Although anniversaries should be a time for celebration, for a lot of men, it can be a nerve wrecking experience leading up to the day. Not only is there a lot of pressure to plan something, getting the perfect gift can seem almost impossible, especially when money is an issue. If diamonds, a romantic get-away or blow out party aren’t realistic, what can you do to give her the kind of gift she will appreciate?
Your anniversaries are special, especially milestone ones so even with a limited budget, you have to come up with something that she will love. Here are five inexpensive ideas to inspire you.
1. CREATE A PHOTO BOOK: Memory Lane
Memory Books are very popular now so the cost of creating one has gone down substantially.
How to Make It Romantic:
Collect pictures of the two of you from over the years. Go as far back as you can. If they are not digitized, you will have to scan them before using an online photo book program to place them.
There are several places you can go to create it. Mixbook.com has Anniversary options to choose from. For that extra romantic touch, you can add text next to the photos. It can be about how you were feeling about her and your relationship at the time the photo was taken or you can go with a theme, such as 10 Reasons Why I Love You.
Be as sincere as possible. The more specific and detailed your thoughts, the more she’ll appreciate it.
2. A COLLECTION OF LITTLE GIFTS
If you have been together for over 5 years, this can be a great one. Getting more than one gift can be exciting even when they don’t cost much.
Give your self some real planning time. The more time and effort you put into it, the better the results.
How to Make It Romantic
For every year you have been together, think about a memorable moment from that year. The trick is to be able to find a gift that represents that memory.
For example, if the first year you met, she was in college, try to get a key-chain or t-shirt from there. For the second year, perhaps you went on a trip together. If you can, order a keepsake from that place or get something that represents it.
Wrap all the gifts individually and number them as year 1, year 2, year 3 etc. Place a note within each gift so that she understands why you chose the gift. For example: Year One: When I first saw you on campus, I knew I was going to marry you…
Again, use very descriptive words that reveal deep feelings. The deeper the better.
3. ROMANTIC SCAVENGER HUNT
A scavenger hunt can be an exciting twist to a special day. You can keep it confined to the home, or make it big by sending her around town.
How to make it romantic:
1. Decide what you want the end prize to be. It could be you standing with a bouquet of flowers at a favorite spot or have her meet you at a nice romantic hotel room for one night.
2. Determine your theme. Again, using your history together is a great starting point. Take inspiration from the collection of gifts ideas and leave a small wrapped gift at every clue.
Also, figure out where you want her to start. If you want her to end up at home, then you may want to have someone deliver a note to her at work or put it in her car.
3. You will need several note cards. Use the color red so that they stand out immediately and place them in obvious places she will see it. You can create riddles for her to figure out, or your can leave clues. If you’re going to use riddles, make sure they’re not so difficult that she won’t be able to figure them out. Keep it simple and keep it short (up to 5 different stops) or else it can become tiresome.
4. If you’re going big, enlist your friends for some of the stops. They may provide transportation or be the clue giver. Just make sure they can keep a secret.
Be sure to be where you’re suppose to be when she gets there!
4. “ALL ABOUT YOU” VOUCHERS
If you’re really strapped and just need a really creative idea that will make a big impact, try this one.
You can hand-make these, but for an extra special touch, type them out, print them and get them bound at Kinkos or your local print shop.
These vouchers can give or fulfill anything you think your wife would love and she can use them as she sees fit. Some ideas can be:
- (5) 10 minute foot massages vouchers
- (2) Chore-free days vouchers
- (2) ‘Do It Now’ vouchers (you have to drop whatever you’re doing, and do whatever she needs you to do in at that moment- she’ll really love this one)
- (4) I will do the dishes voucher
Be as generous with these vouchers as you possibly can. You decide what you’d be willing to do and stick to the requests once given. Make each request, (especially the ones that repeat) individual so she can tear them away. This is a gift that she will absolutely love and appreciate and will possibly talk about for years.
5. CREATE A MUSIC VIDEO
Don’t worry. You don’t have to sing!
The beauty about living in these times is that you no longer have to lug around a huge camera for capturing video, especially for the home.
All you need is a smart phone, your favorite song and access to editing software. Smilebox.com allows you to create great video slides hows in minutes. You can add photos, personalize it with music and email or share it on Facebook. You can even have it saved on DVD.
Without letting her know what you’re doing, take short videos of her. Make sure to shoot her when she’s looking her best so she’s not embarrassed about showing it to friends. If she asks what you’re doing, think of something clever as not to spoil the surprise.
Include yourself in the footage by having a friend video taping you or strategically placing the camera. For a creative twist, create a story line where you’re getting ready and getting dressed to meet someone, which happens to be her. Try not to be too serious or it can come off cheesy. If anything, make it funny. Making her laugh is sometimes a great thing.
Put it all together and reveal it to her during a romantic dinner on a laptop. If you can have it displayed on the television set that would be even better.
The more effort you put into these ideas, the better the results will be. When your funds are low, your creativity has to be at a high. If she loves it, she’ll share it with all her friends and that means you did really good. Anniversaries should create great memories within themselves. Give her gifts that she will never forget.
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