First let me start by saying if you are my offspring, or a friend of said offspring, while I love you all and so appreciate your support of my blog, please do yourselves a favor and STOP READING right here. Save your eyes from the words, your minds from the visions. Just know that there are certain things that husbands and wives, mommies and daddies, do to keep things fun and interesting in their marriages. And I’d like us to be able to look each other in the face over breakfast.
For the rest of you, let me share some of the best marriage advice I ever received — find a time during the holidays for some special one-on-one celebrating, create a new tradition, and have a Naughty Stocking night.
One of my favorite cousins, shared this advice years ago. It was when the kids were small and life was busy, and finding time to connect as a couple, especially during the holidays, was proving to be difficult. We were at a family, girls only, Christmas party and I was explaining that while I love the Christmas season and all the festivities that come with it, I was feeling tired and a bit drained and I missed my husband. She leaned over so as not to share with the entire gathering, and said, “Do you want to know our secret? We have a Naughty Stocking. On Christmas Eve, after the kids are in bed, and all the presents have been placed under the tree, we open a Naughty Stocking together. Sometimes it has the ingredients for a special drink, or lingerie, or any other things like that, and we have our own special night before getting up to do Christmas morning with the kids.” She explained how connecting like this as a couple, on the busiest night of the year, actually made them feel invigorated and renewed.
I let that sink in. Without even having to ask, I knew my husband would LOVE the idea, so I bought the naughtiest looking stocking I could find. Black velvet with a fur cuff. And I filled it up and started a new tradition that year. The stocking spends all year tucked in the back of a dresser drawer, but on Christmas Eve it finds its way out to be hung on a nail, on the doorknob to our bedroom, or when it’s too heavy just on the bed itself.
We take turns filling it. Which means some years it is filled with “I can’t tell which is the front, back, top or bottom” super, skimpy, dental floss style lingerie, and some years it has fun and flirty matching boxer shorts. Some years there have been massage lotions and oils, candles, and even a DVD of a crackling fire for ambience. Airplane-size liquor bottles are perfect for stuffing the stocking and making late night “naughty drinks.”
We look forward to our special time all day (even all week when we are hustling and bustling through life). We laugh, we have fun, we connect.
Even now that some of our kids are college age and stay up really, really late, we get all the presents wrapped, bows attached to the top, place them under the tree, make sure stockings are straightened and Santa’s cookies are just right, and then we sneak off to our room to see what’s inside the Naughty Stocking.
**Of course this year, if the offspring didn’t heed the above warning, we may have to start a new tradition and save the Naughty Stocking for another night. <<sigh>>