Romance 101

How to Create Holiday Traditions with Your New Spouse

holiday jessica wilson

By guest blogger Natasha Burton

If you’re newly married like I am, this holiday season is extra special: It’s the first one you’ll be spending with your significant other as husband and wife.

Sure, it may not feel different if you’ve been together many years and have spent a number of holidays with each of your families, but this year marks the first time you’ll start making decisions as your own new little family. For some, what you decide to do this season could set the tone for how you’ll enjoy the holidays for many more to come.

Here are some tips to get you started on creating some new traditions—and incorporating a few of your old ones— with your new spouse.

1. Talk about your musts.

You each likely have some strong opinions about what constitutes the holidays for you. Perhaps your spouse enjoys doing absolutely nothing on Christmas Day, while you can’t imagine not baking cookies, going sledding, and making a full-scale meal. Maybe you have to have ham, while he can’t live without turkey. These may seem like small things, but it’s important to talk about what your ideal holiday looks like for you to see if you both are on a similar page (or opposite ones!), especially if you typically spent the holidays with your respective parents pre-marriage.

2. Borrow from your families.

Pick the best and most beloved holiday traditions to incorporate into your new life together. Maybe his mom has a special latke recipe he loves. Maybe your family always watches Elf on Christmas Eve. Give these childhood rituals new life in your marriage.
christmas traditions

Also, you’ll want to ditch the rituals that never worked for you. Does the idea of having to put up—and decorate—a Christmas tree give you anxiety? Nix it. Prefer to give one big present rather than do eight whole nights of small Hanukkah gifts? Go for it. Now is your chance to switch things up, if you so choose.

3. Try something new.

Use this holiday season as an opportunity to test-drive certain activities that could become traditions. Maybe go ice-skating on Christmas Eve, or go on a mini vacation for New Year’s. You’ll find what feels festive to you by trying it first.

4. Allow yourself to spend the holidays alone.

If you ever have an excuse to spend the holidays without having to schlep to your families’ houses, it’s this year: You’re newlyweds, after all! Take this year to opt out of driving and flying home, if you’d like, to enjoy the holidays as a family of two. This will give you a chance to actually try out some new traditions and will show you what you really miss about your families’ celebrations. You may think you can’t live without your Aunt Mary’s sugar cookies or the rambunctious family gift-exchange, but discover that you actually prefer making homemade gingerbread houses and quietly opening stockings with your husband instead.

5. Stay flexible.

Just because you do something one year, that doesn’t mean you’ve set a tradition in stone. Maybe it’s not possible for you to spend the holidays just you two this time around. Maybe you even have to split up over the holidays to see your parents and extended family. That’s okay. However, and whenever, you celebrate will be right for you as long as you’re staying true to what you think is best for you and your marriage. New traditions take time to take shape so be patient and focus on enjoying the moment, not having every last piece of tinsel in place right away.

Natasha Burton is a relationship author, freelance writer and wedding planner.

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Graduate Students Get Engaged At Dallas Baptist University!

Just Engaged! Congrats to Madison & Dominique who got engaged at the beautiful Dallas Baptist University bridge.

Just Engaged! Congrats to Madison & Dominique who got engaged at the beautiful Dallas Baptist University bridge.

Engagement Date November 8, 2014
Projected Wedding Date May 2, 2015

In Madison’s Words

How did you two meet?
We met at college in Abilene, TX. He attended Abilene Christian University and I was a Hardin-Simmons University student. He attended an HSU volleyball game to watch an old high school friend of his, I was playing for HSU at the time, he laid eyes on me, and the rest is history!

How did he propose?
The reason I was making a trip to Dallas this weekend was to celebrate Dominique’s birthday early because it lands on a Tuesday and I am still in the process of finishing graduate school in Abilene, TX. Boy was I in for a surprise. I knew something was up because I saw a test notification from my best friend pop up on his monitor, and they never speak unless something’s up. I was expecting something to happen the next day, Friday. Friday passed by, nothing unusual happened.

Saturday rolled around and I set out for my apartment search. He had a group project meeting that afternoon and we had dinner and movie plans to celebrate his 23rd birthday that night. After getting back from my apartment hunt, we began to get ready for dinner and a movie and he says to me, “Oh shoot! I forgot to leave a paper with my group for our project. We’ve got to go by campus before dinner.” This was hard for me to believe, but I went with the flow and we were soon at Dallas Baptist University. After running his “paper” inside to his group he came back to the car to tell me, “My group really wants to meet you.” I found this strange, it was a Saturday night and we were late for our “dinner reservations.”

Soon after getting me out of the car, he led me toward the DBU bridge that crosses over a campus pond. The venue was beautiful and we came to the end of the bridge where a gazebo was decorated with rose petals at my feet, framed pictures of us over the past 5 years, and 8 red and white balloons. After admiring the decor, he continued to lead me through the gazebo and near the shore of the pond where a single bench stood alone.

Dominique pops the question!

Dominique pops the question!

He looked into my eyes and reminded me of our time together, how we’ve come thus far through good times and bad. He dropped down to one knee and asked me to make him the happiest man alive. I SAID YES!!!!!! Soon after, my mom and some of my absolute dearest friends cheered from across the pond!! I’ve never been more overwhelmed with joy in my entire life. I could relive this moment over and over again. It was perfect!

What do you love most about your engagement ring?
I love that it has character! The rose gold is my favorite and the round brilliant cut could not be more perfect!

Madison rocks her beautiful rose gold split shank diamond engagement ring from Robbins Brothers Dallas

Madison rocks her beautiful rose gold split shank diamond engagement ring from Robbins Brothers Dallas.

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5 Places I Get Caught Staring At My Wedding Ring

By guest blogger Natasha Burton

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Well before I met my husband, I was enthralled with the idea of wearing a wedding ring. (Paired perfectly with an equally lovely engagement ring, of course.) I’ve never been the type to get all starry-eyed over jewelry, but these rings were different. They meant something–more than I could know when I was single and just excited about the future prospect of someone wanting me to be his wife.

Now that I’m married (almost three months!) I look down at my left hand more than I care to admit. I’m almost surprised to see that sparkle on my ring finger–even though I was engaged for over a year and a half before I took my trip down the aisle. (Hopefully I’m not alone here?) These are the top five places I catch myself checking out my own rock.

1. In the car
The sunlight coming through the windows and windshield amplify the sparkle factor of my bling—how can I not take a peek?!

2. While making dinner
Really, during any lull in my daily life, when I’m paused or waiting for something (a pot to boil, for instance), I catch myself examining my ring. Hey, it’s the most interesting thing to look at.

3. On my couch
Yep, sometimes I’m just vegging out with my HGTV and I find myself glancing down at my rings. You know, just making sure they’re still there. Sometimes I even poke my husband and ask him how awesome my rings look today. Rhetorically, of course.

4. In yoga class
While I was engaged, I committed myself to finishing 300 workouts (of 30 minutes or more) in one year as a way to get in shape for my big day–and to form a healthy habit I could stick to for the rest of my life. I’d look down at my rock for motivation, when needed, which was quite often. Even now, I find myself using my ring as my focal point when I’m holding an uncomfortable yoga pose. (Thinking: “After this class, I can sit on my couch and watch HGTV with my husband.”)

5. When I spy another woman’s rock.
Look, we all do it. (Right?!) Every time I catch sign of another woman’s wedding or engagement ring (or both), I peep back at my own. I can’t help it.

Natasha Burton is a relationship author, freelance writer and editor.

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Women Who Propose To Men

For years popping the big question has been considered a man’s job, but lately more and more women are stepping up to the plate and taking “Will You Marry Me?” into their own hands.

See how Audrey surprised David, her boyfriend of 3 years, with an unsuspecting marriage proposal and a Scott Kay Men’s Cobalt Ring on the popular talk show The Real. Let’s just say David looked a bit uncomfortable, but maybe that’s because her question caught him completely off guard.

Meanwhile, on the Steve Harvey TV segment, Ask Steve & Receive, sweet Karli planned to ask Kevin to marry her after 9 years of dating. She was beyond ready but Steve advised her differently. See what happens:

What do you think? Should a woman propose marriage to her man or is it best to wait for him to pop the question?

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Robbins Brothers Engagement Party Photos

There’s nothing better we love to do than celebrate your entire engagement experience, from helping you pick the perfect ring to planning the proposal, and then connecting you with the best wedding vendors in town. This past weekend six of our stores hosted a fun Engagement Party for newly engaged couples in the area and let’s just say…“There’s no party like a Robbins Brothers party.” The photos tell the story.

Nikki Closser Photography sets up shop at our Bellevue, Washington store.
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What a decadent wedding cake! Emerald City Cakes & Chocolates delighted our Washington couples with something sweet.
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Always Fun & Fabulous Giveaways at our Parties! We want you to Sparkle!
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Well you know the saying, everything is bigger in Texas. What can we say. Our Arlington team put on one heck of a party with some of the hottest vendors in town.

Chris "Smiity" Smith, GM of Robbins Brothers Arlington with his awesome associates.

Chris “Smiity” Smith, general manager of Robbins Brothers Arlington with his awesome team.

Nothing Bundt Cakes delivers tasty treats for our guests.
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Couples mingle with vendors and shop for wedding bands too!

Robbins Brothers Arlington Engagement Party

Robbins Brothers Arlington Engagement Party

Couples look for wedding bands at Robbins Brothers Arlington

Couples look for wedding bands at Robbins Brothers Arlington

Consider Alfred Angelo for your wedding gown and bridesmaid dresses.

Alfred Angelo Bridesmaid Dress

Alfred Angelo Bridesmaid Dress

We really do get butterflies in our stomachs when we hear the stories of how you met your True Love.
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And sometimes there are even surprise marriage proposals inside of the store! Just like at the San Diego location. Yep, we ring bells & everything. So exciting.

Couple gets engaged at Robbins Brothers San Diego.

Couple gets engaged at Robbins Brothers San Diego.

More than anything, we just want you to have fun & walk away with a little inspiration.

San Diego Engagement Party--10/26/2014

Robbins Brothers San Diego Engagement Party–10/26/2014

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