A Couple’s Weekend

Couple Time

When our children were younger and we needed some ‘us’ time…

we would simply wear them out, feed them an early dinner, and scoot them off to bed.

We affectionately called this ‘Flex Time’ and it was oh so rejuvenating for us and our relationship.

As our children have grown and multiplied in number…

bedtimes have grown later, responsibilities have increased,  parenting has become more complicated, and wake-up calls remain early.

There is very little alone time and it seems more necessary now, than ever before.

It’s nearly impossible to have an uninterrupted conversation in our home, never mind one not intended for little ears.

The work is never done.

A new problem is always on the horizon.

And life just keeps getting busier.

It’s easy peasy to place our marriage on the back-burner and forget about it in the name of sacrifice.

But what exactly would we be sacrificing as time ticks away?

Time + Unintentionality = Ordinary Marriage

This book is a must read.


I wrote about it here.

I do not choose ordinary for our marriage.

But how do we carve out time for each other?

Serveral weeks ago I had myself a little pity party because I felt like no matter how hard I worked and labored toward my goal,

I never got to spend quality time with my husband.

This led us to approaching our oldest daughter about babysitting on a bimonthly basis so that hubs and I could have ‘Date Night’.

We agreed to compensate her fairly and we also try to make it a fun pizza and a movie type night for them.  This has worked out really well so far.  Where could we possibly find a more trustworthy and knowledgeable sitter?

Another thing we have tried is kid swapping with another family.

We have a massive sleepover at our house and then they do the same at their home.

We chose a family with a similar number of kids (so they wouldn’t feel like we were taking advantage of them)

whom we love spending time with.

We chose a family we trusted implicitly, respected, and admired.

Initially we tried a 24-hour sleepover and then, just recently, we made plans for a 48-hour kid swap.

They’d take our 7, then a few weeks later, we’d take their 6.

I could not remember the last time we had a couple’s weekend.  Had we ever even done this before…since the birth of our first?

I was REALLY looking forward to our weekend together when this happened…

Broken Bones

A fractured lower leg with a full-length cast and crutches.


We can’t possibly leave her we reasoned.

She needs us.

Big ol' Cast

But as the week passed things began to look up.

Lookin' Up

I was super torn.

I didn’t want to make this decision for selfish reasons, nor did I want to make this decision for the wrong unselfish reasons.

I prayed very specifically that God would show me an obvious red flag if this weekend wasn’t meant to be…

And then I waited.

I waited all week long for a brilliant red flag signaling us to cancel our plans.

The day arrived and I bathed children.

I packed numerous bags.

I stuffed sleeping bags and pillows into the rear of the van.

No red flags.

I frantically mopped the kitchen floor, and in that moment of unexpected silence, wondered what we would do with ourselves over the next 48 hours.

We hadn’t made any plans.

Duff would want to relax.

I would want to fix everything around the house that needed attention.

We couldn’t possibly stay at home I realized.

It would only cause friction.

But we couldn’t afford to spend gobs of money or travel too far.

I explained my insights, in a frustrated way, to my husband as I scrubbed away at the filthy linoleum.

He disappeared upstairs into his office…

and quickly solved everything.

All of my concerns were addressed…

except perhaps, we ended up spending a bit more than anticipated.

But hey, after 17 years of marriage, it wasn’t difficult to rationalize away the many reasons we deserved to splurge.

We dropped off all 7 kids at 5:00PM on a Friday and checked into the Renaissance Hotel in Raleigh, just 20 miles from home.

Renaissance 2


 I picked up a pumpkin-spice iced coffee at the DD’s drive-thru and kicked back in our eerily quiet hotel room.


We arrived

Coffee Break

It was as though we had traveled back 15 years in time to our pre-kid days.

Strange and wonderful all at the same time.

We had a delightful sushi dinner for two at Mura.

I can’t remember being that relaxed and unrushed in a restaurant.

So awesome just enjoying each other’s company and trying to pick up on our waiter’s dry sense of humor.

More Sushi

The food was beautiful and scrumptious.


Later that evening we hit Ben and Jerry’s for a sweet treat to take back to the room.

Ben Jerry's

Nothing like a little bedtime ‘dippy’ (ice-cream).

Saturday was the wildest day of all because we were completely and entirely free to go anywhere and do anything.

We had no time-line.

No schedule.

We were absolutely FREE!

We arose at 8:00AM and Duff delivered me Starbucks in bed.

Oh how I love that man.

Post-coffee I hit the gym that was connected to the hotel.

Burning some calories

I ran on a treadmill while watching the Food Network and drooling over magnificent culinary creations.

This did strike me as a bit odd, in case you wondered. ;)

But it was so much fun to do something so out-of-the-ordinary.

I showered and dressed before we stepped outside to enjoy the most fabulous fall day.

We walked around scoping out our options for lunch.

It was a tough decision, but the smell of Firebirds lured us in.

Gorgeous Fall Weekend

Lunch with my absolute fave…

It was surreal.  Me and my man, mid-day, all alone.

Couple Time 2

I ordered the fish tacos, if you cared to know. ;)

Duff ordered something far more manly.

Fish Tacos

We headed back to our room after a delightful lunch.

Duff napped while I started in on my new favorite book.

Insanity of God

I read the most disturbing accounts of a man’s time spent in war-ravaged Somalia, and then tweeted this:

So I’m in my hotel room drinking a pumpkin spice latte whilst reading ‘The Insanity of God’. How’s that for insanity?

This book was awesome.

It was sushi for dinner again that night.  We were kidless.  What’d you expect?

Sushi 3

What’s that?

Of course I missed my kiddos!

I mean you can’t walk past books like these and not think of your children and their love for potty humor.

Made me Think...

No cooking and maid service were two of my favorite parts.

I mean returning to a neat and tidied room is a special treat for any mom.

Room Service

And what Couple’s Weekend would be complete without…



We were gone for less than 48 hours but it felt like we had spent a week in the Tropics.  So refreshing.

The time away served to remind me above all else, how very much I have to be thankful for…

I am married to my most favorite person in the world and we have 7 amazing children.

Sometimes taking a step back brings everything into a very Heavenly perspective.


  1. LOVE THIS! Hope to see you on Saturday in Raleigh. We will be there for the night on the RefineUs Tour! Would love to meet you guys. Thanks for reading and sharing our book.

  2. Awesome!
    Btw, did you get to meet the authors of the book?

  3. Hi there great website! Does running a blog like this require a lot of work?
    I have very little knowledge of computer programming however I had been hoping
    to start my own blog soon. Anyhow, should you have any
    suggestions or tips for new blog owners please share.
    I know this is off topic however I simply had to
    ask. Thank you!

Speak Your Mind