By Susie Cortright
Anyone can splurge on a formal dinner or a pricey bottle of
perfume, but it takes creativity, forethought, and time to be
The key lies in personalizing your celebration. Here are ten
ideas to fuel your own creativity:
1. Empty a box of chocolates. Then cut out 50 to 100 hearts
from lace doilies, construction paper, or fabric. On each cutout,
record something about him that you love. Be specific,
"The way you smell when you come to bed at night," "The way
you take care of me when Iím sick," "Your recipe
Fold the cutouts, place them in the chocolate
box, and top with a red satin bow.
The time you spend coming up with these ideas will contribute
to your own romantic mood, and what he thinks is a plain
box of chocolates will be a gift heíll keep close to his heart
forever. And you can add to the box on Valentine's Day, his birthday,
your anniversary, and other holidays throughout the year.
2. Build a romantic fire. Before the kids go to bed, have fun
roasting marshmallows. After their lights are out, host your
own indoor picnic, complete with a bottle of wine and
3. Recreate your first date together. What were you wearing?
Where did you go? Do you remember what you talked about? Spend
the evening reminiscing and reflecting on how far youíve come
as a couple.
4. Spoon all night.
5. Choose a book in which you are both interested, fiction or
nonfiction. Read a new chapter each night before bed. This
cozy tradition will allow you to spend some quality time
together and often makes for thought-provoking breakfast
6. Make a tape of the songs special to your relationship.
Include "your song," songs from your wedding, songs from
favorite movies. Add a personal voice dedication and leave
it in his briefcase, Walkman, or car stereo.
7. Turn off the TV.
8. Kidnap your husband. Arrange for a babysitter for a few
hour--or a few days. A friend of mine had a lot of success
with this one. She knew her husband had always wanted to get
married in Vegas, but he had agreed to a large, formal ceremony
hosted by her family. So, after they had been married 10 years,
she surprised him at work with a packed suitcase. They caught
an evening flight and renewed their vows before an Elvis
impersonator in a Vegas chapel. Years later, theyíre
still talking about it.
9. This one requires a babysitter, too. Next time youíre
visiting your parents or in-laws, leave the kids with their
grandparents and travel to another town, where no one will
recognize you. Check into a hotel or B&B. Dress like another
woman. Act like another woman. Itís fun to slip into another
persona from time to time.
10. Have a scavenger hunt. Write a few poems, wrap candy
kisses inside, and hide them around the house. Each poem
should be a clue to finding the next one. Make sure the
final clue lands your man someplace you want to end up
for the entire evening. A romance package, including a
bottle of champagne and new lingerie, is a nice touch.
Create some romantic memories today. Now with your pocketbook, but
with your imagination.
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Focus On The Joy
Instead of focusing on the
effort, FOCUS ON THE JOY. Focus on the people
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goals. Focus on the process of creating something,
not what results you expect.