Every married couple has one. Some remember them more fondly than others, but they should all be celebrated. Even in the most difficult times, our anniversaries serve as a reminder of the covenant we both agreed to for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health. That about covers every challenge a married couple can face together. And it’s in our “togetherness” that the burden can be lightened if we let it.
Tom and I will celebrate 35 years on the 24th. 35 years!
How did we get here? Only by the grace of God because we are two sinners who do what sinner do–sin! But we have a remedy for our sins, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We celebrate His grace on our anniversary because we know that left to ourselves we would have never made it this far.
I love to plan romantic memories for us, and after 35 years I have quite a list. Now I want to share my list with you in an effort to help you plan a special memory for your anniversary this year. On a side note–I haven’t done everything on this list, but hopefully will.
- Think of one word to describe each year you’ve been married. If you have lots of years behind you this one might be more challenging. But give it a try. It’s always good to look back and remember how far we’ve come. Then share your list with your spouse thanking them for each year.
- Recreate something from your honeymoon. It can be a special dinner, songs you danced to, or any other activity you really enjoyed 😉 on your time away as Mr. & Mrs.
- Watch your wedding video.
- Make a photo book of pictures from every year you’ve been married.
- Make a music video using the same pictures, but put it to your favorite love songs as the background music.
- Give them a year of romantic dates based on the number of years you’ve been married. For example–if you’ve been married 11 years, plan 11 dates sometime over the course of the next year.
- Give your spouse a day of all their favorites. This can be any number of things–like a massage, day at the beach, golfing, fishing, roller skating, along with their favorite foods. The more you can do in the day the better. And don’t tell them what’s coming next. We heard of one husband who sent his wife to one place and when she finished he would send her a text telling her where to go next. I think she went for a massage/mani/pedi, to the hair salon, to the mall for a new outfit, and finally met him at a great restaurant for a romantic evening.
- Follow the traditional list of anniversary gifts and give them something for your year.
- I love using the number of years married as a spring board for ideas. For example, if you’ve been married 12 years, that’s a dozen. Celebrate the #12 by coming up with dozens of things to do or gifts to give. How about making them a personal calendar with one date day each month. If you’ve been married 16 years–that’s Sweet 16. Let “sweet” be your theme. You get the idea.
- Plan way ahead and start saving for a really nice gift. I did this one year by taking an extra $5 from the grocery budget, as well as had garage sales and such through out the year. I managed to save $400 to buy Tom a really nice stereo system. And we were living paycheck to paycheck, so I know it can be done. It just takes incentive and determination. Once you see how you blessed your spouse, it’ll inspire you even more.
- Do something totally out of your normal routine, like rent a convertible and go for a drive in the country all day long–or to the beach. Plan ahead and put a picnic in the trunk to be spontaneous.
- Commit to planning a regular date night for the rest of the year. You could do Alphabet Dates, which would provide 26 dates, and many of them are at home dates not requiring a babysitter.
- Plan a special getaway together. It may not happen on your anniversary, but you could spend the evening talking and dreaming about. Maybe even book your flights or your cruise date.
- Set the timer for the number of years you’ve been married, and blindfold your spouse. Have your way with them until the timer goes off. Guaranteed this anniversary gift will be a favorite! 🙂
- Find time to thank God for all the things He’s brought you through together. Think out loud of all the ways you’ve both changed through the years, and end the night by taking communion together.
What would you add to the list? How do you make your anniversaries special?