What We've Learned about Marriage from Chip and Joanna Gaines

Fixer Upper's dynamic duo go all in on every one of their projects. Our hands-down favorite: The rock-solid foundation of their relationship.

The fifth season of Fixer Upper promises to be a doozy: Former First Lady Barbara Bush and NFL quarterback Tim Tebow will make appearances, Chip and Jo will spring jaw-dropping, customized surprises on their clients, Chip will continue to out-‘do himself in the personal-grooming department...“We are really, really proud of season five,” Chip says. “We laid it all on the field and didn’t hold anything back.” (We see that, Chip.)

We’re also looking forward to a slew of new #relationshipgoals, since the not-so-secret sauce in their success is the strength of their partnership itself. As for that recipe, it goes a little something like...

Embrace Your Differences

“I look back and go, ‘If I would’ve ended up with that quiet guy or that stable guy or that safe guy, I would never have been able to pursue any of these dreams, because no one would have pushed me to these new places I discovered in myself,’” Joanna writes in The Magnolia Story, the Gaines’ first book. “Those other types of guys might have allowed me to stay in that safe place.”

“And if I had wound up with some cheerleader who was always the life of the party, I don’t think I would have found my way, either. I needed [Joanna] for that,” Chip responds.

...But Don't Be Afraid to Twin It up Every Once in a While

Who could resist hiring this pair of merpeople to renovate their home?

Go Unplugged

Chip and Jo have social media down pat, but they also know when to step away from their devices — which makes it easier to focus on each other and sets a solid example for Drake, Ella Rose, Duke and Emmie Kay. Limiting TV time is even more of a breeze, since they don’t have one. (They watch Fixer Upper at a friend’s place!)

Hang on to Questionable Snapshots

Wedding and glammed-up date-night photos are grand. So are the ones that make you snort-laugh every time you see them.

Lean on Each Other

These two have each other’s backs for better and for worse. “When things come against us we can either turn on each other, or we can come together and turn on it,” Chip says in The Magnolia Story.

Prioritize Play

Onesies and slippers are optional, of course, but they might just be optimal.

Make Your Community Part of Your Partnership

Chip and Joanna took their talents for transformation to the next level in 2014, when they turned a derelict cotton oil mill in downtown Waco into Magnolia Market’s shop, garden and event space. Their grand opening in 2015 became an annual, everyone’s-welcome #silobration.

Celebrate Milestones (with Cheese)

Those #silobrations also call for a Gaines-only date night. “[W]e tend to frequent our local holes-in-the-wall for street tacos and queso,” Joanna told People. “After dinner we get ice cream and drive around Waco to go down memory lane and visit our old stomping grounds.”

Know When You’re Wrong — And When You’re Right

“I’m not sure why I ever gave [Chip] a second chance when he showed up 90 minutes late for our first date or why I gave him another second chance when he didn’t call me for two months after that,” Joanna writes in The Magnolia Story. “And I’m not sure why he gave me a second chance after I blew that romantic moment in the driveway [when Chip said, 'I love you' and Joanna said, 'Thank you']. But I’m very glad I did, and I’m very glad he did too—because sometimes second chances lead to great things. All of my doubts, all of the things I wanted out of a relationship, and many of the things I thought I wanted out of life itself turned out to be just plain wrong. Instead? That voice from our first date turned out to be the thing that was absolutely right.”

We can’t wait to see what they take on together next.

Tune in for the Fixer Upper Season 5 premiere episode, "Austin Couple Finds Waco Charm," on Tuesday, Nov. 21 at 9p|8c.

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