You met your spouse, spent time together, got to know him or her better, spent more time together finding out more information about him or her, fell in love, continued to spend time together, got married, had kids, and all the sudden forgot about spending time with your spouse because you got busy with career, kids, and life in general.
Remember…your spouse is the only family you got to choose!
Your spouse is the only family member in your life you got to choose! You don’t get to choose your parents or even your children, but you got to choose your spouse. Your spouse is someone you should continue to spend time with and continue to get to know. You, your spouse, and everyone in the world changes to some extent through the years. You want to and need to be able to continue to learn about your spouse and grow as individuals and as a couple through the years.
Time with your spouse can be as simple as dinner once a week without the kids or thirty minutes of one-on-one in the evening after the kids have gone to bed. It can be as exciting as a long-weekend couple’s trip a few times a year or an exotic beach vacation once a year or once every other year. It’s important to spend time with your spouse without your kids doing activities you both enjoy and/or doing activities that are new to both of you. These are ways to continue to build your relationship and shared experiences and memories.
Time away from the kids is super important!
My husband and I try to take a vacation without the kids once a year. This is something that we have focused on within the last few years, but, sadly, did not do this earlier in our relationship. We did a honeymoon, one-year anniversary trip, and then did not travel with just the two of us overnight anywhere for several years. Looking back, I wish we would have known better—known the importance of focusing on us and our relationship, as well as on the children.
Thankfully, we know better know. However, it is also easier for us to travel now that our children are older, and we have fewer children in the home since some of them are grown adults now. Either way, we have taken time to travel together, just the two of us, once a year for most of the last few years and it is definitely worth the time, energy, planning, and money spent on us and our relationship.
Something different this time
We typically do beach resort trips or other places with palm trees. However, for our most recent adventure, we went to Gatlinburg, Tennessee for a week instead of traveling to palm trees. We stayed at the Westgate Resort in Gatlinburg and enjoyed a relaxing week of no kids, no plans, and doing whatever we wanted whenever we wanted.
Typically, I’m a super-planner. I want all the details planned out, restaurant ideas are chosen, activities planned out and paid for, etc.…. However, we decided to wing this trip! The only activities we had planned were our resort hotel and a tour of the Biltmore House in North Carolina, about an hour or an hour and a half from Gatlinburg.
The trip was fantastic! Relaxing! Sleeping in, eating ice cream every evening, and just wandering wherever we wanted. We enjoyed walking all the shops in Gatlinburg and finding jerky from a shop in our hometown—Evansville, Indiana. We did not even know there was a place for jerky in Evansville, but we found the jerky in Gatlinburg!
Continually trying new things
We did a couple of moonshine tastings and wine tasting! I’m not a big drinker, but this is something we had NEVER done before. I’m not a fan of moonshine, but it was sure fun to try the various liquors (and take pictures of my husband’s reactions to them)!!
We even brought a bottle of the moonshine home with us. We typically bring back some household souvenirs from our travels and recently that has been a bottle of alcohol. We never drink it. It sits on the top of our kitchen cabinets as decoration and we joke about our children fighting over them once we are dead!
We tried new restaurants our resort recommended, ones we had never heard of before. The first one we tried was The Local Goat. There is no way we would have tried it by name alone, but with the recommendation we sure did! It had a wide variety of food, the food was good, and we even tried their Jello shot samples. I am far from a drinker, but it was fun to try something different at the new restaurant.
We also traveled to Cade’s Cove and enjoyed some of the nature of the Smoky Mountains!
It was a great trip and a very relaxing week for the two of us to spend together on our 11th anniversary! We enjoyed it so much we plan to return again in the future! It was a great time to get away, try new things, and just spend time together with no one to take care of but ourselves!
Check out this post if you need or want more reasons to continue to date your partner!!