For those of you who don’t know, Valentine’s Day is coming up this weekend. I think the Moms here with BurritoBuzz can all agree that it’s just another “Hallmark holiday” to us. Sure it’s great to celebrate it if that’s what you want, but to us, it’s the other 364 days of the year that matter most. We shouldn’t save our romance, thoughtfulness, and gifts for one night out of the year. Now I know finding time for you and your spouse sometimes is far and few between if you have little ones running around, but you have to make it work and find the time.
After talking with some of the Moms with BurritoBuzz, here are some of our recommendations to maintaining a happy, healthy relationship – not JUST on Valentine’s Day!
- Deliberate and scheduled date nights – It doesn’t matter if they are once a week, once a month, an overnighter, or just a couple hours away, make these happen. It is normal to feel guilty while you’re away, but you won’t regret it. You and your significant other need those moments together. It will get easier to be away from your kiddos. Try not to be on your phone texting, talking to your sitter ABOUT the kiddos while you’re gone either! There’s actually a really unique company called Datebox. It’s a subscription service where couples receive, “everything you need for a fun and creative date delivered to your door step every month!” One of the Moms with BurritoBuzz is going to be trying a box out here soon!!
- Scheduled family meetings (just the two of you) – Take this time to go over that months budget, schedule, events, etc. (It’s virtually impossible to fight about money and not keeping each other in the loop if you have a meeting specifically about it). Use a calendar, phone apps, etc. to keep a sort of family command post. This way everyone knows when things are occurring, who is babysitting, when bills are due, etc.
- “It’s the little things” – Just taking the little bit of time to let the other person know you are thinking about them is worth more than any bouquet of flowers or box of chocolates in my book. Put something by the bathroom sink before you got work, put a note in the others lunch, leave their favorite treat in their car cup holder, etc. Even if it’s as simple as sending a text saying, “I hope you’re having a good day.” It just lets the other person know that they’re on your mind. Who wouldn’t love this!?!?
- YOUR time – Every couple’s schedules are different, but I believe it’s extremely important to be able to devote some portion of your day to each other. It might only be a few minutes of peace in quiet in the mornings before the kiddos are awake or right after the kiddos fall asleep for the night. Maybe it’s a Saturday afternoon and both kids are actually asleep at the same time. Either way, its quiet time, and those moments are important. I look forward to the evenings after we get both kids to bed. It might only be a half hour some nights, but it is still time that my husband and I can talk about our days, catch up on our DVR, and just be together. We try to limit using our cell phones, tablets, etc. at this time. It’s not quality time unless your both present, and I don’t think you’re really present if you’re glued to your phone.
- “Divide and Conquer” – This applies to everything in your household. I think if you and your significant other can work together, not only will you get to spend time together in the end, you won’t feel like you’re doing all the work all the time. Usually I’m the one who makes dinner, which I actually enjoy doing most of the time. In return, my husband is the one who cleans up afterwards. Bath time is another thing we split up as well. Sometimes we each do one of the kids and sometimes one of us has to do them both, but I don’t consider it my job or his job; we share it. We help each other get the kids ready to go in the morning before we go to work when we can. There are other chores we do not split evenly. For instance, my husband takes out the trash, mows the lawn, and shovels the driveway, while I’m usually the one who packs lunches. Bottom line – we work together and it works for us.
- Talk – If something is bothering you, your significant other should be there for you to talk to. They should be one of the only people who you can be completely open and honest with about anything and everything. The issue may or may not pertain to them, but either way, you should be able to talk to them about it. Sometimes just talking about something that has been on your mind and getting it off your chest will make you feel 1000 times better afterwards!
- Listen – It’s so important to be honest and open with your partner about everything, but along with that is also being a good listener. Sometimes your better half just needs to vent, cry, or talk, and you need to be that person for them. Even if they had the day off work and were home all day with the kids, that doesn’t mean it was just “a walk in the park” kind of day. They might just need a few minutes to talk to an adult about their day filled with baby talk and Paw Patrol.
- Don’t forget YOU – Try not to forget about yourself. If Mommy isn’t happy and loving herself, it will show in her household! You have to find time for YOU. Whether it’s a night out with girlfriends, getting groceries alone, painting your nails; sometimes a little time away can have a big affect on your mood and emotional well-being. I know I can get caught up in day-to-day Mommy tasks – work, eat, sleep, take care of the kids, repeat. I have to remember to take a little bit of time for myself from time to time. IT IS OKAY! It’s important for my whole family!! Keep this in my mind when it comes to your spouse/significant other too. Make sure you allow some time for him to get away too – playing video games, going to a football game, etc.
- Be away from work – Technology is great, but sometimes that means that you are available to your job 24/7. When you are at home make sure you are actually at home and not still finishing up things from work. Sometimes you can’t avoid it, but if you are doing it every day, it is time to make a change. You’re family needs you to be present when you’re home. Leave work at work.
I think I could go on and on with this list. I think it’s so important to not forget about your relationship with your better half. It’s not all over after kiddos, it can just get better, but not without a little thought and care! You don’t have to go on a big elaborate date and spend tons of money to let the other person know you still love them. Keep it simple and do it every day of the year!