Archive for the ‘Special Days’ Category

Happy 2015 Valentine’s Day

January 29, 2015

Turtles in love

Hello Friends,

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Yes, once again it is that day of the year when we honour our partners and try and experience them as the lovers we fell in love with.

I know there is too much pressure put on this day. It seems as though the authentic romance we want to feel gets lost in the materialistic Hallmark day it has become. Have no fear…put the meaning back in by keeping things simple. Somehow simplicity can help to make it more memorable.

Here are some ideas for those of you who need inspiration:

  • Give your partner a love poem (you don’t even have to write it!)
  • Make a nice dinner at home and eat by candlelight on the floor
  • Just spend the evening in candlelight!
  • Go for a walk in the day and stop somewhere new for a coffee and surprise your lover with special chocolates with the coffee
  • Stay in bed together longer than usual in the morning!
  • FLIRT with your lover all day!
  • Give your lover a massage

Whatever you do, be loving, kind and have some fun because otherwise what’s the point?

Dare ya – You can use our ideas but we dare you to come up with your own unique idea for that special someone!  Spread the love around!

Love on V Day,

I’m Dating Someone Even Though I’m Married

February 6, 2014

Our latest guest blogger is Jarrid Wilson, husband, pastor, author, and blogger. He has made a confession that has everyone talking lately. You’ll see why in the post below.

I have a confession to make. I’m dating someone even though I’m married.

She’s an incredible girl. She’s beautiful, smart, cunning, strong, and has an immensely strong faith in God. I love to take her out to dinner, movies, local shows, and always tell her how beautiful she is. I can’t remember the last time I was mad at her for longer than five minutes, and her smile always seems to brighten up my day no matter the circumstances.

Sometimes she will visit me at work unannounced, make me an incredible lunch, or even surprise me with something she personally baked. I can’t believe how lucky I am to be dating someone even though I am married. I encourage you to try it and see what it can do for your life.

Oh! Did I mention the woman I am dating is my wife? What did you expect?

Just because you’re married, doesn’t mean your dating life should end.

I need to continue to date my wife even after I marry her. Pursuing my wife shouldn’t stop just because we both said, “I do.” Way too many times do I see relationships stop growing because people stop taking the initiative to pursue one another.

Dating is a time where you get to learn about someone in a special and unique way. Why would you want that to ever stop? It shouldn’t. Those butterflies you got on the first date shouldn’t stop just because the years have passed. Wake up each day and pursue your spouse as if you are still on your first few dates. You will see a drastic change for the better in your relationship.

When it comes to any relationship, communication and the action of constant pursuit is key. Nobody wants to be with someone who doesn’t want to pursue them whole-heartedly.

I encourage you to date your spouse, pursue them whole-heartedly, and understand that dating shouldn’t end just because you said, “I do.”

Dare ya:

See his website – for additional blogs.

The greatest Valentine’s Day gift ever!! Quality time together

February 11, 2013

Don’t let your job or the kids or volunteer work or time with friends and extended family interfere with your committed relationship.

Many couples today find that being together doesn’t guarantee that they will have quality time with one another. If you are both busy, you have to plan to spend time together. Here are some ideas.

Difficulty: Easy

Time Required: Varies

What you need:  commitment and a calendar!

Here’s How:

  1. Schedule a weekend just for the two of you. Write it on your calendar, put it on your computer planner, etc. Don’t change it for any other event. You don’t have to go anywhere.
  2. Have lunch together once a week. On nice days, meet in a park.
  3. Let your children know that you two need time alone together. Tell them they can knock on your closed bedroom door only if there is blood.
  4. Walk around the block together.
  5. Do chores together like the dishes or weeding. It may not sound like quality time, but it can be.
  6. When you are running errands together, turn off the radio or CD player in the car and talk with one another.
  7. Take showers together.
  8. Spend 20 minutes a day in daily Imago dialogue. “How do I feel about today?” is a standard dialogue question. Remember, dialogue is a gift you give to one another. However, it is a gift with no strings attached.
  9. Arrange for a quiet evening at home alone once a month.
  10. Hire a babysitter to watch the kids for a couple hours even though you are home. This works wonders!
  11. Work out a deal with another couple to have them watch your kids overnight so you can have a romantic evening alone … then you watch their children for them.
  12. Schedule dates with one another. Having an evening or afternoon out together twice a month is a good beginning.
  13. Think about coming to one of Imago Vancouver’s updates for graduates of the Getting the Love You Want workshops.
  14. When you travel together, don’t take work on the plane or road trip. Spend that time talking with each other.
  15. Have a one-night stand with each other.

Bottom line: if you don’t schedule time for one another, you won’t have the time.

Dare ya –

What are you going to do to schedule a quality time date with your beloved? (Remember don’t wait for your partner to do it. You do it. Life happens while you are waiting).

Yours truly on Valentines 2013,


How to put meaning back into Valentines Day

February 12, 2012

Here we are again….Valentines Day is almost upon us!

It doesn’t matter if you are married, dating, engaged, in a committed partnership or newly in love. Whether in a relationship or not, Valentines Day impacts most of us.  When it comes to V Day there are bound to be as many experiences as there are different kinds of relationships,  I am sure most of us have  been through highs and lows; some memorable, some we may wish to forget; this one coming up, are you looking forward to it?

What is V Day  really about?

What does it mean to you?

Is it just a plot set up by corporations to make money off of us?

Why does it often feel like a let down?

How can we make it a day of real meaning?

How can it be the day you really want it to be?

What do you think about these questions? (why not send us a response and tell us?)

Honestly, I have mixed feelings about it.

I think it is great to mark a day a year and celebrate love and relationship, commitment and romance. Making  Feb 14th special is wonderful as long as it  turns out wonderful.

I hope this post will give you an idea of how to make it memorable in a good way!

Unfortunately, too often I hear folks complain of being let down. Why does this happen? I think it comes from having hopes that are not met or wanting a partner to do something or say something that does not happen or if it does it’s just not quite right.  Then comes the sadness, the discouragement or worse.

Seems like too many couples nearing Feb 14 come to it with this thing called…it begins with e and is followed by_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _s. That’s right expectations (for those of you not good with words clues).

What is this about? I think we want so much for our partner to be a certain way towards us or do a certain something and it never feels good enough.  Even more confusing is when they do it only once a year  so we are  even more  disappointed about the other 364 days. Valentines Day can be a real set up!

How can we change this???

Seems to me what we all really want is to connect with our lover and feel special. My suggestion is, why not keep it simple and put real meaning into it?

Let’s face it, we all want to feel appreciated and loved! Ask yourself how can I express this to my partner so it will really land? How can I do a few small and meaningful behaviours that will promote connection and help my partner feel loved?

Dare ya!

(Here are some ideas to get you started):

First off…REMEMBER IT IS ABOUT THE OTHER 364 DAYS OF THE YEAR! Yes keep it special on the 14th but why not generalize it to the rest of the year. Don’t we all want to keep it fresh and full of surprises all year round? It really is the little things that matter. Telling your partner what they want to hear is way better than a box of chocolates or roses!

Give your partner what they want not what you want to give them. Forget the lingerie if your partner doesn’t love it, why not come home early, put the kids to bed make a nice dinner and give your partner a massage? Oh yeah, clean up the kitchen too.

Send a sweet and sexy email or text more than 3 times in the day on the 14th.

Tell your partner what first attracted you to them and DO NOT make it brief, make it LONG!

Make a compilation of music your partner loves, include songs from the beginning of your relationship, special times together, relationship milestones.

Make a card, DO NOT BUY ONE….include a beautiful poem, “How Do I Love Thee” is tried and true!

Watch a movie genre you do not like but your partner does and ENJOY it.

Flood your partner with positive appreciations that tells them how much they mean to you.

Tell us what you have planned so we can add more ideas to this!

Yours truly,



Markers… Yours, Mine and Ours

September 6, 2010

Flickr / ornellaswouldgo

Why mark important events?

What markers are worth marking?

How should they be marked?

Some dates we mark because we love to celebrate happy times; some because we are grieving a loss; and some we feel we must acknowledge even if we don’t really want to (certain birthdays come to mind when I think about the latter! I had one of those this year and let’s just say it remains unmentionable). But back to relationship markers…

The marker that I feel most proud of, my greatest achievement of late is my 25th anniversary with my life partner Sarah. In gay years that’s actually 175 years because it is said that a gay year is like a dog year – you get 7 years for a straight folk’s 1 year because it is so damn hard. Well we have made it this far and wow have we been marking it BIG! 75 or 25 it doesn’t much matter it’s a LONG time believe me!

First off we went to Maui for 2 weeks with no kids. What a paradise: sun, beauty, beaches and pineapples galore. What a place to reconnect and remember what’s important. We had lots of dialogues about little and big stuff. We had tons of fun. We watched the sunset every night and walked the beach every day. We ate, we drank, we rested. It was just what we needed to mark our time together.

It’s been a summer of marking the time….. dinners with friends and family; many indulgences; we keep remarking a few times a week things like, “wow can you believe it’s been 25 years?!” or, “the time has sure gone by fast” or, “wow, feels like a lifetime time moves so slow!” or, “you know I still really like you”.

Let’s be honest. It has not been a bed of roses, sweetness and good moods. OH NO, not at all.

It’s been more like a constant sea of change. Like a wave: there’s the high of course, the crest which is the best part and then just when it seems as if it is going to last, crash we are at the low point only to build up again and the cycle continues. I guess after all these years I’ve learned that’s just life.

Way back when, in the beginning, of course it was wonderful. We were so young and actually had no idea about anything let alone relationships. Determined, in love, confident, conflict avoiders; pleasure seekers, — that was us.

Then a few years later add a dog, mortgage, a renovation, separate careers and 2 kids to the mix…all of sudden we had lots to disagree about!  That was just about the time we found Imago. Goodness knows what would have happened if we hadn’t.

So how have we completed 25 years with grace? I’d say our recipe was  about 3000 dialogues (ok, maybe 500), tons of humour, countless date nights, some serious setbacks and a whole lotta  trying. At the time, we didn’t know it was our recipe. No magic, just a lot of plodding and more commitment to”us” than I would ever have imagined possible.

There is one more key dynamic that I am still learning about and am far from perfecting. As we mark 25 years, I realize we are both continuing to mature to the point where we can delight in the other partner being who they really are, not who we want the other to be (this is another blog entry unto itself so stay tuned.)

I can say I am truly happy and grateful for all the work we have done that has taken us to this point.

Oh yeah, one more thing, happy markers are a great excuse for a party!!

Dare ya –

Mark something about your relationship you are proud of…anything. Contact us and tell us about it!

Yours truly,

T at 25!

Valentines Day…..Again

February 14, 2010

geishaboy500 / Flickr

Well folks here it is again, the day of…well, what is it to you?

This is what people tell me, and I must confess, I have thought all of these myself:

A capitalist plot. A day filled with love and gratitude. A big letdown day highlighted by unfulfilled needs and yearnings. An excuse to receive and eat chocolate.  An important day to deeply share in connection with your partner. A day in which there is some focus on romance and a good dinner out. A day a little more special than most.  The one day a year you are likely to feel really disappointed.  A day to just try to ignore.

All of these can be true depending on where your relationship is at in the present moment. It is a complex day because many people assign such significance to it and are sadly let down. Why?

I think it’s expectations.

C’mon, admit it. Don’t we all just wanna be that special someone to our partner and when our hopes and needs aren’t met just the way we want, we come crashing down, feeling hurt and rejected.


Sister72 / Flickr

Here’s what I propose: DON’T ALLOW YOURSELF TO GO THERE. Do not, and I repeat DO NOT, have a set of unrealistic expectations you want your partner to meet (especially if you don’t even tell them what they are) and then feel terrible because they haven’t been met. And then do not, and I repeat DO NOT, go off and have a temper tantrum (quiet or loud) because once again you feel let down and just plain crappy about your love life.

Save yourself the heartache and instead try….

  • Focusing on the GIVING. Put your energy into giving something to your partner you know he or she will appreciate. Make it small and meaningful.
  • Do not let any money exchange hands to gift this.
  • Make it an unconditional gift and experience how it feels to do this in a mature way!

Get the picture? If you need some ideas here they are:

  • A massage.
  • A card you have made with a message from you about what you are grateful for about your partner.
  • A note you have made with a sweet poem you have found in a book or on the internet.
  • Sitting them down and telling them 6 things you really appreciate about them.
  • If you have kids, allow your partner to sleep in. Make breakfast for the family.
  • Try a new recipe for dinner and remember the candles on the table.
  • Ask to go for a walk and have fun: do not bring up a complaint!

Send me other ideas and we’ll add them to the list.

Keep it simple and keep it real!

Dare ya –

Work with yourself to stretch and grow-up a little more. Mentally prepare yourself to GIVE unconditionally and notice how this feels. In order to do this it takes real emotional preparation because you will be using your big brain. Your limbic system will not like it one little bit. Be curious and relax. I know you can do it!!!!!