Category Archives: Marriage

Tough Issues–Cowards Vs. Heroes

Taken from Successful Farmer magazine: 

“The very human desire to run away from confrontation is so natural and common that we have to wonder how so many farm partnerships [or relationships in general] manage to survive and succeed in spite of it.

When trying to gather the courage to face a tough issue, it’s worth remembering that cowards die a thousand deaths, while heroes die but once. We know from experience that avoiding a battle doesn’t end a war – it just makes it that much tougher to fight, let alone win.

Fear can paralyze. It can keep a soldier from fighting for survival. It also can prevent people who love each other from coNfRoNting dangerous issues and solving them while that’s still possible. Armies learned centuries ago that even though fear can’t be eliminated, training and experience can instill habits that sidestep paralysis and enable action.

It can be the same in families. The straightforward commitment to face and rEsoLve day-to-day disagreements and misunderstanding, particularly the smaller, easier ones, develops the habit of reacting appropriately to issues as they arise.

It’s not so complicated. Sweat the small stuff first, day after day. It won’t make the big stuff any smaller, but it will make it that much easier to muster the courage for the scary face-to-face discussions that are so critical.”

I can relate to this article, can’t you? If I have a conflict with a friend, family member or coworker, it is much easier if I can work through the problem as soon as it comes up.  It is never easy, but it is worth it. Suppressing issues that arise only turn small problems into big ones. Do yourself a favor and Be a HeRo by resolving disagreements as they come.

~Lara

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If You Say It, Mean It

I was having a conversation with a friend the other day about how society overuses certain phrases and responses.  For example, when someone asks “How are you doing?” don’t you normally reply with “I’m good”?  Whether or not you truly are GoOd, out of habit, your response is always the same.

Another habitual phrase is “We should get together sometime”.  How often do you say that but never follow through?  Do you really mEaN it or are you just saying it to be nice?  Maybe you have good intentions but life gets in the way before remembering to schedule a specific date.

On the flipside, have you ever tried to follow-up with people who wanted to ‘get together sometime’ and it was almost like they fOrGot they ever suggested it?!  That was a little awkward, wasn’t it? The situation may have even made you question your relationship with that person.

We have all made pRoMiSes that we can’t keep but how often do we consider how it makes the other person feel?   Next time your routine conversation comes into play, stop and ask yourself if the words you speak are siNceRe.  By doing so, following through with your commitments will comfort the other person that you value the relationship.

(*I am writing this post because I need this reminder, not because I am trying to hint around that you have broken a promise with me :) No worries!  And if I haven’t been prompt on following up with you, please forgive me!)

~Lara

(Up for an additional challenge?  Take your relationship one step further and read my other post If You Feel It, Say It.)

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{When To Tell The Truth}

Does your mouth ever get you in trouble?  Are you puzzled as to why some of your relationships are on the rocks or non-existent?  Are you one to “speak your mind”?

If so, you may justify your actions by saying, “I was only telling the truth.”  Telling the truth is good, but telling it all the time without discretion is not.  I once heard someone say, “Always tell the truth, but don’t always be telling it.”  It takes wisdom and self-control to know when to keep your mouth shut.  I can attest that it is not always easy, but the wise King Solomon states over and over in the book of Proverbs how it is the fool who is always talking, but the wise man who can overlook an insult.

Do you use your words to destroy or build?  Encourage or discourage?  If you have relationships that need mended check your words.  Do you need to give more grace?  After all, you do reap what you sow.   And speaking for myself I sure can use grace.

So, keep speaking the truth, but learn when it’s time to keep that truth to yourself.  You will be doing you and all your relationships a favor.

:)

Robynn~

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Lesson Learned: Enjoy Occasional Trips w/out Your Kids

(Written this past February)

Greetings from Hawaii!  I am writing this as I sit on our hotel balcony, overlooking the ocean.  I was lucky enough to be able to tag along with Doug since he had a conference here for a week!

We wrestled with the thought of taking our kids on this trip.  We have missed them so much but I can ConFideNtly say I am glad we went on this trip alone.  I am amazed with the depth of our conversations simply because we had time to THINK.  No distractions. No diapers to change.  Just us, having conversations that can last longer than 60 second because there is no one around to interrupt!

I won’t lie.  I had anxiety about taking this trip.  Being a Mom (and a bit of a worrier), you can only image the type of concoctions that I came up with on why I needed to stay home with the kids.  I can’t tell you enough how GooD this time has away has been for our marriage and for our spiritual life.

We all need time for ourselves and with our spouse.  If I’m at home I come up with a million things I have to do.  Forcing myself to be away from cleaning a house and taking care of the kids allows me to clear my thoughts and become Re-eNerGized.

Has it been a while since you have stepped away from your normal routine and environment?  You don’t need Hawaii to eScaPe.  Be creative, but most importantly, don’t talk yourself out of it!

~Lara

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What Women Can Learn From Men

Doug and I woke up one morning and had a small disagreement before he went to work.  After he left, I spent the next hour FeeLiNg horrible in my responses to our conversation.  I felt insensitive and unsupportive.  No matter what I did to distract my thoughts I couldn’t stop thinking about what happened and how gUiLty I felt.

Source

So…I sent him a text that SAID:  “Honey I am SO sorry about this morning.  I will try harder. Please forgive me.”

In the text back, HE SAID:  “Oh, what are you upset about?  Whatever happened, I already forgot about it.  Have a good day!”

Men.  Aren’t they amazing how quickly they “move on” after a fight and don’t consume their entire day analyzing arguments?  I have found that if I apologize quickly or improve my mood when conversations start off on the wrong foot, he is already way ahead of me!

I challenge you to try this!  When you get in an argument, be the “MAN” in the relationship.  Despite how difficult, improve your mood and MOVE ON.  If you do, most likely they will too.  Don’t waste endless hours replaying the fight in your mind and use that time doing better things with the ones you love.

~Lara

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{Love That Never Fails}

My Wedding Day

A few months back, my fellow blogger, Robyn (Jersey Girl) shared a list of her plans in her youth that she was able to say, “Check, check, and check” to.  {Click here for her story}  Well…
My life didn’t go exactly like pLaNnEd.  My check off list in high school/college included:
  1. Get married right out of college.
  2. Have four or five children before age 30 (3 boys and 1 or 2 girls and in that order).

Hey, I’m a planner and that’s what planners do!   Well, man’s mind plans his way, but it’s the Lord’s purpose that will PrEvAiL!   And my plans were obviously not God’s purpose.

So there I found myself single and 30-SoMeThInG.  (I didn’t get married until I was 35.)  What’s a girl to do?  I can actually say that I was very content being single.  Did I want to get married, absolutely, but I really did enjoy all the luxuries of single-hood.  It wasn’t always easy and at times it was lonely, but I was content.

If you find yourself in the single stage of life and wish you had a significant other, here’s some input that may help:

  • Enjoy the FrEeDoM of single-hood.  You get to call all the shots!
  • Develop yourself as a person.  Become a person of MoRaL ChArAcTeR that a future spouse would find attractive.
  • PrAy for God’s direction regarding finding the right person and the grace to help you through!
  • Do all those things that you’ve been wanting to do, but that may be difficult to do once you’re married.  (I was able to visit family in Asia, which may not have been possible as a married person.)
  • Cultivate close relationships with family and friends.  Develop close friendships with other singles.
  • Get yourself in a position of FiNaNciaL freedom.
  • Focus on your career and/or professional life.  Maybe it is time to venture out and take a risk in starting the business/career you’ve been dreaming about.

Fortunately, after the long wait, I was blessed with a WoNderFuL husband.  He’s funny, caring, generous, laid back, and fun to be around.  I loved my life as a single person and I love my life now.  I’m sure to many, my life now may look boring.  My idea of a great evening is hanging out, At HoMe, with my family and friends!  It may not seem exciting to some, but I’m very CoNtEnT and happy.  And I’m not going to MeSs WiTh “HaPpY”!

So, if you’re single and wishing you were not, hang in there.  This song is dedicated to you and anyone, for that matter, married or single, looking for love that never fails.

Happy Valentine’s Day.

;) Robynn

Your Love Never Fails Lyrics

Nothing can separate

Even if I ran away

Your love never fails

I know I still make mistakes

But You have new mercies for me everyday

Your love never fails

Chorus: You stay the same through the ages

Your love never changes

There maybe pain in the night but joy comes in the morning

And when the oceans rage

I don’t have to be afraid

Because I know that You love me

Your love never fails

Verse 2: The wind is strong and the water’s deep

But I’m not alone in these open seas

Cause Your love never fails

The chasm is far too wide

I never thought I’d reach the other side

But Your love never fails

Bridge: You make all things work together for my good

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{Just Swallow}

Remember being a kid and your mom giving you NaStY tasting MeDiciNe?  The only thing you wanted to do was spit it out!  Well, that is a lot how taking correction can be.  Whether it is from your spouse, a friend, your boss, {or God}, we really don’t like to be told we need to make a ChAnGe.  However, a lot of times they are right {God is always right}.  And although it can be HuMbLiNg, taking correction to heart can be like taking medicine.  Incredibly hard to swallow, but the very thing that can fix the internal problem.  Truth about ourselves can hurt.  But it can also bring growth and FrEeDoM.

So next time you are faced with correction, take a deep breath, put your pride aside, and just SwAlloW.

:)

Robynn~

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I Was Hiding and I Didn’t Know It

A couple of weeks ago my husband had made the oBserVation on how I don’t put things away when I am done using them.  I responded the way I always do, “It’s because the kids probably distracted me when I was getting ready to clean up”.

That conversation tugged on me for a week.  Was there tRuTh behind my husband’s observation of my untidiness?  I decided I would test myself and see.  After making a point to break this habit for a week, the answer is YES.  I have been hIdiNg behind the excuse of the kids, and I never knew it.  Not only did I realize that Doug was right (see my “Tastes like vinegar” post), but it has actually made my life easier.  I don’t have as much to pick up at night and I feel more organized during the day.  Now, don’t get me wrong—my house is not spotless because I don’t spend all day picking up after the kids.  BUT, if I get it out, I put it away when I am finished!

It was hard to admit that Doug was right, but I did what all wives should do (no matter how bad it tastes!) and thanked him. Sometimes people tell us things that hurt, but after we have time to cool off, we should try to see if there is some truth to what they are saying.  It was worth the pain knowing that Doug loves me enough to hold me aCcouNtabLe so I can be a better ME.  If I’m not willing to allow my spouse to hold me accountable then who will?  The truth hurts, but let’s be honest, being stubborn gets you nowhere.

~Lara

Live-It List Hidden Question of the Week

What will be the hardest item to achieve on your Live-It list?

Comment below to receive 1 point.

For more details: https://thesuedesofa.com/2011/10/02/win-a-coach-purse-the-details/

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{Cotton Bowl Baby!}

If you follow our blog you already know that our guys are KaNsAs StAtE WiLdCaT fanatics.  So, when the Cats made it to CoTtOn BowL it was signed, sealed, and delivered that they were going.

Cotton Bowl Ticket

Nothing like grilling a fillet mignon for the tailgate!!

Although the outcome wasn't as the guys had wished (Arkansas won 29-16) they had a great time! They really loved the Cowboys Stadium!!

Can you pick out our guys?! {Doug is directly above the guy in the middle of the pic with a black shirt, orange lanyard, and who is talking on the phone. Scott is to the right of Doug.}

~Robynn & Lara~

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Marriage Can Taste Like Vinegar

{With the support and approval of my husband, I am sharing this with you.  Thanks Babe.}

Two weeks ago Doug went on a hunting trip with his college buddies.  I am rarely eXciTed when he tells me he is going to be gone for 3 days, especially since his job requires him to travel so much.  I also resent the fact that it isn’t as easy for me to get away, and even when I do, I feel gUilTy for leaving my family.  I guess because I feel that way I assume he should too!

Each time he leaves for these extended weekends, it is very pRedicTable on what the mood will be.  I’m usually not very peppy because I’m worn out from watching the kids and need a break.  He feels like every time he calls home to check in I try to make him feel bad for leaving (which he is probably right).  When he finally comes home it is hard to cOnnEct because we’ve built up a large wall between us.

Well, that is where we were when he came home on Saturday.  After we finally broke the ice, we ended up having the same disagreement regarding his extended trips, and it ended the same as all the others ….with no one happy.  We walked in separate directions of the house, with nothing but knots in our stomachs.

One GooD thing about our marriage is neither one of us can stand being mad at each other very long.  This time around, I beat him to the punch.  I walked up to him, and although it tasted like vinegar, said, “Are we oKay? I don’t want to spend the whole day being mad at each other” and hugged him.  I have to admit, even at that point I wanted to pull away and scream with frustration. But staying frustrated wasn’t going to get us anywhere and I didn’t want to spend any more time being mad.  I would rather suck it up and mAkEup vs. be mad and alone.

Marriage isn’t always eAsy.  In fact, it takes a lot of work much of the time.  If you are having a similar argument that has lasted 20 minutes, 2 days or several months, there is no better time than now to make a mends.  From experience I know that the longer you go without breaking down those walls, the easier it is to keep separating.  We know where too much separation leads, and no one wants that.

So, even though it may taste like vinegar, do the right thing and reconnect.  You are probably to the point you don’t even know what you are mad about, you are just MAD.  Do your marriage a favor and make this holiday season an extra special one by breaking down the walls between you and the ones you love.

~Lara

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