In his book, Fun Loving You, Ted Cunningham writes about how married couples should aim to have a daily getaway, a weekly getaway (date night), and an annual getaway.
- The daily getaway is quality time spent in and around your home.
- A weekly getaway is spent away from your home but in town (otherwise known as a date!). (If you have kids, this can also happen at home after you put them to bed. You can have a creative weekly getaway in your own home).
- The annual getaway is quality time spent out of town.
Cunningham writes how prioritizing and planning all three transform a marriage. I highly recommend this book, and in fact, will give away a copy to a lucky prize winner! See below for details.
What is an Annual Getaway?
Kristen and I did our last annual getaway together as a couple a few weeks ago. We went to Boston for four days and had an amazing time. My mother-in-law came to town to watch our boys, and we had a blast celebrating the fact that I turned in the first draft of the manuscript for my book.
In 2015, I shared four reasons why you and your spouse need to get away. Today I share four more reasons why I’m glad we got away (and why you should as well).
1. To explore other parts of the country and world.
We have grown to love our hometown of Dallas, but I gain a great appreciation for God’s creativity and vastness when I get outside of Dallas. I see these things they call hills, mountains, and oceans. Dallas is FLAT and not pretty. The people are amazing; the scenery is not. Getting outside of Dallas allows us to appreciate a different part of the country and different aspects of His creation.
2. To get some extended time together to talk and catch up.
Sometimes life back home is one to-do-list conversation after another. Kristen tells me about all the kid’s activities. I tell her about all that happened at work. We then tell each other about all the things we need to do and places we need to go. We make sure we know who’s dropping off which kid when and where. And we make sure we don’t leave any kids behind. We’ve done it one time before. Don’t judge me.
When we get extended time away, we get to talk about hopes and dreams. We take long walks and hold hands and talk about everything and also talk about nothing. It’s awesome.
In Boston, we ate donuts and drank coffee out together at real places (i.e., not at IHOP – yuck). We walked the Freedom Trail from early morning until late evening. I think we walked 12.5 miles that day!
Last year we went away to San Diego. One day we rented bikes and cruised around Coronado Island together. We biked, parked our bikes, sat on a bench and read for 30 minutes. We’re easy to please, and there is something so sweet about enjoying simple pleasures like biking, hiking, and reading together.
4. We’re reminded this isn’t real life, and a marriage isn’t built on one annual getaway together.
For four days we leave our responsibilities behind. We leave behind our jobs, bills, and house chores. At the same time, we leave some of life’s greatest gifts behind. Our kids were at our home (with my incredible mother-in-law), our jobs which provide still go on, and we leave behind friends and our home we love. We realize real life doesn’t consist of sleeping in, eating out, and biking and hiking all day every day. Realizing this makes me do two things:
- Thank God for the gifts in our lives and for the time away.
- Remind me that we have to work hard every day in our marriage and parenting so that we can enjoy extended time away together. If we didn’t do the hard work at home, we would never have the money to get away or the relationship to build upon while away.
Now you have eight reasons to get away with your spouse on an annual basis (Click here to read Part One). It’s time to get super practical for a minute:
- When can you and your spouse get away?
- Where do you want to go?
- If you have kids, who can watch your kids?
- Need some suggestions? Leave a comment below or make some suggestions!
- What is your favorite place you’ve been for an annual getaway? Leave a comment below, and let us know where you love to go and why. I’ll pick a prize winner of the book Fun Loving You from out of the comments/suggestions on Facebook, Instagram, and below.
- Check out this post by my friends at Fierce Marriage. In this post, Ryan & Selena share 7 Reasons Why ‘Getting Away’ is Good For Your Marriage.