In our house, baseboards and window sills aren’t the only things that have been collecting a thin layer of grime this winter. My husband and I have been trapped inside together for months. I’m close enough to smell him and hear him (the chewing!) but even though we’ve been in proximity to each other a lot this season, winter has the annual ability to leave us feeling disconnected. During these dormant months our relationships gets a bit dusty (which is what happens when all you do as a couple is sit on the couch, drink wine, and watch tv: you collect dust.)

One thing is clear: it’s time for a spring spruce up. That’s why we love spring right? Fresh starts. Clean slates. Opportunities for growth. Cadbury mini-eggs.

If you’re also feeling like your relationship could use a little warm up, here are a few things to get you started:

1. Air Old Resentments

Have an issue that you’ve buried under the winter weight? Don’t let it stagnate any longer. The sooner you get it out the open, the sooner you can move on.

2. Take Her Out for a Spin

It’s time to get out of the house. Look at your spouse in a different environment, from a different angle, under different lighting. You’d be surprised how much a change in venue can freshen up your perspective.

3. April Showers Bring May Flowers

You want flowers? You’ve got to plant seeds. And water them. And fertilize them. And sing to them. And weed them. Of course you could just go buy them, but isn’t that cheating? Wait, are we still talking about flowers?

4. Don’t Forget Curb Appeal

If your winter uniform consists of hoodies pulled over heads and flannel pajama pants, it’s time to spruce it up with some grooming and landscaping. Have a little pride in your appearance. Your spouse will notice.

5. Don’t Put Off General Maintenance

It’s fine. It’s fine. It’s fine. Until suddenly it’s not. If you ignore the little things that need to be taken care of, you’ll find they can add up to be quite costly. Try small, consistent measures to keep things running smoothly. This can help to avoid major issues later.

6. Get Rid of What’s Not Working

Spring is the classic time for a good old-fashioned purge. Whether it’s stuff, habits, or attitudes that need to go, cleaning out the pieces of your life that aren’t working can do wonders for a relationship. Less stress makes for happier people. Happier people make better partners.

7. Prioritize Your Projects

What would make your spouse feel really valued and appreciated? Invest your time and resources in that.

8. Check Smoke Detector Batteries

Because house fires just plain suck.

Ready to get started? Even if your marriage is older than dirt, spring is the perfect time to reconnect with your spouse. Because before you know it summer will be here, and you’ll be melting into a puddle of laziness clutching your cold beer and begging to be left alone.