Champions of Extraordinary Marriages

I Resolve To… January 1, 2010

Filed under: General — Tony & Alisa @ 12:52 pm
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2010 is here and if you are like most people you have thought about your New Year’s Resolution, if not actually making a resolution.

Not surprisingly the top 2 resolutions center on fitness and finance. Why do you think so many gyms see a spike in membership right after the holidays? And with debt from the holidays looming, many say, time and again, that this is the year that they take control of their finances.

These are two excellent subjects for resolutions but what about adding one more, one that really should go before the other two.

This year I resolve to put my relationship with my husband/wife as my #1 priority. I am going to choose my spouse over all of the other “stuff”. This is not to say that you can’t have hobbies or do things without your spouse. Please!  Can you imagine if I told Tony that he couldn’t ride his bike? For those of you who don’t know, Tony is an avid road cyclist who averages about 6000 miles per year. And if I didn’t get out for some me time, YIKES!

What I’m saying is that by choosing to put your spouse first all of the other resolutions will fall into place.  If your relationship is the priority then you will want to look good physically for both of you.  You will also want to be on the same page financially whether it’s getting out of debt or saving for that special trip for the two of you.   Finances are one of the top causes of marital struggles.  Resolve to make your spouse a priority and work through the financial issues in your relationship.

Now that you know what I’m resolving for 2010…what is your New Year’s Resolution?


Staycation 101 November 30, 2009

Filed under: General,Romance — Tony & Alisa @ 8:31 am
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Downtown San Diego is awesome!  The Gaslamp Quarter and Sea Port Village area are alive with people eating, sightseeing, dancing, and my personal favorite people watching.  Over the Thanksgiving weekend Alisa and I were blessed with a staycation.  My brother and sister-in-law took both of our kids for the long weekend giving us plenty of time to relax and do a couple of things we wouldn’t otherwise do.

We try to get a weekend away at least once or twice a year to reconnect and recharge our marriage.  The last time we had an overnight without the kids was in July when Alisa and I attended a marriage conference in Indian Wells.  We always head out of town for such an occasion, but this time we decided to forgo the cost of a hotel and stay at home.  We instead splurged on some great food at Croce’s Restaurant where the sounds of Yavaz, a latin jazz band played with gusto while we ate.  Afterwards we walked along 5th street enjoying the sights and sounds of the Gaslamp.

The following morning we lazed around the house enjoying the quiet that comes with not having kids around.  With rain coming down on and off all day we decided to head to the USS Midway Museum.   All I can say is wow!!!  We spent close to 3 hours on the USS Midway and didn’t see the whole ship.  After being aboard the USS Midway I have a new appreciation for all of our servicemen and women who protect and serve us with their lives.  Thank you to each and everyone of you.

That evening we attended church before heading to The Barrel Room.  Another fine restaurant with a very relaxed atmosphere.  Alisa and I decided to sit on a comfortable leather couch as we talked and ate our dinner.  There is just something about hanging out on a couch side-by-side eating a meal.  The Seared Ahi Salad was simple and tasty while the garlic fries added a good kick to the meal.

Sunday came and we were off to Los Angeles to pick up the kids.  The joy of seeing them again was fantastic and the quality time spent with Alisa allows us to be the lovers and parents that we are called to be.

So to sum up the weekend:

Dinner at Croce’s: $80
Tickets for the Midway tour:  $30 (AAA discount, use it if you have it)
Dinner at the Barrel Room:  $6 (with a $25 gift certificate)
Not staying in a hotel:  (-$250)

A weekend to rejuvenate our marriage:  PRICELESS

Are you ready for a staycation?  Take the Lead and make it happen for you and your spouse.



Truly Thankful November 26, 2009

Filed under: General — Tony & Alisa @ 7:34 am
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Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

On this day set aside for gratitude I hope that you will take the time to reflect on ALL of your blessings.  I’d like to share some of my list with you:

My life, all of it, the good and the bad because without both I would not be who I am today.

My husband, who puts up with more than he should, who does more than he probably wants to, and who loves me no matter what.

My children, who day in and day out deal with a mom who’s trying to get it right, some days more successfully than others.

My family, who has known me forever and has come to embrace, or at least tolerate, the quirks that make me unique.

My friends, who support me, encourage me, listen and love me.

My clients, who have enriched my life by sharing their lives with me.

The readers of this blog, who give me an audience for my thoughts.

Please take some time today to reflect on your blessings and share them with us.

Happy Thanksgiving!



No Turn on Red November 16, 2009

Filed under: General — Tony & Alisa @ 10:16 pm
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It was a warm San Diego day.  One of those days when I had the radio blaring, the windows down as the wind rushed over my face, and just enjoying life.  As I exited the freeway I stopped at the turn signal, made my right hand turn and as I did the flashing lights from an police offices car caught my attention.   What did I do?  My heart was beating fast and my breath was shallow.  It was a deer in the headlight moment.  As I looked through my windshield I realized that I had made the cardinal NO TURN ON RED mistake.  Darn it!!!  From flying on the clouds to reality in 0.1 seconds. The officer turned on the siren for good measure as I pulled over.  As he walked up to my window I had a couple of choices to make, tell the truth or lie to try and get out of it?  I handed him my license and insurance card while letting him know that I missed the very large NO TURN ON RED sign. Sitting there waiting for the officer to return the only thing I could think about was how much is this going to cost me?  Have you been here before? Time dragged on as I sat there waiting for my ticket.  The officer returned, but instead of a ticket he gave me a warning.

There are times in our married lives when we take a NO TURN ON RED. Maybe viewing pornography, hiding a credit card from your spouse, lying about your whereabouts, or texting a co-worker of the opposite sex too much.  These behaviors drive a wedge between us and our spouse.  And then one day when we are flying high you have a NO TURN ON RED moment, not on the road, but at home.  We get caught!  The lights are flashing, our heart begins to beat faster, as our breath becomes shallow, and we realize that we’ve made a mistake.  We’ve hurt the one we love the most.

At this moment you have a choice, lie or tell the truth.  I have had to make that choice on the road and at home.  The times I’ve been up front and honest with Alisa have stretched me and helped us grow in our marriage.  It’s like a warning from the police officer.  You don’t pay a fine or go to court, but you get a second chance at making it right.

What’s your NO TURN ON RED moment?