorite parties ever. Now that I look back, that sounds exhausting. Ha!

It’s not that I don’t like to hang out with bunches of people any more. And having a big party can definitely be fun. But now that we’re in it for the long haul and we’ll (hopefully) be celebrating a whole mess of birthdays together, my preference in the way that we celebrate has totally changed. What did we do for this last birthday for instance? My two guys took me to lunch at Chipotle (that guac tho) and to Trader Joe’s to get my favorite gummy bears on earth. We had family taco night, and then spent a day in San Francisco a few days later. Nothing fancy, just little adventures with the people that I love most.

We hardly even do gifts any more, which is actually kind of a relief. Mr. Lovely surprised me with a couple of vinyl albums that I had been wanting and we called it a very successful day. (He didn’t wrap them — I came out into the living room in the morning and they were leaning against the tv. Ha.) So. This is my question for you guys. Have we lost the romance and excitement? Or is it kind of expected that after a while you don’t need a whole fanfare for birthdays? I mean, I guess where we’ve settled is a celebration in a smaller way — a way where a taco bar with your family is really all you need in the world.

So leave a comment: How do you celebrate birthdays with your boo?! (Ha. I said boo.) xoxo

wedding-car-palm-trees-bride-groom

Married Life // Looking Good

Before we start, can we just acknowledge that we looked like absolute children on our wedding day? Geez when did I get so old?! Something tells me this one might…

wedding-car-palm-trees-bride-groom

Before we start, can we just acknowledge that we looked like absolute children on our wedding day? Geez when did I get so old?!

Something tells me this one might get some strong opinions in the comments, and I’m all for that. But it’s been on my mind lately so I want to know your thoughts. Here’s the deal. I’m pretty sure Mr. Lovely would love me regardless of the way that I look. Fat, thin, bald, cross-eyed — whatever. And vice versa. I would love him if all of his teeth fell out and he singed his eyebrows off in a terrible grilling accident. For sure.

But! Here I am, post baby, scrapping to get my body back the way that I like it. And one hundred percent truthfully, I am working out and watching what I eat because I want to. I feel better when I’m healthy and keeping it right. But also, it’s a fact that I want my husband to think I’m looking good. I guess my question for you guys is this: Do you think we owe it to our spouses to try to keep looking as fly as we did on our wedding day?

My answer is a wholehearted yes. And that’s where I think I might rile some people up. Of course we should all love each other regardless of our outer appearance. Of course. But also, I feel like when I’m working on my health and fitness it’s also a gift I’m giving Mr. Lovely. The gift of self care, and the fact that it makes me feel better. The fact that when I do my makeup or hair or actually put on clothes, I feel like a better, stronger, more on-top-of-it version of myself. And what’s wrong with feeling that way, and giving that as a gift to the person you married?

Do you know that song, Wives and Lovers? It’s so antiquated and kind of crazy. The first lyrics are, “Hey, little girl, comb your hair, fix your makeup. Soon he will open the door. Don’t think because there’s a ring on your finger you needn’t try any more.” What?! Crazy, right? I remember being in high school and listening to that song and being pissed. Because, ya know, feminism and all that. But now I kiiiiind of get what Burt Bacharach was saying (in a really misguided way). It’s so easy to get married and have a baby and forget to wash your hair one day and suddenly you don’t wear anything but sweatpants and you find yourself looking in the mirror like “Who is this?!” And not that I’m afraid that if I wear sweatpants Mr. Lovely is going to go running to the arms of another woman, but doesn’t he deserve a cute outfit and some lip gloss every once in a while?

Maybe I’m not expressing myself very clearly here. It feels kind of jumbled. And here’s hoping I haven’t alienated all of you lovely feminists out there. But hopefully some of you are picking up what I’m putting down. And of course I’d love to hear your opinion! If you’re in a long term relationship, do you find it important to maintain your looks for your honey? xoxo

Married Life // New Baby

  Woah guys. I have so much to say on this subject it might as well be its own column. Ryan and I have been through a good number of…

 

Newborn Photo Shoot

Woah guys. I have so much to say on this subject it might as well be its own column. Ryan and I have been through a good number of changes and adventures — jobs traveling the country & overseas, cross-country moves, new homes, and more. But nothing, nothing has been more intense than the experience of bringing home a baby and learning how the little one would fit into our world.

When I say intense, I don’t necessarily mean it in a negative way. In fact, mostly the intensity has been in the love that we have discovered you can have for a baby — for such tiny little things they sure know how to wrap you around their itty bitty fingers. For the first couple of weeks we would just stare at Henry, then back at each other, then back at him, marveling that all of a sudden there was another person in our midst, and that we totally made him. If that ain’t miraculous, I don’t know what is. Even more miraculous was the fact that we kept the baby alive and well in spite of having no earthly idea what we were doing.

Now that the fog has cleared a little bit and we’re getting used to life as a family of three, the reality of things is settling in and we are realizing that we need to develop some systems. Since we both work from home, we’re trying to figure out a schedule of who’s on baby duty and who is working, and when we switch. It’s something that I think will take some trial and error before we figure out what is going to work for us. But in the meantime I’m so grateful that this season in our lives has us both capable of being home with Henry to see him grow up. Which, by the way, seems to be happening insanely quickly. Just a few weeks ago he was a total potato, and now he’s laughing and smiling and reaching for things.

Mostly, it has been the greatest joy to navigate this bizarre new world of parenting with Ryan. My tired mom brain can’t come up with words that are beautiful enough to explain what it’s like to care for a baby with the person you love most. But I will tell you this — sometimes the three of us slow dance together to old Rosemary Clooney records, and in those moments there is nowhere else I’d rather be. xoxo

Photo by Scot Woodman Photography
White Hexagon Tile

Married Life // Home Ownership

And now for your entertainment on this fine Monday morning, a (slightly disgusting) tale from the trenches of marriage and home ownership. Warning, guys: this gets a little real. So….

White Hexagon Tile

And now for your entertainment on this fine Monday morning, a (slightly disgusting) tale from the trenches of marriage and home ownership. Warning, guys: this gets a little real.

So. Before we moved into the new house, we had the original hardwood floors refinished and new kitchen and bathroom floors put in. We chose this most gorgeous, white, lovely hexagon tile for the bathroom floor and it was the very last thing to get installed before we moved in. It was grouted and sealed and we moved in while it was still setting, so we couldn’t walk in that bathroom for a day or two.

On the evening of our third night in the house, we started having plumbing problems. The other bathroom wasn’t draining properly and we were trying to fix it with a good old fashioned plunger. About an hour later, I walked to the back end of the house, passing by the bathroom with the new tile floor. And I stopped dead. Flooded. It was flooded with you-don’t-even-want-to-know-what. The toilet had overflowed and flooded the new tile, into the hallway on the hardwood and all the way into our bedroom. Just thinking back on it right now I have a sick feeling in my stomach, it was so out of control.

So there we were, three nights into our new home, a guest staying with us, barely-sealed tile completely buried under a soggy mess, all of our towels packed away in some box somewhere. We panicked for about three minutes, and then we got ourselves together. Mr. Lovely was so distraught about the tile his reaction was to just kind of freeze. My instinct is always to clean. So I made a plan and he helped me execute (keep in mind that I’m about 8 months pregnant at this point, making lots of running and fetching extremely slow). Eventually we got into a rhythm of cleaning, rinsing, scrubbing, sopping up water with rags, and we got it all cleaned. I think I scrubbed the floor three times over that night.

My point is this: home ownership is a nonstop thrill ride of things that break and things that cost a zillion dollars. And that early initiation made us realize that when terror (or an overflowing toilet) strikes, we have nobody to lean on but each other. I’m hoping that whatever else comes with owning this adorable little home will be equally manageable as a team. And by the way, the tile is fine.

Do you own a house? I would love to commiserate about your crazy tales of home ownership! xoxo

readyforbaby

Married Life // Getting Ready for Baby

I mean, is there such a thing as being “ready” for a baby? I’m starting to think not. You can pick the name, put together the crib (or watch your…

readyforbaby

I mean, is there such a thing as being “ready” for a baby? I’m starting to think not. You can pick the name, put together the crib (or watch your husband put together the crib), and paint the walls, but I don’t feel like any of that means you’re ready. But still, we’re trying to “ready” ourselves as much as we possibly can.

I guess in our heads, being ready means being educated but not crazed. Yeah, we’ve read a few books. And we’ve scheduled all of our classes so we know which end of the kid to stick the diaper on and which end to feed. And the nursery is on its way to not being a shambles. But other than that, I think we’re both mentally preparing ourselves for… um, anything. It seems like we’ve had an unspoken agreement all along that we, together, will be ready to tackle whatever changes the kiddo brings. Maybe he’ll be a great sleeper or maybe we will be up every night for the next six months. We’re ready. Maybe breastfeeding will be a breeze or maybe it’ll be a nightmare. We’re ready. Who knows? But I think the thing is, I’m feeling ready because Mr. Lovely and I are heading into parenthood with the same vibe. Basically, let’s do this — together.

I keep reading and hearing everywhere that the best thing you can do to raise a child is keep your marriage strong, secure, and on the top of your priority list. It really makes sense to me. We were the team before the kid and we’ll be the team after the kid. I think it can get to be a bit of a touchy subject, but I understand it when I hear husbands and wives say that they try to put their marriage first and their children an immediate second. Even in these pre-parenting days, I feel like it’s been so important to have the husb by my side, at doctor appointments, choosing baby stuff, making decisions. It’s a comfort and helps me feel like I have a teammate in all of it.

What’s your take? Do you think it’s out of line to prioritize a marriage over a child? Do you think they go hand in hand? Is it even possible to keep your marriage a priority in the midst of raising babies? xoxo

marriage tips for year three

Marriage // Tips for Year Three

I almost forgot! Our anniversary went by in such a blur I almost passed by this little post, which has become a tradition. I love looking back at another year…

marriage tips for year three

I almost forgot! Our anniversary went by in such a blur I almost passed by this little post, which has become a tradition. I love looking back at another year married and realizing the lessons we’ve learned. This year has felt pretty grown-up; we’re having a baby, our businesses are a focus, and we’re in our first house together. Along the way we’ve had bumps and bruises that have both tested us and thrilled us. Here’s what we learned in year three (for years one and two, go here and here!).

Side note: I know I love to call him Mr. Lovely, but sometimes I’d rather save the extra letters and just type Ryan. So. Introducing Ryan. Ha.

Choose to Find it Funny.  It might seem sometimes like we laugh off important matters, but for us it’s a way to stay positive. There have been so many times when we’ve felt overwhelmed as a team or that we were up against something insurmountable, and one of us would make a joke that would make it feel half as scary right off the bat. When we choose to find humor in a situation, it helps us see that it might not be the end of the world after all.

Lean on Each Other. Many hands make light work, and all that jazz. Literally and figuratively. I learned this year, without a doubt, that we are stronger as a pair. We get more done, we have better ideas, we are bolder, kinder, smarter, and better in every way. When I lean on Ryan for support I know that the outcome of whatever situation we are in will be better. And I hope he thinks the same, vice versa.

Give Space. We live together, we work side by side at home, we hang out together — it’s a lot. Don’t get me wrong, we like it that way. But this year I finally started reading Ryan’s cues about when he might just need some space. Usually it’s brain space. Maybe he just needs a couple of hours of quiet while he works through something. But physical space is important, too. We never blame each other if one of us needs a little time alone.

Let it Go. I’m still working on this one, it’s one of my challenges. You know those teeny tiny things that people do that just make you crazy? Don’t call it out every time. Ryan loves to whistle. (I think I might have said this before.) But he doesn’t whistle real songs, just sequences of random notes. It actually, literally hurts my brain. But as many times as I can, I just let him whistle. Because what fun is it if someone is shutting you up or breaking you down all the time? Let the little things go.

Build Up. I feel my best when Ryan gives me words of encouragement or love or praise. From something as simple as “Thanks for getting the mail” to something bigger like “I’m proud of the work you’re doing.” I realized earlier this year that I was letting so many opportunities to build him up pass me by. So whenever we have a chance, we encourage, thank, or just recognize. It’s become important for us to build each other up.

Who else has marriage tips?! Where are you in your marriage or relationship, and what are you learning in this season? I’d love to know the things you’ve found out about making this incredible adventure work. xoxo

Bride and Groom

Year Three

Photo by Rusty Lens Photography This little post could get dangerous, what with all the pregnancy hormones running around in m’bod. But I could never let an anniversary go by…

Bride and Groom

Photo by Rusty Lens Photography

This little post could get dangerous, what with all the pregnancy hormones running around in m’bod. But I could never let an anniversary go by without a tiny tribute to my very favorite (plus, ya know, any excuse to re-share one of our wedding photos…).

This is the last anniversary that we’ll be just the two of us. And sometimes that scares me just a bit because I love being just the two of us. But the reality is that the adventures will be that much sweeter and life will be that much fuller with a tiny person that we made together. And so I kind of can’t wait for next year’s anniversary, when we’ll be the three of us.

So to my husband (at the risk of pushing this smushy post right over the edge), thank you for just being as you are. You are more than I could ever hope for or need. Happy anniversary. xoxo

Married Life Changes

Married Life // Big Changes

Mr. Lovely and I tend to kind of go big or go home. Throughout the course of our dating and marriage, we’ve chosen some crazy paths — working in China…

Married Life Changes

Mr. Lovely and I tend to kind of go big or go home. Throughout the course of our dating and marriage, we’ve chosen some crazy paths — working in China together for a few months, going on U.S. tours together, moving from NYC to LA, and marriage and now babies and all of that. And now with the baby on the way and moving into a new home, we have another set of big changes coming our way.

I realized the other day that we kind of have this series of emotions that we go through when we make a big decision or change. Usually, it starts before the decision is even made, and we both find ourselves kind of squirmy and uncomfortable. And it takes us a while to realize that maybe we’ve outgrown our current situation or we are looking for a new direction. So once we realize it and make the decision, we are antsy to get going.

Then usually with the whole antsy thing comes a phase of being unsettled for a bit. Like with this current move, for a good few weeks we didn’t know when our new home would be ready or when we would actually be moving. This part makes Mr. Lovely crazy. He likes to know exactly what is going on, and when, and where, and how, and what. And I totally get that. But it’s really uncomfortable for him. So once the details get finalized, he’s full speed ahead in planning and organizing mode. No joke, you should see that kid pack up a house. It’s like a well-oiled machine. Or like he’s playing life-sized Tetris with our belongings.

So now that we’ve been through a few of these whole life-altering-change-type-of-things together, I feel like we have a handle on adjusting and being prepared for new directions together. And I’m grateful to be getting a little more comfortable with being unsure of what a new decision will bring, or having some elements be out of our control for a while. I’m finding that it’s all about stepping back and getting some perspective. Because in the end, things usually just work out. Cheesy but true: we’ve always said that everything will be cool as long as we’re together. I’m feeling bonkers lucky to have a guy like that on my team these days.

So what about you?! How do you and your partner deal with big changes? Is it easy or tough for you? And what types of changes have you been through together? Do tell! xoxo

living

Married Life // Living Spaces

It’s happening. Mr. Lovely and I are getting itchy for a new place. This always happens! We’ve been so fortunate to always find great little apartments that are just perfect…

living

It’s happening. Mr. Lovely and I are getting itchy for a new place. This always happens! We’ve been so fortunate to always find great little apartments that are just perfect for us, and our place now is no exception. We’ve got enough space, a little patio that is filled with plants, big windows with lots of light, and a granite countertop in our kitchen. It’s fine. But I just can’t stop wishing we were in a house.

Are you an apartment dweller? Condo? Big ol’ house with a front porch? Wherever you are, are you happy with it? It’s kind of hard to live in an apartment and look at friends who live in full houses and not be jealous. I just sigh every time I think of having a whole extra bedroom for guests, or an office space that isn’t in our living room, or a backyard to invite friends over and barbeque. Sigh. See? Even typing those sentences I get this vision in my head of the perfect little house on the perfect little street and I look around my apartment and kind of harumph. I shouldn’t be so ungrateful.

So what is in your head when you picture the perfect living space? I have this vision of an airy, white, bright house with lots of windows, and a room just for me and Mr. Lovely to work in. Lots of cool nooks and crannies and space for the treasures we’ve collected while we travel. Room for everybody to come and stay the night or have a party. And call me crazy, but I think it would almost be fun to have kind of a fixer-upper so that we could get our hands dirty and make it our own. But there’s also the very real restrictions that finances put on a situation, and looking at housing prices is totally insane.

I’d love to know about your digs, and if you dream of being somewhere different! Do you find that your living space affects your relationship? Do you love where you live? xoxo

HowAboutWe

Married Life // Dating

Mr. Lovely and I are serious homebodies. We have a home that we love to spend time in, just being comfy and together. So sometimes we have to make an…

HowAboutWe

Mr. Lovely and I are serious homebodies. We have a home that we love to spend time in, just being comfy and together. So sometimes we have to make an actual effort to get ourselves dressed and up and out of the house, especially when it comes to going on official “dates.” Do you still go out on dates if you’re married or in a long-term relationship? Mr. Lovely and I have a standing Friday lunch date, but that’s pretty casual. So when I found out about HowAboutWe for Couples I was pumped to try out their service.

HowAboutWe

HowAboutWe “helps people fall in love and stay in love” — how awesome is that? You guys know I love love. I just so enjoy spending time with Mr. Lovely and finding new adventures. I even love seeing other people on dates enjoying each other’s company. I just think it’s so sweet. So HowAboutWe for Couples seems so brilliant to me; they organize and curate these awesome dates and you choose your fave. It’s like picking an experience off of a menu. They set everything up, you choose your adventure, and everything’s taken care of. (There’s also a service for singles that takes online dating offline so you can get out in the world and meet peeps!)

When we were looking at some dates to choose, we almost couldn’t decide! Mr. Lovely wanted to go paddleboarding but I thought it sounded a little cold for spring. I kind of wanted to take a brunch cruise, but we were looking for something a little more laid back. So we finally figured it out — a progressive date, starting at Yuca’s Tacos and ending up with ice cream sandwiches at Coolhaus. Tacos and ice cream? Come on. This date was made for us.

HowAboutWe

HowAboutWe

HowAboutWe

It was so nice to head to some places we’ve never been, and to have a reason to spend some time together not working. It’s kind of crazy that I even feel like we have to “find” a reason to go on a date. And this whole thing has made me excited again to find new things to try and places to explore right in our town. It was such a treat of a day and by the end we were so happy to have just had the experience. That kid was cracking me up, too — the tacos and ice cream were both so good that he was on a total food high (see Exhibit A, below). And it was so fun to feel kind of like a VIP on our date because the restaurants knew we were coming and took such great care of us!

HowAboutWe

HowAboutWe

So what about you? Is your dating game on point? Or would you try a service like HowAboutWe to get your dating mojo back in gear? If you’re interested, Lovely Indeed readers are getting the hookup with a special deal to try it out! Just click here and you’ll get $50 off of your first date booking! It’s actually a really great deal; we found that your dollar goes a long way with HowAboutWe. I’d love to know what date you guys would choose, so check them out and let’s gab about it! xoxo

HowAboutWe

This post is in partnership with HowAboutWe; all opinions are my own.