Have kids, will date: 7 creative date ideas to keep your post-kids marriage alive

While our children have brought so much joy and fulfillment into our lives, getting out on dates takes a lot more effort and planning than it used to. (Taylor Ann Photography)
While our children have brought so much joy and fulfillment into our lives, getting out on dates takes a lot more effort and planning than it used to. (Taylor Ann Photography)

 

My husband and I were married for three and a half years before kids came into the picture. While our children have brought so much joy and fulfillment into our lives, getting out on dates takes a lot more effort and planning than it used to.Read More

The evolution of a marriage

Ali Middleton Photo
Ali Middleton Photo

My husband and I just celebrated our 10-year anniversary, so I’ve been thinking a lot about how our relationship has changed over the years.

Ours started out as a happy-go-lucky, smooth-sailing thing of freshly-returned-LDS-missionary-boy-meets-girl bliss. We dated for a year, then continued dating, traveling, and enjoying life as a married couple for three and a half incredible years before we had our first child.

Having that first baby and dealing with some emotions and hard things we had never faced before taught us how important it was to communicate openly with each other. As I got wrapped up (maybe a little too much) in the care of this tiny human that had entered our lives and tried to adjust to the joyful but overwhelming task of being a mother and this baby’s sole source of nourishment, Clay silently worried I maybe didn’t love him quite as much anymore. It breaks my heart to look back on that time and think of how insecure he felt without me even knowing it. But after we survived the first year of parenthood (a.k.a sleep deprivation) and started getting the hang of both being parents and being in a marriage, we grew closer and our communication became more open.

Welcoming baby number two was easier on our relationship because we had been through it before, but this baby gave us a serious run for our money. Cept we didn’t get paid one darn cent. Parents should get paid. At least for the first year. And if anyone says the first year of having a new baby is not freaking hard, I don’t understand you. But maybe you have magical powers or something. Anyway, our boy cried a lot more and slept a LOT less than our first one. And it was tough. But, we were communicating as a couple. We were okay.

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A love story

Kim and Clay
A 100-year-old photo from our engagement session

 

As I mentioned in this post, my husband and I just celebrated our 10-year anniversary, and I’m sharing the story of how I fell in love with him.

Clay and I met just a couple of weeks after a four-year, serious relationship ended with my Australian boyfriend, Adam. Adam and I went to high school together in Brisbane and dated from our junior year until after I had moved back to America for college and did the long, long distance relationship thing for over a year. We crossed the ocean to visit each other a few times, but in the end, the strain was too much and we agreed it was time to give other relationships a try.

I didn’t expect that other relationship to come about so soon. But about two weeks later, I was in my college apartment with my best friend, Karlee, and her phone rang while she was in the bathroom. I answered it for her and it was Clay, the boy I had known of because of mutual friends, but I didn’t know him personally. For some reason, I ended up inviting him to a party I was having at my parents, who were out of town. He came, backed up by a group of five of his close friends. At the end of the night, I gave a hug to each of his friends, and Clay was last in line. We talked about how he was going down to BYU to play soccer and go to college soon and I would be going there too . . . I felt like he was trying to get at something, like my phone number, so I helped him out a bit with a “We should hang out!” We exchanged the numbers to our Nokia bricks. That’s how old we are.

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