15 Ways to Say You Love Him…Without Ever Saying A Word

15 Ways to Say You Love Him (Without Ever Saying a Word)

I’m not sure that I understood the man’s mind when we first got married.

Or maybe I should say understood his masculine heart.

I mean, I thought I did . . . but it turned out I had a lot to learn.

Lots and lots.

Basically, clueless.

I figured mostly what I needed to do was to look up at him with adoring eyes and occasionally say, “I love you” and that about covered it.

It had worked so well when we were dating . . . .

But less so as time went on.

Not that he still didn’t want to hear it, but I found there were other ways to tell the guy that you love him.

I discovered that – much like me – he needs to hear love spoken in a variety of ways.

And he needs more than just big eyes and a few romantic words.

So my friend Christy and I decided to pool our marriage experience to offer some suggestions (sort of a “two for one” deal) in case you were looking for new ideas too.

So here’s what we came up with . . . .

15 Ways to Say You Love Him

1.     Prepare him food that he especially likes.

I know. It may seem a bit silly to you, but the feeling is real. They might say that “Love makes the world go round,” but the truth is—it’s food.

Especially cinnamon rolls.

Preferably homemade and with extra cinnamon goo.

2.     Do one of his chores that he wouldn’t expect you to do.

Surprise! All done. Just ’cause and no need for thanks.

3.     Display overt public affection.

Remember how you used to drape yourself all over him when you were dating or engaged? (you did do this, didn’t you??)

Well, no reason to leave off with that lovey-dovey stuff.

Even my silver-haired hunk of a guy loves it when I wrap my arms around his neck. Or tuck my arm into his. Or snuggle in next to him. Right in front of everyone.

Somewhat embarrasses the teenagers, but I figure it’s good for them.

And I know it’s good for him.

4.     Tell him Chris Hemsworth only wishes he could look so good.

No explanation necessary. 😉

5.     Serve him with style.

For instance, making his dinner could be described as my “job.” But when I add a little extra flair? Put some finishing touches on the plate? Present it with a warm smile?

It communicates that it’s not only my job – it’s my pleasure.

6.     Buy white bread on occasion.

Contains zero nutrition.

And a bit hard on the soul.

But there you have it.

The way to a man’s heart.

7.     Initiate you-know-what.

Your man likes to know that you find him desirable too.

8.     Do something cheerfully where you would normally have a habit of whining and making his life miserable.

So go ahead and shock the socks off of him.

9.    Brag on him.

Tell family and friends – maybe even complete strangers – how much you appreciate the man that he is. Preferably within his hearing.

10.    Make an effort to enjoy an activity along with him, even though it’s not your thing.

Sometimes “laying down your life” means watching a sports game with him. Tagging along on that unfamiliar adventure. Or, in my case, being willing to go dirt-camping when I’d rather sit by clear, blue water at an upscale resort. Sigh.

11.    Play footsies with him under the table.

You wouldn’t believe something so simple could be so effective. My husband still looks up with astonishment – and I’ve been playing this game with him for over 20 years now!

12.    Learn the lingo of his favorite hobby.

Casually throw out your thoughts on the improved clinch knot or perhaps the Boone & Crockett Club. Or maybe drop some remark about the halyard or hawser. This kind of vocabulary is sure to get his attention.

13.    Communicate contentment.

Let him know that he makes you happy.

Not that he – or your marriage – is perfect.

Not that you both don’t have room to grow.

But for today, for now, you’re content with him and the life you enjoy together.

It will mean a lot to him.

More than you might know.

14.   Tell him, “Go fishing. You deserve it!”

My husband calls it “recess.”

So give him your blessing to go outside and play.

15.   Listen to his heart.

Even if he doesn’t share it with words. Listen anyway. And listen carefully.

Because his masculine heart might be different than your feminine one.

But it’s still a heart.

And it’s his.

So why not tell him you love him? 

Without so much as a word.

In His grace,

Lisa & Christy

*Got any fun additions to add to our list here? Please share! 

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100 Ways to Love  by Matthew and Lisa Jacobson

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What Makes Marriage Strong and Beautiful: A Few Things You Might Not Know

What Makes Marriage Strong and Beautiful - A Few Things You Might Not Know

Love is a complicated infrastructure.

A thing you are either building up or letting fall into decay.

What makes it strong are the deeds done in the everyday walk of life.

What makes it beautiful is two unique people coming together and making their own unique kind of love.

It doesn’t come from textbooks or formulas, or to-do lists.

You’ve probably seen my parents from afar, either online here or maybe speaking at a conference somewhere. But I’ve lived around them for a long time, so in case you were wondering . . .

Here are a few things you might not know about my parents’ love:

They talk about everything.

Even tiny, inconsequential things.

Sometimes I wonder at them as they sit chatting away about a subject that seems to be of little importance. They mull it over, and in between second cups of coffee, they look at it from their different angles.

It’s a slow process, and I must confess, sometimes, as an observer, I grow impatient. Why talk about the small things of life? Schedules? Planning? Little worries and concerns?

And then it came clear to me one day . . . that to them, this was sharing life.

There are so few mountain top experiences in this life, and they could not wait at the bottom hungering for them.

They find their love, on Monday and Wednesday, and the week-end.

They make their love talking about the smallest of things.

They live their life confiding the tiniest thoughts.

They like going everywhere together.

Even to tiny, inconsequential places.

Again, this seems to me to be taken somewhat too far.

Going to feed the chickens? Let me come with you! Going to work in the garden? I’ll come.

No matter how small the destination happens to be – either of them is usually willing to tag along. It could be a trip to Home Depot, it could be to Costco. It could be to the tree nursery, or to the bank.

And all this takes place in little, dry, dusty Central Oregon.

But by their attitudes, you’d think they were going out for a round of champagne kisses.

They love touching each other.

Even in tiny, inconsequential places.

Dad and Mom like touching each other. Of course, since there are eight of us kids pretty much always around, they have to keep it toned down. But it seems to me that little touches are a thing too. Maybe brushing the back of a tired head, or stroking hair that’s gone a bit flat at the end of the day.

Sometimes I see them touching – without touching – by a look. It’s really understated most of the time.

It’s a slow burn of love, and it keeps on from day to day.

They take care of each other’s hearts.

Even in tiny, inconsequential ways.

If Dad is feeling worn out, Mom will often encourage him to go do something she knows will help him relax. Sometimes mom is feeling stressed,  and you’ll hear dad telling her to retire earlier than normal in the evening.

If one is down, the other will hurry to support. It’s like a friend thing.

Sometimes I get the feeling that they are just best friends. Not so much just lovers.

And, yes, in case you’re wondering, they argue.

And they get mad at each other . . . even sometimes for tiny, inconsequential things.

But all that never lasts long.

Their love is not perfect. It’s something much sexier than that.

It’s real.

What Makes Marriage Strong and Beautiful

With love,
Savoury Jacobson
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100 Ways to Love  by Matthew and Lisa Jacobson

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What More Can You Ask For In A Husband and Father? {& Peanut Butter Butterfinger Pie}

Husband and Father

As soon as I saw him interact with his younger brothers and sisters, I knew, I just knew, that one day he was going to be a great dad.

Wait, I take that back.

I knew that one day he was going to be an amazing dad to any future kids he had.

I was just hoping they would also be mine.

But back up. I wasn’t even married to him, or engaged for that matter. I had only known my now husband for about a month then, and already I was dreaming about marrying him and starting a family someday!

Lucky for me, he felt the same way.

But I’m not sure he felt that way a month after we had known each other. He took his time promising himself to me, while I was ready to jump right in and marry him, like yesterday and at 19 years old.

There was only one problem.

I had been informed by one of my doctors that it would be difficult to nearly impossible for me to have children.

Butterfinger Pie-2

Crazy In Love

We met in June, two weeks after I graduated high school. In January Josh told me he loved me for the first time. By April we were engaged and married by August.

I was 19 years old and he was 18 years old.

Just little baby newlyweds all goo-goo eyed and crazy in love.

Three weeks after our honeymoon, a nudge of intuition pushed me to buy a specific kind of test, you know…the kind that tells you if your life is going to change dramatically in about nine months?

I had planned on taking the test on my lunch break, but when my mother-in-love walked into the building where I worked, my inability to keep a secret got the better of me, and I told her my suspicions – she in turn encouraged me to take the test right away. So I did.

Butterfinger Pie-3

Right away a pink line indicating that I was going to be a parent popped up and my heart nearly burst.

I was pregnant. I was pregnant with his child.

We were going to be parents, and I would finally get to see him with a little tiny baby cradled in his arms…an image that has been prominently glued to my memory, an image that makes my heart leap and almost burst at the thought.

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! ~ Psalm 127:3-5

Three kids (two daughters and a son) later, I still feel the same way as I did when I watched him first interact with his siblings. But now my heart skips a beat because I see him laughing, playing, comforting, and training them, not to mention teaching and showing them the love of Christ.

What more could I ask for in a husband and father?

Peanut Butter Butterfinger Pie

Peanut Butter Butterfinger Pie

It’s our church’s Father’s Day tradition of serving all the men pies after our Sunday service (they serve us breakfast on Mother’s Day).

My husband is kind of crazy about any kind of peanut butter dessert so I generally try to make something that I know he specifically will enjoy. This Peanut Butter and Butterfinger pie is definitely one of those, and if the father of your children is anything like mine, I promise that he will enjoy this pie for Father’s Day, too.

*What are some of your Father’s Day traditions?

~ Chels {Catz in the Kitchen}

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Peanut Butter Butterfinger Pie with a Pretzel Crust
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 10
 
Sweet and Salty is the theme of this creamy peanut butter pie. With chunks of Butterfinger and a salty pretzel crust, it's the perfect dessert to serve this summer.
Ingredients
  • 1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups Cool Whip, thawed
  • 12 (fun sized) Butterfinger candy bars, finely chopped
  • ½ cup hot fudge topping, melted
  • 2 cups crushed pretzel crumbs
  • 6-8 tbsp butter, melted
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 250 degrees. In a food processor, process pretzels until they are fine little pieces. (You do not want a true crumb. You want the pretzel to still have some of it's former shape.) In a saucepan or microwave safe bowl, heat butter until melted. Use 6 tablespoons of butter if you want your crust to be crumbly. Or 8 tablespoons if you want a slightly firmer crust. Combine pretzel crumbs and butter until completely incorporate and pour into a 9-inch pie plate, make sure the bottom is evenly covered and the crumbs go up the sides.
  2. Bake the pie crust for 10-12 minutes. Remove and place on wire rack and allow to cool.
  3. Finely chop 9 of the fun-sized candy bars, reserving 3 for topping the pie.
  4. In a large bowl of your stand mixer using the paddle attachment, combine cream cheese, sugar, and peanut butter and beat until blended. Add whipped cream and the chopped Butterfingers and beat gently on a low speed until evenly distributed. Pour the peanut butter batter on top of the baked pretzel crust and gently, using a spatula, spread the mixture until it is evenly spread over the crust.
  5. Add the hot fudge topping to a microwave-safe bowl and heat for 30 seconds. Stir. It may not be completely melted after 30 seconds, so heat for an additional 10 secs, stirring after each interval. Gently pour and spread the hot fudge topping over the top of the pie, gently spreading the chocolate around, but leaving about a ½-inch space around the edge of the pie.
  6. Chop the remaining 3 Butterfinger bars and scatter the Butterfinger crumbs over the chocolate. Refrigerate for 6-8 hours before serving.

Creating a Romantic Refuge in Your Very Own Home {& Giveaway}

Creating a Romantic Refuge in Your Very Own Home

I am a hopeless romantic.

You might not guess that when you first meet me because I’m so terribly practical.

You can ask my kids. They’ll tell you.

Practical to a fault.

I make lists, organize the spice cupboard, and draw up chore charts.

Practical things. 

So you might not see that underneath all this sensible exterior, I have this rather romantic heart.

But it’s true.

I love beauty and elegance and adventure.

Flowers and art.

Quiet conversation and holding hands.

But I’m afraid these things don’t necessarily line up with our Real Life.

The one where we have 8 kids, the health challenges of his parents, and the pressures of work deadlines.

Bills to pay and errands to run.

Basically, just plain, everyday unromantic life takes over.

Or, at least it would if we let it.

But a few years ago I decided that life is too short and our relationship is too important to let that happen.

How to Create A Romantic Refuge

So I determined to create a romantic refuge in our very own home.

A sweet spot that the two of us can slip off to whenever we get the chance.

And then I make sure that this chance happens.

Sometimes it’s right before dinner when he arrives home from work.

Or maybe after the kids are in bed late at night.

In the summer months, it’s likely to be in the morning before the heat of the day sets in.

So you see, the “when” hardly even matters—all you need is a where and that is totally up to you!

And that’s also where all the fun begins . . . .

Creating a Romantic Refuge in Your Very Own Home

A Romantic Refuge

It takes less to create a Romantic Refuge than you might think. All you need is . . .

A place to sit.

Two chairs or a couch will work. In the summer, we have a couple of chairs designated out on the back patio. In the winter, it’s a cozy spot near the fireplace. We even have a sweet corner in our bedroom now for when we desire more privacy from the children. (Yes, that makes 3 “Romantic Refuges,” but this number grew over time.)

Touches of beauty.

Now don’t get stuck on this one because it takes sooo little to make a small space lovely. Truly. All you have to do is to make sure it’s clean, neat, add a few bits of beauty and voila! romance. Pick out some flowers, a pretty picture or two, and throw in a darling pillow and you’ve got it!

And loving conversation.

We have certain “rules” of what we can – and cannot – discuss in our Romantic Refuge. For instance, this is not the time to talk about our finances, or the children’s misbehavior, or problems at work. That is saved for another setting. Because this is the place where we talk about us and dreams and good things.

*Bonus tip: Do NOT put pressure on your guy or this will take all the fun out of it for him. You don’t even need to tell him that this is your “romantic refuge” because he might misunderstand and feel pressure to “perform.” Instead, simply entice him with a warm smile and something special to eat or drink. Communicate that there’s no agenda, other than enjoying being together.

Creating a Romantic Refuge

We Still Do Giveaway

So you’re ready to create your own Romantic Refuge?

Wonderful! Because I’ve got a surprise for you.

Remember how I mentioned  adding a “darling pillow” earlier?

Well, I have a total thing about pillows. If you ever come over to our home, you’ll see that I’ve got them scattered just about everywhere: bedroom, living room, patio—you name it!

And today I’m offering a giveaway for 3 of these very romantic, We Still Do pillows from Ever Thine Home!

I love this beautiful reminder of our promises to love each other . . .  for the rest of our lives.

A perfect start to a romantic refuge!

Ever Thine Home

Ever Thine Home is a lovely holiday and home collection begun by Barbara Rainey and a part of Family Life.  Not only am I thankful for their faithful ministry to families, I’m inspired by their beautiful offerings for the home. So you can imagine how thrilled I was when they offered to join me in this giveaway!

More here: Ever Thine Home

*And, as an additional gift to Club31Women readers, they are offering us a 10% discount on all items (which are reasonably priced, I might add!).  Just use the code: Club31ETH when you check out.

Creating a Romantic Refuge In Your Very Own Home

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I can hardly wait to hear how your Romantic Refuge turns out!

Blessings on you both,
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Those Little Things That Speak Big Volumes of Love

Those Little Things That Speak Volumes of Love

I’ve determined that my husband Ted has a foot fetish.

Okay, maybe “fetish” isn’t the right word. Perhaps “preoccupation” or “fixation” better applies here.

When I mentioned this to him the other day, he looked confused.

Foot? Fetish? Huh? Yep, his expression said it all.

That is, until I explained. Suddenly this confused look of his was replaced with one of understanding. You see, I reminded him how often matters of feet make him feel loved.

Take, for example, the matching of his freshly washed socks. In our twelve plus years of marriage, this is one action that he’s consistently responded to with an enthusiastic “You love me!”

But that’s not all.

As quirky as it may be, Ted likes me to touch his foot with my foot in the morning before I get out of bed. To him it’s a nonverbal reminder that “We’re good. There isn’t anything strained between us.” It helps him start the day freshly reminded that I love him.

And, if I really want my hot-footed husband to remember that he holds my heart, I grab a bottle of lotion and rub it on his feet while we Netflix binge watch in the evenings. Nothing like a foot massage to communicate to Ted that I’m still glad that I’m his wife.

What about your husband?

Perhaps he doesn’t have a “fantastic foot fetish,” as Ted now calls it, but I have no doubt there are little things that speak big volumes of love to your man. If nothing immediately comes to mind, perhaps it’s time to sharpen your inner Sherlock Holmes skills.

How can you do that? How can you strengthen those powers of observation?

Well, let’s get a bit scientific and look at four ways you can train yourself to be an expert in the ways of your husband.

1.     Observe

According to an article by Time, seeing and observing are not the same thing. It’s one thing “to see” or, as Dictionary.com notes, “to perceive with the eyes; to look at.” It’s another thing to “observe” or, as this trusty online resource explains, “regard with attention, especially so as to see or learn something.”

How can you make sure that you’re not simply seeing your husband, but actually observing him? You can do this by teaching yourself to focus your attention on the right details. This is where #2 comes in.

2.    Record

One way you can focus on the right details is by taking field notes. It might seem silly to pull out a notebook to write descriptions and maybe even draw pictures – you know, if you’re the artsy type – of the ways you notice your husband feels loved, but it’s something that Family Life President Dennis Rainey actually recommends. He encourages:

Become a student of your spouse. Make a list of things that communicate love to your mate and write it in something permanent that can’t be easily lost or forgotten.

3.     Analyze

Next, you can continually analyze your data. What do your notes tell you about the ways your husband feels most loved at this point in time? Is it when you speak affirming words to him? Perhaps it’s through acts of service, or maybe physical touch. Look for patterns or common threads. You know, perhaps things like feet.

4.     Test

Finally, make it a habit to regularly test out what you’re learning. Come up with hypotheses based on your observations and put them into action. Have fun determining “If I do _____, then my husband feels loved.”

In an article at ThrivingFamily.com, Dr. Paul C. and Teri K Reisser note:

Your school days may be long behind you, but you never need to stop learning. Careers, hobbies, parenting – life is full of opportunities to grow and gain new knowledge. Unfortunately, there is one subject that far too many adults stop learning about: the person they married.

Let’s not be those adults.

Instead, let’s be wives who are experts in the ways of our husbands. Wives who can confidently determine whether or not our husband has a “fantastic foot fetish.”

Ashleigh

(This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure.)

Team US by Ashleigh Slater Team US: Marriage Together by Ashleigh Slater

Like a conversation with a true friend, this book is open, real, and honest. Ashleigh invites you inside her heart and home to humbly share wisdom gained from experiences she and her husband walked through….We highly recommend this book for couples of any age. ~ Matthew and Lisa Jacobson

*You can read my full review of Ashleigh’s book HERE: A Book Review – Team US Marriage Together

Ashleigh SlaterAshleigh Slater is the author of the book, Team Us: Marriage Together (Moody Publishers). As the founder and editor of Ungrind Webzine and a regular contributor at several popular blogs and websites, she loves to combine the power of a good story with biblical truth and practical application. Ashleigh lives in Atlanta with her husband Ted and four daughters.

To learn more, visit AshleighSlater​.com. You can also find her on Facebook or follow her on Twitter at @ashslater.

100 Ways to Love Your Husband by Lisa Jacobson and 100 Ways to Love Your Wife by Matthew L Jacobson

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When One Small Daily Habit Makes a Big Impact {On Your Lifelong Marriage}

When One Small Daily Habit Makes a Big Impact On Your Lifelong Marriage

It was one of those gray rainy days preceded by another sleepless night with kids that were up –again.  I curled up on my couch with my early morning cup of tea while I read my Bible, prayed, and tried to get myself in a good mood before the household exploded with ten little feet.

As my brain cells began to stir I started to think about my misery and my husband. In my exhausted, early morning mental fog these thoughts tumbled out-

I wonder if he ever thinks about how I feel- how hard life is for me with all these kids.

And that thing I asked him to fix last week, it’s still broken. 

And just once, I wish he’d offer to do the bedtime and homework routine without my asking.

And that suggestion I gave him about something that might help him at the office-he didn’t think it was very good.

I wonder if he appreciates my carpooling the kids all over every day and feeling like I’ve accomplished nothing…and, and…

As I sat in my pity-party, a question entered my mind. “Susan, what if he had said:

“Honey you work so hard; I appreciate how difficult it must be especially because it feels so so mundane to you.

What if he had fixed that broken thing right away.  

What if he had come home one night and said,” I’m taking over dinner and homework; you take a break.”

What if he had said, “By the way that suggestion you gave me for work; I took you advice and it was good.”

Then what?

What I quickly realized was that I would have simply thought of something else that did not please me.

I had fallen into a “picky trap.”  Pick, pick, and pick at the things my husband does or doesn’t do.  Rehearse them in my mind. Add to the list.

I also realized that I had become an “encore wife,” a person for whom nothing is ever enough.

No matter what he did I would think of something else I wanted.  There was no way he could satisfy me.

Picky wives who also want an encore are not very much fun to live with.

And I wanted to be fun.

When One Small Daily Habit Makes a Big Impact {On Your Lifelong Marriage}

The Daily Marriage Vitamin

“Please Lord, change my heart.  Make me grateful instead of critical. Remind me of things to appreciate in my husband.”

I began to say out loud the things I was grateful for in my man.  He gets up early to pray for the kids and me. He is a man of integrity. He is even tempered. He is reliable. He has self- discipline; doing things he doesn’t necessarily like to do.

That morning I discovered what I call the “marriage vitamin.“

Every day I try to thank God for one specific thing I appreciate about my husband. Occasionally, I even tell him.

No he’s not perfect, but neither is his wife.

And yes we still let each other down, ask forgiveness, and start over again.

The thing about marriage is it’s a lifetime of growing together, of iron sharpening iron.

We never will get it just right this side of heaven. Our God is more concerned about what we learn in the process than He is about us getting it all figured out.

Even with 45 years of marriage I still get lazy and fall into the picky trap. I still need that daily marriage vitamin.

Today I find myself praying more and more that I’d lighten up and not make a big deal out of something small. And I continue to pray that we’d laugh more together at the dumb things we do.

Today, after all these years we appreciate more and more that we simply have each other. God is good and He is using us to sharpen one another.  (Proverbs 27:17)

 Blessings,

Susan Alexander Yates

*What’s your daily Marriage Vitamin for today? Share one thing you appreciate about your husband!

Susan Alexander Yates

I’m mom to five children (including a set of twins) and grandmother to 21 (including a set of quadruplets!). My husband, John and I have been married almost 45 years. I’ve written 13 books and speak on the subjects of marriage, parenting, and women’s issues.  Some of my books include And Then I Had KidsAnd Then I Had Teenagers; Barbara & Susan’s Guide to the Empty Nest (with friend Barbara Rainey) and Character Matters!: Raising Kids with Values That Last (With John).

I write regularly for the blog: MomLifeToday.com, sponsored by Family Life. I’m a Tarheel. I love Monday night football, ACC basketball, shooting hoops with my grandsons, hiking and riding horseback with my husband, running and talking with girl friends.  My favorite time of the year is June when all my kids and grandkids are together for a week of “cousins and family camp” in the foothills of the Shenandoah Mountains of Virginia.

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Barbara & Susan’s Guide to the Empty Nest: Discovering New Purpose, Passion & Your Next Great Adventure

Guide to the Empty NestYou’re done . . . but you’re not finished! And one more thing. You’re not alone. Feeling unsure? Scared? Expectant? Maybe even giddy? Is your nest empty–except for a bundle of mixed emotions? As you grieve what’s behind and daydream about possibilities, you’ll feel young again, ready for new challenges and adventures. Yet you may not know what to pursue or how to discover what’s next. Many women in this season of life wonder: Who am I now? And what should I do? How will my marriage be affected? Does anyone need me? How do I relate to my children? Is it okay to feel sad? Or thrilled? What’s next?

Barbara and Susan can be the friends you need to walk you through these new experiences. They’ll guide you to answers, and together you’ll discover a new purpose and passion for your next life adventure.

Available HERE: Barbara & Susan’s Guide to the Empty Nest