As the years go by, we often fall into a tried and tested routine. This is especially true of anniversaries. How many of us are guilty of the “book a nice restaurant for dinner and buy some flowers” formula? Whilst there is nothing wrong if this is what works for you, there is something to be said about changing things now and then.

How about trying something “old” for your next anniversary? Try re-creating your first date together and make “something old” into “something new” again.

Getting Ready

The first thing you must do is make sure you have all the details right. Go through old photos and journals, if you don’t have these maybe check with your spouse and see what they remember best about that date. Make sure you note details such as the date, time and place. Think about where you went and what you did. Visit those places to see if they still exist.

Make a Memory Book

Think about how you felt and what you thought at different times during that first date. What were your first impressions when your saw your future spouse? Were they funny? Was it love at first sight? Were you nervous at any time during that date? At what moment did you think “This could be it – I want to see this person more and more”. How did the date end? Did you ask your partner out again that same day or did you call later?

It’s a sweet gesture and a lovely anniversary gift to compile a keepsake notebook with pictures of the places you went to and what you did and add notes about your feelings at each of those places.

Plan Your Itinerary

This idea really works best if you can re-create as much of the date as possible. Book the same table at the same restaurant. Or if it was an outdoor event, try and get the same tennis court, or walk the same hiking trail.

Now what happens if time has changed these places? Maybe that restaurant doesn’t exist anymore? Well, then either book a table at the new restaurant that has taken its place, or look for a similar one. For example, if you went to a kelong for seafood dinner, but the kelong has now been redeveloped into a marina for yachts, you could look for another kelong elsewhere with a similar ambience to visit.

Are you up to dressing in similar clothes to those you wore on your first date? Did you go dancing somewhere – maybe they might be willing to play “your song” for you? It’s the details that make the date.

It’s Better the 2nd Time Round

In any case, enjoy your date all over again. In most cases, it’s better the second time round. End your date by sharing how you’ve grown and changed together. Talk about what you are most thankful for in your relationship and your plans for your future together. Make this the beginning of more and more conversations about the future that you have built and are continuing to build together.