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True Romance for Couples with Kids: 10 ideas?
by Susie Michelle Cortright

In my marriage, some of the most memorable evenings have also been the least expensive.

Sure, I have enjoyed the bouquets and the boxes of chocolate, but it is the folk music in the ski lodge, the sips of Chardonnay on our summer porch swing, and the nights spent reading in bed, side by side, that really stand out

Anyone can splurge on a formal dinner or a pricey bottle of perfume, but it takes creativity, forethought, and time to be truly romantic.

The key lies in personalizing your celebration. Here are ten ideas to fuel your own creativity:

1. Empty a box of chocolate (either into your mouth or onto a plate...) 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 I’m sick," or simply "Your recipe for pancakes."

Another variation: Write down 100 cherished memories of your life together. 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 he’ll keep close to his heart forever.

And you can add to the box each 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 chocolate-covered strawberries.

3. Recreate your first date(first date tips) 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 you’ve 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 conversations.

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.

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