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Relationships Archives - New Orleans Weddings - Reception, Venue & Planning

What Your Zodiac Sign Says About Your Love Life This Week

 Horoscope, Relationships  Comments Off on What Your Zodiac Sign Says About Your Love Life This Week
Nov 142016

Get ready girls because change is a coming this week, thanks to The Taurus Full Moon in opposition to the Sun in Scorpio. Astrologer Suzie Kerr Wright breaks it all down for us and explains what it means for you and your love life this week with her horoscopes for the next seven days.

Aries (March 21 - April 19)
Your 2nd house of valuables and values is spotlighted now. This can be a pretty deep time for Aries when you'll find yourself reassessing friendships and relationships that you may have had for a long time. Be kind and don't be too quick to cut them off if you've felt like you're in a rut. It may simply require a new way of looking at others and respecting, rather than resenting, your loved one's differences.

Taurus (April 20 - May 20)
The Super Moon will hit you right in the feels! You may be more emotional than usual and there's nothing wrong with that. Speak from your heart in all you do and loved ones will finally get to see the side of you they've always known was there. Be vulnerable and love deeply right now.

Gemini (May 21 - June 20)
Take a break this week. Rest and relaxation will help you to see where you can improve your relationship and take it to the next level. There's plenty more in the story of you and your sweetheart; you just have to remember what brought you together in the first place. Single? Work on building better relationships with friends and family.

Cancer (June 21 - July 22)
Time to refocus your direction in life, Cancer. What is it that you love to do the most? Get together with friends and let them support you and guide you on your new path. If you can get your partner involved, it'll be that much better.

Leo (July 23 - August 22)
Changes at work finally give you time and money to make some major changes at home. You may be renovating your current abode or buying something new that's perfect to begin your newly married life or just give you a fresh start in general. It all comes together now.

See More: What It's REALLY Like to Be With Him (According To His Zodiac Sign)

Virgo (August 23 - September 22)
Major lifestyle changes are in the cards for Virgos. There's a new you coming to the surface, but you just have to be a little bit more patient before others really start noticing. The hard work you've done this year is finally going to pay off with a new sense of freedom.

Libra (September 23 - October 22)
You'll want to be wined and dined and given the royal treatment. Nothing wrong with that! It's wonderful to let your significant other (or if you're single, that guy from Tinder!) treat you special; just make sure your romantic week doesn't infringe upon your future financial security. You can turn the heat up just as easily much closer to home.

Scorpio (October 23 - November 21)
The Full Moon shows up in your 7th house of relationships. Keep pushing forward and keep the lines of communication open. If you feel you're putting more effort in than your partner, it's only a temporary situation. It's important to talk about what you need and remember the long-term goal.

Sagittarius (November 22 - December 21)
You'll want to assess your work situation this week. Are you working too much or are you feeling things are not fair? Take some time to bring it all back into balance by asking for help and focus on bringing your stress level way, way down. This will benefit every area of your life, especially relationships.

Capricorn (December 22 - January 19)
The Full Moon brightens up your house of self-expression and creativity and pleasure. This is a great time for you to seek out a new way to let people see your most personal side. A painting class with your date would be just right.

See More: 12 Zodiac Matches That Make The BEST Couples

Aquarius (January 20 - February 18)
You'll want to stick close to home right now, spending time with family and close friends rather than working extra hours. Your sweetie won't be complaining about the extra time with you! A quiet, candle lit dinner will renew your passion and help you feel like you're not so alone.

Pisces (February 19 - March 20)
You have a chance to change your mind about someone. With your ruling planet, Neptune, changing direction on Saturday you'll gain the clarity you've been lacking the last few months. Although things are rapidly changing, you and your partner are still on the same page.

Psst! Want even more astrological insight into your love life and relationship? Remember to not only read your Sun Sign but check out your Ascendant (Rising Sign) too! Not sure how to find that? Give Suzie a shout here, and she'll gladly help.

5 Skills You Must Have For a Successful Romantic Relationship

 Advice, Relationships  Comments Off on 5 Skills You Must Have For a Successful Romantic Relationship
Nov 122016
successful relationship tips

Photo: Getty Images

You've got skills, we know. You're strong, competent, and communicative, to name a few. But, "while these are all important foundational skills for living a successful and happy life, they need to be built on in order to help an individual transition to a successful and happy partnership," explains psychotherapist and marriage coach Toni Coleman.

Enter: Couple skills, next-level expertise we need for successful relationships. But don't worry, they're not too hard to grasp. Here, our experts give you five to start.

1. You've got to have empathy.
According to Lesli Doares, marriage coach and author of Blueprint For A Lasting Marriage, empathy is the ability to see things from your partner's perspective, and it's a huge plus in your relationship. "No two people experience life in the same way and this leads to viewing the same event differently," she explains. "Being empathetic and understanding and seeing this as legitimate differences, not in terms of one of you being right and the other wrong, is key for success."

2. You have to be able to think "we," not "I."
You know what you need, and how to get it. "But when someone is part of a couple, he or she needs to view each need as it impacts 'us' as a couple, and not just him or her as an individual," says Coleman. "Keeping a 'we' perspective will help a couple to make sure both of their needs are priorities for them as a couple, which helps create a balance and maintain a sense of oneness."

See More: 5 Couples Define What a "Happy Marriage" Means to Them

3. You have to be able to regulate your emotions.
That anger that bubbles up when you see your spouse left the house in disarray? You've got to be able to put it in check, Doares says. "Each of you is responsible for managing your own emotions and having a plan for what to do when things get hot to minimize damage to your relationship," she says. "If one of you can remain calm and implement that plan, then there will be no escalation and no need for repair."

4. You need to be able to communicate well.
Good communication skills include active listening, not interrupting, asking good follow-up questions, reflection, and avoiding jumping to conclusions, among other traits, says Coleman. "There are a number of skills for couples to learn in order to be good communicators, but these are not difficult and if used consistently, can make or break a relationship," she says.

5. You've got to have good negotiation skills.
All communication skills are valuable in a relationship. "But the ability to negotiate a solution you both can support and implement is the key to being willing tackle the hard stuff that inevitably crops up," says Doares. Plus, she adds, negotiation keeps resentment at bay. "When you can successfully negotiate, there is no manipulation or giving in and that keeps resentment from taking hold," she explains.

Here’s How to Create a Married Couple Budget With Your Spouse

 Married Life, Relationships  Comments Off on Here’s How to Create a Married Couple Budget With Your Spouse
Nov 122016
wedding budget

Photo: Getty Images

Some of us avoid budgeting when it's just us. Add another person into the mix, with his or her own opinions on how to spend dough, and others might rather go to the dentist than set up a budget with that person, even if it's our husband or wife.

"Money can fuel some pretty passionate responses and reactions, and each person is bringing in their own money histories and scripts into the marriage," commiserates Mary Beth Storjohann, finance expert and founder of Workable Wealth. "Talking and communicating about money without it leading to a fight can be difficult, and that's one reason why many couples opt to not do it at all, which means budgeting goes out the window as well."

But that doesn't mean you should avoid budgeting with your spouse. If having a budget will work well for you as a couple, there's a way to set one up that won't lead to fights and will lead to financial success. Here's how to get started.

Open up, and be kind.
When you sit down to have your budget talk, "couples should be prepared to have an open, honest, and non-judgmental revealing of their financial pasts," says Elle Kaplan, finance expert and founder of LexION Capital. Adds Storjohann, "review the state of your finances so both of you know exactly what your money situation is." Take note of whether you have enough savings as well as whether either of you is carrying debt into your marriage. "Having both of you aware and involved will help keep you aligned," she says.

But whatever you do, don't play the blame game if you have to make room in your budget for, say, someone's debt. "Playing the blame game will do nothing but halt this positive progress," Kaplan explains. "These issues are just financial problems, not character flaws. Remember, these are goals you can both work through together to better your future."

Set up specific goals.
"Couples should first prioritize their goals, and then tie them to spending," says Kaplan. "Couples should sit down and determine which budgeting issues are important to them, and which ones they don't really care about. You can stretch your budget by spending less on the unimportant costs, and avoid squabbles by allocating more towards hot-button issues."

See More: How to Create Your Wedding Budget

Then ask yourself, what exactly are you saving for in that savings account? If you don't know, the time to decide is when you set up your budget. "Are you buying a new home, starting a business, growing your family or simply trying to build your rainy day fund?" asks Storjohann. "Target specific amounts you'd like to stash away and assign a time period for building up the savings for each goal."

Consider the 20-30-50 plan.
If you're struggling with setting up specific goals, the 20-30-50 plan is another good place to start. As Kaplan explains, "the 20-30-50 plan is a great guideline to track spending. And it's especially beneficial for couples because it doesn't involve agreeing on every penny spent." Here's how it breaks down: "The 20 is 20 percent of your take-home income after taxes," Kaplan explains. "This portion is non-negotiable, and it should go towards improving your financial future together, whether that's paying off debt or investing in a 401(k)."

Next, 30 percent of your after-tax income should got toward fun or something you want. "Couples don't have to agree on everything that money is spent on, as long as they are able to keep it in proportion," says Kaplan. And lastly, 50 percent of your income should go toward essentials, such as mortgage payments or electricity bills.

Use an app to track your spending.
Now that you've set up a budget with goals, or a plan like the 20-30-50 one, it's time to track where your money goes to make sure it goes to the right place. "Leverage an online platform like Mint or You Need a Budget to start monitoring your spending for you," suggests Storjohann. "These apps will tell you what you're spending in categories like dining out, entertainment, groceries and more, and you'll be able to see how what you're actually spending measures up against what you thought you were spending." When you spot something that doesn't align with your budget, you can readjust.

7 Types of Family Members You’ll Likely Find at Every Wedding

 Moms, Planning Tips, Relationships, Wedding Guests  Comments Off on 7 Types of Family Members You’ll Likely Find at Every Wedding
Nov 112016

You know what they say: you can choose your friends but you can't choose your family, right? Inevitably, at every wedding, there always seems to be a good (if you want to call it that) mix of relatives. From the overly emotional parent to the jealous sister-in-law, here are seven types of family members you'll find at any big day.

1. The Drunk Uncle
He's a huge hit with all the groomsmen, can cut a rug like no other and still thinks he can drink like he's in his freshman year of college. Well, unfortunately he can't! And while he most likely (fingers crossed) won't cause a scene on your big day, he will have the rest of your family laughing out loud and/or shaking their heads and everyone teasing him about his antics the following day. You can bet your ass he'll be hurting at your morning after brunch too.

2. The Jealous Sister or Sister-In-Law
Whether she's your sister, sister-in-law or first cousin, there's always that one girl in the family who wants to either try and one-up you every chance she gets or bring you down on your big day. She's critical of absolutely every decision during the planning process and totes judging you like she's on TLC's "Four Weddings" the actual day of. Um, jealous much?

3. The Wedding Know It All
This could be any female in the fam! But chances are, she's recently married, around the same age as you and a self-proclaimed wedding expert who isn't shy about dishing out planning advice even when it's clearly not wanted. If she's a bridesmaid, watch out! You'll likely find her bossing around the wedding planner, instructing the photographer and chastising the DJ because obviously she knows more about your wedding than the people you hired to help.

4. The Cool Aunt
She's got style and is arguably the best-dressed adult at the wedding. She looks about 20 years younger than she actually is and all the bridesmaids wish they had an aunt as cool as her. She can kick it with guests of all ages and loves herself a good night out sans the kids. Sit her at any table and she'll strike up a conversation and make your friends laugh. Of course, she's got moves like Jagger and will only leave the dance floor to fill up her cup but she never gets noticeably drunk.

See More: 5 Ways to Deal with a Jealous Sibling on Your Wedding Day

5. The Emotional Parent
Most often, it's mom, however some dads can surprise you out of nowhere too! Get ready for the waterworks because the emotional parent will not only shed tears themselves but also make everyone else cry with an adorably touching speech. You can tell this particular parent loves their daughter or son a ridiculous amount and all that affection makes hearts around the room melt.

6. The Traditional Grandma
The music is always way too loud and she can't for the life of her understand why anyone would choose a DJ over a lovely live band. While she wasn't exactly happy about the fact that you were getting married by an "officiant" instead of a preacher or that you opted out of doing the bouquet toss and other traditions, she's done her best to keep her mouth shut, nevertheless she's secretly she's shaking her head wondering what it is with kids these days.

7. The Creeper Cousin
Beware because sometimes it's the brother too! This dude will start with the bridesmaids then proceed to hit on any single female guests unless he gets a plus one. And even then he'll still be spitting game (or rather trying to) the entire night until legit everyone has rejected him.

The 7 Phrases That Are Ruining Your Relationship

 Relationships  Comments Off on The 7 Phrases That Are Ruining Your Relationship
Nov 102016
Common First Year Fights

Photo: Getty Images

"Words have huge power in relationships," so much so that even the smallest words and phrases aren't to be underestimated, says Jill Whitney, LMFT. Each little syllable has the power to inspire us, encourage us, help us, or much worse, hurt us. And their power, Whitney says, is especially poignant when coming from our partners.

"The ironic thing is we tend to be less careful about the words we use with our partners," she adds. "We may take for granted all the good things they bring to our relationship and focus on what's lacking. And because we may feel hurt or angry about what's lacking, we may speak from an impulsive, attacking place. That creates distance rather than the connection we're likely hungering for."

Of course, if you don't know what words are hurting the most, you can't stop saying them. So our experts are here with seven phrases you didn't realize could ruin your relationship.

1. "I'm sorry, but ..."
Even the most heartfelt apology can be completely negated if it's followed by the word "but," warns Cathryn Mora, relationship advisor. "It implies a lack of integrity, invalidates the apology, and turns a positive statement into a negative one," she explains. "Saying 'but' doesn't help build trust, credibility, or intimacy," which, of course, are the foundations of any healthy relationship.

2. "Yeah? Well, you ..."
Turning the tables on your partner shuts down meaningful conversation, says Whitney. "'The best defense is a good offense' may work in sports, but it's destructive to relationships," she says. "Rather than feeling heard and valued, your partner feels attacked. This feels like a threat to your connection, so he or she is likely respond from a distressed, emotional place, and the situation spirals downward. Both of you end up unhappy, and the concern doesn't get addressed."

3. "You always ..."
According to relationship expert Lori Bizzoco, the surest way to exacerbate an argument is by making blanket (and often untrue) statements about what your partner always does. "This phrase opens up to further arguments," she warns, "and will make your partner feel like you are attacking his or her character on top of whatever it is you're arguing about."

See More: Happy Marriage Habits to Start Before You Tie the Knot

4. "I'm fine."
No, you're not. And your partner knows you're not. With that in mind, "if you need a little space to cool down after a heated exchange, that's OK," says Mora, "as long as you eventually communicate and resolve." But if you use this phrase to stonewall and shut down a conversation, "it [can be] a big red flag for a failed relationship," she says.

5. "I told you ..."
Let's face facts: "The 'I told you so' game isn't fun for anyone," says Bizzoco, including your partner. And heard enough times, he or she could harbor resentment toward you. "Using 'I told you ...' sounds like you are against your partner," Bizzoco explains. "It's much healthier for the both of you if you remind each other that you are on one another's sides."

6. "You're just like ..."
Pointing out the similarities between your partner and someone he or she doesn't want to be is a cruel kind of criticism. "This is pretty much guaranteed to get your partner's back up," says Whitney. "The immediate reaction is likely to be, 'no, I'm not,' and suddenly, you sound like kindergartners bickering on the playground."

7. "You're overreacting."
Trying to diffuse a situation with this phrase will only hurt your partner. "This phrase, along with others like, 'you're being too sensitive,' make the receiver feel his or her feelings are unjustified, and he or she feels unheard and belittled," says Mora. "It also creates a power imbalance that is never conducive to long-term happiness."

Nov 102016
Reasons To Take A Pre-Wedding Vacation With Your Fiance

Photo: Getty Images

Taking a honeymoon has been a common part of getting married for hundreds of years. But, the idea of vacationing as a couple before the wedding is a relatively new trend. "Some call it a mini-moon and some just call it a vacation, but either way, we are in favor of this retreat before the big day for many reasons," says Jennifer Stuart of Explorateur Travel. Here are six good excuses to take time as a twosome before you dive into the fanfare surrounding the big day.

1. To hit the reset button on romance
It's no surprise that the ginormous task of wedding planning can take a toll on your romantic life as a couple. Nights and weekends that were once spent enjoying candlelit dinners or frolicking around your neighborhood are now taken up with appointments and endless decision-making. "It can be easy to temporarily forget about romance while deciding between crudités and passed hors d'oeuvres or buffet vs. plated dinners," Stuart says. So use this as the best excuse to take yourselves back to the frame of mind where it all began — simply enjoying each other's company.

2. To cool off
While you might want to rev your engines for one another, it's also important to chill out and kick back while getting some time away from your bridesmaids, groomsmen, families, work, and so on, says Stuart. Forget the frustrations you've been dealing with up until this point. De-stressing and escaping any family drama is key, says custom luxury travel and lifestyle experience expert Chloe Johnston. So sip a glass of wine or step into the spa and cool off for a minute.

3. As practice for the honeymoon
Whether or not you've already traveled far and wide with your soon-to-be-spouse, a short trip before the wedding will help you determine your individual or joint preferences when it comes to jet-setting. Think of it as practice or a dry run for the honeymoon, Stuart says. Do you like to plan every meal and tour ahead of time, or leave space for being spontaneous? Sleep in or get up early to beat the crowds? Figuring this out on a pre-trip will help you plan your perfect itinerary for the honeymoon itself.

See More: Deciding if a Mini-Moon Right for You? Consider These Factors

4. For some rare one-on-one time close to saying "I do"
This is especially true for couples who aren't planning to get away immediately following their wedding, or for those who have a destination wedding and find themselves surrounded by family and friends 24/7 the week before or after the event. "You have your wedding somewhere lovely that not everyone lives, so once they're all together they want to stick around!" jokes Rachel Jo Silver of Love Stories TV. And it happened to her. "Since all my nearest and dearest were in town I didn't want to leave them all to jet off on a honeymoon. It would have been smart for my husband and I to take a little mini vacay, just the two of us, a week or two before the event to catch up, slow down, and gear up for the big event."

5. To discuss last-minute details
Chatting about guest favors and RSVPs at the end of a long day at the office isn't all that appealing. But talking last-minute details over poolside cocktails or during a relaxing stroll on the beach is an entirely different experience. Getting away from it all will help you focus, so you can nail down any pending items and then get back to enjoying yourselves, says Stuart.

6. To soak up the final moments of being engaged
Whether you're engaged for a few months or a couple of years, the time you get to call each other fiancé will go by in the blink of an eye. "It can all happen so, so quickly. The proposal, the engagement, the ceremony. Take a minute to enjoy being engaged! That shiny, bright, and new feeling is so precious and important to creating a foundation for a hopeful marriage," Stuart says. Taking a mini vacation is a chance to revel in the engagement and also get excited for all that's to come — especially the wedding!

He Hasn’t Proposed Yet?! Here’s What to Do…

 Relationships  Comments Off on He Hasn’t Proposed Yet?! Here’s What to Do…
Nov 092016
What to Do If He Has Not Proposed Yet

Photo: Getty Images

Okay, so you totally thought he was going to propose during that romantic weekend vacation you took last month, but he hasn't popped the question yet — what's a woman to do? A lot, actually. Here's how to handle that tricky position, regardless of the current situation with your significant other.

Scenario 1: You are already living together but he won't discuss marriage.

The mere fact that you are sharing a home means you are both invested in the here and now of being together. The question, though, becomes, what about the future? Is there anything holding him back from making that final move toward your joint life together? Before you take it personally, consider his career path, specifically where he is now and where he hopes to be down the road. Has he reached his goals, or might be still be striving for financial and professional security before he makes that huge commitment to you and to the demands of planning, and possibly paying for, a wedding and a honeymoon?

Once you have a sense of that, suggest a conversation during which you can talk about all this and each discuss your feelings and hopes, and he might have a chance to give you a sense of his timeline, what he is looking to achieve before proposing, and if he is, in fact, planning on marriage in the first place. With that information you will be able to make an informed decision about if it is worth the wait.

Scenario 2: You are long distance and he wants you to come be with him.

The big question here is if you trust the relationship enough to give up the life you are living now and go join him. Again, a conversation would be in order to figure out what he envisions your future together to be: Does he have a sense of the timing in his mind? Can he map out the next phases for you?

If he is giving you clarity that this is just one of the steps that is on the path toward the engagement, and you both believe him and feel comfortable that he will follow through, then go ahead. If, however, he won't talk about anything beyond your getting there, refuses to look ahead, and won't offer any reassurance that he plans to commit to you one day, then you might consider waiting it out before making that big move.

See More: Real Brides Share: My Boyfriend's Fear of Marriage (And How He Overcame It)

Scenario 3: He wants you to move with him (for example, he got a new job in another state).

The fact that he is interested in the relationship enough that he wants you to continue to be together even though he has to move is very positive in terms of what he is thinking about your being a couple. But before you uproot yourself and leave your friends and family behind, here are a few things to consider. How long have you been living together? What is the quality of your relationship? Are you getting along most of the time with a few disagreements, or do you end up arguing a lot and doubting yourself and questioning your bond? If you feel you have a solid foundation, and are able to handle some of the differences that come up, that's important because a big move like this can be very stressful and you are going to need to support each other through the process.

Being secure and able to work as a team plays an important role in successfully navigating these big changes. Additionally, you can look back on things you've planned together and see how well they've worked out, such as trips, celebrations, and family events. Have your plans generally come to fruition in a positive way that has given you both a sense of well-being? Considering these factors will give you an indication of how stable your connection is, how committed you both are, and the skills that you have for handling this big a change. Also, it can be helpful to have a conversation to make sure that he is looking to get married down the road. If he is, and it's a matter of just getting your lives set up in this new location, the move can be something that can deepen your commitment to each other. Otherwise, you might end up feeling that you are sacrificing your life to join his and not feel grounded enough to trust that marriage is in your future.

Dr. Jane Greer is a New York-based relationship expert, radio host, and the author of What About Me? Stop Selfishness From Ruining Your Relationship. Connect with Dr. Jane Greer on Facebook and follow @DrJaneGreer on Twitter for her latest insights on love, relationships, sex, and intimacy.

6 DEADLY Mistakes Newlyweds Make (That Cause Drama Down The Road)

 Married Life, Relationships  Comments Off on 6 DEADLY Mistakes Newlyweds Make (That Cause Drama Down The Road)
Nov 082016
Mistakes Newlyweds Make That Cause Drama

Photo: Getty Images

Unfortunately, dreaming of "happily ever after" as a newlywed can create unrealistic expectations and lots of problems down the road. So much of marriage advice today is too complicated, too pie-in-the-sky, and too out of touch with contemporary marriage.

Over the past three decades we have researched marriage around the world and discovered the six deadly mistakes newly married couples often make.

These six mistakes are not complicated to understand. Yet, newlyweds who make these mistakes at the beginning of their lives together will get off to a rough start:

1. You tally or keep score of wins and losses.

Couples should never ignore bothersome behaviors, but "keeping score" or holding grudges is not okay. There are no winners and losers in a great marriage. You can't hold grudges and you shouldn't cast blame when things go wrong.

Don't be afraid to argue and debate an issue. Just remember to fight fair and learn to argue effectively. It will serve your marriage well down the road.

2. You lie to your spouse or make promises you cannot keep.

Little white lies and broken promises erode the glue that holds marriages together. Even small lies can form a habit of dishonesty in your relationship.

Trust is the foundation of any lasting relationship. Dishonesty erodes the very essence of the bond between the two of you.

3. You make assumptions about what your new spouse likes, dislikes, enjoys, or thinks.

Assumptions lead to trouble — and men who order for their wives could end up eating alone. Ask them!

The old adage is certainly true that to assume is to make an "ass out of you and me!" And the corollary is, never ignore behaviors in your spouse that bother you.

Talk about them. It will strengthen your relationship if you talk out issues calmly and respectfully.

See More: 4 MUST-DO Tips For A Successful Monogamous Relationship

4. You assume role stereotypes early in your marriage.

Phrases such as "that's a man's job" or "that's woman's work" have no place in modern romances. Early role assignments based on stereotypical roles will only create imbalance and potential frustration later.

Take the time to talk about each of your strengths, what responsibilities best fits each person, and how the two of you can share the burdens of life together in your marriage. Think in terms of "us" and "we" instead of "you" and "me."

5. You mount up a "butt load" of debt when you first get married.

Racking up too much debt is pure poison when it comes to your marriage. Keep the use of credit cards under control. The single greatest cause of divorce and marital discourse is debt and other financial-related issues.

See More: These 20 Quotes Explain Why We Need Unconditional Love So DAMN Much

6. You assume that marriage is fair, just, and beautiful all the time.

Just like life, marriage comes with its ups and downs. If you go into marriage believing it will be like a Hollywood movie with roses, sunshine, no responsibilities, and no setbacks, you are in for a big disappointment. Every successful marriage has to deal with setbacks.

You see, successful marriage is not all that complicated. In fact, if married couples would simply do the simple things that matter day in and day out in their marriage, they would be successful.

The problem is, they don't!

If newlywed couples follow the simple advice we have outlined in this article, they will discover what we and other happily married couples have discovered over the decades — a successful marriage is an accumulation of having done the simple things. A great marriage is no more complicated than that!

See More: 11 Brutal Truths About Loving A Libra (Written By A Libra)

Creating a successful marriage is not always the easiest thing to do. Your visiting our blog suggests you are highly interested in making your relationship work! And truthfully, we have learned over 30 years of marriage research that there are proven effective ways to ensure a happy and healthy marriage.

This article originally appeared on YourTango.

What Your Zodiac Sign Says About Your Love Life This Week

 Horoscope, Relationships  Comments Off on What Your Zodiac Sign Says About Your Love Life This Week
Nov 072016
Garden-Inspired New York City Wedding, Bride and Groom Portrait

Photo: Nathan Smith for Ira Lippke Studios

Love is definitely in the air this week, as the love planets Venus and Mars both move into new Zodiac signs. Your career is also a major focal point right now. We talked to Kathryn Andren "The Love Astrologer" to get the lowdown on exactly what the stars have in store for you and your relationships the next seven days, our weekly love horoscope.

Aries (March 21 - April 19)
Aries, you're fired up these days at work and in public life. Enjoy love planet Venus cruising through your career zone for the coming month. Place your priorities at work, or perhaps find companionship with a new co-worker. By the weekend, plan a girls' night out. Mars is moving now into your area of associates so balance work and play with the friends and family who matter most.

Taurus (April 20 - May 20)
Pleasure planet Venus ignites your area of travel and foreign lands, inspiring you to travel far and wide. Plan a getaway next weekend with your gal pals or make those honeymoon plans for somewhere wild and exotic. Motivated Mars moves into your region of reputation mid-week. Maintain your focus on your career goals. Remember, all eyes are on you at the workplace in the coming month.

Gemini (May 21 - June 20)
Your story Gemini is steamy and sensual. The pleasure planet Venus slips into your area of sex and intimacy by the week's end. Desire is high right now. Passionate Mars stimulates your region of the higher mind in the coming weeks, so now is the time to take your loving to the next level. Sign up for a tantra class or plan a getaway with your lover next weekend and learn something new.

Cancer (June 21 - July 22)
Lucky you, Cancer! Your love life is extra activated this month with sensual Venus in your area of relationship and marriage. Enjoy simple pleasures with your special someone in the coming weeks. Mid-week, Mars activates your area of intimacy and sexuality. If you're feeling fired up, bring it to the bedroom and make your move. If you're single, who knows, you might just find strong chemistry with someone on a night out.

Leo (July 23 - August 22)
All work and no play? It's time to place your priorities on taking care of life's little details, Leo. Team up with your sweetheart for a healthy eating plan or an exercise routine in the coming weeks. Value loving Venus enters your area of healthy habits mid-week, while assertive Mars makes its move in your relationship region. Looking for love? Get your groove on at the gym!

See More: What It's REALLY Like to Be With Him (According To His Zodiac Sign)

Virgo (August 23 - September 22)
Be creative. Venus supports your area of creativity in the coming weeks. If you've been working too hard, take time to nurture your inner child or be near children to soften your heart. Mars motivates taking care of business in your region of ritual and routine. Stay organized to get your work done so you can go out and play either with your partner or out on the town with your gals if you're single.

Libra (September 23 - October 22)
Place your focus and attention on your heart's desire. When pleasure-loving Venus enters your area of private life and family, stay home next weekend to regenerate yourself. You're best nurtured by loved ones right now. In the meantime, sexy Mars moves into your region of romance mid-week. The heat is on! Take the lead with a special someone and reveal your passion.

Scorpio (October 23 - November 21)
Party planning? Get out of your box and get the word out. It's okay to reveal yourself to friends and neighbors, and let them know what is on your mind. Be resourceful in your community, as Venus shifts into your area of connections and communications next weekend. Home is where the heart is once Mars makes its move through your region of private life in the coming weeks. For a hot date, invite your lover or that sexy man you've been seeing recently over to the privacy of your place.

Sagittarius (November 22 - December 21)
Enjoy life's little pleasures. Love planet Venus enters your area of personal possessions and finance. Thoughtfully plan your budget in the coming weeks. By mid-week, you may have more motivation to speak your mind, as assertive Mars moves into your communication zone. Remember to keep the big picture at the forefront during your conversations, rather then getting all caught up in the details. Have the courage to reveal yourself. Your loved one (or ones) deserves to know what's on your mind and in your heart.

Capricorn (December 22 - January 19)
Capricorn, you're in the spotlight as the love planet Venus shifts into your Zodiac sign next weekend. Take time to reassess your values and priorities over the coming month. What matters most? By mid week, motivated Mars supports the focus on life's little pleasures. Make sure you let those you love know just how important they really are to you.

See More: 12 Zodiac Matches That Make The BEST Couples

Aquarius (January 20 - February 18)
Take charge! Mid-week, Mars moves into your sign for another six weeks. Try to see both the forest and the trees. In both love and life, take the high road and appreciate your situation from the highest possible perspective. Love planet Venus moves through your area of completions over the next month. Be compassionate with yourself and others when it's time to say goodbye to both people or plans.

Pisces (February 19 - March 20)
This coming month is a time to be active, not passive, Pisces. You'll get by with a little help from your friends. Your soul sisters are your support team, while Venus enters your area of friendships. Cut ties with former lovers and pals that bring you down, since motivated Mars activates your area of endings. If some situation is naturally coming to a close, be clear and move on.

Ready for a relationship reading? Schedule a session by phone or Skype with Kathryn Andren "The Love Astrologer". Call 808-896-3982 or visit www.KathrynAndren.com, where you can also request The Love Astrologers free ebook, "Manifesting By The Light Of The Moon, A Journey Through The Zodiac". Kathryn empowers others to life a life they love, using lifetime soul cycles and relationship astrology!

Could You Marry Someone From the Opposite Political Party?

 News, Relationships  Comments Off on Could You Marry Someone From the Opposite Political Party?
Nov 072016
fiance voting for donald trujmp

Photo: Getty Images

Dating may have never been more complicated than it has been this year as Hillary Clinton battles Donald Trump in the race for the presidency. The presidential election alone causes stress that can spill over into your relationship. But standing on the opposite side of the polls from your partner is a whole 'nother (very bad) story.

"This particular election season has become so volatile," says relationship and etiquette expert April Masini. "The conversations have changed."

As a recent survey by Zola shows, rooting for opposite political parties can take its toll on your partnership. The registry site surveyed more than 800 couples, then crunched the numbers to see whether, in this climate, these guys and gals could stomach their partners' votes for the opposition. Spoiler alert: Most of them can't. In fact, supporting the opposite party in this race could flat-out ruin your relationship.

Zola found that a whopping 93 percent of Democrats would not marry someone who was voting for Donald Trump. (It's probably a good thing, then, that 87 percent of those left-wingers are engaged or married to someone of the same political party.)

Republicans, on the other hand, are a little more forgiving of their partner's crossing party lines. A full 59 percent of them said they would marry someone who plans to vote for Hillary Clinton. But, even so, 84 percent of the Republicans surveyed are engaged or married to another Republican.

And lastly, Independents are perhaps the most understanding political party, with 77 percent saying they'd happily marry a Hillary Clinton supporter and 44 percent being amenable to exchanging "I dos" with someone who'd vote for Donald Trump. Interestingly, only 29 percent of the Independents surveyed are engaged or married to another Independent party member.

Of course, if you find yourself crazy about a man or woman who's voting for a candidate you couldn't support yourself, that doesn't mean your relationship has to end or that you can never tie the knot, as these survey respondents may say.

See More: The Wives and Weddings of Donald Trump

"Ask yourself if this is a hill you want to die on," suggests Masini. "What this cliché means is that there are so many deal breakers and sticky situations in relationships on a good day — so is this really what you want to fight about at the expense of the relationship?" Maybe it is, and maybe it isn't. It's something you need to think about, either way, if you find yourself voting for opposite candidates.

"There are lots of places in any relationship where there is disagreement," Masini points out. "Do you really want to break up a relationship because of who you're voting for? I know that for some the answer is yes, but just make sure you're clear on your own answer. If the answer is no, then back off. Find your sense of humor, your ability to dodge aggressors, and an interest in other topics."

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