Wednesday, July 23, 2014

our secret to a happy marriage (that we've learned after 11 years)

Our 11th wedding anniversary was on June 21. 11 years! It feels longer, but in a good way. It probably comes as no surprise that I'm blogging about it a month later. Procrastination takes time (;

We celebrated with a chill "Dajo & Scott day." We visited the Old Strathcona Farmer's Market and picked up Frickin' Delights Donuts (a must! see picture below), took Lucy on a long walk in the river valley and strolled down Whyte Ave. window shopping. While on Whyte Ave. we passed by Meat, a bbq joint opened by the owners of the Next Act Pub. It looked like our kind of place so we immediately cancelled our reservations at our go-to fancy restaurant and went there instead. I'm so glad we did. The drinks were strong and the garlic fries, house-made pickles and fried chicken really hit the spot. Don't get me wrong, dressing up and having a night out on the town is great, but anniversaries don't have to include that to be wonderful. Better to let go of the notion of anniversary perfection and instead live in the moment. Spontaneity has a tendency to bring its friend "fun" along for the ride. Who doesn't love fun or pickles?!

photo 1

Speaking of fun times, we visited Charleston for our anniversary last year and shared Our 10 for a Happy Marriage. It was a popular post (thanks for reading, kids!) so here's this year's marriage tip:

Scott and I have made it a habit to greet one another at the door after coming home from work (or running errands, etc). Those first few moments spent together set a positive tone for the evening. So if he's downstairs watching tv, he gets up and makes his way to the front door. And vice versa. It's one of the things I look most forward to at the end of a long day. Knowing that no matter what kind of day I've had, a friendly loving face is going to plant a big one on me and hug me as soon as I walk in the door (full disclosure: Lucy also plants big ones on me). This simple gesture also tells your partner you value them and they're more important than anything you might be doing at that moment (um, like scrolling through your IG or Facebook feed).

photo 2

Just last week, I came home ragged and annoyed from my commute. It had taken me over an hour to get home (dang summer construction!) and I took my frustration out on Scott soon after he greeted me at the door. I quickly realized I was being a brat, so I left the house and closed the door behind me. I stood there for a few minutes and then knocked a couple of times. Scott opened the door and I asked, "Hi, can we start again?" And we did.

Try it. It's goofy and your partner may think you've lost your marbles, but I can guarantee from personal experience that it'll clear the air and probably make you both laugh.

I guess that's actually two tips. Let me know if you end up trying either of them! What little secrets and tips do you have for relationships? I'd love to hear.

Hope you're having a great week!

P.S. Yup, that's the outfit from my last post.


  1. Oh this is such a good reminder. I love that you blog about these things so I don't get so caught up in whatever silly task I am doing and miss the important stuff. Happy anniversary! To man more....

  2. I love this! Congratulations on 11 years - that's amazing :) I completely agree about greeting each other at the door and that's a rule in our household too! Thanks for sharing XO, D

  3. Kevin and I greet each other at the door too! It's such a simple thing, but I agree that it shows your partner that you value them. I especially love it when Kevin comes running around the corner and lays a big kiss on me :) Granted, we've only been married for a year (together for almost 7), but I hope it's something we always make time to do.

    Happy Anniversary Scott and Dajana!!

  4. Aw, I love that!!! Here's to another 11 amazing years :)

  5. Ha- sweet story! I love that you changed your anniversary dinner plans for what felt right in the moment. my boy and I have always been much more successful at the low-key moments of lovin' and happiness...(just celebrated our 21st anniversary-ish with a cone at McDonalds...!)
    You guys are beautiful and funny and wonderful!

  6. Happy Anniversary! I love this! I'm so bad for doing the opposite, especially if I'm stuck on the couch nursing or as you say, scrolling thru my IG feed ;) I'm going to start implementing the greeting at the door asap.

  7. Congrats on 11 years! My big thing in my relationship (15 years as of yesterday) is to not sweat the little things. Yes, sometimes they are very annoying, but in the big picture, they just don't matter that much.

  8. Words of wisdom...thanks for opening your hearts and lives to those of us who love you!

  9. We greet each other at the door as well! Only been married a couple of years, but I agree that it's a nice practice. I will definitely have to remember to "leave" and come back when I'm being a terrible brat. My husband is guaranteed to burst out laughing, lol :-D

  10. Awww! I love how you quickly realized your mistake and asked Scott if you could start again. One of the few known tips of a happy marriage is to regularly sympathize with your partner's feelings. Let's be honest, every couple fights, and mean words are easily thrown, but to quickly lower down your pride once you realize your mistake is one of the best ways to negate a dying flame. Sorry doesn't have to be the hardest word, right? All the best wishes! :)

    Brandi Kennedy @ Restoration Counseling

  11. What a great couple!! Well no one can deny this fact that after few years of marriage we understand our partner very well. I got married few years back in event venues Seattle, and after that my life journey begins. My wife really appreciate being with me.


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