Friends. I cannot believe it. Jackson and I have been married for one year. Today, we are talking all about marriage.
Our wedding day was perfect. It really was, and there wasn’t one thing I would change about it. All of our favorite people from all parts of our lives were together in one place. You can learn about our story and engagement, here. But long story short, we were together for 8 1/2 years before our Wedding day. So you could say that we were really ready.
Even though we have been together for so long, we are still learning and growing each day. If I said that our marriage and life is perfect, I would be lying. We have hard days when our communication struggles or we just straight up get on each others nerves. Marriage is hard, but it is definitely worth every minute. I love creating our home together! We have literally grown up together.
Our first year went so fast. I am not sure if it was quarantine or actually owning a home and having some major responsibilities.. but it flew by. I literally cannot believe that it has already been a year. It is crazy to think how long it felt waiting to get married, and here we are, already completing year one of a hundred.
We have learned a lot in our first year, so today we wanted to share this with you, from both sides. Seven things that I have learned, and seven from Jackson. A few of them overlap, but I can’t wait to continue to do this post year after year!
14 Things We have Learned in Year One
- Communication is important: I always knew this but it is paramount to keeping a healthy relationship. Expressing to your partner how you feel can be a huge stress reliever. Being able to just listen when the other person is expressing how they feel, goes a long way. Jackson
- Communication, Communication, and Communication: Being together for 9 years, doesn’t mean that you have everything perfect. We work on our communication skills for our relationship everyday. Something I struggle with is not expressing myself in the moment, and keeping it in. Then when something little happens, I get upset easily because I had something else already bothering me. Keeping an open line of honest communication with no judgements is one of the keys to a successful marriage. Nikki
- My wife can actually cook: For the first 9 years of knowing each other we never had meals where we cooked for each other. Nikki is constantly trying to make new foods and she is actually a really good cook. I know that I am a picky eater so she always goes above and beyond on making sure she doesn’t put ingredients in a dish that I will not like. Jackson
- Make a list: Lists are my best friend. I learned quickly that if I just make Jackson a list with a due date, shiz will get done. But I also can’t expect that list to get done immediately, it will get done by the date. This opens up our line of communication between each other. I can’t expect Jackson to read my mind of what I want him to do. When I communicate my list with him, it is a win-win. Nikki
- Nikki is a great dog-mom: This is something I knew she was going to be good at, but when we got Casey three years ago, she lived with my parents. Nikki didn’t see her as much as I did. Once we got our house, Casey came to finally live with us. Over the past year, Casey has become so attached to Nikki. Sometimes I even get sad because she would rather lay with Nikki than me. Nikki is very protective of her and I know Casey is of her as well. Jackson
- Boys are messy: Okay, so yes, this one is kind of funny, but it is something I had to get used too. I never had a brother, thus never lived with a boy besides my dad. Just little things I had to get used too. It is funny because when I talk to my friends about their husbands, it is pretty much the same thing. All boys are pretty much the same when it comes to their cleanliness. Now, if we could just get them to put their dishes away. 🙂 Nikki
- It is okay to disagree: Over the years, I’ve learned that Nikki and I almost agree on everything, but every once in awhile we will not agree on something, which is totally okay. We both don’t like conflict and will try to avoid it at all costs. I have to remind myself to think about where she is coming from and to find a common ground. I believe having different opinions on things is what makes us a strong couple. Jackson
- I need date nights: Living together doesn’t mean that you stop dating. With COVID, this is something that obviously had to be paused, which made me realized how much I love dating my husband. Yes, we spend time together at home, but there is nothing like a planned date night. In year two, I want us to be more focused on this time together. Nikki
- Be Thankful: Over this past year, I have learned that Nikki does a lot for us to make sure our house is always in tip top shape. Sometimes to her it probably looks like I’m playing a game to see how much of a mess I can make. The best thing I can do is to always be thankful and express that to Nikki (and maybe pick up after myself). Jackson
- It is okay to be upset: Similar to what Jackson said above, we don’t agree on everything. But what we can do, is hear each other out. Sometimes it is hard to admit he was right and I was wrong, but hearing each other out is the most important thing. Wait, did we just jump back to communication? I think we did. Nikki
- We will always have each other’s backs: I think this is really important because I know if I’m having a bad day or vice versa that we can count on each other to be on the same team and do whatever it takes to overcome challenges in life that are thrown at us. Jackson
- Showing each other Support: I know Jackson supports me, but when he actually tells me, it is everything that keeps me going. There is nothing like when your partner shows you their support. We have big goals we want to achieve and showing up for each other a long the way will make them achievable. Jackson works so hard for our family, and I love being by his side, supporting him along the way. Sometimes he has to work late hours, while that isn’t always the easiest, I know he is doing it for us. Rebranding my blog was a lot of work, and Jackson’s support for this space of mine means the world to me. Best Photographer ever! 🙂 Nikki
- Know your partners love language: This is something that is very important and something I will always be striving to be the best at. I think the biggest key in a strong relationship is understanding what your partners love language is. Nikki is something who wants words of affirmation and physical touch. Knowing each others love languages has made our lives a lot better, and easier. Jackson
- It is okay to have time apart: Sometimes you just need your space. If that is Jackson playing Call of Duty with his friends online and me organizing something or writing a blog post, it is okay. We don’t need to spend every moment together at night. Sometimes, we do.. like taking Casey on a walk after dinner or watching a show. Other nights, we do our own thing. We might just be really annoying each other one day, so giving each other a reset is healthy for our relationship.
Eek! There are 14 things that we have learned in year one. We have big plans for this little family of ours, and I can’t wait to see where year two takes us. With God as our center, I know we will be able to accomplish anything.
Wedding Photos by Leah Marie Photography!