Thursday, July 31, 2014

10 TIPS FOR STAYING MARRIED FOREVER

Most times a person with better experience can provide a deeper insight into things. This has always checked out time after time. I am of the opinion however that much as it might seem like there is no air tight formula in being able to achieve a healthy relationship, some principles are just so recurrent that they never go old.

Jeanne Faulkner shares her tips gotten from almost 33years experience and although you might have heard or read them before, her straight to the point tips might be less confusing and more achievable. Enjoy.


OLD COUPLE LOVEMy husband and I will soon celebrate our 33rd wedding anniversary. We got married way too young and the odds were probably stacked against us and yet, here we are so many years later and we're still together. We're not celebrities, not wealthy, not in the spotlight and not any different than anybody else who has picked a lifetime partner. We've been through some seriously great times together but we've also been through some shit and I mean real-life shit that could be way too much for some couples to withstand. So what's the key to our longevity? It's pretty simple. We're happy together, we like each other's company and we're still genuinely in love. That accounts for most of why we've been able to stick it out while other couples can't. We have other keys though and here are ten of them:
1. When you're thinking about getting married, pick someone you absolutely adore. It sets a good baseline for those times when you get on each other's nerves.
2. Make sure he/she has a sense of humor -- you're going to need it. If that sense of humor is similar to yours, you'll have a lot of fun together.
3. Don't consider your spouse a fixer-upper. The person he/she is on the day you marry is the same person he'll be 30, 40 or 50-odd years later. His habits, body, career, friends, interests and goals might change, but the person he is deep inside will remain the same. If you don't think he's fabulous as is, don't get married.
4. Expect your marriage to be a nice long road trip with smooth stretches and unpaved areas, hills, curves, valleys, ditches and quite a few speed bumps and potholes. Every now and again you might need to fix the engine and find a good mechanic, but don't forget to stop at the viewpoints, enjoy the scenery, pack good snacks and take a lot of pictures.
5. Be nicer and more compassionate to each other than to anyone else.
6. If you have children, don't make them the total focus of your marriage.They're important and distracting and they'll require a lot of your attention, but they'll only be with you for about 20 years. Your spouse will be with you for life.
7. Communication is important, but it doesn't always have to be verbal and you don't absolutely have to talk about every little thing that comes up. Leave room for silence.
8. Have your own interests, activities, friends and career. Share liberally with your spouse but don't expect him/her to be your everything.
9. Each spouse should work and contribute money to the household. It's one of the best ways to support each other. Plus, if each partner is a wage owner, the balance of give and take and power and responsibility in the relationship is more equal.
10. Don't get divorced. Plain and simple.

Original Article appeared on www.huffingtonpost.com

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Getting Him To Appreciate You

I just let go of the help I had at the house. Irreconcilable differences capture the essence of arriving at that decision. Truth be told it has been kind of hard adjusting to juggling house chores with other errands. To compound the situation, we have plumbing issues that has to wait till the weekend to get fixed which means I also have to worry about getting water in the house. I am in a constant state of fatigue and atimes it is a wonder that I wake up the next day energized and ready to take the world again.

I try to suppress my lawyerly attitude and the temptation to always expect for my husband to put in equal or even more effort than I put in keeping the house together. I have accepted a number of times to being guilty of being locked up in a fantasy world. I stay very well in the ideal of ‘what ought to be’ zone. But even when I am being reasonable with my expectations, I still feel I don’t get enough ‘thank you’s for the things I get done around the house. Men can be really lazy when it comes to doing chores, imagine my irritation when I am cooking and cleaning and my husband tells me our daughter needs a diaper change.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

God's Prodigal Love

We are all familiar of the parable of the prodigal son in Luke 15; and from childhood, many of us were taught in sunday schools to view this story from the perspective of the son- He took his share of his father's inheritance, went to a different town, squandered all his money, and when reality hit, decided to return home. And of course, the lesson was always "You can always return to God". 

Recently, I saw a book that was titled "The Prodigal God", and I couldn't wrap my mind around anyone calling God prodigal. I got home and googled the meaning of the word 'prodigal'. The first meaning that jumped out at me was "wastefully extravagant", and the second was "to give something away lavishly". I smiled!

The story of the prodigal son was not really about the son leaving and coming home when he had hit rock bottom. It was about his father who was so willing to accept a son who had defiled him and defiled tradition, by asking for his share of the inheritance while his father was still alive. Can you imagine walking to your parents now and demanding they give your half of their wealth?money you didn't even work for? especially after they've given you everything a child could ever need? It is absolutely unheard of! I trust African parents will scream out loud and propose that child is planning to kill them in their sleep. This father in the parable did none of that. He gave his second son his share, bade him goodbye and let him live his life. He did not threaten him, nor did he even disown him. He let him be.

Advice for Parents: Train up your child in the way he should go.


Proverbs 22:6 New King James Version (NKJV)

Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.


The Bible verse is very specific about the responsibility of parents when it comes to bringing up their children. Sometimes I get the feeling that parents think because it is in the Bible, it refers only to spiritual things, not the everyday little things.

The verse refers to all things. It includes the way to cook, the way to greet elders, the way to eat at table, the way to dress and many more. Some parents shout at their children and tell them that their children do not know how to do this and how to do that when they have never invested in training the children.

The family is the nucleus of society and every child is supposed to learn most of life's values from its family. So if the family presents a conducive setting; with the parents lovingly teaching and setting good examples, the children will learn and imbibe the good values. Parents should not leave the setting of good values to the school authorities and the environment. The ones that do end up blaming the society and schools for the immoral values of their corrupt children.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Best First Date

This is an interesting video of the best first date. Nice and sentimental

Watch and Enjoy




Friday, July 25, 2014

Dating Down is a Crime!!!

Many women are in a race against time and simultaneously in competition with their friends, colleagues, neighbours and even other people that are oblivious to their existence. In order to attain the 'Mrs' tag, women reach a point of desperation where they believe anyone is better than no one. It doesn't matter what anyone does, or what his aspirations or lack thereof are, no one is no-no, so anyone will do.

The concept of dating down to most people immediately ignites discussions about financial wealth and many are quick to point out that dating a rich man will not necessarily result in happiness. He might be abusive, a cheater...etc. I agree; however I believe many people have misconstrued views of what dating down is about.

If you are working on your MSc degree in Microbiology, and your man is doing his Honours degree in Information Technology, you are not dating down. Dating down has nothing to do with a competition of degrees and qualifications. It however has a lot to do with dreams and aspirations, drive and the will to succeed.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Are You Heading to Tarshish?

 At some point in our lives, we reach crossroads that send us into pondering modes; we wonder if we have been living our lives the best way, we ask if we have been handsomely rewarded for the good decisions we made or if we are just another match in a match box. What is it about doing things God's way that is so enticing? So many christians still face tribulations, so many face trials...yet they remain steadfast in faith, something must be wrong with them! So we decide to do things our way; afterall, so many people living in sin seem to get away with every wrong doing they dabble in- they scam people, tell lies, make loads of money and still live the good life. Is serving God truly worth it? 

Beware of these thoughts! Because, like Jonah, they are about to send you on a voyage you did not envisage for yourself. Jonah's story is mainly about his disobedience, but there is also the fact that he turned away from God and tried to do things his way! Like Jonah, when we hatch a plan to do things that are opposite to God's will, everything seems to be smooth sailing and perfect at first. When Jonah decided he was heading to Tarshish which was even farther in the opposite direction from Nineveh, he bought a ticket, boarded a boat and was enjoying the ride....until the storm came, and all his plans were dashed!

Let's bear in mind that turning from God can have grave consequences on how our lives turn out. God is all-seeing and all-knowing, all he needs is for us to trust him and believe he will see us through every situation. Satan on the other hand provides a quick get-away from our troubles. In other words, he provides a boat to Tarshish and makes sure there is room for one more passenger so you can get onboard. The gifts of satan come quickly but there is hell to pay, literally! I remember a man I knew for a few years who lied to get through life. He lied to make money, lied to get jobs, lied, lied and lied, harming so many people in the process, yet living the good life. His day of reckoning came in one of his brand new expensive cars which was involved in an accident and burnt beyond recognition. I hoped when I heard the news that his last words were to seek forgiveness and salvation.

God can take care of all your needs, don't turn away from him! Don't get on satan's boat to 'freedom'. God's gifts are free. Satan on the other hand, never offers free lunch. Turn back to God now. He is waiting for you, arms outstretched and wide open! Be blessed XOXO



Finding Peace by Making Peace

I have become quite addicted to a particular photo blog I discovered about seventy two hours ago. Looking at the faces of the different people and their stories just further affirmed my thoughts that we are more similar as humans than we agree. Everybody has a story and everyone just needs someone to care enough to share or live their stories with. I realize that we crave acceptance which translates into happiness for us all and that informs most of our choices.

We measure ourselves against a worldly standard and condemn ourselves for not adding up to the expectations of those around us. The complexities of the world are those created in our choices of achieving that common goal of happiness. These choices of ours might not be popular ones because we all go about achieving our goals in different ways. The concern for another is very secondary and the love and satisfaction of self makes life seem difficult.

Some have been blessed with the wisdom to understand that most of the things we clamour for are nothing compared to being able to discover inner peace. And that nothing leaves a great legacy like the ability to radiate the brightness, peace and love a person feels to one’s neighbours and surroundings. The understanding that we can rule the world, if only we can understand and submit to the person that is really in control of things, is something we all need to come to. Our struggles to live through everyday trying to balance all the odds will be better defined and reduced when we are able to be in tune with our inner man. The ones that have discovered this secret are the ones this world has been given to. They are the meek the bible spoke about.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Silence the Jonah in You!!!

Do you have a bit of Jonah in you? You can't say no, because we all do. I am not referring to Jonah's obvious disobedience which has been the focus of this story whenever I heard it being taught. I am referring to Jonah's disdain for the people of Nineveh who he believed were not good enough to receive God's blessings.

I think I have had some Jonah moments when I heard someone got something I badly wanted and had been praying for for a considerably lengthy amount of time. That of course is not the only scenario. I have had my Jonah moments when I saw someone who would not care to listen to the word of God, heading in the wrong path and I just felt 'Oh well! That's not my problem!', turned my face in the opposite direction and acted like I couldn't see that person walking into a ditch. Just like Jonah, we are all likely to have such thoughts once in a while.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Know Where You Stand; Define Your Relationship

I'm not asking you to declare intentions of marriage after one week of knowing each other, nor am I asking that you completely eradicate the foundation of friendship in your relationship. I am simply asking that you should be aware of where you stand in a relationship to avoid being caught in a 'situation-ship'.

It is very common these days that everyone wants to 'go with the flow' to avoid losing out on being with someone they really like or sending the wrong message across. By the wrong message, I mean, many of us don't want to be considered as 'playing unnecessarily hard to get', 'prudish' or 'simply difficult'. That is understandable but how far is too far when the relationship you are investing so much time in, is not defined in any way. 

These days, many individuals approach the opposite sex without knowing what they want exactly from a relationship or even what they can offer, besides superficial qualities. They believe it is ok to be in doubt about a person but still string that person along, and when the 'where is this heading?' discussion is placed on the table, there is a babble about how they don't know what they want, or they care but just can't commit, bla bla bla. My advice? If a person is not sure they want to be with you, it's a diplomatic way of saying they really don't want to be with you but wouldn't mind if you keep them happy till the one they are looking for comes along.

Know where you stand before you decide to go with the flow. It is so easy to be carried away on a wave of emotions and believe it will end in a beautiful fairytale. Perhaps it might but it, will help you to know what you mean to someone. People say relationship definitions don't make a difference; I beg to differ. Defining what you share with someone can help you draw the necessary boundaries. I always tell people there are different categories in my social circle- acquaintances, friends, family, colleagues, and interesting strangers. Everyone should know their place so things don't get awkward. Same way, relationships should be defined so things don't become excruciatingly awkward. If a guy has been hovering over you for months with no declaration of his intentions (courtship, marriage or friendship), it is time to ask him to clear the air. Don't go with the flow that one day you may magically kiss and everything will fall into place. Back in the day, that was a precious thought. These days, the word 'selfish' has been personified and walks around in skirts or pants, looking for who to use without losing anything. Know where you stand! Share your thoughts! 

XOXO

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Learn to Embrace Who You Are Not!

We live in a society that highlights the need to be strong at all times, to never break down and above all, to never show our weaknesses, else we may be pounced upon and taken advantage of. In our bid to hide our weaknesses, we concentrate on them and abandon our strengths. Society says analytical thinkers are the best people, so we all want to think analytically. Society says being skinny and tall is the ideal look so we all starve ourselves, and some of us go in search of bone elongating medicine (that is not a joke; a petite friend of mine was really bothered that science had not gone that far). And of course, there is the perception that fair complexions are more beautiful so we go in search of whitening creams and serums.

What is it with this new treand of being and embracing someone else? We spend so much time working on our weaknesses, we do not improve our strengths. Some of us are not even criticised by society; we simply look in the mirror and highlight every weakness we can see. We self-abuse and then go in search of ways to project the image of perfection. We now live in times where we believe being ourselves is not good enough, we need to be someone else in order to be accepted.

It is ok to accept who you are not and live with it! I mean seriously, when  did the term 'uniqueness' start to lose value? As much as many of us claim to be unique, we are actually projecting someone else's uniqueness to the public. Have you noticed that happy people find it easy to admit their weaknesses, while those who are not willing to accept their weaknesses are often burnt out at school and  in the workplace? It is ok to not be an analytical person or a strategic thinker. It is ok to enjoy doing things that career driven individuals may look down on. It is ok to not be light skinned (I really don't consider a person's complexion as a weakness, but seeing as many people are on a skin bleaching spree, I can only assume it is truly a problem). It is ok to be a certain figure, as long as you are healthy. The size of a person's body isnot necessarily proportional to how healthy that person is. It is ok to be that person that doesn't understand a certain concept- that's why you have other people in teams to help you. It is ok to not be an eager beaver, it doesn't mean you take things less seriously. Be yourself and be aware of who you're not. Accept who you're not- this is one of the few secrets to happiness. Embrace your imperfections- they contribute to the unique you!



Friday, July 11, 2014

Be Grateful for the Little Things

Life is sometimes turbulent and we struggle to see reasons we should be should be grateful. This post is not to make you feel bad or guilty because at some point in our lives, we all struggle to be grateful. I remember a few months ago, I was at church. On that particular day, I did not feel as much joy in my heart as I normally would, and it did not help when the pastor stood to preach and the title of his message was 'Be Grateful'. I rolled my eyes as he started to state that even in negative circumstances, we must be grateful. What?

You're probably wondering why I was rebellious to the message; the truth is not far-fetched. I looked at the pastor from head to toe, he was dressed in a nice suit, well polished shoes, had a Mercedes-Benz C Class parked outside the church and a wife that glowed every time I saw her.. Wasn't it easy for him to preach the grateful message considering he didn't have to worry about basic needs? Food, clothes, shelter, employment were all ticked boxes for him. What about the rest of us who were battling with unemployment or an illness? Did we have reasons to be grateful?

I left without my thoughts changed in anyway and it took a week for me to realize I ought to be grateful. I was trying to overtake a bus when the bus driver decided to pick up speed. The traffic lights ahead were amber and I was facing another vehicle. My life flashed before my eyes but somehow, that traffic light stayed amber long enough for me to avoid colliding into other cars. I parked the car and took deep breaths! Why was I afraid of dying? Because I had hope there was so much more God intends to achieve in my life. And then it hit me! Hope is something to be grateful for! As Christians, we sometimes struggle with the fact that God's promises have not yet come to pass, yet we remain hopeful because we believe they will. So many people do not have such hope.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

33 Surefire Ways To Mess Up Your Marriage(The Don'ts of Marriage) - Alison Bowman

No relationship is perfect and many people have come up with formula on what makes marriages successful. Since, we have been armed with things we ought to do, this list I am about to share is a different angle to look at it. I stumbled on this list of don’ts and I must confess they are on point. You can measure yourself against this scale and set yourself right. Enjoy.
  1. When your spouse comes to you with a problem, you downplay it, saying, “Things will get better in time,” or “You’re blowing this out of proportion.”
  2. When something bothers you, you don’t tell your spouse because your spouse should know not to act this way without you saying anything!
  3. Your relationship with your children is more important than your relationship with your spouse.
  4. You refuse to compromise. It’s your way or the divorce court.
  5. You belittle your spouse because it makes you feel better about yourself.
  6. You constantly brush off your spouse’s sexual advances because you are “not in the mood.” You do not look into ways to get yourself in the mood. Thus, you can’t remember the last time you had sex.
  7. You treat your mother-in-law like vermin, even though you know this bothers your spouse.
  8. You let yourself go. You no longer take steps to make yourself sexy and desirable for your spouse. Sometimes, you don’t even brush your teeth or bother to make sure you don’t have B.O.
  9. You cook your spouse’s least favorite foods on purpose.
  10. You flirt with the opposite sex, even though you know it bothers your spouse.
  11. You refuse to give your husband the “atta boy” for doing mundane things like emptying the dishwasher simply because he never gives you an “atta girl” for doing the same thing.
  12. You never tell your wife that she’s sexy, beautiful or hot, simply because she never thanks you for emptying the dishwasher.
  13. You only hug your wife or grab her rear when you want to get busy. You never do it just to make her feel good.
  14. When your spouse says, “We need to talk,” you reach for the remote control.
  15. You stopped dating your spouse the day you got married or the day your first child was born.
  16. Your idea of the perfect vacation is one you take with the kids. You would never hear of going away somewhere just with your spouse, even though you have many viable baby-sitting options.
  17. You never notice when your spouse has a new haircut because you rarely look at your spouse.
  18. You don’t try to understand your spouse’s hobbies and passions.
  19. You refuse to give your spouse space, because space makes you feel vulnerable.
  20. You don’t take turns reaching each other’s dreams. You think your spouse is there to support you and not the other way around.
  21. You stopped getting to know your spouse years ago. In fact, you just read that sentence and thought, “What else is there to know?”
  22. You belittle your spouse in front of other people.
You can finish reading this post here

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Financial Freedom Is Not A Myth!


Have you ever wondered how it is possible that some people have so little, yet seem to have enough; perhaps that is not a good example of financial freedom for many of us, as we envisage financial freedom to be millions of dollars, pounds or even your local currency in the bank. As much as we tend to see ourselves as financially free only when we have enough, it is important to bear in mind that we first need to have enough to be free.

Money is a big deal; although many of us say we want world peace, I think we say that because we have enough financially. Why is that many of us have more month at the end of our money (our income is exhausted way before we are due for our next pay check), yet so many people that do not earn as much as we do and have more financial responsibilities make it work? 

Lessons From Life About Love


I am here thinking this friend of mine has deserted me but I just got greeted with the shocker of my life. I must confess I am ashamed of my thoughts.

See, we are not the closest of friends but we have a good enough relationship that makes us to check up on each other every other week and it’s been months since the last time we spoke. God knows I wonder about her atimes but my pride wouldn't let me reach out. I thought she owed me a call or a text message at least to find out how I was doing. I planned to allow the silence linger for a while just to prove to her that relationships are nurtured and that everyone loves to feel relevant and important.

My phone got missing and I lost her number but I was still surprised she never even called once to find out why my phone was unavailable for a while.

Monday, July 7, 2014

The Importance of Trust In A Relationship And How To Build Trust


One of the most important ingredients to having an almost perfect marriage is trust. The ability to be able to vouch for your spouse without flinching that they did or didn’t do a particular thing is one feature a marriage or relationship should be able to boast of (well, in order to last). 

From experience and observation, I can say as a matter of fact that nothing tops a good sense of security in a marriage or relationship(as the case might be). I can list all the advantages that having a secured relationship has but time wouldn’t let me.

Being able to trust one’s partner however exists more on paper and in words for most people than in actions. This is so because of the society we are in. Demi wrote in a recent post of the alarming rate couples cheat on themselves and I couldn’t agree less.

I shared how I was told to program my mind that all men cheat and mine will probably not be different in an earlier post too. Marriage has become a case of who can make the most compromises and some wives and some husbands stay contented with being the ‘main one’.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Beware of Mr. Desperate!!!

It is general knowledge that women are the ones that get desperate for marriage at a certain age. well, guess what I uncovered? There are many desperate men out there too! Some of them have jumper tendencies (for the definition of a jumper, check out my post of men single women should avoid here....... Five Types of Men You Should Avoid) while the rest have very subtle qualities that won't set off any alarm bells in your head. Whether you like to believe it or not, Mr. Desperate is out there somewhere, waiting to pounce on whoever would give him a teeny tiny bit of attention.

I have met many men that are keen on the path of desperation! They tell you from the first minute..." I just want someone I can call my own". Now that may not sound wrong when you hear it the first time but then watch out for the speed with which they move in on any lady that seems to fit the bill.

The problem with Mr. desperate is that he wants someone, anyone! It doesn't matter if she has three legs or a tail, as long as she's willing to pay him attention, he's good and ready to pounce. Mr desperate has no clear indication of what he wants in a woman. He lurks around several women until one of them fall for his devices; he never chases just one woman!

Mr desperate is the man that tells you he loves you and if you act a bit skirmish, trust he is sending the exact same message to the next girl on his list. It is really about trial and error for him. When Mr. desperate feels you are not into him as he hoped you'll be, he is ready to go after your best friend if she winks in his direction. Mr desperate is after you because he loves you, he is after you because he needs someone to make him happy. It is about him and how lonely he is; any nice girl will do.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Are You Stuck and Stagnant?

There are times in life when we feel stuck and stagnant like our lives aren't heading anywhere. In this phase of our lives we tend to welcome despondency and disappointment because we believe we have done everything right. We look around us and see less-deserving people attain the joys we've been aspiring for and this causes us to slip into a depressive state. Where is God in all of this? Why do the same things keep happening to me? Why am I stuck? What about all the great promises God made to me?

Last night I met with a very close friend I hadn't seen for about three years. We were speaking when God dropped something in my heart- God can show you where he's taking you but he'll never show you how to get there. If he did, what on earth would you need him for? Secondly, many of us are stuck in the same phase because we are blind! It's not blindness that we are aware of; we are blind spiritually to see what God is trying to tell us. Some of us have Job moments, while the rest of us go through life like Joseph. God takes us through meandering journeys to our success not just so we can have stories to tell other people but so we can learn lessons from those difficult journeys. 

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