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Today’s Sweet Tea Sunday couple is not only close to our hearts–they’re also close to our office! Right down the road from us in Raleigh, Nancy and Will Ray are some of the sweetest people we have the privilege of knowing and working with. Nancy is the gal behind Nancy Ray Photography (she shot Song of the South in V6, Something Old, Something New in V5, and both V6 and V5 surcees!), and Will is a finance coach, youth minister, and second shooter for NRP. Knowing about their passion for marriage and their commitment to always learning, we were so excited to hear advice from the Rays. We hope you love it as much as we do!

Walters and Walters

To quote Timothy Keller in The Meaning of Marriage: “Marriage is glorious but hard. It’s a burning joy and strength, and yet it is also blood, sweat, and tears, humbling defeats and exhausting victories… and yet there’s no relationship between human beings that is greater or more important than marriage.” Even in just five short years, this quote rings so true. So let us begin by saying this: marriage is worth fighting for!

A few things that have kept our marriage strong and vibrant? Setting goals and choosing experiences that we can accomplish and enjoy together. We love to sit down over a home-cooked meal and dream of our next big thing–whether it is reaching a financial goal, sponsoring a child in need overseas, or planning travels in the near future. We love thinking big-picture and planning ways we can impact others. We both have individual interests, and it’s just as important to be mutually supportive of those. But we are also intentional about experiencing things we enjoy together!

In addition, we always strive to constantly improve and never settle in our relationship. We read all kinds of books together, and discuss them–including marriage books. We always want to know each other more deeply, understand what makes the other person tick, and improve our relationship continually. By accomplishing goals together, choosing experiences together, and learning of life and one another together, you can only strengthen your marriage relationship.

Eric Kelley

Keep up with Nancy:
Website: Nancy Ray Photography
Blog: Nancy Ray Photography
Facebook: Nancy Ray Photography
Twitter: @nancyray
Instagram: @nancyray

Keep up with Will:
Blog: William Ray
Twitter: @willrray
Instagram: @willrray

lisa Written with love by Lisa
  1. avatar Claire reply

    What a beautiful couple- great advice! I’m newly engaged and it’s always lovely to hear from couples who are living as individuals and working together as a team to grow as a pair as well. Love this! God bless the Rays. :-)

  2. avatar Catherine Grace reply

    so sweet

  3. avatar Will reply

    Thanks for featuring this; Honored to share! Appreciate all that you guys do!

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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When we started brainstorming people to reach out to for marriage advice in V6, Sarah Tucker was one of the first names that popped into my head. Sarah is the stylish gal behind Sarah Tucker Events and Sarah Tucker Styles, and I am constantly inspired by the way she talks about her husband and their marriage. They are best friends, and even after four years of marriage, they are still completely smitten with one another. We are so happy to share her sweet advice with y’all!

Jessica Lorren

I always tell people, “I got the best one! How did I do that?” And it is no joke–I really did. One of the best pieces of advice I can give someone about marriage is to tell anyone who will listen to you just how great your spouse is. It’s great when they are in earshot, but it’s really special when they overhear you raving about them. I could write novels about the kindness my husband has shown me, but since I don’t, I make sure everyone knows just how great he is all the time. Including him! If you meet me in person, I can guarantee you’ll hear “I hit the jackpot!” or”I’ve got a big crush on that husband of mine.” I have no fear of mush, and you will never hear me speak ill of my husband.

I was five when I first met my husband, and he was seven. We watched each other grow up; he watched my chicken legs get longer and I watched him become so handsome, my knees would get wobbly. We were “just friends” for twenty years, even though our dates and friends always suspected we had feelings for each other. He became one of my closest confidants and the person I’d always run to for advice. My point is, we were friends before we were anything else, and that has been huge for us. It was an incredible foundation to build our relationship on. He’s still my best friend. I don’t just love him–I really like him too.

Be ready and willing to sacrifice. Don’t keep score in marriage. Never hold a grudge–seriously, never. Get over it.

If you have an argument, make sure you are not just hungry or tired–or worse, both!

Take daily walks together.

For heaven’s sake, talk about your finances! Set financial goals as a couple. Lay it all out there. It may be uncomfortable to talk about at first, but it will give you so much peace!

To simplify most of what I’ve learned about marriage in the last three years, make decisions together. Even the small ones. The two of you must make decisions together, as it affects the whole. You are one now.

Jessica Lorren

Keep up with Sarah:
Website: Sarah Tucker Events
Blog: Sarah Tucker Styles
Facebook: Sarah Tucker Events
Twitter: @sgmtucker
Instagram: @sgmtucker

lisa Written with love by Lisa

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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