Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Make Love, Not Scrapbooks

I'm an open book, for the most part, I believe.  I've written about the ups and downs of my marriage...the good, the bad, the ugly.   It's all here, for the world to see.

My most recent post regarding my marriage was written not too long ago, when Tim and I had taken a little mini-vacation...just the two of us.  We rediscovered who we were as a couple, as best friends and, perhaps most importantly, partners for life.

But, as they say, the good times don't last for long and before I knew it, we found ourselves stuck in a valley yet again.

Marriage is hard work.  Damn straight.

When Dr. Jennifer Gill Rosier, a mother of twins herself, contacted me to inquire if I'd be interested in reading and reviewing her new book Make Love, Not Scrapbooks...a book dedicated to sharing several research-based love tips to intensify a relationship, I was totally game.

The first thing that struck me about Jen's book is that it reads just like a conversation you'd have with a good friend...you know, over coffee as you spill your guts and admit how badly your husband pissed you off the other day, while she nods her head in agreement and says, "You're preaching to the choir, sister".

So here's the thing...most of the research-based love tips were things that Tim and I were already aware of.  Tim even said as much when I pleaded with him to read the book after I had already finished it...in one day, I might add, because it was THAT great of a read.

"Why should I read it?" he had asked.  "It sounds like it's full of information we already know."

I answered, "That's true.  I'll give you that.  But...and this is a huge BUT, if we're so smart and we already know this stuff, why are we not practicing all these things?"

He shrugged his shoulders.

I continued, "Well, I'll tell you why....because it's overwhelming and it seems like a lot of work so we get stuck in this 'why bother' attitude.  The author of the book talks about being supportive, spicing up your sex life, how to keep things positive and manage conflict.  Simple little things that go a long way.  But she doesn't just WRITE about it, she explains HOW to do it successfully.  I don't know...I found it very inspiring, encouraging and made me want to take action."

Tim chewed on that for several seconds and then finally said, "Okay, I'll read it, especially if it means getting some action."

"Uh, I said, it made me want to TAKE action, not GET action but I suppose that would be a good start," I replied.

Because he reads super slow, I haven't been able to get his final opinion on the book.  But let's just say, I'm thrilled that he at least agreed to read it.

I really appreciated Jen's humor in dealing with such a serious subject matter.  She doesn't come across as someone who knows more than you...she comes across as someone who's "been there, done that" and genuinely wants to help you achieve and/or maintain a happy marriage.

And I absolutely LOVE that she has helpful quotes from other couples scattered throughout the book, explaining how they deal with specific issues, as well as words of inspiration.

Tim and I are guilty of muttering simple "I love you's" to one another, without much thought about the meaning behind those three little words.  But when was the last time we had been more creative about expressing our love to one another...like, as Jen suggests, "I cherish you" and "I want to be with you always"?

To be honest, I don't think either of us has ever said anything more romantic to one another than "I love you".  But I would imagine the day Tim comes to me and says, "I'm better because of you", he will have won my heart completely all over again.

Words and actions, people.  That's what it comes down to.  And it's about not waiting for your partner to make the first move...we have to be willing to step it up, as well.

And with Jen's Make Love, Not Scrapbooks, we have no more excuses.  She elaborates on the tips in great detail, even making lists and using bullet points to make it more manageable, which I love!  And she writes about the results you should see once you begin to implement her suggestions.

Jen's honesty is refreshing, the research is proven and the book will quickly become your "go to" manual when you need reassurance and assistance, as well as stimulating and exciting ideas.

Even if your marriage is already on good terms and/or you just got hitched, the book is still a great reference for ways to keep the flame burning brighter.

You can read more about Make Love, Not Scrapbooks by visiting Jen's website at http://www.makelovenotscrapbooks.com/.

WIN A SIGNED COPY OF THE BOOK

Jen has generously offered one of my readers his/her own signed copy of the book!

To enter the giveaway, simply leave me a comment telling me what you and your partner do to keep the love alive in your relationship.  

If your e-mail isn't visible in your profile, please leave it in your comment.

For extra entries: (please leave me a comment for each entry)

1)  Become a follower of Jen's blog, Jen's Love Lessons (tell me which # follower you are)
2)  Like Jen's Facebook fan page (and tell me which # follower you are)
3)  Tweet and/or Facebook about this giveaway (and leave me the URL in a comment)
4)  Write a blog post about this giveaway (and leave me the URL)

This giveaway ends on Wednesday, September 28, 2011 at 9:00 pm PST.  The winner will be chosen via Random.org and notified by e-mail.




*  I received a complimentary copy of Jen's book for the purpose of this review.  This review is based on my honest opinion of the book, as well as my personal experience.

MyFreeCopyright.com Registered & Protected

52 comments:

Emily said...

Well I have only been married for 2-1/2 weeks so the love is still very much alive! But I would love to read it and learn how to get into healthy habits to keep our love strong.

Maria said...

I won´t enter in the giveaway cause I´m soooo far away, but just wanted to leave you a comment. We don´t have a recipe, we just try to talk about everything (or at least, I talk, lol), I leave the guy watch his tv shows, try to cook for him, he´s really helpful with the kids, we love each other, so we try to figure it out, I don´t know. I agree that making love, not scrapbooks, haha, is a good one...:)

Tarah said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tarah said...

We do our best to make sure we get a date night out at LEAST once a month, just the two of us. No friends & family. So we can focus on us.

Tarah
tarah716[at]ymail.com

Sheryl said...

To keep our love alive, every day (for the past 3, out of 4, years) my husband (we've only been married 2) has written me a lunch love note every single day. I have shoe boxeS filled! Everyday I have something to look forward to! And I sit down with him and watch his silly wrestling shows (shout out John Cena ;).) and what not. We do things for eachother. We have been fortunate to have more ups than downs, but I definitely want this book, whether I win or not! It's best to always be prepared!

Sheryl said...

I am a follower of Jen's blog, and I'm #96.

Eva Gallant said...

Hubby and I try to start and end each day on a positive note with a hug and a kiss; we always thank the other person for doing something that we appreciate.

Babygirl said...

Well, I'm getting married in like nine days...so it's still very much alive and thriving in our household, but if i had to pinpoint something that helps keeps us stay strong, it's probably that every third day, my hubby to be is at work...for 24 hours. He's a firefighter, 24 on, 48 off. So having that absence every few days makes me miss him. We do everything together, so when he's not there, i look forward to the next time he's home. Also, still two years later, we still message each other every day when we wake up to say good morning! I look forward to that text or hey tell every morning, it brightens my day. Will these things fade over time, maybe, but we've stuck with them for two years, and I can't wait to start our life together and see what happens next!

Samantha said...

The thing that keeps us going, is getting in those date nights. We try to get at least 3 in a month, sometimes it's less...and every three or four months or so, we try to get a weekend. Because we're so young, we just need that time to be with each other, and be...well, young. I think it's really kept us together, and helped us in a lot of way. We discover, when we're away from the kid, that we're still best friends in every way and love each other just as much as we thought we did. It's pretty amazing...I love those date nights or those weekends.

I'm follower number 333 on Facebook at Jens Love Lessons

I'm follower number 98 on her blog :)

Mommie2my4Angels said...

For the past 18 years we have found the best way to keep our love alive is to first realize it takes effort on both sides to make it work.

As a military family we have endured many deployments and separations along the way but we stand firm on the knowledge that communication is key. Whether it be a email, letter, skype session or sticky note we persevere because we know without a doubt we are each others everything .

Rhiannon said...

oh my gosh, sounds so much like my hubby! hahahaha! i cant tell you what we do, cause quite honestly the spark is pretty much gone! boo... we could really use this book because youre right, we just say i love you without even thinking about it... gosh and with our 11 yr anniversary coming in just 9 days, bet ya he didnt plan anything

Niccki1211 said...

We try to take time away just the two of us each month. We both wish it could be more often but with three kids and a budget once a month is all we can do right now.

Niccki1211 said...

I'm now follower #99!!

Niccki1211 said...

Just liked her on facebook. I'm now follower #334 on there.

Brooke said...

"She doesn't come across as someone who knows more than you..." this is important for me. if an author tries to pretend its easy stuff, i can't be bothered - she's obviously never been married!!!

Brooke said...

i just followed her blog, but i have no clue how to tell you what number i am.

Brooke said...

tweeted
@frugltrophywife

Emmy said...

We date each other.. we try to not just go on dates necessarily, but really engage and talk and do fun things together all at the same time.
Sounds like a great book!

Lisa said...

This book and post relates so much to my post today. I would love to have the book.

I'm follower #100!

Lisa said...

Liked on FB!

Missy said...

Date night. We try to do 1-2 a month. It reallllly helps.

Great review!

Kimberly said...

i'm not going to lie...this has been the most difficult year of our entire lives.
We are just finding our footing after I was correctly diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
He's been beside me this entire time rooting me on and I will forever be thankful for that...but I find that our relationship changed from husband/wife/bestfriend/etc to "care giver/patient" role.

I would love for us to be able to be like we used to...

(kimber_loo@yahoo.ca)

Rhiannon said...

I blogged about it... and I poured my heart out!

http://collectionsfrommyheart.blogspot.com/2011/09/till-death-do-us-part-thats-long-time.html

sarajo said...

We have been married for 8 years now. Although, I think we have a good marriage, it would be nice to see if we are doing things "right", or what we could do to spice things up. 5 kids later, it's getting a little hard (no pun intended) to get the romance back in after #5 came along.

This book sounds like a great way to learn about marriage and all that jazz! I'm excited to get a copy and read it....if I don't win. :D

Twinstips said...

Hi, I love your blog and I also have two sets of twins. There is rarely any time for adult time, we run our own business and are an unschooling family. We never tell one another we love each other but we know. I am a firm believer in reading between the lines and allowing the actions speak for themselves. They do after all speak louder than words. The one thing that keeps us strong and together is we are heading in the same direction as we have designed this life that we have together. The books sounds good though x

April @ PolkaDots n' PinkySwears said...

We have to carve out a date night for us in our busy schedule, and its usually only to rent a movie and sit together and watch it, but we love it, as well as the quality time we get to spend with each other.

K said...

One month into new relationship so things are still great but we both have learned from our relationships that communication is key, we also agree that we need to keep things fresh and new.

I am a follower of Jens on her blog and facebook.

Cindy said...

My husband and I tend to do little things for each other - they aren't the most romantic always (such as making a fresh pot of coffee or cleaning the cat box) but they are things that each of us really don't like to do so it's sweet when it's done. Also, we make sure to tell each other thank you for...(insert a specific thing here) because it makes the other feel appreciated. I am a basic "I love you" person, but my husband always tells me in wonderful ways such as you have in the post. I need to do that more, I think, because it makes me feel really special when he does.
This sounds like a great book to read. We've been married almost 8 years but have dated (with a long separation for growing up in there) for 19 years. You tend to forget the little things and get stuck in ruts that definitely need some switching up. Even the best marriages, mostly the best marriages, take work. I'd like to read this book regardless.

lauraciaravino said...

I'm facebook like number 340 as far as I can tell. :)

My husband and I make sure to spend at least 10 minutes snuggling in bed every night and talking about our days.

The Jammie Girl said...

A friend and I did a one-month challenge in August where we were not allowed to criticize our husbands (to them or to others) and had to say something positive and encouraging every day. I have to admit, it made a difference. I've never considered myself a big whiners, but I guess I was whining more than I thought!

The Jammie Girl said...

Tried to follow, but couldn't find a GFC connect thing (mine disappears randomly, too), so I subscribed to her blog through my Google Reader.

Lisa said...

We've been married for 28 years. We have a great marriage, but there are always ups and downs. There were times I had to make a choice that involved a sacrifice on my part. It wasn't easy but keeping our marriage together was worth it. I know my husband has sacrificed for me as well. Since my husband has a job that requires him to work every weekend, most holidays, and be on call, we've both had to learn to adjust and be happy with the way that affects our family and our relationship.

Sara said...

My husband and I still goof off like we were kids. We have tickle fights, we sing chummy songs, we still do many new activities that keep our love fresh! We have been married two years, and we have cherished every moment of it.

Secret Mom Thoughts said...

We try to have date nights once a week even if they are at home.

Kakunaa said...

Does telling my husband: "We are going to make this sex thing happen before you leave!" count??? LMAO

KSK said...

I'm working on making 'date nights' -- it's just hard with a one year old.. and grandparents living almost 2 hours away... (excuses. excuses.) :)

Shell said...

Wow, this book sounds amazing.

We try to have date night every week- even if it's just watching a movie at home w/o any kids awake.

We're exciting like that.

Mrs. Lofgren said...

Your post came at just the right time. Even if I don't win this book, I know I'll have to run out and buy it. After 15 years together, I feel like we are in a bit of a slump. I would love some new perspective!

We try to go on a date night at least once a month; the kids sleep over at their grandparents and we go out to dinner, talk, and enjoy being together...just the two of us. :)

Marci J said...

spend time together - alone!!!

HoneyDame said...

I am in a long distance relationship with 7hours and miles between us. We talk on phone everyday at least for an hour. We do this at my night (before I go to bed), his morning (before he gets up). We figure that at those times, we can sort of get the best from each other with minimal distractions and discuss real issues.
Now, I really want that book!:)

Tiffany said...

Can I just say that I am uber-impressed you got the hubs to read the book? I have never been successful at that!!

What do we do? Well, we struggle with this but for us without alone time we find ourselves easily annoyed with each other. It's almost as if we need to remind ourselves why we like each other :) With a newborn, dates are few and far between but I have been coming home for lunches when he works out of the home office for a bit of action... B/c hey I'm out of it by 9:00 pm and I'm up every 2 hours so it's then or never :)

Renee G said...

One of the things my husband and I do most is call each other frequently throughout the day- just to share our day.
rsgrandinetti@yahoo(DOt)com

Amy said...

My hubby and I struggle with this, being the parents of four children...we try to find time together if it's only going to the grocery store together.

Also, I am now a follower of Jen's blog.... #101

spacebarshift said...

I could tell what I do to keep the love alive, but it would embarrass him.

Bee W Bedard said...

We tell each other we love each other everyday in the morning and before we go to bed
brendawitherspoon at hotmail dot com

Bee W Bedard said...

Became a follower of Jen's blog, Jen's Love Lessons - #102
brendawitherspoon at hotmail dot com

Bee W Bedard said...

Liked Jen's Facebook fan page - 354
brendawitherspoon at hotmail dot com

Bee W Bedard said...

shared on fb
http://www.facebook.com/brenda.witherspoonbedard/posts/129564513810513
brendawitherspoon at hotmail dot com

Laurie said...

we try our best to have a date night once a month

laurie1993@verizon.net

Laurie said...

follow on GFC
#1531 laurie1993

laurie1993@verizon.net

Laurie said...

like you on FB #355

laurie1993@verizon.net

Laurie said...

follower of Jen's blog, Jen's Love Lessons
#102

laurie1993@verizon.net

I figure that if the children are alive when my husband gets home at the end of the day, I've done my job.

----Roseanne Barr



 
Blog Design by Likely Lola