Couch Time

So after several months away, I’m happy to say I’ve changed so many of my expectations for the better!  Life is full of joy and peace – even when things aren’t perfect.  As you can tell, one expectation I let go a long time ago is weekly blogging!

But I have something quick to share that Ben and I are trying to implement lately.  It’s couch time – an idea we took from a couple from church – Kurt and Kristen Sauder.  The first 5 minutes Ben gets home, we are trying to have a chance to catch up and talk – the 2 of us.  If I’m cooking, I shut the burners off, we set a timer and press pause for 5 minutes.

It’s not something we are trying to be legalistic about… There are nights we are headed out the door as soon as he’s home.  There are times it may be a while before we make it to the couch.  But we decided this was WORTH it to do whenever possible.

  • It sets the tone for the night.  It reminds us – and Elliot – of the relationship being center.
  • It helps us catch up on our days, tell on ourselves if it’s been rough.
  • 5 minutes isn’t enough!  but it’s a start and helps us catch our breath.
  • It helps me relax and not be a control freak!  I remember that there are few things in life that can’t wait for 5 minutes.

A couple of neat things have come of it:

  1. First, I have found I really look forward to it.  It’s my own time-out and chance to give 100% attention.  It’s easy to multitask, but not fully get what Ben is saying.  Sitting on the couch distraction-free has been awesome.
  2. Second, Ben has started taking the next 5 minutes for special Elliot time.  Which she LOVES.  And it makes it easy for her to not interrupt (as much) when she knows her turn is coming soon.

I have a friend that used to do something similar when her kids were young – they called it boat time.  The kids would lay out a blanket on the floor as their “boat” filled with toys and books.  They had to stay in the boat for adult conversation.  It helped them not interrupt by making a game out of it!

I know that different seasons, kids, ages – all make this challenging.  But any way we can try to demonstrate this, we want to try!  And we’ve seen a big difference so far.

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