In a Rut? Spice It Up.

His alarm goes off, I roll over. He gets in the shower. I get breakfast. He wakes the kids. I get them ready for school. He leaves for work. The kids come home. He comes home.  We go to a ballgame, or we don’t.  Suppertime.  Bath time.  He prays with the kids.  We tuck them in.  I work at the computer.  He watches tv or plays a wii game.  I take a bath.  We go to bed.

The rut of the day to day is there for survival.  It’s not a bad thing to have the security of knowing what comes next, and who’s in charge.  It’s perfectly fine to do the same thing over and over if it’s working well for you!

If it’s not working for you, though?  Or even if it is, but you’d like to inject a little spontaneous fun into your fine marriage, there are simple things you can do to spice up that delightful routine.

Every schedule and situation is different.  I’m in the unique position of living pretty much across the street from where my husband works, and being home most every day.  With his schedule and day to day location, what works for us may or may not work for you.  Use these ideas (some of which I do, and some of which I should!) as a springboard for your own creativity.

Oh, and ladies.  I know some of you out there are thinking “What in the world?  Amy thinks I should do all this when my husband won’t notice, won’t care, and won’t reciprocate?”  Well, I can’t help you there.  I do know, though, that with my own marriage, regardless of what my husband’s doing, if I put in 100%, he always ups the ante.  😉

The Morning Rut

  • Sneak out of bed while he’s in the shower and warm up a towel for him in the dryer.  Better yet, sneak out of bed and join him!  “Water Conservation” (Did I just say that?!)
  • Enjoy breakfast together before waking the children.
  • Slip a love note into his briefcase or pants pocket.
  • Pucker up for that goodbye peck.  Linger a little!
  • Smile.  Get your day started without the grump.

The Daytime Rut

  • Send a quick email, just because.  I love these one-liners!
  • Surprise him during the day with a cold drink.  (My favorite is to walk to school with a homemade Frappé during lunch break.  Makes his students jealous.  Makes him smile.)
  • Hold off on the litany of “what went wrong today” when he walks in the door.  That’s no way to be greeted.

The Evening Rut

  • Take over one of his responsibilities, so he can “veg out” a while.
  • Get off the blasted computer!  (Totally talking to myself here.)  Put the smart phone away!  Even one or two nights a week is better than nothing.
  • Take turns giving massages during your favorite tv shows.
  • Attempt to go to bed before your eyes glaze over in front of the tv and you pass out on the couch.
  • Be the instigator.  Of good things. 

While The Rut is fine and good and necessary, spicing up the routine every once in a while may take your marriage from fine to fabulous! 

What rut-busting ideas work for your marriage?

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  1. Every time I read about you running a drink over to your hubby, it makes me smile. 🙂 The biggest thing that has made a change in our evening “rut” has been making the decision to be intentional. I purposefully shut the computer, light a candle, curl up with him. No more mindless screen-staring. I can’t even begin to tell you how much more amazing our evenings are together now. It’s shocking that it was that simple…

  2. Such good reminders and ideas . . ., thanks Amy!
    Can’t wait for mine to get home from a business trip.
    BTW, I recently learned how to text (so behind the times, I know) and I have totally enjoyed sending and receiving these with my sweetness. 🙂

    • My husband doesn’t even carry a cell phone, LOL. I don’t text, either, so we rely on email. Just don’t want you to feel too far behind the times. 🙂

  3. Thanks for these!

    I have found that my husband appreciates when I thank him for being such a hard worker and providing for us. I try to do this regularly as I can tell it means a lot to him!

    Take care!

  4. My husband works in a different district than where we live, so he has a different schedule than the kids. Sometimes he has a day off that they don’t have. He can sometimes sneak out of work early giving us 30 or 40 minutes alone before the kids get home from school. Yep, I love it when he comes home early. Especially when he comes home early just to be with me. Why wait until bed time? Blushing hard here!

  5. love this – just what i needed today. i was starting to see a “rut” in my future! so i took a preventative measure & texted one of those 1-liners to my man 🙂

  6. The past couple of weeks I have been upset with my spouse. I attempted to try to talk to him last night about my feelings but couldn’t find the words. You have described it perfectly. We are in a rut. Everyday it is the same thing, the same routine. I am bored, kind of feeling taken for granted and just plain sad. I needed to read this today. 🙂 I plan to start practicing a few of your tips.

    Today I will surprise the spouse and take lunch to him. 🙂 Thanks for the tips!

    • That’s so hard, Cindy. I hope the little things will add up to big things and your relationship will be “new” again soon!

    • Cindy I have days like that and it is so hard to continue to be nice to my spouse when I feel like nothing I do matters and every thing is always the same. Ugh! I hope your gesture works!

  7. We’ve been shutting down the computer once the kids are in bed. We’ve found a couple of great two player games and we’re enjoying going to bed a little earlier 😉

  8. Your daily routine sounds a lot like ours. I am going to give your ideas a try. Thanks!

  9. Last night we played a card game (hand and foot) for a date at home after the children were in bed. It was simple, and fun.

  10. Oh no, two-person showers DO NOT conserve water! They use up ALL the hot water!

    This year one of my goals is to exercise with my husband once a week, usually on Sunday afternoons. This is not normal for us, believe me. But last week we threw the frisbee around for half an hour; another time we went skating. He wants to teach me to play tennis. Getting out of the rut has been so much fun, I’m actually starting to look forward to those exercise dates.

    • Ha! That’s the NIGHT-time showers that use up all the water. Morning showers are faster. (in theory – ha!)

      Exercising together is a GREAT idea!

  11. Kristen Trappett says:

    i am doing something like this. I decided to do the 14 days of Valentine’s, with small notes and silly treats. I have all 14 planned hopefully I can pull them all off, but day two and I am having a blast!!

  12. You are so right! I like your suggestions! I’ve been feeling more distance than usual, just because of schedules and conferences and the like, so this week, I’ve been getting up early to make him breakfast….it’s not much, but it gives us just a few minutes that we wouldn’t have had if he’d skipped out for breakfast on his own….

  13. Love the pointed list, Amy! And it’s all so doable — love it. I think the biggest thing for me has been realizing what he finds important. Writing him a note and propping it up by his clothes? — didn’t even get a thankyou. However, when he comes home and there’s a home cooked meal and I actually make an effort to listen… He can’t thank me enough.

    • christine says:

      The love languages you hear about; it’s not unusual that the way one person shows love is not what they want to see. It sure makes things trickier until you figure it out! 🙂

    • I have a hard time remembering that what’s important to HIM may not be the same thing that’s important to ME.

    • Kristen Trappett says:

      You should take the test to find out what your love language is, there are 5. Just google Love Language and a free on line survey like test should come up, my husband and I did this, it was interesting to see where we both were and the differences we had. Now that I know his I like to angle towards his language more.

  14. Excellent post! I would say remember your manners, i.e. please, thank you, excuse me. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that when you’re with the same person a lot. Sincere compliments go a long way too.

  15. I love this! I’ve keep it “unread” at the top of my Google reader so I see it often to remind me to do something nice for the hubby. We have a 2.5 month old (and 3 yr old) and the marriage has definitely been put on the back burner since we’re just in survival mode right now. I’m hoping that changes soon. 🙂


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