Although the recent NBA lockout has kept talented basketball stars off the court for months, you won’t see Monica or her baller hubby Shannon Brown complaining. In fact, the newlyweds are using the down time to get closer than close.

PHOTOS: Monica and Shannon Brown’s Star-Studded Wedding Guest List

“We’ve been taking advantage of the lockout,” Monica said in a recent interview on the Russ Parr morning show. “We’ve been ‘locking in’ with each other and enjoying the time together.”

While the Brown family is taking a break, Monica is also gearing up for the release of her upcoming album, “New Life,” which hits stores November 29th. For her new LP, she wants her fans to know that despite her blossoming marriage, her album won’t totally be about being head-over-heels in love.

“The album is done and I’m happy with it because it’s not just about one thing,” said Monica. “People assume that I would be singing about being in love, but it’s easier to talk about where I’ve been because I wouldn’t be the person that I am if it had not been for some of the things that happened to me.”

VIDEO: Inside Monica and Shannon’s Dream Wedding

Despite Monica having to divide her time between the new album and her family, when it comes down to choosing between the two, there’s no contest.

“My husband and my kids absolutely come first,” Monica told us during her recent visit to the ESSENCE office. “Work is just something where I figure out where it will fit.”

Awwww! We love hearing Monica gush about spending time with her family.


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