Today marks four years of marriage for me and my husband. I’ve been feeling all mushy and sentimental lately, so I thought it would be fun to do a post all about wedding anniversary traditions. Hubs and I don’t really have any traditions ourselves. But, I come from a family who loves a tradition, and I’m hoping it’s not too late for us to start one of our own.
The Traditional Gifts
Every year (so far), I’ve given my husband a gift from this list of traditional themed gifts by year. For our first anniversary (paper), I put together a scrapbook of photos from our first year of marriage. Then, on our second anniversary (cotton), I had a custom, 100% cotton blanket made for him. For our third anniversary (leather), I had a custom leather sheath made for the pocket knife I also gifted him.
It’s fun to find creative ways to give gifts my husband will enjoy that are still within the theme, or at least my interpretation of the theme.
The fourth anniversary traditional gift is fruit or flowers. Now, I was really struggling with this one. How could I go from customized leather products to a fruit salad? I just couldn’t understand it, and I even considered going off the rails a little. Some further research revealed that the UK has a different list of traditional gifts, and the fourth anniversary is silk or linen over there. But, the 12th anniversary is silk or linen on the US list, which I’ve already been following for 3 years.
A little more digging though, finally brought me to the information I needed to get on board. The reason the fourth anniversary gift is fruit or flowers is “to represent the blossoming of your relationship and the beauty that comes with sticking by each other’s side through thick and thin.”
How beautiful is that?
So, I decided to carry forward with a fruitier gift. I found a very fitting gift to commemorate our fruit and flowers anniversary for him, which I’ll share more about in my newsletter this Friday. Since he reads my posts and we’ll be exchanging gifts later this evening, it’s too soon to share here.
Now, it’s time to begin thinking about our Wood Anniversary next year!
Does Not Having a Tradition Count as a Tradition?
Hubs and I were married the day before Christmas Eve, 2016 (I affectionately refer to it as Christmas Eve Eve). Both sides of our extended family have large celebrations on Christmas Eve, and of course Christmas Day is always a special day with immediate family. So, we never had a honeymoon and we don’t typically travel for our anniversary.
We had a lot going on our first three years of marriage, so we don’t have any really strong traditions. On our first anniversary, we had breakfast at a favorite restaurant in our small town, where we also enjoyed breakfast on our wedding day. But, the next couple of years, it didn’t work out and we enjoyed quieter days at home. Today, we’re both working, so we’ll celebrate this evening.
10 Wives Share Their Favorite Wedding Anniversary Traditions
Since my husband and I don’t really have a tradition, but of course I love traditions, I decided to ask some other wives to share the wedding anniversary traditions they share with their husbands, and here are some of my favorites.
Sending Floral Arrangements (it’s not what you think)
Tabitha Liburd shared a very sweet tradition. No, her husband doesn’t send her a floral arrangement every year for their anniversary. Instead, together they send a floral arrangement to the altar of St. George’s Anglican Church in Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, where they were wed.
Wearing a Small Accessory from Her Wedding Day
Ashley told me that every year on her wedding anniversary, she wears the headband that she wore at her wedding. I absolutely love this idea! On my wedding day, I wore a pair of blue flats with rhinestone broaches on the toes that I adore, but never have occasion to wear. Our anniversary just may be the occasion.
Giving Funny Anniversary Cards
Jamie over at Aesthetic Journeys loves to give her husband funny cards. In fact, she enjoys this tradition so much, she has a whole collection of funny wedding anniversary cards. The cool thing about her collection is that she shares printable versions of the cards for free that you can print at home OR you can purchase customized, printed versions.
Dining at Favorite Restaurants
Petra McEwan from Wifey Mommy Doc enjoys a meal with her husband every year on their anniversary at the same restaurant where they ate the night after their wedding.
My good friend, Audrey and her husband like to celebrate with dinner too. They have young children, so they go out to one of their local favorites if they have a sitter, and if not she makes a special dinner.
Audrey’s mother-in-law, Cheryl, another kind, beautiful soul in my life, and her husband love a dinner celebration too. They like to alternate between Olive Garden and a local Mexican restaurant.
Preparing a Special Meal at Home
Katy Thomas and her husband like to prepare a special dinner at home. They always select a dish that takes longer to prepare and may even be a bit complicated (foods you wouldn’t normally cook on whim after work). Past recipes they’ve enjoyed include beef wellington, seafood ravioli, and smoked ribs.
Taking a Special Trip
Barbara and her husband, like me and mine, were married right around Christmas and also never had a honeymoon. Since then, they’ve enjoyed taking an annual trip to Gatlinburg around Christmas time.
A Trip to Taco Time
My dear friend, Kelci and her husband celebrated their first Valentine’s Day together with a Taco Time meal on the couch. They don’t love fancy situations, so it was perfect for them, and has become their standard Valentine’s Day celebration since then. On their wedding night (fun fact: their wedding was just 5 days before ours!), they were starving on their way to their hotel. But it was late and Taco Time had closed. So, instead they went to Taco Bell and were sorely disappointed. So now, every year on their wedding anniversary, they have a meal from Taco Time to make up for that disaster!
At some point during the day, they also try to make sure they get a photo of the two of them holding their wedding photo. My heart is melting!!
Red Velvet Cake
Another wonderful friend named Kelsey and her husband enjoy a red velvet cake every year on their wedding anniversary. Sometimes she bakes the cake, and sometimes they buy one. Their wedding cake had multiple flavors and the red velvet was their favorite. So, they treat themselves to that sweet memory each year.
The Marriage is What Really Matters
I don’t know what we’ll wind up doing today or next year, or ten years from now. But, we’ve got some fun ideas here to get us started. In the meantime, we’ll continue to enjoy each other’s company as we always have and look forward to a happy, Married Christmas together.
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