10 Years and 10 Lessons | Hampton Roads Family Photographer

Hampton Roads Family Photographer

Time flies when you're having fun!

Today is my ten-year wedding anniversary (June brides, hey!) and I cannot believe it's already been a decade. A DECADE. I am grateful beyond words for my best friend, Matt, and the life we share. To celebrate, my pal Elizabeth Henson Photos captured some sweet images for us last week. The ever lovely and talented, Dhalia Edwards, did my makeup (turns out I've never worn false lashes!) and it was really fun to spoil ourselves. We were even able to grab dinner after and it was awesome just to enjoy one another's company without cutting up chicken nuggets and cleaning up spilled milk. I love our little humans, but an uninterrupted dinner is such a treat!

I'm someone who LOVES hearing about love stories. Real love stories. Not just boy meets girl but boy and girl are married for 25+ years and overcome obstacles and put in the work that marriage really is. I especially love when a couple has been married for 40 or 50 years... wow, what an incredible history. I want to just sit at their feet and soak up all that knowledge.

Now I don't consider myself a marriage expert at ALL, but I couldn't resist sharing ten lessons I've picked up over the past ten years. I even got some input from the hubs too, I loved his additions. We certainly don't always get it right, but the beauty is in the trying. Because when you walk down the aisle at 23-years-old, you have a LOT of learning to do!

  1. Communication is King - Avoid being passing ships. Talk face-to-face as often as you can.
  2. Prioritize Date Nights - We do a monthly babysitting swap with a dear friend and it has made all the difference. If you don't have family local, swap with a friend and cut down on the cost for a babysitter. It's worth it!
  3. Make Solo Time - Don't be afraid to have time apart. Absence can make the heart grow fonder (and more patient!).
  4. Your Differences Count - It's fine to have totally different interests, behaviors, passions and jobs. I would be seriously bored if I was married to another ENFP photographer/word nerd/yogi. Instead, I'm always challenged by my INTJ physical therapist/associate professor/woodworker/gym-er. ;)
  5. Honor the Other - Because I am an extrovert who is home for most of the day with two young kids, I crave time with my girlfriends. I book it on the schedule and Matt honors me by picking up the home duties so I can enjoy my time. In return, if he has a project or something he wants to build, I try to give him space and time to get it done.
  6. Boundaries in Place- You're a family. Yes, your friends, co-workers and other family members matter and have opinions. But make no apologies for putting any relationship boundaries in place that need to be there. I think this has helped us grow closer as a couple.
  7. It Doesn't Really Matter - Whatever small tiffs or disagreements come up... they don't matter that much. Forgive quickly and completely. And then move on with the day!
  8. Shared Faith and Values- Whatever you believe in, being on the same page spiritually will only benefit you and your family.
  9. Rock the Romance - You are not roommates. Don't act like it. #enoughsaid
  10. Love is a Choice - It really is. Choosing to love someone past the honeymoon phase is a commitment and a decision. It is not your spouse's job to make your life perfect. Ask how you can make their day better and then do the work. Marriage is selflessness in daily action.

If you haven't had photos of you and your other half since your wedding day, can I just encourage you to do so? It makes my heart happy that my girls will have these images of us forever. I know I love seeing photos of my parents together.

Here are a few favorites from our time with Liz :)

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Happy Anniversary to my love!

Best,

Erin