It may be a magical time of year, but that doesn’t mean fires can’t burn out. While everyone is focused on decorating, planning feasts, wrapping presents, and other activities, romance can get pushed back. Relationships hit snags. Added stress causes issues we didn’t plan for.
Instead of waiting until someone burns the cookies, it’s more festive to remember the reason for the season before you get caught in the whirlwind. Family, love, and togetherness are the core values of the holidays. So here are some special ways to remain extra snuggly with the one you love as we close out the year.
1. Make Time To Be Alone Together
The calendar may be overflowing, but spending quality time together is more important during the holidays. Even just a couple of hours once a week will keep you connected.
Prioritizing your marriage makes the season brighter. Instead of feeling overworked and overtired, a simple date offers a break from the bustle to ease your mind and give you both a reprieve to actually stop and enjoy things. Hire a babysitter and go out, or stay in and set aside the evening to spend time together.
Turn toward each other when you speak.
Prioritizing your husband takes a conscious effort. Turn toward each other when you speak. Just looking deep into each other’s eyes makes all those Christmas love songs completely relevant and totally NOT cheesy. (Okay, maybe a little, but some rhetorical cheese is even good for the lactose intolerant.) This encourages both of you to get offline, avoid screens, and just BE together. That wholehearted bond is truly a gift.
It’s also incredibly sexy. Way sexier than your to-do list. The more you relax, the easier it is to offer each other physical intimacy to take the pressure off, and maybe try on that Mrs. Claus lingerie you’ve been hiding for just the right moment.
2. Let Family Traditions Bring You Closer
Whether stumbling onto the ice for a skate or painting the baby with icing, creating new traditions and sharing in the old brings couples closer. Now is the best time to break out all the Christmas clichés. Have fun with them!
Drive around looking at lights. Sing carols together. Dance to classic songs. Hold hands while you watch your favorite Christmas movies on the couch. Even just filling a pair of glasses with eggnog and toasting to your better half ups the holiday romance. The point is, don’t hide your love under all the boxes and tissue paper, bring it out front and center. Plus, it’s fun to gross out your kids (and sometimes your mother-in-law) with cute lovey-dovey displays.
All the little things matter. Best of all, they spark new traditions while enhancing time-honored ones.
3. Be Attentive To Each Other’s Needs
Sure, dates and sharing in traditions are helpful, but the most important aspect of keeping your husband engaged during the holidays is to be attentive. Consciously listen to him. Observe his behavior and respond to his bids for affection.
Check in with him. Maybe don’t ask how he’s doing if he stomps in after a long day of work – timing truly is everything – but take time each evening to check in with him. Ask him how he’s doing, mentally. Give him a back massage. You can even use time in the car to rub his leg and offer support.
The most important aspect of keeping your husband engaged during the holidays is to be attentive.
It’s just as important to not be afraid to use these moments to express yourself. If something’s been bothering you, calmly let it out. Be honest and open. Don’t expect your husband to read your mind. If you’re dealing with anxiety because your mom is demanding she bring her dog over for dinner (even though last year it knocked the tree down and ate your pie), speak up.
4. Stay Off the Phone and Social Media
We already know that phubbing (short for "phone snubbing") is a real phenomenon that can cause strife in your relationship. And the temptation to share every bit of your fun holiday with friends via social media can be very tempting. Or you may find yourself mindlessly scrolling in order to distract yourself from the stress and commitments of the holidays.
Either way, your husband deserves any attention you can spare, not your phone. As fun as it is to share your adventures with friends online, and catch up on what they've been up to, real life is more important than anything digital. You'll always remember a sweet moment shared in solitude with your husband; you won't remember that one pic your friend shared on her Hawaiian getaway.
5. Don't Overcommit Yourself
It's easy to fall into people-pleaser mode around the holidays and insist on doing and helping with everything. But remember that no one is focused on if the house is perfectly clean or if you made the fanciest dessert at the table. Instead of trying to do it all and making yourself frantic or exhausted in the process, choose what you'll invest your energy in wisely.
Instead of trying to do it all and making yourself frantic, choose what you'll invest your energy in wisely.
For example, if you're hosting, what can you ask others to help you with? Perhaps you can relinquish control of desserts and ask each member of the family to bring something to share. Or choose to go with simpler decorations instead of going all out. Your husband definitely won't care if you used the fancy candlesticks, but he will care if you're stressed out and snapping at him all day because you've overcommitted your time and are taking it out on him.
Plus, just because family is around doesn't mean there isn't time for you two to have special alone time. (Wink, wink.) So saving your energy during the day by being realistic about what you can do will leave you more relaxed and energetic enough to enjoy some sexier moments with your husband once the guests are gone and the kids are tucked in.
There are so many feelings we experience throughout the holidays, but the main one that should be amplified and shared is love. The man in your life is a big part of you. Don’t forget him during the rush and don’t let him forget you.
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