The Top 10 Posts of 2016!

by | Dec 30, 2016 | Bare Marriage | 9 comments

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2016 is almost over. And what a year it’s been!

My oldest daughter graduated from university this year, and now she’s working for me. My husband is also working on the blog these days–and it’s been great to allow him to get more involved in my ministry. My mom also moved in with us this summer, and we took our first big trip as a family with my son-in-law. It was a fun year for us. So today I thought I’d round up the top 10 posts from 2016 on To Love, Honor and Vacuum to give you a snapshot of what this year’s been like on the blog. First, though, let’s do the top 5 posts from all time that were popular this year: The Top 10 Christian Marriage Posts from 2016, from To Love, Honor and Vacuum

Top 5 Posts From All Time of 2016

1: How to Initiate Sex with Your Husband 

Have you found that your marriage has gotten into a rut where he wants sex more than you do, so he’s always asking for it and you just never seem to initiate? You’re not alone–this was the most popular post of over 2,000 posts I’ve written this year. Initiating sex is one of the best ways to tell your husband, “I love you, I want you, and I think you’re the greatest man alive.” It makes him feel ten feet tall, and is so important for keeping a marriage healthy. So check out my top 10 tips for how to initiate sex with your hubby!

2: The Effects of Porn on Your Brain and Your Marriage 

Pornography use is becoming more and more common, and it’s bringing hurt and destruction wherever it goes. It’s tragic that it’s also a really huge problem among married Christian couples, too. But one of the biggest weapons porn has in many marriages is a misunderstanding of its effects. Media and the secular world tell us, “It’s harmless!” but is that really true? Read about the effects of porn here.

3: The 50 Most Important Bible Verses to Memorize

This post consistently is one of my most popular. If you’re looking to revitalize your spiritual life and get back on track with studying God’s Word this new year, this is a great place to start. Also, it’s easy to get the whole family involved since there’s a free printable so you can make your own Bible verse flashcards and test each other around the dinner table or even waiting in line at the grocery store. Check them out here.

4: Two-Player Board Games to Play With Your Husband 

I love this post, mostly because Keith and I are crazy about board games. He actually bought me a two-player version of my favourite game to play with the family, since all the kids are moved out now. So I don’t have to wait until everyone’s home anymore to play, since Keith and I can just pull out the two-player version! Such a great present. If you’re looking to have more quality time with your husband this New Year, or to spend less time staring at a screen, make sure to check out these two-player board game ideas. They’re a ton of fun.

5: Why I Didn’t Rebel – by Rebecca Gregoire (Lindenbach)

Almost 3 years ago now, my daughter Rebecca wrote a guest post for me on why she didn’t rebel as a teenager. And it blew up. In fact, she even got a book deal out of it and just submitted her final copy of the manuscript (woohoo!). And it’s stayed really popular even three years after the original post! It’s been amazing to see how many parents have been encouraged by her story, showing that teenagers really don’t have to go off the rails. Check out Rebecca’s post!

Now let’s get to 2016!

The Top 10 Posts of 2016

1: Top 10 Things that Scare Me About Purity Culture 

Does the purity culture movement do more harm than good? I’m not talking about the belief that sex before marriage is wrong–that’s Biblical and just basic Christian morality. But the extra rules and cultural beliefs that surround purity culture can be troubling. Such as calling girls who lost their virginity “stained napkins.” Have we, in efforts to spare girls and boys from the pain that comes with premarital sex, swung the pendulum too far? Some thoughts on that.

2: Top 10 Things to Do For Your Husband in Only 10 Minutes 

Are you looking for easy ways to make your marriage better, or to make your husband feel loved? Here are some great ideas of ways to make him feel valued and treasured that take less than 10 minutes! These are great habits to start in the new year.

3: 50 Conversation Starters for Couples 

Tired of sitting across the dinner table without anything to say? Why not resolve this year to work on communication between you and your husband? These conversation starters are a great place to start, because they focus on sharing memories, stories, and getting to deeper levels of communication. Plus, there’s a free printout of them all so you don’t have to sit around the computer or rely on your memory!

4: Top 10 Signals for Sex 

Looking for some ways to spice up your marriage? Here are some great and flirty ways to let your husband know he’s getting lucky tonight!

5: List of Hobbies to Start as a Couple 

If you’re looking to start having more fun together as a couple, this is a great place to start. I’ve compiled a giant list of hobbies that are great to do together to really foster your friendship with your spouse. Plus, as always, there’s a free printout of this resource so you can brainstorm with him over dinner sometime!

6: If I get divorced, will I lose my salvation? 

I received a reader question that revolved around the question, “Will I lose my salvation if I divorce my husband after I’ve fallen out of love with him?” And I was blunt. Because too often we put our own feelings above what is right, what is holy, or what is just. And that is the opposite of what God calls us to. You can read my rant here. (note: this article was written solely for women not in abusive marriages. I have written many articles on abuse, and this one is not at all applicable to those horrible situations.)

7: 10 Simple Ways to Put Sexy Back in Your Marriage

Is your marriage feeling a bit “blah” lately? Here are some great ways to make your marriage sizzle with some simple ideas that are easy to implement in your day-to-day life!

8: What to Do When Your Husband Won’t Change 

Have you been asking your husband for years to help with housework, or to help more with the kids? What if there’s something that’s been an issue for a long time, but he won’t seem to listen, or take the initiative to fix it? Here is some guidance to handle these difficult situations. 

9: How to Become More Orgasmic

If you want to have more regular orgasms, you’ve come to the right place! There are a lot of misconceptions about the female orgasm, mixed with a general lack of knowledge. Men seem to have it so easy–why is it so hard for us? Here are some tips and tricks to help you become more orgasmic!

10: 10 Signs You’re Respecting Your Husband Too Much 

Can we sometimes fall into a negative loop of enabling behaviour in the name of respect? Do we really understand what it means to respect and love our husbands while also setting boundaries? This post went crazy in the comments–and I loved the discussion that came out of it! We need to stop allowing marriages to become sick because we’re silencing half of the conversation. We need to be willing, as wives, to stand up for what’s right, even if it means standing up against our husbands’ behaviour so we can stand for what God wants for our marriages.

Thank you for such a wonderful year here on the blog. I can’t wait to see where 2017 takes us!

Do you have a favourite blog post from this year? Or are there topics you want to read more about in the New Year? Let me know in the comments below!

Friday Roundup on To Love, Honor and Vacuum

What’s #1 at To Love, Honor and Vacuum?

fb-lose-weight-new-yearsWith all of our Top posts of the year already being listed above (which you should definitely go through!), here are a few of the #2’s that might also catch you attention!  There are some great tips and reflections here as we enter the new year! #1 Post on the Blog: Please Don’t Resolve To Lose Weight This New Year’s #2 on the Blog Overall: Top 10 Wedding Night Tips #2 from Facebook: When Waiting Is Hard #2 from Pinterest: Top 10 Tips For Initiating Sex With Your Husband

I’m Thinking About My One “Word” for 2017

For the last few years I’ve really focused on my ministry, and I’ve had words like “focus” and “balance” and “purpose”. I’m thinking of spending most of my emotional energy cocooning a little more this year. I’m thinking my word might simply be “love”–loving my husband more, spending more time with my kids, revitalizing some friendships. Not that I’ll neglect the ministry; only that it’s grown, and I think I need to nurture relationships more. Or perhaps my word will be “prayer”, because I feel like God is calling me to understand the work that He does more. Do you have a word you’re thinking of for 2017? I’d love to talk about it in the comments! Happy New Year, everyone!
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Sheila Wray Gregoire

Author at Bare Marriage

Sheila is determined to help Christians find biblical, healthy, evidence-based help for their marriages. And in doing so, she's turning the evangelical world on its head, challenging many of the toxic teachings, especially in her newest book The Great Sex Rescue. She’s an award-winning author of 8 books and a sought-after speaker. With her humorous, no-nonsense approach, Sheila works with her husband Keith and daughter Rebecca to create podcasts and courses to help couples find true intimacy. Plus she knits. All the time. ENTJ, straight 8

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  1. E

    My word for 2016 was ‘love’. Having that word really helped me focus on being loving, and there are so many (free!) online resources for bible studies focussed on ‘love’, which I found helpful as a new Christian.

    My word for 2017 is ‘gentleness’, and I am looking forward to focussing more on this fruit of the Spirit. I am interested to see what I will learn about God, Jesus, and myself by putting energy into gentleness! I know I will be challenged as a parent, because too often I am described by my son and husband as ‘cranky’ or ‘grumpy’ (even when I am totally not!), but I am thinking that if I put on gentleness, the cranky, grumpy characteristics will be much more difficult to maintain!

    I would love more articles focussed on healing relationships.

    Thank you so much for all your hard work in your ministry, your blog has been a source of inspiration and comfort to me all year!

  2. Jessica Harris

    I always find it fascinating to read people’s “top posts.” It gives you such a great idea of cultural pulse.

    My word for 2016 was “invest” and I truly believe I did that. Moving forward, I’ve picked “do” as my word for 2017. I’m such a good talker and dreamer, but I need to start ‘doing’ and stepping out in faith instead of being fearful of failure or wanting everything to be perfect first. I have seen how God has poured out His blessings this year, so I am excited for what is to come! Let me know when your daughter’s book comes out. I’m finding myself in the teen/youth circuit all of the sudden and would love to share it!

    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Jessica, we’ll definitely have to connect about Rebecca’s book! I know what you mean about “do”. I’m an idea person, too, and it’s often hard to get my ideas out of my brain and onto something tangible.

  3. Angie

    I need a good word for 2017. I think INDEPENDENCE. I’m stepping out of my self imposed cage and getting a full time job, a car I’ve always dreamed of having, and hopefully finding a friend or two.

    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Sounds great, Angie! I wish you all the best. Especially with finding a good friend. 🙂

      • Angie

        Thank you Sheila! I really have tried the best I could in this marriage. The ball is in his court now and he has been told. I hope the new year brings much health and joy to you and your family!

  4. Jeff

    I think the word or 2017 should be intentional. More intentional about God. More intentional about our marriage relationship etc…….

    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      That’s a great word! I think if we lived by the word “intention” we’d talk a lot more and read a lot more and watch Netflix a lot less (or at least I would!)

  5. Brian Martin

    Indeed all posts are very informative and I learn something from each post!


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