A Not-So-Romantic Vacation

October 23rd, 2014

As a Marriage Counselor, I often advise couples to get away for a “romantic vacation” – just some time alone, together. I tell couples that they need to “invest in their relationship.”  After reading the following story, I am reconsidering that advice.  ;)

Dr. Randy Chatelain

 

A Not-So-Romantic Vacation

My husband and I had a long weekend off together so we decided to plan a quick trip to California for a last hurrah of summer. My husband, being the financial planner, immediately booked some cheap flights and researched a two-man camper to rent. He thought it would be so beneficial having a car and hotel in one! He showed me his awesome plan.  At first I was a skeptic but soon my thoughts turned to a romantic weekend alone together in our own little camper.    After reading through all the reviews I agreed to book it for our trip. The weekend finally arrived and we made the flight to California.

heartflower

As we were exiting the plane we got a call from the owners of the romantic vehicle and they informed us that there was a slight problem with the battery so if we wanted we could just get a refund and not take it. Or we could still try it out and if it broke down anywhere they would come rescue us. Since we had made all our plans around driving and sleeping wherever we ended up, it was a risk we were willing to make….. And then it got worse.

The owner explained to us that to avoid battery issues with the camper we should probably avoid using any power other than the car. So no toilet, shower, fridge, sink, or air conditioning. My next thought from this point was well at least we could camp by the beach with a camp fire and wake up to the sound of romantic waves.  The owner then explained that no camping is allowed by the beach and camping can only be done at an RV park which would be $60.00 dollars a night. Yes that would be in addition to the cost of renting the camper. So my husband decided we could just stay over nights parked in neighborhoods to keep cost down.

singledeadrose

 

This is where my vacation turned not so romantic but my husband’s budget-saving adventure was just getting started.

 

Once we had the camper and we started to drive, we realized that California is not so flat, that the hills are really big, and how fast one can go down! At one point, the camper actually died half way up a hill and we both started to panic. Luckily it restarted and we were able to turn back down the hill.  Parking to eat out — forget about it, let alone trying to do it in a camper! It took almost 45 minutes to park everywhere we went. Trying to find a grocery market in the city was a little nuts, but we had decided to save on buying food during the day so we could go out for dinners. Lacking electricity, we had to turn the camper’s fridge into a cooler.  We continually bought ice, and laid towels down because it was a stand up cooler that drained on its own. That led to rotating soaked towels so they didn’t mildew and stink up the camper. No, stinking up the camper was due to my husband’s convenient use of the toilet in the mornings with a bottle of emergency water to wash it down.  We had a pass to the YMCA for showering.

I didn’t get any sleep the whole trip.  Since we were sleeping in neighborhoods and I was so hot without air conditioning, I wore next to nothing.  I was not willing to open the windows because I was wearing next to nothing! I ended up so grumpy in the mornings and near a meltdown. Interestingly, my husband was always able to sleep and wake with a smile every morning. To cheer me up, he would make me laugh while we ate our slightly warm milk and cereal by telling stories of awful family vacations in Africa. He was so happy knowing that we were doing these great things during the day and saving money at the same time. It’s hilarious to think about because this trip was painful and amusing all in one. The trip actually ended up good because we did all the fun tourist stuff, took lots of pictures, and had great food but maybe next time I’ll tread more cautiously. ~Victoria

camper

*Dr. Randy Chatelain is a Marriage & Family Therapist, popular speaker, and a member of the Utah Marriage Commission.

 

Marriage Myths – Part 8

December 31st, 2012

Welcome to Marriage Myth #8!  As you read the Relationship_Stages_Myths article, and read on here, you might consider talking with the people in your life about what marriage means.  What do you believe is the purpose or point of marriage?  When I talk to my spouse about our beliefs about marriage, our connection grows, our patience increases and our love deepens.  Give it a shot and please let me know how it goes!  (PS – What did you and your spouse discover about your endorsement or rejection of Myth #7?) Read the rest of this entry »

Marriage Myths – Part 7

November 13th, 2012

Welcome to Marriage Myth #7!  As you read about the Relationship_Stages_Myths and read on here, you might consider talking with the people in your life about what marriage means.  What do you believe is the purpose or point of marriage?  When I talk to my spouse about our beliefs about marriage, our connection grows, our patience increases and our love deepens.  Give it a shot and please let me know how it goes!  (PS – What did you and your spouse discover about your endorsement or rejection of Myth #6?)

Myth #7: Maintaining romantic love is the key to marital happiness over the life span for most couples. Read the rest of this entry »

Marriage Myths – Part 6

October 15th, 2012

Welcome to Marriage Myth #6!  As you read the article and read on here, you might consider talking with the people in your life about what marriage means.  What do you believe is the purpose or point of marriage?  When I talk to my spouse about our beliefs about marriage, our connection grows, our patience increases and our love deepens.  Give it a shot and please let me know how it goes!  (PS – What did you and your spouse discover about your endorsement or rejection of Myth #5?)

Myth #6: I must first feel better about my partner before I can change my behavior toward him or her. Read the rest of this entry »

Keeping up with the Joneses

September 13th, 2012

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Every time my wife and I walk into a friend’s home we seem to be bombarded with a slew of subliminal messages telling us we don’t have enough and we need to buy more. My wife has even been quoted saying, “Leather couches, new cars, home decor, summer vacations and a baby on the way. How do they have all of this nice stuff?”

We analyzed our situation and often asked ourselves, “What were we doing differently than other couples our age?” We know each situation is different, so we tried to avoid comparisons and focus on what we could do to improve ourselves and our marriage, but that is sometimes hard to do. Read the rest of this entry »

Fighting About Money?

August 21st, 2012

I cannot tell you how many times my wife and I were given that advice before we got married. In one form or another we were told, “Don’t ever fight or argue about money; it’s not worth it.” At the time we were so in love that we were impervious to potential fights or arguments, so we took the advice with a grain of salt.

Read the rest of this entry »

Marriage Myths – Part 5

July 23rd, 2012

Welcome to Marriage Myth #5!  As you read the Relationship Stages Myths article and read on here, you might consider talking with the people in your life about what marriage means.  What do you believe is the purpose or point of marriage?  This kind of conversation can be enlightening.  While I talk to my spouse about our beliefs about marriage, our connection grows, our patience increases and our love deepens.  Give it a shot and please let me know how it goes!  (PS – What did you and your spouse discover about your endorsement or rejection of Myth #4?)

Myth #5: The more my spouse discloses positive and negative information to me, the closer I will feel to him or her and the greater our marital satisfaction will be. Read the rest of this entry »

Sole 2 Soul Event

July 12th, 2012

Some people run to love.  Others run away from love.  Here is your chance to run for love.  Join us at Sugar House Park Saturday, July 14 for the Sole to Soul 5k and event.  The 5k begins at 9AM with other activities to follow.  There will be lots of fun, free activities for loved ones of all ages.  Make sure to stop by the Stronger Marriage booth,  visit with Dr. Liz,   and pick-up a  FREE  copy of our marriage handbook!

Pre-register to save your spot for the 5k at www.sole2soulrace.com and use passcode ‘GUEST’ for a free registration! Come celebrate love with us!

 

Setting Expectations in Marriage

June 6th, 2012

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Hello again everyone! Married life has been keeping me busier than expected.  When my wife and I were discussing what we thought married life would be like, we thought we would be spending the majority of our free time together – and it would be so great!  The truth is that although we do spend the majority of our free time together, it just never seems like there’s enough free time.  And while the time we spend together is great, I’m left wanting more.

Have any of you experienced this too?  Were you surprised by what you expected marriage to be vs. the reality of what it is?  Read the rest of this entry »

Marriage Myths – Part 4

May 30th, 2012

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Welcome to Marriage Myth #4!  As you read the article (link to full article below) and read on here, I encourage you to search the corners of your own mind, invite your spouse to do the same and discuss together your beliefs about what marriage means.  When you both honestly make the effort to do so, I anticipate that your connection will blossom, your patience for one another will increase, and your love will deepen.  Give it a shot and please let me know how it goes! (PS – What did you and your spouse discover about your endorsement or rejection of Myth #3?)

Myth #4: Either my spouse loves me or doesn’t love me; nothing I do will affect the way he or she feels about me. Read the rest of this entry »