Several months ago, Eric and I found ourselves consistently wondering how to be more intentional in our marriage. Last summer, we read a book together, going on weekly coffee dates to discuss each chapter and how it applied to our marriage. This was so significant for us, but we recognized that the season we were/are in is not as conducive to keeping up with a book together as it was last year.
When we were dating, we went through a book called 101 Questions to Ask Before You Get Engaged. After you get past the cheesy cover, this was so much fun for us to pull out on road trips or over dinner on a date. We would take turns picking random questions to discuss, such as, “How do you want to spend holidays when you have a family?” and “What were finances like for your family while you were growing up?” and “What do you see in your parents’ marriage that you want/don’t want?” These questions helped to give us a picture of the other’s past, as well as how that might translate into what their marriage and family would be like in the future. I highly recommend it for couples who are seriously dating, as it is a good resource for questions you might not have thought to ask, and it prepares you to deal with these decisions in the future.
So I decided to bring this question-asking tradition back. I put together a list of questions I found from various places on the internet, printed them off, then cut them into strips and stuck them in a pocket of my purse. In the middle of a date, I randomly exclaimed, “Magic purse!” and told a confused Eric to stick his hand in. He pulled out a slip of paper, unraveled it, and read off the question. I don’t know where the phrase “magic purse” came from, but it stuck, and on various dates or road trips or even sitting at home in the evenings, we would take turns pulling out a question or two and discussing them.
This has been a key to keep us talking, and if we have had a rough week and are feeling mentally exhausted, we don’t have to put forth a whole lot of effort to think of good questions. It keeps us daydreaming about the future and having a family, or even just continually being a student and learning about each other. Some of the questions are silly and fun, while others require more thoughtful input.
If you want too start this question-asking tradition, feel free to use this compilation of our questions to start with, and let me know if you come up with any good questions of your own! Click here to download the list.
Another resource for questions is from one of my favorite blogs, Today’s Letters – their weekly questions require vulnerability, but also provide room for specific growth in understanding your spouse and how to connect with him or her.