Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Love & Marriage Blog Series: Keeping Things Interesting

Hello out there!

Today is part 3 of our Love & Marriage Blog Series.  Click here to see Part 1 and here for Part 2.

Just to recap...here are all the bloggers participating in this series...



marriage bio roses final
marriage bio Shay final
marriage bio jenn final
marriage bio lindsey final
marriage bio megan final

Today, we are all talking about how we keep our marriages interesting.  Do we have date nights?  How do we make our marriages our priorities?  So...I started thinking...

...what is one thing I can recommend for you to do to keep your marriage from growing stale.

And I decided to talk about how you should still get dressed up for your hubbys.

I know, I know...my sweet Andrew should love me no matter what I look like.  Andrew has vowed to be with me for better or worse...through sickness and health...and all that other stuff he repeated one rainy March night in front of our family and friends.  But...just because he should love me no matter what, doesn't mean I should take advantage of that and just look like a hot mess at home all the time.

Here's the thing...

I was in the corporate world for 8 years before having Kensington, so I wore office clothes every day.  When I would get off work, I would keep my makeup and hair done and just throw on some sweats.  I was still showered and clean and looking like I cared about myself, just with sweats on at night.  Then, I got pregnant with Kensington and continued to work in an office, thus showering and dressing every day.  After I had Kensington, I pretty much got pregnant with Smith right away and threw up every day...so, we can consider those months lost.  But...after I had Smith, I noticed a few things happening.

First, I didn't really have any "regular" clothes.  I had business attire and maternity wear, so I needed some normal, day to day, clothes.  I found myself a few times at Target and Old Navy buying zip up hoodies and sweatpants...then, one day, it dawned on me...that cute flannel button up right there at Target, is the exact same price as this hoodie...and it does the same thing (keep me warm) but yet it looked so much more put together than the sweats...so, I decided to break free.

You see...for the first year of Smith's life, I worked out, stayed in my workout clothes all day, took care of two babies and stayed a stinky hot mess until I showered before bed.  Then I would repeat the same thing the next day.  My husband pretty much never saw me clean except for the 5 minutes before bed and the 30 minutes in the morning before I headed to workout.  And forget about doing my hair and makeup...that was reserved for Sunday mornings at church. 

I had become one of those people.

So...I revamped my wardrobe one day.  I realized it really takes the exact same amount of effort to put on a shirt and jeans as it does sweatpants and a hoodie.  And ponytails are still perfectly acceptable ways to wear my hair...I just might want to start putting some dry shampoo in there first to you know...spruce things up.  And just a swipe of lipstick can turn me from drab to fab.  It really doesn't take much effort.

So, my tip for the day in how to keep your marriage interesting is that ladies, we should still try and look cute (or at least clean) for our men.  I still wear sweats at night but I at least try and make them match...and I try to be clean when I'm wearing them.  Not only do I feel better for my poor husband but I feel better for me too!  Getting myself together makes me feel better...it makes me feel good about myself.  

I repeat, this is not about wearing fancy schmancy clothes all day long...it's just about caring enough about yourself to pull yourself together...and not just for you but for that sweet boy who married you.  

Next week, we end our series.  I'm going to talk about how you just really never know what's going on inside someone's marriage.  Don't always assume everything is rosy. 

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23 comments:

Sheaffer {Pinterest Told Me To} said...

Good tip! Yes.......showered, clean, AND cute is a good combo!

Randi Jo :) said...

Good thoughts!

It does take longer for some than others but I am slowly getting myself back into caring what I look like. I wore the same velour running suit every other day for years the past 4 years since I've been preggo or nursing an infant for a long time lol. It is so amazing how pregnancy & the first year with each child can totally distract you from buying anything for yourself, doing anything to yourself or caring at all what you look like.

Sending lots of grace for all you preggo mommies & mommies with infants!! Enjoy the mommy comfy clothes - this stage will go by soo quickly!

I think it's especially hard for some mommies because the baby weight doesn't all come off and they can't invest as much time, effort, $ as they would like into working out --- so they hold off and hold off and hold off buying clothes until they feel they've gotten to a size they like..... so you have to discern, do I *need* some at this size or can I make do? When money is an issue, everything decision is like an SAT problem trying to figure out life hehe.

I think for me the key is to just do SOMETHING, like you've said. Small steps. Don't just do NOTHING about your looks. Care a little bit! :)

We can't use much money right now on extra things - and for me - makeup & clothes are extras - but I CAN wear the good clothes I do have, I can put on lip gloss and shower (boooo hehe).

Thanks for the encouragement! :)

Aubrey said...

I could not agree with you more, my friend!

On the surface it sounds kind of 1950's-throwback to urge us women to dress to impress our menfolk, but I think it's exactly the opposite if closely examined. When I take care of myself, it shows that I respect myself. When I make an effort to look nice, I feel more confident. And any 21st century man worth his salt loves a confident women who respects herself!

I'll leave it to the psychologists to get to the bottom of why I feel more confident when I'm well dressed and well groomed. :) All I know is it's a fact for me and lots of other women out there!

Ginny said...

When I got married, someone gave me the exact same tip - that your husband is going to see pretty, "put-together" women all day, and that he should see the same at home :). Thanks for showing how it is done practically!

Ginny
www.moderncommonplacebook.com

Kristen said...

I couldn't agree with you more. I have friends who disagree with me on this. I think they are crazy! I always say "You should dress like your husbands girlfriend." Because lets face it...most girls put a lot more effort into how they looked when they were the girlfriend. We don't have to get ourselves go just because we got married and had babies! I know my husband appreciates it and after 7 years of being together he still compliments every single day. It also makes me feel a lot better when I know I look halfway decent as apposed to when I'm a hot mess! :)

Christina said...

Shay, I love this post. LOVE.THIS.POST. My daughter is almost 15 months, and YES, I have become one of "those women" who stopped taking care of herself once the baby came, and just became "Mom." I still dress (fairly) nicely each day for work, however, in the evenings after work, it's straight into sweats or even my PJs (at 6pm!) Weekends it's all about the yoga clothes (never mind the fact that I haven't attended a yoga class in well over a year). But lately, I've been trying to change that - I've stopped waiting to lose all the baby weight so I could buy nice clothes, and instead I'm investing in cute but less expensive clothes from Old Navy and Target. I bought a couple new lipsticks (inspired by your post on makeup!) And I just signed up for a barre class at a local studio! I finally feel like I'm getting "Me" back, and I have no doubt it will help keep my marriage fresh and strong. Thanks so much!

C said...

When I first saw your tip, I cringed until I realized you were being reasonable and not suggesting high heels and sexy clothes:)
I'm a stay at home mom and have been since my daughter was born 4.5 years ago and now also have a 3 month old. I am not a fancy person and never have been. I was a nanny before my daughter was born so my wardrobe was tshirt and jeans or cardigan and jeans and still is.
What did always amaze my friends was that from day one (literally!) I start every day with a shower. I just feel like crap if I'm not clean, and then I'm cranky and certainly wouldn't feel affectionate or anything beyond that toward my husband.
I hold/wear my babies basically all day, including naps, so I have never felt guilty about putting them in a bouncy seat in the bathroom while I shower even if they cry the entire time -- I don't want to make my kids cry, mind you, but as they say "If Mama isn't happy, nobody's happy" and I need to feel clean...and shave my legs every day, yes indeed!...in order to feel good about the day. I just do.
And I do put on real clothes every day I realize -- jeans and a cute cardigan usually. My husband sometimes gets home from work and says "Wow I'm surprised you're still in jeans!" because the man knows how I feel about comfy pajama pants;)

Brianna♥Mattias said...

Awesome advice!! I really love my sweatpants, sweatshirts, and Uggs but I agree it takes the same effort to put a nicer shirt and jeans on at least lol!

Thanks for the post :)
http://www.briannamattias.blogspot.com/

Julie Raymond said...

Shay...this has nothing to do with your blog post today, but wanted to make sure you had seen a grass roots level Run for Boston that is going on today. Your heart of Boston made me think of it. I live in College Station and their is a group here that has organized this and in less than 24 hours they have 17,000 likes on FB and people are running all over the world today. It is really, really neat! Anyway, you can go to Facebook and type in Run For Boston in the search on FB and the page should come up. You will be moved by how people are coming together. Anyway, maybe you and your kiddos could run around your street tonight and post a pic. They are making a book out of all the pics!

Mandy Rose said...

Such a great tip Shay, as I sit here in my yoga pants and hoody! LOL! Teasing. My husband and I have actually talked about this same topic on numerous occasions and it's amazing how it makes him feel if I just "try" and look put together every now and then. It really does make a world of difference. Not just in our marriage but in my own self-esteem. I think this a fantastic piece of advice for any marriage!

Randi Jo :) said...

P.S.

I just wanted to apologize for all the typos in my first comment. I wrote it way too early this morning!!!

And also --- after reading more of the comments - I really do understand even more now. Imagine if I cared even half as much as I used to when I was my husband's girlfriend! That's a great point. I need to think about that. :)

And finally --- I love how sharp my husband looks every day in his shirt & tie. I can NOT imagine if he slumped around for even one week the way I do - I wouldn't like that at all! We really are more inspired, challenged, attracted to our spouse when they are confident & taking care of themselves.

Thanks for the encouragement.

Randi Jo :) said...

I really will try to make this my last comment on this entry hehe but I really do feel quite overwhelmed with fashion/style. Do you have any pointers for somebody who is just starting out. I don't necessarily want to even be too "trendy".... I'm sporty and enjoy wearing clothes I can run around with my kids in and not be afraid of messing up - because that's what I do all day every day. But I need to at least figure out what works for my body & what doesn't!

Can't I have a "Clueless" re enactment where somebody will take me under their wing and show me how to dress for my body type & budget?!?! and show me how to do my hair & makeup!??!?! For real, watching videos doesn't help. I wish I had a live person hehe. For real...I need to be ambushed... or on that show, "what not to wear"... because I still have clothes from college in my closet (ahhhh! I'll just say that you can tell by my clothes what year exactly I fell in love with my Lord Jesus) and preggo/maternity/nursing clothes.... and pre-baby clothes (7 years ago)....and have no clue how to dress for my body type. I'm SLOWLY getting there. But it's gonna be a long time haha

and there's WAY TOO MUCH information/websites/videos on this. I need a "dress your body type & personality" & where to find it cheap - for dummies.

Rebecca Thomas said...

Shay,

I am a newlywed (10 months)and have found your blog and the marriage series incredibly encouraging. Thank you for being open and sharing with me. My mom told me to read your blog after she met you at church, and I am so glad she did! I pray that I can be as good of a wife and some day a mother as you are. Thanks for being open about your struggles and about God's victories in your life.

Thanks for the encouragement!

Rebecca

Linds said...

Good tips! I definitely agree with a lot of what you said. I did a bible study on being a wife once, and there were all these things that it said that husbands valued, and we had to ask our husbands about them. Since having Brayden I had SO much guilt over not getting dressed up as nice since I was a SAHM, and what I found in talking to Drew that that was on the bottom of his values list for me as a wife, and that other things that I wasn't as worried about and probably not doing as well were more of a priority to him and meant more to him than what I had worried about all along.

Kelly said...

I definitely needed to read this! Going on six years with two year old twins.... gym clothes and sweats pretty much sums up my day(s). Tomorrow will be different!

Kelly said...

This is something I've been TERRIBLE at since I had Hollis. I live in sweats and ponytails. And lately I've decided I have to change that. I would have NEVER gone anywhere looking like I do most days - it's AWFUL! I loved this post - I'm going to change my ways!! :-)

Angela @ Teaching Mama said...

I love this...so guilty of over-wearing my yoga pants and not showering! Such a good reminder to take a little time to get ready for the day and look good for my hubby. Love this marriage series--thanks for sharing!

Paula said...

Great tip Shay. It is easy to fall into the over comfty clothing department. I fall into thsistrap occasionally with 4 children. My twins are only 2, so my yoga pants and oversized T is easy and comfty. However, when I do take an extra 15 minutes to bathe, little make up, jeans and just a Old Navy T, I feel like a hot Momma! It boost my confidence and Chris both notices and appreciates it.

Tracy said...

Great post Shay. I'm not a stay at home Mom but I do have the opportunity to work from home 2 days a week. I make sure that I don't spend the day working in my PJs or a track suit. I always get up and get dressed in nice casual clothes so that when my hubby comes home I don't look like I spent the day on the couch watching Bravo re-runs. It also makes me feel good about myself and I feel more confident.

Kelly Jo said...

I agree! My poor hubby is lucky if he sees me in anything other than a nursing tank. :) I bought some nice new spring clothes last week, and I'm looking forward to wearing them!

Tracy said...

Great post Shay. I'm a working Mommy that is fortunate to have the opportunity to work form home 2 days a week. I make a point to not work in my PJs or track suit all day. Instead I get dressed in a nice casual outfit, fix my hair and put make-up on. This makes me feel confident and ready to take on the world. When I feel great about myself the hubby can see the difference.

Jaren said...

I always feel so much better when I take better care of myself. Sometimes, though, I get caught up in buying this and that for my kids that I forget how doing a little for me helps me be a better wife and mother. I can remember when my son(second child)was like 2 1/2, I finally decided I should go buy some cute stuff for me, and it felt like I was "me" again. I felt like I had been in mommy mode a long time with my two kids who are 17 months apart, and I had lost site of myself a little. Now after having our third child, who is 14 months, I'm trying to get back into the swing of the fashion world all over again. It has really helped with you and Sheaffer's fashion tips and ideas!

Jenn @ Munchkin Land said...

Ahhhh, yes, the good, 'ol frump mommy days. I have them often! I really need to get better about this one. Even my son appreciates when I take the time to put on some makeup and do my hair. ;) Ha!

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