DSC_0085Advice is always something that comes along with planning a wedding. Among the best advice I received regarded our honeymoon plans. While Hubbs and I knew our desired location, Maui was our top choice, we weren’t sure of anything else. Our initial plan was to jump on a plane and get going on our marriage the morning after the Big Day. I mean, isn’t that what most everyone does? Why wait?

One of my matrons (yep, I had 3 matrons in my wedding!) gave me one of the best gifts to begin my marriage. Time. Did she actually give me time? No, but she suggested it, strongly, and 6 years later, I am still glad I listened to that advice and heeded it.

Rather than whisking off into the sunset with my groom of a few hours, only to be stuck in an airport, or a train station, or – even worse – a car, my matron Kandi suggested we stay put for 2 nights.

That first full day of newly wedded bliss began with a delicious breakfast enjoyed in our bathrobes while watching the drizzling rain off our hotel balcony. That first day of staying put enabled us to get some seriously much-needed rest before embarking on our honeymoon trip. My wonderful matrons had gathered all of the cards that weren’t attached to a gift so we could open those up that first day and take whatever cash, checks or gift cards that were given and use them on our honeymoon. And Kandi came to the hotel and gathered up the tuxedo, the bridal gown, and other items that needed to remain in town.

Hubbs and I enjoyed a tandem massage (which I highly recommend) and had a quiet dinner at the hotel restaurant that first day. We got to bed at a decent hour and left for the airport on our second full day of marriage, fully rested.

And while all of that was great, the reason the advice still means so much to me today is because I had a headache the entire time that first day. I still enjoyed the massage. I still enjoyed the dinner. But I really didn’t feel like I was missing out on much or having to sacrifice because we had given ourselves that window of time to regroup, recharge, rest up.

Now, 6 years later, Hubbs and I still find it important, if not crucial, to regroup, recharge, and rest up. Problem is, we haven’t been very good at heeding the advice of taking time for us since our firstborn came along over 4 years ago.  We’ve had job changes, house changes, and a relocation back to California. Then our second was born 18 months ago. In all of that, we have taken one weekend vacation that was just Hubbs and I. Napa was beautiful and we attended a marriage conference during that time. But since that was the first and only time we’ve taken a good chunk of time for ourselves, it really only made a dent in the amount of “recharging” that we both have desperately needed.

Over this past summer I actually stopped for a moment to think about our anniversary coming up in November. We had not had one single night away from our boys in over a year and I didn’t want another year to pass without Hubbs and I “getting away from it all.”

Since Hubbs had a week of furlough over the Thanksgiving holiday, I asked my in-laws if they wouldn’t mind caring for the boys while we took off for a few days. Thankfully they agreed that was a good idea. And even more thankfully, we took the time to make the reservations needed for a grand getaway.

4928188483_11b7648fedOnce again, I can tell you that time is still one of the best gifts I have ever received. This time around the gift of time was from my wonderful in-laws. And I do mean wonderful in all sincerity.

Avila Beach was our destination. It was true “anniversary bliss.” And yes, I had a headache the first evening of our getaway. Once again, we were both thankful for 2 nights of rest!