About the Author

Honey's main interests are online dating, long distance dating, and long term relationships. She met her boyfriend on MySpace and they have been exclusive since their first date over three years ago. Currently they live in Tempe, Arizona. Honey graduated with her PhD in Composition and Rhetoric in May 2009. You can contact Honey via email here or online here.

3.5 Years and Counting…

Today is three and a half years since Jake and I met.  Things are going great!  I don’t have much to add, so I am throwing in a recent e-mail exchange.  Enjoy!

A Game


You made me so happy this morning when you said that I was the best thing in your life.  I try really hard for that to be the case (even though like I said in my card earlier this week I feel like I fail a lot).  [Note: I’d gotten him a card and a bottle of wine for being patient and covering some expenses for me until my freelance check came in.] I think you deserve good things and I think that relationships don’t just stay great – you have to try, even if you’ve been together for years.

So, I thought it would be fun to list 5 things that you would like to do to improve our relationship – even though things are going great, I don’t ever want to take you for granted.  Here are the categories:

  1. Fun, lighthearted thing
  2. Serious thing
  3. Sexy thing
  4. Adventurous thing
  5. Long-term thing (like a plan)

I will think about this, too – both the things that I think you would like me to do and the things that I would like you to do. Here is some of what I’m thinking.  #1, set aside $150 to play craps in Vegas – on the first or second day.  #4, go shooting with you (I’ll go with you this time in Vegas but if you want to go out to the desert sometime before then then I am game!), #5, retire early – in Amsterdam!

Love, Honey



You do not fail a lot. You are almost unwaveringly happy and fun, even when I’m being grouchy. I’m constantly amazed that I don’t get you down. But I like the way things are going, so as long as you’re happy, I’m happy!

I think this is a good idea. I will think about it some more, but off the top of my head I will suggest the following:

  1. Fun, lighthearted thing – paddle boats on Tempe Town Lake !
  2. Serious thing – Wanna go shooting with me? [Note: the arrangements for this have been made!  I’m learning to shoot this weekend.]
  3. Sexy thing – try amyl nitrate? Strip clubs? Rent some porn?
  4. Adventurous thing – go to the Burning Man festival! (or any of the following: hiking; travel to see one of Arizona ‘s natural attractions; white water rafting)
  5. Long-term thing (like a plan) – maybe we can plan a cruise trip for 1-2 years out? Or a trip back to Amsterdam for next summer? (I like your Amsterdam idea!)

Love, Jake



I’ve been thinking about it, and here are my things:

  1. Fun, lighthearted thing – set an official boardgame night once a week or month with each other (no TV)
  2. Serious thing – open a joint bank account to start saving for mutual goals (like a wedding, a move to another state, etc.)
  3. Sexy thing – use the toys/games/accessories we already have to spice things up
  4. Adventurous thing – train for a triathalon together, do the World Famous Mud Run at Camp Pendleton together, go to Gatlinburg TN (I’ve been before, and it’s gorgeous)
  5. Long-term thing (like a plan) – go vegan, at least at home (I go back and forth on this one); always be proactive in improving our relationship and talking to each other about how we are doing (in relation to each other but also work, etc. – doing stuff like this is I think one way).

I can’t wait for you to get home – love you, baby!


If you enjoyed this post about a lover’s game, you might also enjoy:

  • http://blog.penelopetrunk.com Penelope Trunk

    Love this post. I wish more people would be transparent about the work it takes to keep a relationship good. It’s very hard to write about the work. It’s usually boring (which is why people don’t even do it in the first place). I like that you can write about the work and it’s not even boring. Also I like the self-discipline you guys show here — the self-discipline of paying attention even after the initial months of excitement. You inspired me.

    .-= Penelope Trunk´s last blog …How to make business travel manageable =-.

  • http://honeyandlance.com Honey

    Thanks, PTrunk! It is an interesting challenge to write about a relationship when everything’s going great – most of the relationship “excitement” we’re trained to crave is from the movies, so either the initial getting-together stuff or the OMG are we going to break up stuff. You have to train yourself into appreciating new things when you’ve been together awhile.

    Glad you enjoyed!
    .-= Honey´s last blog …3.5 Years and Counting… =-.

  • http://howtodate.blog.com Tanay

    A great post and yes its easy to describe your problems but difficult to sort out the fundas of a successful relationship.It seems that whatever we do it clicks but its not that way.We are doing the right things ,That’s it.So its essential not to try anything different but to move in the right direction.

  • http://blogs.marinij.com/katwilder Kat Wilder

    I like the idea of this, but took a big pause on this:
    Serious thing – open a joint bank account to start saving for mutual goals (like a wedding, a move to another state, etc.)

    If you two haven’t talked yet about getting married, this is a potentially dicey thing.

    If you have, uh, never mind …
    .-= Kat Wilder´s last blog …Honey, those are fighting words =-.

  • http://www.moneyunder30.com David

    I love this “game”; I think it’s a great idea for any relationship at any stage. In fact, I’m going to propose it to my wife.

    We’re coming up on just three months married (after about 11 years (off an on) of dating). And we’re at this place, not a bad place, but a place, of realizing that, okay, well we’re finally where we wanted to be. Together. In the same city. Married.

    What next?

    Short of buying a house, getting a dog, having children (which are all on the list, but not things we want to do tomorrow), we need something…just like this…to keep things fresh. So thank you for providing it!!
    .-= David´s last blog …A Case for Local Banks and Credit Unions =-.

  • http://honeyandlance.com Honey

    @ Kat – oh, yes, we’ve set the date and picked out the rings and everything. We’re just waiting for the part where we can afford it – hence the savings account. But I agree, I DO NOT recommend that women just drop this kind of thing on their fella…

    @ David, you’ll have to let us know how it goes! I love that you and your wife have been together that long, and yes, sometimes having everything you wanted can be the start of a rut. Where do you go from there?
    .-= Honey´s last blog …So Much Sex I Lost Count =-.

  • http://blogs.marinij.com/katwilder Kat Wilder

    Honey, my advice (not that you were asking for it!), from a divorced woman, is — forget about the big wedding, which causes more grief for more couples and is a terrible way to start off a life together (even though you’ve already done it because you’re living together).

    You don’t need much money to get married — enough for the license, which is pretty cheap consider how much things cost after, kids or not.

    What is that you’re saving up for? And, is that what you really want, or something you and Jake have been dreaming about since you were children or that others expect you to do?

    Just a thought …
    .-= Kat Wilder´s last blog …Honey, those are fighting words =-.

  • http://honeyandlance.com Honey

    Thanks for the advice, Kat! We are getting a CZ engagement ring and so anticipate spending less than $2K for the engagement ring and both wedding rings (probably less than $1500).

    As far as the wedding itself…I actually don’t really care. I didn’t spend my childhood (or my adulthood, for that matter) daydreaming about a wedding. I tried to convince Jake to go to Vegas, but he’d have none of it :-)

    Jake, OTOH, has been dreaming of a huge, formal wedding FOR HIS ENTIRE LIFE. So we’re doing whatever’s the most important to him, though I am continually advocating for something small and cheap. We’ll see what happens.
    .-= Honey´s last blog …So Much Sex I Lost Count =-.

  • http://honeyandlance.com Honey

    Oh, and we’re not saving up for a wedding, at least not yet. When I say we’re waiting until we can afford it, I’m saying that he has $40K in credit card debt and I won’t marry him until it’s paid off. I decided not to wait until we pay off our student loan debt because that’s $100K apiece!
    .-= Honey´s last blog …So Much Sex I Lost Count =-.

  • http://blogs.marinij.com/katwilder Kat Wilder

    100k? Holy crap!!! You’d better go to Vegas 😉

    I think it’s rather sweet that he’s the one wanting a big wedding, although I’m not sure why I feel that way.
    .-= Kat Wilder´s last blog …Honey, those are fighting words =-.

  • http://honeyandlance.com Honey

    Yeah, we’ve got 11 years of graduate school between us, and it’s expensive!

    I think the wedding thing is kind of sweet, too – he’s very into that sort of romantic view of relationships, which is why we’re getting married on the sixth anniversary of the day we met (his suggestion). Why six years? Partly because that’s when his credit cards will be paid off and partly because that’s the first time since we met that our anniversary will fall on a weekend 😉
    .-= Honey´s last blog …So Much Sex I Lost Count =-.