One of the keys to keeping a relationship fresh and connected is to make date night a priority. I know you’ve heard it a million times. Well, this makes one million and one. You and your mate need time to reconnect. I know Jon and I sure as hell do. We need time to reconnect on a level that isn’t solely related to our child-rearing responsibilities, work stress, or what’s for dinner…and we need to do this without our children. Bless their little hearts.
Since December was such a stressful month, Jon and I decided to take off and head to the hills of Kentucky for a few days the weekend after Christmas. And with the weather peaking in the 50’s, Eastern Kentucky’s well-loved hiking getaway, the Natural Bridge/Red River Gorge area, seemed like the perfect place for us to spend some time clearing our minds with the fresh air and breathtaking views.
Since we arrived later Friday night, Jon and I didn’t have time to do much more than locate our cozy little cabin, Hickory Heights, in the woods and get a fire started outside our private cave in the backyard.
Cashing in on something we rarely have the opportunity to do, these exhausted parents slept like zombies until after 10am, piddled around the cabin and surrounding areas, then headed off for dinner & a quick bit of hiking before darkness set it.
It’s a damn good thing we started off on the trail to Natural Bridge when we did because we had just enough time to get up the trail, enjoy the scenery for a bit then high-tail it back down a different trail before it became dangerously dark.
The original trail is perfect for warming up your muscles and getting to see some of the older trail marking habits and learn a bit more about the history of the trail and the area. Established in the late 1800’s, this area was created as a tourism spot for the Kentucky Union Railroad (and later the L&N railroad), accessible only through their railroad. In 1926, L&N Railroad donated the land to the state park system and the tourism department began work on what is now a family friendly and couples destination for the entire state (or country).
Thought to be around a million years old, the Natural Bridge is a stunning natural testament to the powers of nature and I can’t even begin to describe the thrill that literally courses through your body, escaping through your fingertips, when you stand on the bridge and look at the tree tops and breathtaking vistas.
*I should know: do not go into this thinking if your forget something you can just run right up the road and pick up whatever necessity you’ve forgotten…that would be an egregious mistake, as I learned Saturday morning.*
After the the quick, but slightly strenuous (clearly we need to go back to the gym), hike, we made it back to our little bit of heaven and got a fire in the fireplace before the downpour began. After a loooooong soak in the hot tub to release the strain from my tired muscles, the steady sound of the rain patting on the tin roof paved the way for this girl to sleep a deep and restorative sleep Saturday night.
Despite our desire to get a bit more hiking in, the rain drove us out of town earlier than we had expected Sunday morning and after tidying up the cabin, we escaped to a Panera Bread for coffee and soup to warm up before heading back to pick up our anxious little girls.
Just this short break allowed Jon and I to spend time enjoying the comfortable silence that often falls when it’s just us, discuss our dreams, and honestly about our relationship. We need this. We don’t always need to ‘go away’ for our dates, but this was a nice Christmas gift to ourselves and our marriage.
How do you and your spouse reconnect?See y'all later!