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  • Pam Smithgall

Staying In Love!

I’m a big fan of a great marriage. This world is so tricky. I say be very careful who you pick to marry! When a man and woman find a great match it is truly a magical thing!

As a travel professional, I love to help other couples celebrate those marriages and develop that commitment, enrich their relationships, and make absolutely sure they do not grow apart! I know, sadly, that there are relationships that break and maybe just cannot be fixed, but I’m talking about investing in ways to keep the bond of love alive!

When my husband and I were dating, we loved to get away to a great movie, and then often get a bite afterward, to analyze the storyline and see what the other person may have seen that one of us had missed. After we were married, and still to this day, we try to make time to do the same kinds of things that we really enjoyed when we were just dating.

Life can get so ridiculously busy that couples sometimes put their relationships behind the needs of the children, working on the house, or being part of social activities, and they forget about the person they chose to share their lives with. If we picked that person as the one we can’t live without, then why are we building a life without them at the center?

I love putting together trips for couples and highly recommend going away for 5 - 7 days at least once a year. No kids, no dogs, no in-laws or friends traveling with you. Go somewhere that you will both enjoy, and do things that will be new discoveries for both of you.

If you can go away, think about escaping to a lovely island with a high quality all-inclusive couples-only resort. Going to a couples resort means you can enjoy time alone together, and time interacting with some other couples you may meet there, spending time listening to music on the beach, playing pool, or just friendly chit chat on the beach. There are active times where the resort may have a fun, friendly competition around the pool, or a work out class, that contribute to your good health as well.

One great thing about a very well run all-inclusive resort is that once you’ve paid for your trip, you are done spending money. This can make your getaway much more relaxing, since you won’t worry about how much that appetizer or glass of wine is costing you!

I recommend resting after arrival at your resort. The next day is a great time to have a pre-arranged couple’s massage to get your body and mind into relaxation mode. Then mid-way through the week, take a pre-arranged off-resort excursion to see a local attraction that is truly unique. Then toward the end of the week, we can plan a romantic surprise such as a candle light dinner for just the two of you, very different from your usual weekday dinner on the run. That is a good time to make some commitments, to think about ways to make your life more supportive of your relationship. Set a date for the next getaway for just the two of you.

I often run into couples who have been blessed with a long marriage. One of the things they do is commit to time spent with just the two of them and time for having some fun together. Imagine that! Having fun together just like when you were dating!

Children will grow up and go start their own families and lives, You should make sure your own marriage hasn’t been put on the back burner so that you don’t even know where to start when the nest is finally empty! Learn from those couples who have made it long term!

Don’t feel bad if you are not able to pull off a trip to a secluded island every year. Maybe every other year, just go spend the week at a nice hotel near an attraction or place you’d like to explore. Just make that commitment to get away with the one who makes your eyes sparkle!

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