Everyone loves gifts and surprises, even those to deny it truly love getting a sweet little surprise now and again! Whether you are planning an anniversary surprise for your spouse or you want to get creative with your deployment packages, here are a few ways to do something kind and different for that special someone.

Embrace nostalgia

If your spouse is deployed or away for training, do as military couples of years’ past and begin writing letters to one another. Love letters are a comforting reminder that you’re waiting and missing your servicemember. This isn’t to say you should stop emailing and Skyping one another; it’s just a classic way to give one another something to look forward to. To make things easier for your spouse, you might also consider sending blank stationary and a spare envelope along with your letter. You could also include a stationary set in your next care package.

Cook together

Instead of going out for a fancy dinner, make an upscale dinner together at home to celebrate your anniversary.  Splurge on a few gourmet ingredients and make a decadent meal in the comfort of your own home. Play the first movie you ever saw together, or music from your favorite band (as a couple), and enjoy a meal you prepared as a team while you stroll down memory lane. Be sure to include roses and candles on your next grocery list. If you’re going to put on a high-end evening, do it right!

An alternate to this, if you want to enjoy a beautiful day with your spouse, is to prepare a swanky surprise picnic. be sure to include a small vase with flowers, wine and a comfy blanket to lounge around and enjoy your meal. Use an excuse like needing help picking out something up from the home improvement store; once you have your spouse in the car, you can steal them away to a picnic location of your choice.

Get sporty

As an active servicemember or veteran, your spouse has probably become accustomed to regular workouts. Do something active with your spouse. Get out into nature and go on a hike. Rent bikes and take a leisurely ride. Or, channel your inner tween and go roller or ice skating. Whether you’re celebrating a milestone or just want to do something with your partner, this is a fun way to spend time together.

Home spa

Couples’ massages can get pretty pricey.  If you’re looking for a great anniversary date without the indulgent price tag, set up a massage therapy paradise in your room with the relaxing oils, low lights and tranquil tunes; and what better way to get all of the oils off than a nice bubble bath…

Watch the sun rise

Not many things are more romantic than watching the sun greet a new day. This is a great way to welcome your spouse back from deployment. Once they’ve had a few days to rest up and re-establish their family life, gently wake them up early with a sweet treat like hot chocolate. Take a walk in the early dawn, or take a blanket and some pillows into an open area of the back yard to relax and watch the sky light up.


What are some creative ways you and your spouse bond at home or on deployment?

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