I got this from this little blog that I have where they often feature a Married Couple and showcase their home. So I decided to answer these questions on our own First anniversary.
Years married: 1 today
Where they live: Johannesburg
Tell us a little bit about yourselves. The Mr grew up in Johannesburg while I was born and brought up in Nairobi, Kenya.
Tell us your love story in one sentence. Met at Uni and were friends for a large part of the first year and then started dating and got married six years after meeting.
Tell us a little bit about where you live. We are currently renting a little two bed apartment. After the wedding expenses, we decided to save up some more for a deposit on a property in a couple of years. We chose a suburb quite close to work for both of us and we both spend 10 – 15 minutes commuting as it was important to us to limit the length of the commute. With six weeks to the wedding, we had no place and had both given notice on our places and had to find a place because the Mr had to move in at the start of the month. One afternoon, I found a place I liked, I called the agent, set up a meeting, viewed it, asked her to meet the Mr the next day and when we checked out, paid the deposit and moved in. It certainly helps to be quite aggressive with the property agent.
What is your favorite part of being married? Doing life with a friend, a solid and great partner – the good, the fun and the not so good. Endless hours of laughter and retelling of life’s best moments. Planning for the future and talking about a dream. Also, still getting to know each other with each new day.
What has been the most surprising thing about marriage? People’s expectations around so many things: 1) The appropriate time for you to start a family; 2) Roles and responsibilities around the house; 3) The expectation to always be together for all events and meetings. Between us, having to communicate more and working together to get to a single outcome that works for both of us. Definitely, abandoning the self and working on the joint.
Tell us about the process of moving in together. Neither of us had really lived alone prior to getting married so when we moved in together it was mainly with clothes, a few large appliances and the gifts we got from the wedding. Since then we have accumulated stuff together – me: mainly getting stuff for the kitchen, us: doing the large pieces together. We did decide on a neutral palate for the colour scheme and then we play it by needs and sometimes wants. Our big thing is making our home comfortable and inviting for us and our guests.
Which room in your home is your favorite, and why? I would have to say the sitting room and our bedroom because they both have a sense of being complete (needing very little more) and being comfortable but luxe.
What most makes your house feel like home? Knowing that all the stuff we have belongs to both of and has a specific memory attached to it and also the fact that it is our little space and that we can do with it as we please or don’t care to. Also, I kept all the cards we got from the wedding and that for me brings to mind the fact that we have a community that is rooting for us to stick things out and work on things.
Where do you splurge and where do you save when decorating? Still very much in the early stages of decorating so I can’t say much BUT, I am finding that if it’s something that we use occasionally, it’s easier to look at saving and if it’s something we don’t then splurge.
What is your favorite memory from your wedding? So many moments, locking eyes with each other for the first time and having my mom hand me over to the Mr; having the priest join our hands under his stole as he pronounced us man and wife, OUR EPIC FIRST DANCE!
How do you remember your wedding in your home? I mentioned the cards we got from guests at the wedding; the candle we lit to show us being united as one and then pics I recently got blown up for our home.
How does your family handle finances? We have a spreadsheet that summarises personal and joint finances and each of us is directly responsible for updating it and making sure that the appropriate costs are covered. We often touch base to talk through money decisions and then we continue. I would say both of us are equally involved in the decision making and implementation.
What’s your best tip for balancing your relationship and other life priorities? We have tried to implement a weekly date night but it’s not our thing. So we make sure we take time to talk and catch up with each other. When we have something that requires both of us to participate, we often consult on the others availability before making plans as sometimes the other might be committed or not feel like attending that particular event. In terms of family expectations, we try and not put the other one too far out of their comfort zone and just look out for them.
What different decisions, if any, would you make for your registry if you knew then what you knew now? I really enjoyed what we got and even the out of the list gifts we got. If I could do it differently, I don’t think I would have done it any other way.
Who cooks dinner? Definitely me! I love to cook and he washes up/ helps with the prep.
What is your go-to weeknight meal? Weekend meal? Jeez!! Don’t really have a standard go-to but it would have to be something that involves chicken/ chickpeas rice and a quick salad.
What’s your favorite place to find recipes? My trusted recipe book where I have cut out stuff I like, recipe books I had before we got married, Food 52, Serious Eats and Other blogs I like.
Do you have a favorite date night idea to share? Nothing beats getting into a series together that involves staying up late and pigging out at the weekend to get through it all. Also, planning a quick road trip and making a fun outing of it, even if its a trip that you periodically take together. We also love to listen to music together.
What is one small way you love or serve your spouse? By setting out his breakfast for him to take to work, he probably doesn’t like breakfast as much as I do but he takes it daily. He randomly surprises me with a cup of tea, made just as I love it and making sure I am always warm because I HATE THE COLD or BEING COLD.
Do you have children? No children yet!
Before getting married, I wish someone had told me… the stakes are so much higher once you get married. Everything seems magnified – every fight/ happy moment feels that bit bigger. A friend of mine once told me how marriage magnifies all the issues you had while dating and that’s true. I have also learnt the safety in marriage that comes from involving our families, God, the State … and that’s protection for him and I.
Happy anniversary love!!