There's a paper anniversary, a crystal anniversary, and even a tin anniversary. But there's no cable TV anniversary. In the upcoming movie Hope Springs, Kay Soames (Meryl Streep) realizes that intimacy and romance have long left her marriage when she and her husband Arnold (Tommy Lee Jones) celebrate 31 years together by getting a new cable subscription. Kay stops tuning out her unmet needs and asks Arnold to attend intensive couples counseling. But is this decision more than 300 TV channels too late?
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You'll have to see Hope Springs in theaters this August to find out how Kay and Arnold reconnect. But here's something to know in the meantime: A bad anniversary gift can make your partner question your relationship.
So how do you find the right gift, whether you've been in a relationship for one year or several decades? My rule of thumb: Don't give something your partner wouldn't want to tell his or her friends about. Here's a Cliff's Note's guide to the best and worst anniversary gifts.
The Best Anniversary Gifts
1. A shared adventure: Novel experiences keep relationships exciting... even if you've heard your husband tell the same story 326 times. Find something neither of you have done before—something you equally want to do—and make it happen. Not only will you make new memories, you'll see a side of your partner you've never seen. Plus, you can say you took your husband's skydiving, wine tasting, or salsa dancing virginity.
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2. Something to commemorate your anniversary date: Most of us meet our special someone on an ordinary day. It's everything that happens afterwards that gives it special meaning. Walk down memory lane by recreating one of your special first days—your first date, the date you met, or the day you said "I do." Have drinks at the bar where you met and toast to the years ahead and behind (bonus points if you drink wine from the same year). Eat the same main course served at your wedding. And if you're about to get married, here's an idea for your first "paper" anniversary: Give your spouse a newspaper from your wedding day, like YourTango Experts Associate Editor Rachel Kleinman's father did for her mom on their first anniversary.
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