Francine & Byron Pirola

About Francine & Byron Pirola

Francine & Byron Pirola are the founders and principal authors of the SmartLoving series. They are passionate about living Catholic marriage to the full and helping couples reach their marital potential. They have been married since 1988 and have five children. Their articles may be reproduced for non commercial purposes with appropriate acknowledgement and back links.

Habit Makers, Habit Breakers

Lately, we’ve slipped into a not-so-good habit. After dinner, and after all the normal stuff is done, we collapse onto the couch in front of the TV. We settle into our

Habit Makers, Habit Breakers2020-10-30T13:23:22+11:00

Burn the Boats

A recent analysis of modern day wedding vows reveal around a third of couples shunning the traditional commitment for life. According to the results, 34% dumped the phrase ‘until death do

Burn the Boats2020-10-23T16:12:03+11:00

Knowing what to love

You can’t love what you don’t know. This saying has profoundly influenced our marriage and our faith. About once a decade we book tickets to the opera in the expectation of

Knowing what to love2020-10-16T16:25:24+11:00

Change Reaction

It’s easy to see how couples get stuck when ‘being right’ has become a habit. Clinging to our ‘right to be right’ is like gangrene in a relationship....

Change Reaction2020-10-28T10:49:28+11:00

Marriage Lessons from a Dog Trainer 

A few months ago, our young Australian Shepherd went to doggie boot camp. Over five weeks she was trained by professional dog-handlers to walk calmly, socialise nicely and keep her focus under the pressure of distractions.  

Marriage Lessons from a Dog Trainer 2020-10-28T10:51:14+11:00

Wedding Stress Tamed!

Planning a wedding is busy and stressful. There’s lots to think about and lots of factors to consider in every decision: the budget, the aesthetic, and the cost-benefit.   The practical reality of organising the many details is complicated

Wedding Stress Tamed!2020-10-01T10:25:44+10:00

Commitment

In his book, 'The Power of Commitment', Scott Stanley (USA) provides some very useful insights into the nature of commitment. He identifies two types of relationship commitment: constraints and dedication. Constraint

Commitment2020-10-02T12:57:27+10:00

SmartLoving Keys

On a mission to love… Every couple wants to avoid divorce and get along without too many fights. A successful marriage however, is much more than just this; it is a

SmartLoving Keys2020-09-10T16:34:52+10:00

Making Stumble-Stone Altars 

There will be mistakes. We will make errors and we will mess up in this marriage business. Obstacles and challenges will be part of every romance. The critical issue is how

Making Stumble-Stone Altars 2020-09-04T16:47:26+10:00