Posts Tagged ‘marriage’

ImageYour wedding was probably the best day of your life. Ideally, you only get one, and when it’s over, your photos are all you have to keep the memory of your beautiful wedding day alive. They tell the story of your wedding by taking people from pre-wedding jitters and preparation to the cake cutting and sometimes even the honeymoon.

To honor your photos, and therefore the memory of your big day, you must take your photos out of the box or off the memory card and make them presentable. “It’s a great thing to do as a couple,” says Julia Geffner, director of Marketing at in New York. “You get to relive the experience whether it’s for your wedding or honeymoon.”

Here’s what you can do to turn your wedding photos into a keepsake:

Work with your photographer to create an album

If you hired a professional photographer for your wedding, you likely paid for at least one photo album for which you’ll choose your favorite images of the day. The photographer will print or create the album for you. When choosing the album, you should make the photographer verify that it will be archival quality, so it does not damage your photos and can hold up over the years.

Nowadays, couples often get the digital files of all the photos taken at the wedding as part of their deal with the photographer. This is an ideal situation for couples because you can always print out and use images that you like and share them with family and friends for years to come. Right after the wedding, you can use these images to have prints made for thank you cards or to create a portrait as a gift for your parents or grandparents.

When choosing photos for your album, you should look for a good mix of photojournalism (candid shots) and portraits. You should enjoy looking at the images you choose, and they should include those closest to you.

Your pictures should tell the story of your day from beginning to end. “It’s ultimately your album, your story, your day, and it should reflect how you remember it,” says Hayden Perry, brand manager of Bella Pictures in San Francisco. “You should be choosing photos that you absolutely love.” 

The images should include those of the bride getting ready, portraits of the bridal party, the ceremony, portraits of the couple and their families, the reception, details (cake, bouquets, menu or place cards, centerpieces, etc.), the couple leaving the wedding, and traditions (jumping the broom, an Asian tea ceremony, etc.), suggests Perry. 

Create a handmade scrapbook

If you’re a creative couple, you can create a scrapbook that puts your photos and the details of your wedding on display in an old-fashioned way. Using fancy paper, rubber stamps, archival stickers, photo tabs and the like, you can create individual pieces of art that put your photos on a unique and personalized stage.

Truly, a scrapbook can be as simple or complicated as you’d like. It’s limited only by your imagination and the time you have to dedicate to it. You’ll also need to get the right materials (archival tape and adhesives, paper cutters, fancy-edged scissors to create trim, etc.) to achieve the look you want. These products can be found at most crafts and paper stores, and scrapbooks can be as expensive or as cheap as you’d like, too. 

Use an online publisher to create a printed album

Online publishers exist to help you organize the digital photo files you have already taken. If your photographer gives you full rights and access to the digital photos he or she took and your friends and family send you their digital photos from the wedding, you can download the images at an online publisher’s Web site.

Then, you can use those images to create pages for an album. Often, you can choose different backgrounds and colors to show off your images. The photos themselves can be manipulated to look like an oil painting or sepia image. You can go back and forth between black and white and color images with a click of the mouse. Geffner suggests that brides and grooms scan images — from the dried flowers pulled from the bride’s bouquet to the garter — to include in the album. She also suggests using images of the church or reception hall or other location as a background on which you can layer other images.

Perry, whose Bella Pictures offers services to non-clients who wish to use their company to print albums after the wedding, says couples often group like pictures, use the colors of their wedding somewhere in the album, and appreciate selective colorization, where a pop of color, say a red bouquet, appears in an otherwise black and white image. She adds that panoramic spreads are a fun way to show off a portrait or an entire ceremony or reception venue.

After you’ve chosen a cover and created all your pages online, the publisher will print out and bound your album and then send the hard copy to you.

Place portraits on the wall in a special place in your home

With your digital files, you can manipulate the size and shape of your favorite photos. Then, you can have them mounted in frames and hung on the wall. Depending on your personal style, you can display the photos as though they are individual works of art in a gallery with one photo in matted frames or as though they are in a country estate with multiple photos appearing as a collage in a family room. 

Color shots are better with multiple shots, while black and white or sepia images are better for the gallery effect. Before you actually hammer in the nails for hanging, you might want to use a paper pattern of the frames you are using to determine where each should be placed. The price of creating art for your wall with wedding photos varies widely, depending on numerous factors. For example, are you having the images professionally printed and mounted? Or are you creating a collage with photos you printed yourself? Are you having the photos professionally framed or are you using frames purchased in a department store?

Whatever you decide to do with your photos and however much you spend, you should have fun with the activity — and take pleasure in remembering the day you were married.




ImageBy most accounts the first year of marriage – barring that all too brief honeymoon phase replete with sex and lots of it – is difficult at best. 

There’s something about marriage, the act of committing to each other for life, that brings with it all sorts of unrealistic expectations and unexpected tensions. Many newlyweds, even those who lived with their spouse before getting hitched, have no idea what “marriage” is going to be like. How could they? No one ever tells them.

To be honest, marriage can be like peace negotiations during times of war, especially during that first year. Both sides know that it’s in their best interest to unite and work together, but they can’t help but cling to their independence and whatever it was that launched the war in the first place. 

Unlike warring nations, however, couples should have love at their base. This can help them reach agreements faster – or at least it should. But first they have to realize that marriage isn’t some sort of fantasy. Neither of them is going to change over night. You are going to fight sometimes. And marriage takes some getting used to.

Knowing marriage secrets – those things that no one bothered to mention while you were picking out wedding colors and china patterns – can go a long way to keeping the peace and getting through that difficult first year. Here’s what you need to know about marriage:

Marriage is hard work

All that wooing and communication that took place during your courtship needs to be part of your marriage, too. People often think that they can rest on their laurels once they’re married. They figure, “I’ve got the girl or guy now, so why do I have to send flowers, remember birthdays, be romantic, or discuss problems?” 

This is flawed logic. It is actually more important to remind your spouse why you are so lovable than it was when you were just dating. After all, now you have to live with each other, and you know the other person’s every flaw. If you want someone to put up with your bad habits, such as leaving dresser drawers open or spending way too much time in the bathroom, you better give them reasons to stick around, too. 

Also, no one wants to feel as though they are being taken for granted. It can breed resentment. Showing your spouse you care – even if it’s just with a kiss goodnight or a love letter in his lunch – helps him or her forget about all the rest. More importantly, these demonstrations, including talking about everything from your day to whether to have children, reminds your spouse why he or she chose to marry you. By the way, although it is work, none of these actions should feel like chores. You should want to do them and get pleasure out of them, even communicating about difficult topics that need discussing. Isn’t this all just part of love, after all?

You have not won the lottery

People tend to think that having a dual income, which is what usually happens when couples first marry, is like winning the lottery. They feel as though they are rich. That’s rarely the case. Yes, you will probably have more money if you join your earnings. Not every couple does. Some keep their finances or part of their finances separate. Others put all their money together in one account and they own everything together, too. That’s great. 

Regardless, you will have more expenses. Your earnings double, but so does your spending. You’re paying for the medical care of two people, food for two people, shelter for two people. And since many young couples quit living like they are in a dorm, you might find yourself spending on nicer furniture, tools for cooking, and the like. In any event, you should avoid living too large. Save your money and make sure you don’t get into financial hot water. Remember, you’re in this marriage for the long haul and you have many, many years to be together. Think about having money for a house, vacations, children, and retirement. All those years and experiences will require serious funds, so start to save now.

Marriage takes some getting used to

Hearing yourselves referred to as Mr. and Mrs. X… will sound strange for a while. And it might take a few months – or even that whole first year – to get used to being married. Being someone’s husband or wife is different from being a boyfriend or girlfriend. This is for life. This is for better or worse. There’s no out now. When you fight, you can’t automatically think about leaving. Your lives have been legally intertwined. You can’t just stop calling to break up. You have to try harder and you have to work more and you have to nurture the relationship, so that it keeps growing. Beyond your new title, you have to get used to your new responsibilities. The fact is that you must think of the other person now whenever you are making plans, from ordering take-out to investing your savings. Getting a wedding ring and taking vows is just the first step. You’re not automatically going to understand your role after that. You will grow into the job as time goes by.

Sex won’t be as bad as you think

You might have heard that marriage is where sex goes to die. But that’s not at all true. In fact, most studies have shown that married people have more and better sex than single people. Duh! You have a built-in sex partner. No need to go to a bar to pick up someone. You can just roll over in bed. Yes, over the course of your marriage, you will have more and better sex than your single friends. However, you must realize that no one can sustain the levels of passion that they might have had at the start of their relationship when everything was fresh and new. And real life gets in the way of sex. 

You will have nights when you’re too tired for sex or you would both rather watch your favorite TV show. That’s all right. In fact, that’s part of the comfort of marriage. The key is to give up the TV show once in a while for a roll in the hay. When you do, make it good, really good. Truly focus on each other and make sure you’re both satisfied, and enjoy.

In-laws will get on your nerves

I know. I know. You have a great relationship with your in-laws. Your besties. That’s fine and well. But the day will come (it probably already has) that they will say or do something that annoys you. It might be something small that you can overlook, but it will happen. It’s a normal part of life and family. If the in-laws are doing things that you cannot overlook, such as dictating decisions for the two of you or coming over all the time or being just plain mean, then you have to speak up. The first step should always be to talk to your spouse about his or her family. Then, have him or her talk to them on your behalf. Your spouse, after all, has a closer relationship with them and they won’t feel as attacked by him or her. 

Remember, that you and your spouse are your own family now. Try not to get too worked up by the extended family outside your circle of two. By the way, your in-laws might find you annoying, too. Don’t be surprised to hear that from your spouse. Try not to take it personally. Look at yourself objectively and determine if they have a point. Then, try to make changes to improve the relationship if you can. It’s always better to get along with your spouse’s family, so try to make the relationship work.

You will have your moments

Throughout your marriage, but especially at the beginning, you might find yourself questioning your decision to marry. You might even mourn your single life a bit. There are pros and cons to every stage of life, and you might miss something as small as sleeping in a bed by yourself once in a while. Then, your spouse might do something upsetting like telling his friends about your sex life or leaving the wet towels on the bathroom floor for the millionth time. You’ll find yourself longing for the single life and regretting this marriage. It’s all right. This doesn’t mean that you’re headed for divorce. It just means that you’re human. 

Most people second guess the decisions at some point. It’s how you deal with the doubts that matter. When you start to regret your decision, try to remember all the reasons you wanted to marry this person. Think about the loving gestures and the things you would miss if the marriage were to end. You’ll probably find yourself forgetting about those doubts in no time at all.


Sometimes love just isn’t enough to keep a couple together.

So often on the Marriage Forums, a person will share an issue in a marriage that is an obvious deal breaker. When asked if the issue was discussed prior to getting married, the answer is often “no.”

Don’t make that mistake. Don’t get married without knowing your future spouse’s thoughts on these issues that can kill a marriage.

Compromise is usually not an option if the two of you disagree on these issues that can be deal breakers.

1.Do you want to have children?
It is a huge red flag in your relationship if you and your future spouse can not agree on whether to have children or not.

Thinking that you can deal with this issue later in your marriage is a mistake.

Making a decision to have a baby when one parent doesn’t want to have children is not fair to the child or to your marriage.

2.Can we talk about money?
The mechanics of how the two of you will handle your finances really isn’t the issue. Many couples in successful marriages have separate checking accounts and many couples in successful marriages have one account.

The issue is whether or not the two of you can calmly and practically talk about money.

If how your money is spent, or saved, or not spent is an issue before you get married, it will be an even bigger issue after your wedding.

If your future spouse doesn’t want to talk about money, or doesn’t think talking about money is important, postpone your wedding until this issue is solved.

3.Can we talk about sex?
There is no way of predicting the future when it comes to an individual’s sexual libido.

However, if the two of you are already having sexual issues, you shouldn’t get married until the issues are settled.

Differences in sexual frequency, desire, preferences, fantasies, masturbation, pornography, expectations, etc. will tear the two of you apart. If you and your partner are unable to talk about the issues, or if your future spouse doesn’t see any real problem, or doesn’t want to talk about sex with you, cancel the wedding.

4.How much time will we spend with our in-laws?
They may be wonderful people who love you both, but your in-laws should not be allowed to interfere in your marriage relationship.

If either one of you will not set boundaries with your own parents when it comes to visits, phone calls, finances, children, etc., the problem with your in-laws will only worsen.

5.Will you clean the toilet?
If the answer is “no” or “why should I?” or “Isn’t that your job?”, you have several options.

•You can hire someone to do the chores that neither of you wants to do.

•You can accept that you will be doing 90% of the chores around the house.

•You can discuss the importance of sharing the household chores together.

If none of these options work out, call off the wedding. This is another one of those issues that won’t suddenly get better after you sign the marriage license.

6. How do you want to spend our days off?
The answer to this question will reveal several things.

•How your future spouse likes to spend free time.

•The value your future spouse places on having fun together.

•Whether or not you will come first before work.

Balancing work and fun and family time and personal time is not easy.
Without talking about the time aspect of your life together, you may find yourself grumbling because your spouse is spending what you consider to be too much time with old friends and extended family, or on hobbies, sports, the computer, etc

Living a balanced life together will create the time you both need, individually and together, for vacations, quiet time, and fun time.

7.How often do you drink?
The answer to this question, or to questions about smoking cigarettes or using drugs, will reveal whether or not your future spouse has a potential addiction problem which could end up not only threatening your marriage but could also put you in legal and financial jeopardy.

8.Have you ever hit someone?
If your future spouse has anger management issues, or tries to control who you see and what you do, or is causing you to walk on egg shells, cancel your wedding.

These are signs of a potentially abusive personality. Don’t think you can “save” him or her. You can’t. This is a problem that needs professional counseling.

9. Do you think it is important to be faithful to one another?
Open marriage and swinging is okay for some married couples, but most want and prefer a monogamous relationship. If your future spouse and you have differing opinions on what cheating is or isn’t, don’t get married until this issue has been discussed.
10. What do you think we’ll be doing in thirty or forty years?
If your future spouse can’t answer this or won’t answer this, then the two of you need to talk about long-lasting marriage expectations.
Why marry someone who doesn’t think your marriage will last?


Marriage is a social institution in which two people choose to merge their lives and create a family together. Psychology Today’s article “Marriage, A History” states that marriage has been a tradition for thousands of years, but in recent years, the practical need for marriage is not as prevalent as the emotional need. Forbes’s “Why Men and Women Get Married” asserts that, with the advances of women in higher education and the workplace, women no longer need to get married. However, women still want to find the right man to marry.

History of Marriage

According to Psychology Today, marriages in the past were motivated by everything but love. Marriages in many ancient cultures were arranged by the parents for the mutual benefit of both families. These benefits were political, social and financial, but did not always take the woman’s wants or needs into account. In the Victorian Era, love became more important for marriages, however many people still believed that money was just as important a consideration in choosing a husband. In the early 1900s, love was the most important consideration, and marriage became a social requirement. The advances of women in the workplace and education have changed marriage from a social requirement to a want.

Life Benefits

Since the 1970s, research on the benefits of marriage for both sexes varies in its viewpoint and conclusions. Some researchers’ findings discussed in a Psychology Today series believed that marriage was actually toxic for women, but other researchers found that married women have a longer life span and less depression than single or divorced women. This supports the finding in these studies that men also live longer, healthier lives when married. This may be because wives make sure that their husbands go to the doctor when they are sick, and married couples have health insurance more often than single people.

Financial Benefits

Financial benefits exist for both men and women when married, according to Psychology Today’s article series “Is Marriage Toxic to Women?” The author states married men statistically are more successful at work than single men. The article theorizes that it is because the wife is taking care of things at home, allowing their husband to work more hours. The article also states that married women are more successful as well, but they more often sacrifice a career or choose to not advance in their careers so that they are available to their children.

Legal Benefits

“Marriage Rights and Benefits” from NOLO states that married couples enjoy legal benefits that single couples do not. Married couples are able to make decisions for each other. For example, if your husband is taken to the hospital unconscious, you can make medical decisions for his care. If you are not married, you may not be given the opportunity to even see your significant other in some situations. If, heaven forbid, your husband dies, there is no question who makes decisions regarding his last wishes, his estate and his remains. If you are not married, you may not be able to make any decisions and may be left to suffer the loss while others make the decisions.

Bottom Line

The life, financial and legal benefits of marriage are the practical reasons to get married. But, according to Psychology Today, marriage is the ultimate expression of love and devotion. Forbes states that women are looking for a mate who will be emotionally supportive, helpful at home, romantic and good communicators. Women are also looking for a mate who will be supportive of their careers and be a partner in life. The bottom line, according to all the sources, is that women are looking for love and a partner in life.