Friday, March 30, 2012

Date Idea #12 - Take a Drive to No Where

Country road in Kentucky

Need a new date idea to mix things up a bit and throw in a little spontaneity?   Well, this is a great date to do with your husband or wife.   Spring and Summer just beg for outdoor dates so why not oblige.   Take a long drive out into the country.  If you have a truck, then take it instead of the family car or van.   Part of the fun of this date is to just drive to no where until you find a nice spot you and your mate can just be together.   I recommend doing this later in the evening when the sun is about to set and temperatures are nice (at least this is from Texas experience).  Once you find that nice back roads spot, pull off the road and camp out with some blankets in the back of your truck (if you have one).   Enjoy the sunset and the stars, get lost in your love's eyes and arms, and ...well the rest is up to you.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Spend Time Praying Together

Just last night my wife and I had a talk about the challenges in our life. These challenges range from running a small business to finances to planning for another baby in our family soon. It is sometimes amazing at how quickly we can get overwhelmed by life. We can go from marital bliss to the depths of despair in a matter of minutes. Why is this? Well, to quote one of my favorite authors John Elderidge, I will simply say "marriage is opposed" (from John and Stasi's book Love and War). The enemy despises marriage because it is one of the most beautiful pictures on this earth of Christ's relationship to us.

Our marriages are pictures of Christ and His bride the church composed of all believers on this planet. Satan is always prowling about seeking to steal, kill, and destroy. How can we withstand Satan's constant battle he is waging on our marriages. Well, John and Stasi in their book emphasize the importance of praying together. We can pray for each other, we can pray against the enemy, and we can ask God to bring to light areas we are living in fear or are falling victim to Satan's onslaught of lies he is hurling at our marriages.

Prayer is also unifying. Praying with your spouse draws you closer spiritually as you both come before the God that lives in both of your hearts. Just as physical intimacy expresses oneness when we come together with our mate - prayer helps increase our spiritual oneness as we unite and both come before God to see His life manifest in all aspects of our marriage. 

My wife and I have had some of our most wonderful times of physical intimacy after we have worked through a very difficult circumstance through praying together and taking the offensive on the enemy (Satan). Physical intimacy and sex then seem to become the capstone and consummation of a spiritual unity that is deeper than any words can express.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Don't Forget Your Wife During March Madness

NCAA March madness is here again.  As guys watching sports can be a favorite way to spend some downtime, and if you are a basketball lover then March is going to be a blast for you.   There is nothing wrong with enjoying sports,  God doesn't want to suppress everything we enjoy, but take some time to ask God how you can remember your wife this week/month.   Maybe take the initiative to give her a break from cooking supper or lunch. You could also invite her to join you for your favorite game.  To make it even better mute the commercials and spend every commercial break connecting and talking with your wife.

Friday, March 23, 2012

October Baby Coming out in Theaters this Weekend

My wife and are looking forward to seeing this movie soon - maybe on our next date night.  This movie looks like it will deliver a powerful message about the value of life.   I hope to write more about it soon.   I'd love to hear everyone's thoughts on the film.

Click here to find a theater showing October Baby near you.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Secluded Romantic Mountain Cabin Getaway #2

Looking for the ultimate in secluded romantic mountain getaways?  Then please read on about this secluded cabin I found on 5 private acres you and your mate can have all to yourself!   Last year my wife and I celebrated our 5th anniversary.  When I began looking for that one of a kind romantic mountain getaway, I first thought we would go back to our original honeymoon spot near Estes Park, Colorado.   The only problem was it was already booked so my hunt would have to continue.   My wife and I are especially fond of the Colorado Rocky Mountains and the Rocky Mountain National Park area so that is where I began my search.   I searched the internet until I found this cabin called the Bird's Nest near Red Feather Colorado.   Little did I know this would be another fabulous hidden treasure tucked away near Red Feather Lakes, Colorado.

The cabin is a 1 bedroom, 1 bath cabin with a fully furnished kitchen.   It also boasts a wood burning stove and a nice sized living area for two people.  The living area is full of nice big windows to see the surrounding beauty outside.  The cabin was immaculately clean and well cared for.

We could walk out from the living area onto a nice deck looking out over a beautiful mountain meadow.  Just a few paces from the deck is an outdoor fire pit and picnic table (with firewood provided), perfect for getting cozy with your spouse by a warm fire in the evening.  If you truly want to get away from civilization and just focus on your husband or wife, for a few days this is the perfect place to do it.

This is a view of the living area and adjoining kitchen.  The kitchen was fully furnished and completely ready to go.


The bathroom was very clean and nicely decorated.   A nice warm and clean bath is definitely a  must to make any trip comfortable. 

We really enjoyed having the whole 5 acres to ourselves with unsurpassed privacy.  We walked the meadow several times, had lunch outside, had dinner on the deck,  and enjoyed just laying out soaking in the sun.   My wife enjoyed sitting out on the deck reading the Twilight books.   The Twilight books were provided in the cabin and my wife seemed to enjoy them immensely.

Indoors, the cabin was brand new and very cozy and stylish.  There wasn't a TV, but what better way to force a couple to focus on each other.  In fact,   No TV is the best way to go if your getting away with your mate.   We enjoyed hot tea in the mornings.  We even played scrabble next to a warm fire a couple of times in the evenings.   We must have really been inspired, as you can see from the scrabble board on the left we used every piece, ending in a perfect tie.  The scrabble game was provided in the cabin also.

If you want to do a little shopping, Fort Collins is about a 45-50 minute drive away if my memory serves me well.  It is a pleasant drive and very scenic.   If you do drive to Fort Collins, Colorado make sure you check out Bisetti's Italian restaurant.   My wife and I went there for a fancy date.  The food is excellent and if you call in advance you can reserve their Cubby room which is a private room that you can dine in by candlelight and the best part is the reservation doesn't cost anything! (very awesome, my wife couldn't believe it).  Bisetti's is another one of those rare treasures you only stumble upon a few times in a lifetime.

The Bird's nest is truly a one of a kind escape.   It is the perfect romantic getaway for an anniversary or any other occasion.   Here are a few additional pictures from our stay from around the cabin and surrounding area.  If you want the perfect romantic getaway in Colorado I highly recommend checking out the Bird's Nest cabin.  Cabin photos are courtesy of Lone Pine realty.

A deer we saw on one of our walks near the cabin.

Looking up to the cabin from the meadow.

View from one of our walks along the cabin road.

View from Black Mountain Hiking Trail

Monday, March 19, 2012

Date Idea #11 - Four Movie Ideas for a Night In

Just last night my wife and I watched a movie together to have some easy together time after a long week.  A movie night in your own home can be a great date for a budget and also a great date if you have small children that you can't leave at home alone.   My wife and I do this occasionally after the kids are down for bed.

Make it special with a little preparation.  You might make your own pop corn with your favorite soda or any other treat that you and your wife.   Dim the lights, cozy up on the love seat, and enjoy.   You can even take turns giving each other shoulder rubs during the movie.

As far as entertainment selection, I have found that movies that are inspiring or provoke conversation afterwards are best.  Sometimes there is something about a great story that sparks memories of our own relationship or dreams we share together.

Here are a few titles you might consider: 

The Young Victoria (2009)

This is a stirring biography of the young Victoria's reign as Queen of England and her romance with Prince Albert.  Very well done and a tasteful romance for Christian couples.  I can 't say I'm into chick flicks that much but this one has a great story and is very well done, but I would recommend a preview before showing this to your kids.

Fireproof (2008)

This is a great movie starring Kirk Cameron as Caleb, a firefighter whose marriage is on the rocks.   Caleb begins a journey of rebuilding his marriage by doing a 40 day "love dare" to win his wife's heart back.

A Walk to Remember (2002)

This movie is a good story of loyalty and what true love really is.   Granted this movie does have some rough language in spots and some crude pranks carried out by high school students.  Interestingly enough though, this movie features songs from Christian band Switchfoot along with various secular artists.   This movie isn't overtly Christian but allows you as the viewer to assume that the characters might have grown spiritually in their faith.

Faith Like Potatoes (2006)

This movie isn't so much in the romance category, but it is a fabulous story taken from the biography of African farmer Angus Buchan.   Although many may not have not heard of this movie, it will take you on a journey of one man's faith and calling.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Love Your Wife - Let Her Sleep In

Want to show your wife love tomorrow?    Let her sleep in on the weekend if you can.  You take care of the kids and give her a little extra rest time.   Most women will really appreciate this especially if you have really young children that keep her up early and on her toes during the week.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Love Your Wife - Breakfast in Bed Part 2 - 10 Prepare Ahead Ideas

Dessert - Yogurt e Lamponi

If you thought about doing breakfast in bed for your wife (as I mentioned in this post last week), but just couldn't think of some good recipes to pull it off, then please read on.

As I was perusing the internet today I stumbled on this article on theKitchn blog.   It lists 10 great ideas for easy make ahead of time breakfasts.  Many of these ideas are simple, yet still creative with a gourmet touch.   Your wife is sure to like one of these prepare ahead breakfasts.   Check it out and let me know if you find one that is especially good.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Love Your Wife - Pursue an Intimate Relationship with the Father

Often times, when we think about loving our wives we think about things we can do or actions we can perform that will show her love.  Many of the ideas on this blog are just that - practical actions we can take to show our wives love.  While it is true we can love our wives with our actions and our words, we can also love her by pursuing a close relationship with our Father in heaven.

Romans 12:2 says, "Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will."

We love our wives when we pursue closeness with God and Jesus, and when our mind and our strength is renewed by the Holy Spirit she will experience an even better love from us.  We need the Father to be our source of renewal so we can love with His love.

Ephesians 5:25-27 says,  "Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless."

If we do not receive love from the Father and believe that He loves us, it will be hard for us to pour out love on our wives.  We are asked to love our wives sacrificially in the same way that Christ loved the church.   Jesus had a perfect oneness with the Father, and he expressed the Father's desires in everything he did from His miracles to His sacrifice on the cross.  Let us also take time to bask in the goodness of the Father, walk with Him, set your thoughts on Him and how much He has done in your life.

Practically, this renewing of our minds may take place through prayer or reading of scripture.  Note that these activities done as an obligatory to do list won't necessarily bring renewal, but done under the guidance and teaching of the Holy Spirit these things can bring renewal. For me personally, I have had wonderful times with God setting my thoughts on Him and praying as I enjoy a stroll in the freshness of the morning.  Remember that these activities aren't to pursue a greater holiness or higher level of righteousness. Our holiness and righteousness are complete in Jesus' finished work on the cross.  Fixating on God and Jesus will help us live from His life inside of us as opposed to living from our flesh.

It does take a conscious choice to choose the things of God over the things the world lures us with.  Satan wants to distract us and to keep us focused on the frail things of the world.  Ask God, to help you understand fully and most completely who you are as one of His children.   Receive His love, and then as God continually works in you, you will grow in your capacity to love and serve your wife, even as Christ loved and served the church.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A Favorite Romantic Mountain Getaway #1

As we get geared up for spring, and with spring break currently underway it makes me begin to think about getting away with my wonderful wife in the summer.  In this post I thought I would take some time and give an inside scoop on one of our favorite romantic, mountain getaways we have enjoyed in the past. This is not a high profile resort, but rather a quaint and romantic place that offers a great escape for a first or second honeymoon.

 My wife and I enjoy the quiet seclusion and peacefulness of the mountains. Thus far, we've only visited Colorado and New Mexico, but both offer beautiful mountain vistas and are a great place to retreat from the heat of Texas summers.   In this post I will cover one of our favorite destinations, and I hope to include a few other romantic spots in future posts.

Fowler Cabin - Meeker Park, Colorado

Fowler cabin will always remain an unforgettable place for my wife and I because it is where we spent our honeymoon. We enjoyed a full seven days at this wonderful cabin right after we were married. The cabin is located in Meeker Park, Colorado which is near the Estes Park area and the Rocky Mountain National Park. The cabin is fully furnished and all you need to do is show up. A spacious deck wraps around the cabin and makes a perfect place to relax and watch hummingbirds, squirrels, and chipmunks.  The owner even kept a stash of bird seed to feed the wildlife if you enjoy watching wildlife - and there is certainly plenty of wildlife to enjoy.   Or, if you like to grill that special meal for the love of your life there is a grill ready to use (or at least when we were there).  We thoroughly enjoyed a steak dinner out on the deck during our stay.

A gentle running stream is only a few foot steps away from the cabin. The stream flows into a small pond with a bench near by so you can sit and listen to the peaceful sound of the running water.  My wife fell in love with the place as soon as she got out of the car and saw the pond and heard the stream.  The bench by the pond is a very romantic place to cuddle with your wife and enjoy the sound of the water. This property also boasts an area for playing horseshoes which is nestled in the trees and blanketed with deep green grass. If you walk a little further from the cabin, you can enjoy an open meadow, a great place for an afternoon picnic.  This cabin is a very romantic and secluded place where and you and your wife can enjoy being yourselves with a level of privacy hard to be found elsewhere.

Bench near the horse shoe pit.

Horse shoe pit.

All of this, and so far I haven't even gotten to one of our favorite aspects of this cabin - the jacuzzi around back.  Behind the cabin is a private, secluded jacuzzi hot tub. My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed this on our honeymoon, but we have since concluded that after nearly 6 years of marriage that we could probably enjoy it even more now. 

Inside, the cabin has two bedrooms, a cozy bathroom, a living area with fireplace, and a small kitchen.   If you want to check this cabin out, you can view a large number of photos the owner has posted here.    The cabin photos above are courtesy of The Fowler Cabin.

If you like shopping, you can take a short drive to Estes Park and enjoy a day trip there perusing the small shops that are there. My wife and I also bought a 7 day pass to the Rockey Mountain National Park and enjoyed several excursions there. Our favorite adventures there included the Emerald Lake hiking trail, the Trail Ridge Road scenic drive, and a horse back trail in the park.  Below you will find a few photos of a few of our favorite spots in the park. These photos are from our own personal photographs.

Emerald Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park

Waterfall seen on hike to Emerald lake.

Mountain view from Trail Ridge Road.

Another view from the tundra on the Trail Ridge Road Scenic drive.

Date Your Spouse - Date Idea #10 - A Self Serve Yogurt Creation

Yogurtland Yogurt High Res

If you need an idea for an inexpensive date that will please your wife's palate, then this could be it.   See if you can find a self serve yogurt shop in your town and give it a spin.   If you have never been to one of these shops, it works like this.
  • You go in and fill your own cup with the frozen yogurt and toppings of your choice
  • Next you take it to the the cashier who then will weigh it.  
  • You pay by the ounce, but it is usually not too expensive.   
If you make this an experiment in togetherness, you can share a cup and get a good treat for only a few dollars.   Once you have finished your edible soft serve masterpiece, enjoy fine conversation with your wife as you both delight in your creation.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Date Your Spouse - Date Idea #9 - Go Bowling

Do you and your wife ever need to just get out and have some lighthearted fun to escape the stress and worries of life for a little while?   This date idea might provide just some plain old recreational fun for you and her.   Try taking her bowling even if neither of you have ever been before.  Do it just to try something new.  As I've mentioned in previous posts, be a good sport,and don't get overly competitive.   Take any chance you can to complement your wife on her exploits with the bowling ball.

This date may not be the cheapest now days.  It seems that bowling alleys are getting more expensive.  Some bowling alleys are better than others in terms of atmosphere so do a little research to find the best one in your town.   If you want to save a few bucks, check your local yellow pages for coupons.  Our local bowling alleys usually publish a few coupons that will ease the stress on your wallet.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Love Your Wife - Breakfast in Bed

Breakfast in Bed at Idwala

Alright, guys.  The weekend is almost near.  So what is a great way you can love your wife this weekend?   Maybe you should prepare breakfast tomorrow morning and deliver it to your wife in bed.  Add a simple love note to her tray and make it even more special.   If you have small children, you might even help them write a special note for mommy to deliver alongside her breakfast.

If you can sneak out of bed and prepare this while she is asleep, that is perfect.  Be aware not to wake her up to early though.  Letting her sleep in a bit and enjoy a quiet slow breakfast will rejuvenate her soul.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Love Your Wife - Take Care of Car Maintenance

As I was reading the news this morning, I noticed that Toyota is recalling 680,000 vehicles (  So this made me start thinking about how many of us let our wives take care of her car or all the cars in the household.  Sure, we may make the mechanical decisions, but often times she executes the plan of getting it into the shop and picking it up.   If you want to show your wife love, take care of car maintenance and repairs for the household cars.   For example, if you happen to have one of the above mentioned Toyotas, you can be the one to take the initiative.   Call the dealer, schedule an appointment, and take the load off of her.   Most dealers offer a courtesy car ride and many are open early in the morning and later in the evening so you can drop off and pick up before or after your normal work hours.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Love Your Wife - A Bubble Bath Just for Her

Remember the old Calgon commercials?  The mom sitting in the bath tub resting in perfect peace and utter bliss.   The kids come screaming at the door and the mom exclaims, "Calgon, take me away!".   One great way to minister to your wife is to draw her a warm bath.  If she likes bubble baths you can add some bubbles or even her favorite bath salts.  Bath and Body Works has an enormous selection of bath products in a multitude of scents that you can get to pull this off. 

Make sure to get the bathroom nice and toasty for her before hand.  If you want to go all out, light some candles or dim the lights.   Once you've got everything prepared, tell her to go enjoy her bath and let her know that you will watch the kids while she has a nice relaxing time to herself.

Love Your Wife - Text Her a Compliment

It is amazing what a few simple words can do to encourage someone.  Today, my wife texted me asking a few questions in regard to paying some bills.  I was so blessed that she was on top of getting them paid that I texted her and said "You are awesome!".   Little did I know that this would mean something to her.  She responded back in a few minutes with "Thank you! That means alot to me!".

If you can, text your wife a short message of affirmation or encouragement.  Let her know how wonderful she is.  Remember though, don't just do it because I suggested it.   Do it in sincerity, and send a message that will mean something to her as the unique and special person God made her to be.

Give it a try!  I would love to hear how your wife responds.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Love Your Wife - A Back Massage for Your Wife Before Bedtime

As men, when we said our vows we promised to love, cherish, and protect our wives.   Often times we don't give our wives enough acknowledgement for all the things they do.  We can get so preoccupied with our own jobs and to-do lists we forget all our wife does each day.

Tonight, take some time and tell your wife how much you appreciate her and all that she does. Whether she works to bring in additional income or stays at home and takes care of the kids, most women will greatly appreciate this.  After you tell her how much you appreciate her and how precious she is to you, offer to give her a back massage before she goes to sleep.   Communicate with her to find what she likes the most.  Remember, to be gentle.  There are also small hand tools you can use to make your hands last longer.  They usually have a few prongs with smooth balls on the end that you can use to massage the muscles.

If you're massaging against bare skin, remember that a lotion or massage oil will make your hands move more smoothly over the skin and will make your hands less abrasive to the skin.

While you're doing this, genuinely affirm how much she means to you and how much you appreciate her hard work each day.

Date Your Spouse - Date Idea #8 - Coffee and a Board Game

Sometimes as the responsibilities of life take over and our lives are predominantly spent trying to make wise decisions and make ends meet it is very easy to forget how to just have plain fun with our spouse.  This date idea will hopefully inspire you to have some lighthearted fun with your wife.

Set aside some time and play a board game with your wife.  Maybe an old favorite you both like.  My wife and I enjoy an occasional game of scrabble together or nertz (a card game).  Or, another variation you could try is working on a puzzle together - this is great because it requires you to work together and you can sit close.

You can do this date at home, but my personal favorite is to go to a coffee shop and setup there.   Enjoy your favorite beverage and a little fun competition with your spouse.   Flirting across the board is completely allowed.  Just remember don't be a poor sport or a poor loser, as that can take this date south very quickly.   Yes, we men sometimes need to tone down the competitor and just enjoy the experience of being with our wife doing something fun.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Dating Your Spouse - Date Idea #7 - Attend a Symphony

Ever enjoyed fine music with your wife?  If not maybe you should take her to a symphony,  most larger cities have an orchestra.   You may not have a symphony if you live in a rural area, but it is well worth the experience for most couples to try attending at least once.   Granted depending on the music you and your wife like to listen too it might not be an experience enjoyed by all couples.  If you enjoy fine culture and the romance of classical music, this could be a great date idea for you and your wife.  

Be advised though that it is wise to dress for the occasion.  A symphony is a good excuse for you and your wife to dress up and enjoy the elegance of the evening as you bask in the sound of violins, cellos, and timpani drums.  This date may not be the cheapest date, but with some planning it is doable for most couples.

Afterwards, maybe dig a littler deeper what did the music make each of you think and feel?  Did it inspire you or speak to your heart and soul?

Friday, March 2, 2012

Dating Your Spouse - Date Idea #6 - Visit an Aboretum or Botanical Gardens

As spring starts to show its blossoms this year, it has me more and more anxious to be in the great outdoors.   One of my wife's favorite places to visit in the spring and summer is our local aboretum.  Many cities have either an arboretum or botanical gardens for the public to enjoy.   They are often a great place for a nice leisurely and romantic walk.  So check out your city to see if you have a botanical gardens, and enjoy the warm whether with your wife.   Take a nice stroll, hand in hand, and take some time to learn more about her.   Use this time to learn what is important in her life and treat her like the treasured beauty that she is.

If you try this date, make sure you have adequate time to not be pressured by the clock.  The objective is to learn more about the desires of you wife's heart, not to complete the agenda and check it off.   Forget time, get lost in her eyes again, look her in the eyes and let her know she is still the love of your life.