Thursday, April 8, 2010

Get your spouse on the couch

Kathi Lipp wants couples to spend couch time together.

She wants to see them turn up the heat with each other (in the kitchen).

And burn calories together (at the gym).

In her latest book from Harvest House Publishers, “The Marriage Project: 21 Days to More Love and Laughter,” author Kathi Lipp encourages couples to be intentional about the direction of their marriage and gives couples 21 projects to cultivate more love and laughter in their relationship.

The projects – which include having a date night with each other, exercising together, cooking together, and yes, even being intimate with one another – are simple and fun if both the husband and wife are willing to participate.

The book is an easy read that interweaves Christian values and the importance of intimacy in a marriage without being overly preachy or tawdry.

Fun anecdotes from the author’s own marriage and interesting snippets from other marriage-advice books and blogs make this book an enjoyable read.

Unfortunately, part of what made this book enjoyable also was a distraction. As a reader whose 16 years of marriage has survived addiction recovery and severe bipolar disorder, I had a hard time letting Lipp -- who is divorced and is less than five years into her marriage with second husband, Roger -- establish credibility in my mind.

I give props to Lipp, however, because she is upfront about her marital history, and she admits honestly that the ideas in “The Marriage Project” were gleaned from advice given in the plethora of marriage books on her bookshelves.

I don’t think you can expect “The Marriage Project” to be a miracle cure for a marriage in crisis.

But this book would be perfect for church groups that want to begin a marriage-strengthening program.

“The Marriage Project” also would be a great tool to help rekindle old flames for the couple that is starting to lose that lovin’ feelin’, for the couple whose marriage has taken a backseat to child-rearing or for the couple that simply feels like spicing up their relationship.

And once again, I'm sharin' the love.

Become a follower of my blog AND leave a comment below, and I will include your name in a drawing to win my copy of Kathi Lipp's The Marriage Project: 21 Days to More Love and Laughter.

The winner will be drawn next Thursday.


Stina Lindenblatt said...

Thanks for sharing! Fortunately my husband and I have a wonderful marriage that grows stronger everyday (and boy have we had our challenges).

Kathi Lipp said...

Hey Kat - thanks for the honest and thoughtful review of the book. I appreciate it and the feedback. I will say one additional thing in response to your review - Roger and I have healthfully survived the first five years of a blended family, ex-spouses and stepkids (something that at least a third of marriages in the US will deal with.) While in no way will I equate that with bipolar or addiction or some of the other challenges that some marriages have survived, it is a testimony to what God can do with a couple of broken people who are unworthy of His grace, but willing to learn.

More than a regurgitation of other books, I wanted The Marriage Project to be doable steps to put those things into action - no matter where your marriage is.

Thanks again for going deeper in your review. I deeply appreciate the thoughtfulness and candor you approached it with.

Lydia Kang said...

Marriages can always use a little upkeep and work! Thanks for the review, and count me in for the contest!

Anonymous said...

Get yur spouse on the couch...that's great.

Sounds like a great book. The credibility thing is important to me as well. I'm not an expert, but I'm on my 14th year of marriage, so I might want to hear from someone that has a bit more marriage experience as well.

Thanks for the post.