Friday Favorites: Marriage

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Teej and I got married on June 25th of last year, so we’ve now been married for close to 8 months – whoa. Seriously, time flies! I literally feel like we just got married!! But I guess that’s a good sign since time flies when you’re having fun. 🙂

love ‘n’ labels is definitely a primary place for me to connect with other people in the fashion industry and for me to share the current fashion trends with my readers, however, y’all know that I love sharing bits and pieces of my everyday life on here as well – hence why LNL is a fashion and lifestyle blog. If I’m going to do this, I want to be able to share who I really am with you guys – the crazy, messy parts and the fun, pretty parts, lol!

If you are newly married, then you have probably gotten the same question that we have over and over – “How’s married life?!”. (And then of course, the question to follow that is: “When are you having kids?”) .. If you aren’t yet married, then just wait … your time is coming, girlfriend!! Although some people tend to get slightly annoyed with these questions, Teej and I don’t mind it at all – no matter how many times people ask us. To us, we are still so thrilled to be husband and wife – newlyweds – in the honeymoon stage. To be honest, I see us still being happy to answer this question even 5, 10, 25, 50 years from now. And for the kids part of the question, we just get really excited and giddy when people ask us about that. Of course, most people ask us about kids assuming that we are planning on getting pregnant tomorrow. And we are both HUGE kid-lovers. Both of us have a very special place in our hearts for the younger generations, and I know that Teej will truly be the very best Daddy in the whole world. But, we are not trying to rush into anything. We are still newlyweds and want to take this special time for ourselves before we think about adding little baby Baxters into our everyday lives. Now with that said … we really do pray and talk and think about those future little nuggets quite frequently, but we just want to make sure that we are ready and fully capable of being the best parents possible before we grow our family. For right now, we are just genuinely enjoying being married. 🙂

 Marriage is truly the best thing to ever happen to me. It’s my most favorite, challenging, rewarding, incredible role that I’ve ever had. So, without further ado, here I am to answer your questions of “how married life is going”:

Marriage is FUN.

If you asked me the question of ‘how’s married life’ over the past few months, I’ve probably replied with the quick, short answer of ‘SO fun!!’.. which it is just that. Every aspect of this journey has ultimately been a complete blast. TJ keeps life so fun and interesting! He’s truly the best husband that I could have ever hoped for – and I promise I’m not just saying that. He’s perfect for the person that I am. I’m weird, silly, goofy, sassy (like x10), an extreme shopaholic, a huge girly girl, one who needs me-time, and most of all, a person who loves family and loves expressing my love to others – especially to him. He accepts me just the way I am. He’s the person that I feel like I can be my complete weird and silly self around. He’s always up for having fun and being adventurous with me. I mean, the other night we were on the way home from our Valentine’s date, and we were karaoke-ing ‘Say My Name’ by Destiny’s Child in the car, and I definitely made a COMPLETE fool of myself, but having him there beside me to laugh with made it even funnier and oh so special. It was probably one of those ‘you had to be there moments’, but all in all, my favorite thing to do is laugh. Like a genuine, gut-wrenching laugh. I’m not one of those people who will hardcore giggle at every single thing a person says, but when I do start laughing at something, you’ll know it’s for real. Like tears come out of my eyes! TJ’s one of the only people in my life that can make me laugh like this, which makes every single day of marriage even more fun!

Marriage is family.

I’ve always heard from people that you marry the person – not the family … well, I don’t really believe that. At all, actually. You actually do marry into that family, and it’s an amazing thing! Coming from such a close-knit fam, I think Teej knew from very early on in our relationship that my family was like a package deal with me. And since being married, TJ has grown way closer to my family, and I’ve also gotten closer to his. He has been there with my family through some very difficult times, the most amazing times, and throughout the everyday events since we live right beside most of my family. Even with his fam living further away, we’ve managed to spend more quality time with them since we got married, which we both cherish and love! Being a family oriented person, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

 Marriage is having a caretaker.

Growing up, my parents would always stay up in the middle of the night with me if I was sick or hurting. They would comfort me in the best way that they knew how, and they would say that they wish they could take my sickness away. They were willing to give the illness or the pain to themselves, just so that I wouldn’t have to go through it. I never fully understood it (I just narrowed it down to them loving me that much!), and I never thought that I would ever understand it until I had kids of my own someday. But, anytime TJ has ever been really sick, I’ve truly felt like I would feel better about the situation if I could just have the illness and not him. I absolutely DESPISE seeing someone that I love that much in any sort of pain. And I think he’s the same way … about two years ago, I had a big scare with my health that was definitely an eye opener for my family and me. At the time, TJ and I were only an engaged couple, but he was there at the hospital with me in the ICU anytime that they would allow visitors. He wouldn’t leave my side. As challenging & as scary as that time was for our family, I feel like it really prepared us for the future. Now, anytime I am sick, the poor guy is constantly checking on me to make sure that I am completely taken care of. And thinking of my future daughter one day, this is exactly what I would hope her husband would do to take care of her!

Marriage is work.

You could ask any person who knows TJ and I right this instant and after almost 5 years of dating, they would tell you that we’ve never ‘taken a break’, we’ve never ‘had a huge fight’, and we’ve never had something happen in our relationship that has given us the possibility of giving up on each other. We learned at a very early stage in our relationship that both of us were in it for the long run, and we began to talk about a lifelong commitment looong before we even got engaged. Being open about this whole marriage thing always helped us see the long-term picture in our minds. I had prayed for YEARS before I even met TJ that God would let me know for sure when I met my husband. And I have no doubt that I knew for a fact he was the one after just a couple of months together.

With all of that said … No, we never fought. No, we weren’t the couple to break up and make up 24/7. No, we didn’t have another future person in our minds. But, since marriage & actually living with someone is different than just dating someone, we have learned to pick our battles.

All of this that I just said can make a couple seem ‘perfect’ – and I promise you, there’s no such thing. As great as any couple makes their relationship look on the outside, I promise that it is, in fact, not always perfect behind the scenes. Which is okay. I feel like people think there is a such thing as an A+ relationship out there, and every relationship is different, but one thing that they all have in common is that none of them are 110% perfect all the time. Marriage has taught me to pick my battles – and him too. Marriage is work. And everyone told us that it would be before we got married, so we were prepared! Laundry has to be done for two people. Dinner proportions have to be cooked for two people – or in my case, like 3-4 people if you know my hubby 😉. Poor TJ’s patience has had to have grown by 90% because he’s had to wait on me over the years. No matter how hard I try, I always seem to be running late when we are going somewhere important – and Teej hates being late. It’s not always full of those moments that give you crazy butterflies, because life happens. Every single second isn’t going to be those happy, amazing moments that we post about on social media … we’re just 2 real people learning something new everyday about this incredible thing called marriage. And despite all of the compromises, it’s pretty freakin’ amazing to say the least!! If you really love that person with everything inside of you, all you really want is for them to be happy, and you’d give up your entire world for that special person! One of the greatest lessons I’ve learned is that two of the most important things to remember is to always be kind & respectful to one another! Marriage may be work from time to time, but the moments that take your breath away and the love that grows stronger everyday totally outweighs everything else!

Marriage is living with your very best friend.

It’s constantly one big slumber party! First and foremost, who wouldn’t love a slumber party everyday of the week?? Most evenings, I have dinner ready for us (unless it’s on the grill – Teej does the grilling!), and then we eat together while catching up and laughing about stuff that happened throughout the day. Some days, we have to get right back to work on our computers after dinner because we both never really stop. At times that can get exhausting, but it makes our weekly date nights even more cherished! (Yes – weekly dates nights are a top priority for us!!)

We understand each other. We get it if the other person has to work on something at the house even after a long day of work. Really, I think we both just know that one day it will pay off in a very big way.

We dance in the kitchen and make jokes at each other (constantly) – aka flirting. I don’t think we’ll ever let that piece of us die! TJ is such a sarcastic joker that I can always rely on him to make me laugh at something just when I need it. We have movie nights all the time (watching movies is our fave!!). We could sit for hours and watch cool Youtube videos – truth be told, I think we both just get really inspired by some of the people that we see on there. On our one free day of the month (since we don’t have much free time in our schedules), we are totally content with staying at home with each other and not even leaving the house all day. We aren’t the type that has to be out doing something 24/7 – anywhere we can just be together, is ultimately the only place we need to be! One of my personal favorites is when we have time to sit in our hot tub because that usually consists of having a glass of wine over some really good conversation about our future. These talks make us both so excited for all that’s to come! I always knew that Teej was my very best friend even before I married him, but after living together and being married for 8 months, I have learned sooo many more things about him and our relationship. I could really never put it all into words.

Marriage is truly a beautiful thing, and I wouldn’t trade any single part of it for the world! Thank you all so much for your love and support, and I hope you all have a fab weekened!

xo, P

**Wedding photos courtesy of Katherine Birkbeck Photography.

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