Monday, June 30, 2008

Marriage Mondays

Matrimony Magic or Matrimony Mayhem? The first year – and those after, too – are often filled with magic or mayhem. Yes, there is Matrimony Mediocrity, too, but it’s normally the magical moments or the mayhem that we tend to remember the most.

So, with that said Mondays will be dedicated to those magical moments (like the first time he introduced you as his wife or the first time you sat in the middle of your new house that you share with your new husband and you thought to yourself gleefully, “I’m married now, isn’t this great?”); or... those not so magical moments (like when you can’t agree peacefully whose favorite couch you’re going to keep or you sat in the middle of your new house that you share with your new husband and you thought to yourself fearfully, “I’m married now, how did I get here?”).

I guarantee you will probably think both of those things several times through out the course of your first year… and beyond. But, not to worry, it doesn’t mean that you’re uncertain, or that you made a mistake. Being nervous about being a new wife is perfectly normally and more common than most new brides care to admit.

Marriage Mondays will highlight some of those ups and downs and offer some do’s and don’ts to help you get through them without having a panic attack. If you have a magical or mayhem moment that you’d like to share, please leave a comment or shoot me an e-mail at

Remember, there’s nothing wrong with not knowing what to do in your marriage, but there is something wrong with not finding out!

Winks & Smiles,

Friday, June 27, 2008

The Newlywed Life Book List

As an author and an avid reader, it was easy for me to decide to include a reading list on The Newlywed Life. While I haven’t decided if it will be weekly, bi-weekly or monthly, I will regularly recommend books to help you thrive in your first year of marriage and beyond.

Obviously, my book, Help! I’m a Newlywed…What Do I Do Now? Wife-Saving Advice Every New Bride Must Know to Survive the First Year of Marriage, is at the top of the list because it’s filled with priceless tips to get you through that newlywed year and beyond; and, ahem, it’s mine. BUT, I promise I won’t overkill you with it.

So, with that said, the second book to add to the list is The Nest Newlywed Handbook, An Owner’s Manual for Modern Married Life, by Carley Roney.

This book, from the creators of The Knot and, is filled with advice, detailed to-dos, checklists, quizzes, and worksheets that are sure to spark conversations, fix problems and get your new life together on track and off to a good start. It speaks to both husbands and wives and is a great resource to read straight through or pick up and refer to certain chapters as needed.

As I urge you to read my book and others, I will constantly remind you while exploring these resources to keep two things in mind – be open to learning something that you didn’t know and be smart enough to ignore something that doesn’t work for you. Your marriage will be better for it! Happy reading …

Winks & Smiles,

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Got Game?

It’s Hump Day at my other blog, Wifey’s House, the one day a week I dish about sex. I started Hump Day to make sure that sex stays on our minds and active in our relationships. I wasn’t sure if I was going to have Hump Day at The Newlywed Life because everyone knows that newlyweds have sex all the time, don’t they? As soon as they leave the reception it’s on and poppin’, right? Wrong. Hopefully, most newlyweds do have a thriving and active sex life, but it’s a myth to think that they are constantly doing it and that their sex life – like everyone else’s – doesn’t need any extra attention, because it does. So with that said, I’m declaring Wednesdays at The Newlywed Life Hump Day, too. Sometimes I will cross post the same thing and sometimes it might be tailored to each blog. Today’s post works across the board…

A few weeks ago I wrote about treating yourself to a Sexy Splurge. I do my best to try and practice what I preach – especially when shopping is involved – so I crashed Jenny over at Daily Dose of Motherhood’s Pure Romance Party and picked up this fun little game.

It’s called I.O.U., The Game of Hidden Pleasures. It comes with 42 hidden pleasure pull-tab cards that you and your lover exchange and then do whatever is revealed on the card. Directions include things like Dinner served naked, Shower for two, Erotic bedtime story and Playful ice-cube fun.

What a fun and simple way to initiate sex. Slip a card to your husband on his way off to work so he can look forward to cashing it in when he gets home; or use it as an I.O.U. when you need to tell him no, but keep him happy and looking forward to the next time.

Games can be a great way to keep the sex sizzling in your relationship. How about you? When’s the last time you bought, played or even made up a game? This week have a little fun with your husband and show him that you’ve got game…

Winks & Smiles,

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The Newlywed Nine

No, I’m not talking about months, I’m talking about pounds. Gasp! Do you remember going away to college and hearing about – or gaining – the freshman fifteen? Well, here we go again; new circumstances, new husband, and a whole new set of temptations to put on the pounds.

One of the great things about getting married is security. You’ve got him now and that’s a wonderful and relaxing feeling. But, don’t get too comfortable especially when it comes to the way you look. It may sound sexist but it’s true. Ask any newlywed man what he fears the most about getting married, and I guarantee you that “my wife will let herself go” will be one of his top three answers. Most men fear that we’ll gain weight, lose interest in sex and turn into our mothers – but that’s a whole other post.

I have a very simple solution for this one – don’t let it happen. It’s important that you take care of yourself, first and foremost, for you, and it’s nice that your husband can reap the benefits, too. You can’t be happy in a relationship if you’re not happy with yourself. We feel better, look better, and are happier when we take care of ourselves.

So, once a week I will dedicate a post to knocking out the newlywed nine. As a fitness lover and personal trainer I will share what I know about exercise and eating good to help you stay that hot chick your husband married; or to help you turn into that hot chick you’ve always wanted to be. And… I’d love to hear from you. Make sure to chime in and share your secrets to looking and feeling good, too.

You can start knocking out the newlywed nine by going to your doctor and getting a physical. I know that’s no fun but it’s necessary to find out where you stand health wise. Even you natural born hotties still need to go. You might have a bangin’ body on the outside but you want to make sure that everything on the inside is working well, too. And besides, you always want to get clearance from a doctor before starting any kind of physical activity.

So, here’s to making the newlywed nine... the newlywed none!

Winks & Smiles,

Monday, June 23, 2008

The Georgia Bridal Show

I had a fabulous time yesterday at The Georgia Bridal Show. It’s always fun to meet new brides, share in the excitement and to remind them that there actually is life after the wedding.

Thanks to all the wonderful people who stopped by my booth to say hello and purchase a book.

Congratulations to all the new brides and always remember, there’s nothing wrong with not knowing what to do in marriage, but there is something wrong with not finding out.

Winks & Smiles,

Friday, June 20, 2008

Book Signing...

I will be signing books at The Georgia Bridal Show on Sunday, June 22, from 12-5 p.m. at The Gwinnett Center. If you live in the Atlanta area please do stop by to say hello and get your copy…

Winks & Smiles,

Thursday, June 19, 2008


“Why,” somebody asked me, “after nine years of marriage are you still interested in the newlywed year?”

“Because it’s the beginning,” I responded quickly, “it’s important and it’s often overlooked.”

Constantly overshadowed by her big sister, the wedding day, the first year of marriage often receives little preparation or attention until couples are swirling around in the midst of it. Now don’t get me wrong, I love a good wedding and a fabulous party, but it’s the marriage that is most important. The newlywed year starts the foundation of a marriage and that can be scary as *#%@! I wish I had a resource that provided practical advice and reassurance during my newlywed year. At that time there weren’t many options so I took matters into my own hands – literally – and wrote a book about it.

Below is an excerpt from Help! I’m a Newlywed…What Do I Do Now? Wife-Saving Advice Every New Bride Must Know to Survive the First Year of Marriage. It’s the intro to the book that shares a little insight about why I wrote it and continue to stay passionate about newlywed life…

Why I Wrote This Book

Help! I’m a newlywed… what do I do now? That’s a thought most new wives have at some time — in the kitchen, or the bedroom, when the in-laws come to visit, or maybe during everyday conversation with your husband. Regardless of where or why you thought it — you did! And if you’re anything like me, you were probably too scared to ask anyone what you should do. That’s exactly why I wrote Help! I’m a Newlywed… What Do I Do Now? Wife-Saving Advice Every New Bride Must Know to Survive the First Year of Marriage.

As a former glowing bride, I found my wedding day to be the happiest, most magical day of my life. I married my best friend, Napoleon, a man I had been involved with for more than five years and was engaged to for one. I was ecstatic that I found the man I wanted to start a family with, to travel around the world with, and to share denture cream with once we’re old and gray. My face beamed brightly all day, and I have very expensive pictures to prove it. I was absolutely certain that I had made the right decision — I love this man madly — so why was I about to go crazy?

I must’ve read every bridal magazine in existence during my engagement. They were very informative about everything leading up to my wedding. The problem was that very little information was available about what to do when I got back from my tropical-paradise honeymoon. Not much for when we walked through the door as husband and wife and had to live with each other — and like it! There was no one saying, “It’s going to be an adjustment,” or “It’s OK not to know what to do now.” All I heard was “You must be so happy” or “You’re so lucky to be married.” Now don’t get me wrong, I was happy, but I was also terrified of my new role in my relationship!

One day, I finally got up the nerve to ask my mother why Napoleon and I were fighting more than usual. And then I asked my aunt why I had to cook dinner every night. And what was I supposed to cook? I even asked my girlfriend how to get my husband to pick up his dirty clothes after he steps out of them each day.

After opening my mouth and screaming, “Help! I’m a newlywed… what do I do now?” I found out that I wasn’t alone. And most important, that I was perfectly normal. I discovered that millions of women and men have millions of questions about being married and that doesn’t mean they don’t love their spouses or don’t like being married. It just means they need help. So here it is… help… to hopefully make things a little easier for you and your new hubby.

Now I must tell you that I am not a doctor, a counselor or a therapist. I have not completed years of scientific research, nor do I plan to bore you, or myself, with any. I’m a wife. Correction, I’m a happy, loving, sometimes frightened, confused and frustrated but willing-to-learn, madly-in-love-with-my-spouse, still-figuring-things-out wife — just like you. I’ve successfully survived the newlywed years — my husband and I are celebrating eight exciting years together — and we continue to work hard to make our marriage work.

Now some of the advice in this book is first-hand, about things that I’ve done and some are things I wish that I did. I’ve drawn from my own ongoing experiences in this exciting world of marriage and I thought it would be helpful to share all of this with you. Plus, I’ve talked to countless brides and wives — newly engaged, freshly married and old-school veterans — and have taken into account their stories, joys and fears. I’ve asked for advice and suggestions from women and men of all ages, and I welcome yours, too.

My goal is to help new wives (and husbands, too) through the kinks of their happy but also scary new unions by offering suggestions for the many challenges and situations that they may face during the beginning of marriage. Hearing that other people were going through some of the same, very real adjustments of marriage that Napoleon and I were going through — no matter how large, small or silly they seemed — left me comforted and more confident in our relationship. I hope it will for you, too.

However, it’s very important for you as a new wife to understand that every individual and couple is different. Some people face different obstacles than others and some handle the same obstacles in different ways. It is crucial to your relationship that you as a couple handle the challenges that you face in your marriage in ways that make you both comfortable and happy.

The Do’s and Don’ts in this book are suggestions that I and many other newlyweds have found to be helpful. Some you may agree with, and some you may not. That’s perfectly OK! Do take this book seriously and take all the advice that suits you, but also take it with a grain of salt and a sense of humor. And, most importantly, don’t take anyone’s advice (even mine) if you are not comfortable with it!

I love my husband, I love being married — and I’d love to keep it that way. In writing this book, I’m not only trying to help you, but to help myself, too. There’s nothing wrong with not knowing what to do in your marriage, but there is something wrong with not finding out!

Happy Marriage & Best Wishes,

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Welcome to The Newlywed Life

Yes, amazingly there is life after you stroll down the aisle and say “I do.” While marriage is fabulous it’s also full of challenges. This blog was created to help new brides and wives navigate through the kinks and changes of the first year of marriage. It’s also a place to chime in… leave comments, share your thoughts, joys and fears, and, oh yes, part of the fun of being a newlywed is showing off those wedding and honeymoon pictures. You can e-mail them to me at and I will share them with the world.

Why did I start this blog? It all started nine years ago… blah, blah, blah. OK, short version. I fell in love, got married, and found out that there is a whole lot going on with this marriage thing, especially in the first year. So, I wrote a book about it. Help! I’m a Newlywed … What Do I Do Now? Wife-Saving Advice Every New Bride Must Know to Survive the First Year of Marriage offers new wives straight-forward, practical advice to help them thrive in the first year of marriage and beyond. And, yes, I really did say, “Help! I’m a Newlywed…What Do I Do Now?”

Anyway, I’m sure I will share more about my book and lots of juicy secrets from it as time goes on. For more information or to get your own copy please visit my website, Oh, yes, my website. Every Wednesday I write my "Ask Wifey" column where I answer two questions about marriage and/or motherhood. You can e-mail your questions to My site also has a resource page, more information about me, and a link to my other blog, Wifey’s House. Please feel free to stop by and visit me there, especially if any new brides would like a glimpse into future married life, guests are always welcome.

Back to why I started this blog. To provide a little help, guidance, or at least let you know that your not alone. Marriage is wonderful, but in the beginning it can also be scary as #@*%! Hopefully The Newlywed Life can do something to make your newlywed life a little easier.

So with that said I decided to start The Newlywed Life right away, without her makeup done. But don’t worry, I’ve contacted the fabulous Trendy Mommy Blog Designs, who gave Wifey’s House her wonderful look, and she is working on a great design for this one, too.

In the meantime, welcome to The Newlywed Life; and always remember, there’s nothing wrong with not knowing what to do in marriage, but there is something wrong with not finding out.

Winks & Smiles,