Young hikers relaxing on top of a mountain and enjoying sunriseWhether you’re in a new relationship celebrating your first year together, or one that’s been thriving for decades, planning a romantic anniversary can sometimes be a daunting task. My grandparents, who will be married 70 years this coming weekend, are celebrating with a garden party thrown by my aunts, uncles, and cousins, and for my first anniversary, my husband and I celebrated with pizza delivery and a copy of Ferris Buehler’s Day Off, our favorite movie. An anniversary celebration doesn’t need to be lavish or costly, and can be memorable with little investment and just a tiny bit of thought and planning. Whatever you decide to do for you and your beloved’s special day, incorporate the following tips, and reaffirm your connection with the help of David Taylor’s Relationship University.

1. Go Outside

Take the day off from work or take a weekend and plan a hike or walk together through a natural area near your city. The U.S. Forest Service and the National Parks Service offer thousands of hikes, walks, and paths to discover across the nation. If you live in an urban setting, an outdoor urban adventure can be just as exciting as one through the wilderness. Bring lots of water to stay hydrated, and make sure to hold hands along the way.

2. Massage

A massage can be a great way to spend an evening with your loved one. If you’re feeling nervous about what to do and what not to do, turn to Shama Kern’s Learn Massage for Lovers, Friends, and Family. Known to help improve relationships and improve general wellbeing, Kern’s course teaches a number of full body massage techniques to help you and your partner reconnect and celebrate your anniversary.

3. Food is Love: Make Dinner

As someone who cooks nearly every meal at home, I cannot over-emphasize the importance of knowing how to cook at least one delicious dish for your loved one. Even if it’s scrambled eggs on toast, take the time to learn to create a memorable dinner for your anniversary. Your partner will appreciate that you went through the effort to feed him or her, and with just a few simple tricks, you might find that you’re a better cook than you originally thought. If you’re a little rusty, or are new to the kitchen, try Learn to Cook Thai with Chef Kae, or make breakfast with Discover How to Make Perfect Omelets Every Time.

4. Urban Exploration

Choose a few places in your city (or in a new city) that your partner might find exciting and take him or her on an anniversary adventure. Cities, even smaller ones, are often bustling with museums, parks, and old buildings and monuments. For our second date, I took my husband to a vacuum cleaner museum, which he found entertaining and hilarious, and it’s something he still talks about nearly two years later. Many cities and towns have kitschy attractions that can provide hours of entertainment and years of anecdotes for you to reminisce over in the coming years.

5. Camera Adventure

These days, if you don’t have a camera, there’s likely one in that cell phone in your pocket. Spend your anniversary visiting some of the places you’ve been with your sweetie, taking pictures of each other along the way. If you have an iPhone, and need help navigating its camera application, check out Chet Davis’ iPhone Photography Secrets. Commemorate your special anniversary by combining these photographs into an album, or have a few printed and framed in honor of your years together.

6. A Night at Home

Sometimes there’s nothing more romantic than spending your anniversary together at home. Order your favorite take-out or cook a favorite meal together, and splurge with a favorite dessert or wine choice. Turn off your phones and computers, and rent a movie, or spend the evening sorting through the year’s photographs. An evening at home can be a meaningful and inexpensive way to reconnect and celebrate a special anniversary.

7. Get Out

Go dancing! Go to a comedy club! Go to a show! Getting out can be an exciting and romantic way to enjoy an anniversary together. If you live in a large city, you can easily find an evening activity, or tickets to a show you’d like to see. Consider what kinds of entertainment you and your partner enjoy together, and plan an evening out on the town. Outdoor concerts are great in the summer, and are often conducive to picnicking and napping outside on the lawn. Pack a cooler if the venue allows you to bring your own food, and enjoy dinner under the stars with entertainment provided by your favorite artists.

8. Lunch Surprise

When I was little, my mom would take us to my dad’s work to “kidnap” him for lunch. You can try the same tactic to celebrate your anniversary. Call your partner’s boss and explain that your anniversary is quickly approaching and you’d like to get him or her away from the office for the afternoon on your special day. Show up to your partner’s work on your anniversary and take him or her away for the rest of the day. Hang out at a local park, grab a bite to eat, or take a stroll downtown. Finish the evening with a drink and dancing.

9. Send Flowers

If your anniversary falls on a workday and you are unable to take yourself away from the office, send him or her flowers as a reminder of your anniversary. If your partner isn’t fond of plants (or has terrible allergies) there are a number of other options for office gift delivery including chocolates and gift boxes. My favorites include baskets of crackers and cheese, and those filled with gourmet chocolates and cookies. A quick online search will yield a variety of options, and will help your loved one remember that you’re thinking of him or her on this special day.

10. Hidden Love Notes

Before my husband leaves for work, I often slip little notes into his shoes and his lunchbox, to let him know I’m thinking of him throughout the day. Try this on your anniversary, and use a hidden message as an opportunity to indicate the evening’s upcoming activities. Maybe you’re heading out to dinner, or maybe you’re staying in for the evening. Whatever you do, make sure your sweetheart knows how much you care and that you can’t wait to celebrate your anniversary with him.

11. Dessert

Making your partner’s favorite dessert is sure to set the mood for a romantic anniversary celebration. Recipes abound on the Internet, and many only take a few minutes to throw together. If you’re looking for a mouth-watering chocolate recipe, check out Susan Teton’s Make Orgasmic Healthy Raw Cacao Desserts, my favorite is the chocolate mousse. If you’re sweetie can’t have sugar, treat him or her to something that could take the place of dessert like a plate of exotic cheeses or fruit.

12. The Old-Fashioned Mix-Tape

I realize that only a few people listen to cassette tapes these days, but the sentiment of a mix tape is one of careful consideration and thought. When I was a kid, you made a mix tape for the kid in biology that you had a crush on, or for your best friend before you went off to college. You listened to it in your Walkman (yes Walkman), and it often said so many things that were difficult to express verbally. Mix tapes are a great throwback to youth and the days before iPods and playlists. Since cassette recorders, let alone tapes and cassette players are few and far between, aim for a great playlist to commemorate your anniversary. Include songs that you and your partner enjoy together alongside those whose lyrics resonate with your relationship and feeling for one another.

13. Handwritten Letter

When was the last time you wrote your significant other a letter expressing your love for him or her? Sit down and spend a couple hours compiling a list of all the things you love about your partner, include a favorite memory or story, and take the time to let him or her know how much you care. Revise your list and write the letter longhand on paper (no, not on your computer!) Stationary stores often sell lovely sheets of card stock paper and matching envelopes too. Hide the letter under his or her pillow, or pass it across the table at your romantic anniversary dinner.

14. Hotel Weekend Splurge

Sometimes it’s great to just leave the house and celebrate your anniversary away from the cooking, cleaning, and craziness of home. If you have kids or pets, leave them with a sitter, and book a room for the night at a local favorite hotel. Online coupons for a single or double night’s stay are plentiful with just a little research online, and there are often specials and packages that cater to anniversary travelers.

15. Technology Tune-Out

If you only make one plan for your anniversary, make it a technology tune-out day. Spend the day together, with your phones off, televisions off, and computers off. Avoid your email inbox and forget about the afternoon basketball game. Take the opportunity to really reconnect with your mate, and spend some time one-on-one, without the constant hum of technology in the background.

Making time to celebrate an anniversary can be difficult with our busy work schedules, kids, family, and social obligations, but with a few simple tips, and not a lot of money, you can let your spouse know how much you care. Whether it’s a simple dinner for two at home, or a walk around the city holding hands, even the smallest gesture has meaning when you’re commemorating your time together. If you’re looking for more insight into how to better understand your partner and get the most out of your relationship while celebrating your anniversary, or any day, try Secrets of True Love Soul Mate Relationships with Transformation Services Joeel and Natalie. Even couples that have celebrated many decades together can create the true love relationship and many more romantic anniversary celebrations with the previous tips and the help of Joeel and Natalie.

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