Week #3: QUALITY TIME
Day #1: Read a book out loud together.
This is one of our favorite things to do together, especially when we read an especially interesting or engaging book. We’re currently reading through the “Left Behind” series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins. We enjoy reading fiction as a couple since our usual reading lists contain only nonfiction titles when reading alone. I think we connect more when we read together rather than just mindlessly watch a television show or movie.
Have you ever read through a book with your spouse? Is there a book you have both been wanting to read? If so, why not try reading it aloud together? Or, you could choose a book, read separately and then plan times to discuss it with one another. Just try it- you may be pleasantly surprised at how much you enjoy reading with your spouse!
Day #2: Ask questions about his day and/or job and really listen with eye contact.
You would think this would be a no-brainer, but after over 4 years of marriage you can begin to take your spouse for granted. You forget to ask the simple questions and as a result, day after day goes by without you having a clue as to what has been going on in his life. Other times I’ll ask the questions but then forget to listen because I’m multi-tasking (making dinner, finishing a blog post, etc.). I had to consciously think about listening.
I did this by maintaining eye contact and by putting aside whatever had been previously distracting me. It was refreshing to just listen to him, finding out what was on his heart and mind.
What about you? Have you had a heart-to-heart with your spouse, lately? Here are some sample questions to get your creative juices flowing:
1. What are you most thankful for today?
2. What have you been learning, lately?
3. How are you? Really?
4. What happened at work that was funny or out of the ordinary today?
5. What makes you the happiest or most fulfilled as a husband?
6. What movie do you want to see in the near future?
7. What are you most looking forward to in the next year?
Day #3: Play music together.
My husband plays the drums and I have been taking piano lessons for the past couple years, so occasionally we “jam” together. It’s convenient that we live right around the block from our church, allowing us easy access to a drum set and piano whenever we want to play music together. Do you and your spouse play instruments? Or maybe you both enjoy singing? Why not have an impromptu “jam session” together?
Day #4: Go for a walk together.
This is one of my favorite activities to do with my husband. Sometimes we walk in silence, enjoying the comfortable silence. Other times we engage in refreshing conversation. Either way, we both get great exercise and enjoy each other’s company. In the winter our walks are few and far between, but with the slightly warmer weather I was able to convince him to walk to the grocery store with me (almost a mile from our home). He was so sweet and carried our purchases the entire way home, despite the fact I offered to take them several times.
Day #5: Get ready for bed earlier so you can talk before going to sleep.
Sometimes this is when my husband and I have the best heart-to-heart conversations. Cuddling with the lights out seems the perfect setting for us to chat. The first year of our marriage he worked late into the night, so we’d often spend a few minutes catching up on each other’s days before drifting off to sleep. Would your husband agree to going to bed a little earlier “just to talk”? The first time I suggested this to my husband he was skeptical, but afterward he said it wasn’t so bad.
Day #6: Play Dominion (at least 2 games).
This is my husband’s favorite game, so of course when I suggested we play he was very excited. But when I wanted to play a second game he was shocked. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the game, but after having played it 3 times a day for several months upon first purchasing it, I quickly became disillusioned. My husband is the type that has been eating the same exact thing for breakfast for as long as I’ve known him and will probably contentedly do so until the day he dies, so getting tired of the same old game will never happen to him. Anyways, all this to say, he was VERY pleased.
Does your husband have a favorite game? Is there a game you both have been wanting to learn? Is there a game you played while you were dating that you could play again for “old times’ sake”? Or is there a game you played as a child that you think you’d enjoy with your spouse? Choose one and set aside time to play!
Day #7: Cuddle on the couch while watching a movie.
My husband and I prefer to watch movies in the privacy of our own home rather than go to a movie theatre for many reasons. 1) You can pause it if you need a bathroom or snack break. 2) A couch is far more comfortable than the average chair provided in a theatre. 3) It’s much cheaper to stay home and just rent from Redbox or stream from Netflix. 4) You can talk in the middle of the movie without disturbing other movie-goers. 5) If you get part way through the movie and realize it’s not very good, you can stop it and find something else to watch, instead.
Which do you prefer: viewing movies at home or in a theatre? Is there something both you and your husband have been wanting to see? Why not make plans to watch it this week?
Need more ideas? Here are a few for various seasons of the year:
-Go for a hike.
-Have a picnic.
-Make a couples bucket list together.
-Go apple or berry picking.
-Wash the car together.
-Go for a mini-road trip, about an hour from home and spend the day together.
-Train for and run a 5K together.
-Make plans to spend a full morning in bed together: breakfast, read a book, watch a show, etc.
-Stop by his office for lunch.
-Unplug all your technology and give him your undivided attention.
-Make something together (meal, cookies, home project, etc.).
-Go star gazing.
-Watch fireworks together.
-Watch a sunrise or sunset.
-Put a puzzle together.
-Listen to a podcast together.
-Watch a sports game with him.
What kinds of things do you enjoy doing with your husband? Share in the comments below.