Mt. Rainier + 8 years

8 years.  


That’s how long Joseph & I have been married.

We celebrated our marriage by hiking 20 miles in 48 hours with an elevation gain of 4,000 feet.  It was rough.  We sweat a lot.  Sometimes we didn’t think we were going to make it.  We had moments where we thought:  are we completely crazy?!

We could be in a hotel somewhere, on a cruise, on the beach.  But no, we’re here, climbing up a mountain with 70 pounds on our backs, with nothing but a sleeping bag between us & the ground at night.



Since Joseph has been gone almost 5 days out of his 100+ days away, it’s given me time/space to think about what it means to be in a marriage.



1. Being married is a lot of give.

But being married to Joseph doesn’t feel like work or sacrifice.  We’re together on things.  At the end of the day, we don’t just love, but like each other.

We think the other one of us is really funny.  That helps a lot.  Because humor eases the tensions & stresses of life, rounds things out & makes the hard things soft.



2.  I like having kids with my best friend.

We like spending time with our kids.  Not because we don’t have personal interests of our own (because we do), but because the kids we’ve made together are great people.

They are intelligent, curious, & creative.  And they make us laugh.



3. It’s simple.  I like to be by Joseph.

To be in his presence, even if it’s just knowing he’s in the other room, because when I’m with him, I know that I am somehow a better person & I like who I am.

No longer are my wishes & wants my first priority, it’s now about someone else.  This helps me resist my natural impulse to be self-centered.



4.  We talk a lot.

I like what Joseph has to say, he likes what I have to say.

When we dated (which wasn’t for very long), our dates were almost always just us being together, talking.  I think this is what makes our marriage so great.  We can never say enough to each other.  At the same time, we can appreciate silence just as much as words spoken.


What tips do you have about relationships?
& if you’re married, what do you love about it?
I’d love to hear what you have to say.


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  2. Rachel
    on August 31, 2012 at 3:31 pm said:

    I love that I am married to someone so completely different than me. This has made things both harder and better. Harder because, well, we’re different. We clash on a great many things. Better because we have overcome our differences and it has strengthened our bond. And we have grown much more as individuals than we would have had we married people who were more like ourselves. We have come to agree on the things that truly matter which is really all anyone can ask. I love that one’s spouse can be like a mirror. When marital discord arises you can be sure that such discord is revealing your worst traits which is why it is so hard and why so many fail. We can’t stand to examine our flaws so closely. It places us outside our comfort zone. It stretches us in ways we don’t want to be stretched. But after the dust settles and you come to the top of the love roller-coaster, you look in your spousal mirror, in love once more, and realize that you have improved. You are a better person, and all because you’ve had a mirror to help you see yourself as you really are.

  3. Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family
    on August 31, 2012 at 12:18 pm said:

    What a fantastic trip and such beautiful pictures. Congratulations on 8 years and may you 8 more many times over.
    I am married and I think what makes things run smoothly for us is our faith and trust in God.
    We talk a lot and we share (without being judgemental…albeit sometimes sarcastic).
    Overall life is good and we only have one person to thank for that and He is the reason we were brought together.
    May the remaining 95 days seem short and may Joseph have a safe trip home from wherever it is he has ventured.

  4. Sabrina
    on August 31, 2012 at 11:29 am said:

    Looks like the perfect way to celebrate your 8th anniversary. Our 8th was a few months ago, and I can honestly say I don’t remember what we did, probably just dinner and a movie. This would be much more memorable! I agree that being able to talk with your spouse is such an incredible thing. That is what most of our dates were too. We were too poor to do anything else anyway!

  5. lfwfv
    on August 31, 2012 at 9:56 am said:

    Loved this beautiful post.

    I love being married as well. No, it’s not always perfect, but i love it for a lot of the same reasons you do. We love each other, but also like each other. I agree that i just love being around my husband. I like spending time near him. We also talk a lot, and we hike a lot!

    One thing i love doing is cuddling up with him and watching thinking-TV programs, like documentaries. We both like watching meaningful programs (we don’t have cable, just netflix, so we can really pick and choose nice stuff to watch). We will frequently pause the documentaries we watch and then talk about what we’re watching, or ask one another questions about it. I love that he’s smart and knowledgeable and has opinions.

  6. Caralyn @ glutenfreehappytummy
    on August 30, 2012 at 8:52 pm said:

    Congratulations! That’s so awesome:) THanks for the great tips:) beautiful post!

  7. Ricki
    on August 30, 2012 at 8:30 pm said:

    Congratulations on your eight years together! It sounds like you are a wonderful team. 🙂 I agree that liking your partner–in addition to loving her/him–is essential to a strong, long-lasting relationship. I could never have guessed when my honey and I first got together that we’d still be here 15 years later! And still, after 15 years, he is the person I most enjoy spending time with. Sounds like you will have some more time for reflection. . . hope you do enjoy some of the time on your own!