5 simple anniversary traditions

wedding anniversary what to do

In honor of our fifth wedding anniversary last weekend, I thought it would be fun to share five of our anniversary traditions – things we have done each year in celebration. We didn’t necessarily intend for these to be repeated every year but they’re so easy and enjoyable – why not!?

We find value in each of these simple anniversary traditions – I hope you will too!

  1. Get Away

    If only for a couple hours, make some special time for each other. We look forward to this every year. We’ve been lucky enough to be able to spend at least a night away, just the two of us. The first year was the only year we didn’t have kids so we went to Mexico and stayed at an amazing, romantic resort for a week (those were the days, right!?). For our second anniversary, when Ellie was only 2 months old, we spent a few hours at a hotel spa which was heavenly, especially at that time!  For the third, fourth and now fifth, we’ve done an overnight at local San Diego hotels – Rancho Bernardo Inn, La Costa and this last weekend at The Lakehouse. Focusing on each other, outside of the normal environment, is so crucial for reconnecting and strengthening the relationship. We’re huge fans!

  2. Revisit

    Every year, we pull out our wedding book and go through it together. Usually this is at the hotel over champagne of course. We also love to watch our wedding videos – both the one our videographer made and also the 30 minute version my sister put together for us of the entire week, mostly of hilarious drunk shenanigans (we got married at an all inclusive resort in Mexico with 54 of our closest friends and immediate family). It never gets old!simple anniversary traditions

  3. Express

    Presents aren’t always exchanged, and really, they are not always necessary. But we make sure to give one another a heart-felt, long-winded, mushy card each year. There’s something about a hand written declaration of love and appreciation that makes me feel so special. I know Chris adores me but when he takes the time to put it into meaningful, written words, it just reaches me on a different level.

  4. Document

    You know how much I love my progression pics (see these and these) so of course we have to document each year with a photo of us, and now with our kids, and the number of which anniversary it is. Dorky, yes, but I imagine it will be so fun to look back on how our lives are growing and changing over the years.anniversary progression photos

  5. Reminisce

    Over our Anniversary dinner, we reminisce about our top moments of the last year to date. We alternate, taking turns to remember and discuss all the great times we had over the year. This is probably my favorite of our traditions because it helps us be present and grateful for everything we have, and have done the last year. When you start listing all these awesome memories you can’t help but feel like life is good. And it is. It is so good.

Easy enough, right?! What are some anniversary traditions you and your spouse do each year? I can always add more to our list!

14 thoughts on “5 simple anniversary traditions

  1. This is late but I had to comment. To be good parents, you must be a good couple. To reinforce your relationship, you must take time out to be together alone.
    My hubby and I don’t have any particular anniversary traditions, but we do take time to get away together. My brother and sister in law take our boys, or my parents in law come to stay with them.
    We usually try to do this every 6 to 8 weeks. A weekend at a beach hotel, a nice resort, or just a weekend to spoil ourselves locally in a nice hotel. It makes us feel recharged, confirms our love, and makes us eager to get back to parenting.
    And, once a week, we have dinner after the boys go to bed. A nice “grown up” dinner, maybe some wine and candles. We talk, and just enjoy each other. We feel we deserve it, as we give our boys our undivided attention. We take them to zoos, parks, and the beach….and many other places. They have full, enjoyable lives. So we recharge our batteries occasionally so we can be the best parents possible.

    1. Totally agree and how awesome that you make time to do it so regularly! It’s a must. I like the once a week adults dinner, we really notice how much of a treat that feels like when it happens. Once a week sounds nice….. thanks for sharing!!!

  2. Great ideas! I’ve been married 11 years and we vary our celebrations…but there are a few things that we always do:
    1 steak, lobster, and prosecco or spumante wine for dinner
    2 exchange of cards and special gift. Special not meaning expensive…sometimes we’ll do a gift coupon for foot massage or shoulder massage…or breakfast in bed.
    3 we also look through our wedding album and reminisce.
    4 a get away…for weekend, or just several hours. We live in SoCal and one time on our anniversary the beach was deserted. We got hotdogs, buns and fixings and built a fire on the beach. We ate, and stayed long after the fire went out. We had our steaks the next day. Sometimes it’s a night at a local resort. Twice we flew to Vegas for a long weekend.
    We have 2 boys…9 and 7. Gramma and PaPa live nearby, and would keep the boys all the time if we’d let them. And the boys love going there, so babysitting isn’t a problem. A little break from us does them good. And my parents are so good with them.
    Anyway, we always look forward to our anniversary. No matter how we spend it.

    1. I love all of these, we share some of them in common. And how amazing is it to have parents that not only are good at watching your kids but LOVE it more than anything. I wish my parents lived closer but they’re just a quick plane ride away. We take advantage when we can. Anniversaries are special and I’m glad we like to treat them that way!!! Where in SoCal are you?

  3. These are such wonderful traditions!! I love that you guys do this and what amazing ways to revisit and appreciate your lives together. I’ll have to remember this for myself….one day. 🙂

  4. I LOVE these!! I have to admit we haven’t always been super good about celebrating our anniversary, but we have one tradition we’ve done every year (except this year because we fell asleep 🙁 so the first 8 out of 9 anyways)… we sit next to each other and go through our wedding album and reminisce about what an amazing and awesome day it was and then we read our personal wedding vows to each other! I love it. It’s a bit hard to celebrate ON our actual anniversary as it’s also my MIL’s birthday (and often babysitter). We went on a trip our first anniversary and I was pregnant but we literally had an anniversary that we picked a restaurant and took Maddie with us to dinner (she was 2 ½ I think?)! Oh – one super cool thing about our anniversary is the Perseid Meteor showers almost always peak on our anniversary so this year after the girls went to bed, we took some blankets outside and laid on the trampoline together watching the meteor shower! Pretty cool since we can see them so well out here if it’s clear. I wish we had done a progression photo series – those are great! I was hoping to do something AMAZING for our 10th next August but the timing is not so great with work! 🙁

    1. I always think of you guys doing something special. I know you love looking through your wedding book – one day later works too 😉 The meteor gazing sounds pretty darn romantic as well <3

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