After the entry I wrote on October 1 about Lance and I celebrating 10 years together by amping up the romance during the entire month of October, I was inundated with notes asking for specifics. Therefore, here in no particular order are 30 of the things we did. Remember, it's not so much WHAT things you do, it's the cumulative effect of daily “Awwwww!” moments that will make each of you feel surrounded by love and tenderness. The more you do it, the easier it is for even “non-romantics” to come up with ideas.
DO try this at home!
1. Write “I love you” on the bathroom mirror with lipstick, or on the inside of the shower door with Vaseline (so it will show up when the shower fills with steam).
2. Send her a card or love letter through the mail. (Send it to work, if you're sure nobody else will open it.) Write something mushy inside, even if you're generally not mushy in person.
3. FILL the cookie jar with his favorite cookies.
4. Fill the tub with very warm water. (Sprinkle in a few rose petals, if you like.) Make sure the towels are clean and fluffy. Tell her, “You go soak in the tub and relax for a while. I'll make dinner.” Clean the tub afterward.
5. Put a pair of silk boxers on top of the pile in his underwear drawer (even if he's usually a tighty-whitey man). Add a note: “Can't wait to see you in these.”
6. Bring a picnic basket and steal him away for lunch. Go park somewhere with a fantastic view and talk while you eat. Pack grapes, a tiny bottle of wine or champagne and flutes, sandwiches, chips. Throw in a couple of fortune cookies for dessert. (Insert your own fortunes, if you like!)
7. Forgo the usual roses and bring her an enormous bunch of carnations, or daisies, or lilacs. Present them in a pretty vase (you can get them for practically nothing at thrift stores).
8. Burn a CD (or hijack his MP3) player and fill it with “your” songs. Add a few new ones, too.
9. Use scented massage oil, baby oil, olive oil or aspirin cream and give each other back rubs.
10. Have a grown-up date. Dress up. Make reservations. (If you're us, be seated next to a State Senator and ignore him.) Have a cocktail before dinner.
11. Have a “high school” date. Dress down. Go to Burger King. See a movie at a second-run theater. Neck in the back seat of the car.
12. Send a romantic e-card.
13. Buy (or check out of the library) him the newest book by an author you know he loves.
14. Put a bag of her favorite chocolates in her purse when you know she's got a busy day ahead.
15. Have his favorite beverage on hand at the correct temperature. Bring it to him when you think he needs it.
16. Give HER a present on YOUR birthday. Tell her she's the best present you ever got.
17. Buy some glow-in-the-dark stars. Make your bedroom ceiling into deep space, or outline your “favorite” constellation if you have one, or write “I love you” in luminescence. Turn out the lights.
18. While he's making his bedtime ablutions, fill the bedroom with lit tea candles. (If you use the battery-operated fake ones, you won't have to worry about the fire hazard. They sell them 2 for a buck at the dollar store, and they flicker like “real” candles.)
19. While she's making her bedtime ablutions, put a bottle of champagne into a bucket of ice by the bed. Add a pair of crystal flutes and two chocolates (or strawberries). Think James Bond.
20. Give him a clear glass jar full of green M&Ms (or jawbreakers, if he doesn't like M&Ms).
21. Take a weekend off together. If your kids are old enough to look after themselves, go away over night. If your kids are little, hire a sitter or swap overnights with another couple. If you don't have kids, turn off the phones and unplug the TV and – gasp! - the computers.
22. Tuck a love note into the bookmarked page of the book he's currently reading.
23. Bring her a big glass of cranberry juice in bed on a Morning After. Include a multivitamin.
24. Do his chores.
25. Make a ceremony of locking the bedroom door when you turn in for the night.
26. Fill 30 scraps of paper with “Reasons I Love You,” fold them small and put them in a pretty box. Present them to her on the first night of the month and read one of them aloud to her each morning.
27. Send each other sweet text messages – even if you're in the same room.
28. Write him a love note, slip it into a tiny bottle, seal it, hide it in your pocket and take him for a walk beside some body of water. When he's looking elsewhere, toss the bottle into the water for him to “find.”
29. Take a bath (or sit in a hot tub or a Jacuzzi) together. Sit and flirt and talk heart-to-heart until you're both pruny and the water is cold. (This is another good place to use those battery-operated votive candles, by the way.)
30. Buy (or check out of the library) a book about romance. Read a paragraph or two aloud to each other at bedtime. Even if you just make fun of them (and a lot of it does sound funny, read aloud!), it's a sweet way to put the idea in your minds before sleep.