Wednesday, December 15, 2004


What better tradition is there than being expected to kiss your
sweetie for no other reason than just standing in the right spot? If
you don't have any mistletoe hung up, go get some soon. Christmas is
almost here and you don't want to miss out. Be sure to put it
somewhere where you will often be together. Even better, get two, one
for the bedroom and one for the kitchen (or wherever you often meet

Now to the good part, the kissing. What sort of kiss should you do
under the mistletoe? As many sorts as you can think of. One time
give her a peck on the cheek. Next time, give her a toe-curling
whopper. Be sure to mix it up with kisses to her cheeks, lips, nose,
hands, neck, etc. Whatever you do, do not become predictable. Keep
her guessing how she is going to be kissed next. Spice up your
repertory by throwing butterfly kisses and Eskimo kisses into the mix
for a greater variety of surprises.

Also, add various other aspects to the kiss. Perform one kiss while
holding hands. Do another in a full bear hug. Try giving her a
love-pat or not touching her at all. Sometimes whisper a sweet
nothing in her ear or sneak a love note into her hand or pocket. Take
your time and linger sometimes. Other times, make it quick, almost an

Most important: Always smile. Let her see in your countenance how you
much you enjoy kissing her.

What about the kids? It is good for kids to both be kissed and to see
their parents kissing. For example, our youngest has a good friend
whose parents got a divorce. It has been surprising how much my child
has been affected by their divorce and how she worries about my wife
and I getting a divorce. With so many marriages dissolving before
your children's eyes, your kids need to have confidence in the
stability of your family. Give them that confidence by letting them
see you kiss and otherwise flirt with your sweetie. It really helps
them to feel more confident in themselves when they can feel secure
about the stability of their family.

Bonus: One time you will give her a peck on the cheek and she will
grab you and give you a fireworks kiss. Congratulation!! You did it

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Sharing a secret

Admit it, there are some "secrets" that you share with your sweetie.
Not the "dirty laundry" kind of secrets, but the fun secrets that no
one knows about. Things like that one song that is "your song" or
that little restaurant that no one knows about but has a great Italian
food and the accordion player on Friday nights. The secret
discoveries that couples share over the years are what these shared
secrets are all about.

One fun shared secret can be a movie. It needs to be a movie that is
not the most popular movie du jour. It needs to be a movie that no
one knows about, or its not a secret. It can be a fun independent
movie that you see at some film festival. Also, DVDs can make for
some "shared secret" movies. Just be adventuresome and try a movie
you have not seen before. Romantic comedies are often the best for a
couple who want to enjoy watching a movie and being together.

If you want a suggestion, let me recommend "Our Hospitality" starring Buster Keaton. Its an old silent romantic comedy with two feuding families. Of course, the son of one family falls for the daughter of the other, not realizing they are mortal enemies. I'm not going to say anymore except that it is one of the funniest movies I have ever seen. The humor includes the broad physical comedy Buster Keaton is famous for, the standard young couple overcoming adversity and a very cleaver play of feuding and hospitality. But the train scene brought tears to my eyes.

When discovering a new "shared secret" be sure to set the mood. Take
the time to make some movie popcorn and have everything proper for
some good movie watching while snuggling. Having a shared secret is
as much about how you felt while discovering the shared secret as what you were discovering.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

The Danger of a Grand Gesture

Maybe its just a guy thing, but I love to give my sweetie extravagant
gifts. Maybe I hark back to the caveman days when bringing home a
squirrel would keep you from starving but not much else. However, a
woolly mammoth will keep your sweetie well fed and warm for a quite
while. Also, its an ego boost to have my sweetie show off my latest

Come to think of it, its not just a guy thing. My sweetie loves to
lavish me with expensive gifts and toys. Maybe its just that we get
such enjoyment out of seeing our sweetheart happy. And obviously the
more money I spend the happier she will be. Right?

I have learned to keep these Neanderthal impulses under control.
Buying an expensive gift can do more harm to your romantic life than
it does good. Often, a small, but thoughtful token of love is better
than an expensive one. Seems counter-intuitive so lets explore.

First, take into account the family budget. If you spend so much on a
gift that it adversely affects the cash flow situation, the grand
gesture is going to backfire. When your sweetie sees or thinks about
the budget-busting gift, they will not be happy and grateful. Rather,
your sweetie will feel guilty and ashamed. This is not what you
wanted. For long-term happiness, avoid the budget-buster. Remember
this wise saying: There is no better aphrodisiac than a balanced

Second, consider the idea of "points". When you do something nice for
your sweetie, you are said to have scored points with them. Now the
weird thing is that points are not proportional to money spent.

Consider the story of a wise friend of mine. He got his wife a new
car. He also got her wedding ring upgraded for their anniversary. A
foolish man would think that he would have scored enough points to
last a long time. He would think "I spent so much money she is going
to be happy and I won't have to worry about any of that romantic stuff
for a long time". My wise friend realized that these points would
only last a few days. Once she had shown all her friends and family
the car, it would go back to being just a car. The same applies for
the ring.

Which leads us to emotional memory. Our emotions have no memory.
Emotions only exist in the NOW. It doesn't really matter how I felt
last week, last year or 5 minutes ago. What matters is what I feel
NOW. So the joy that your sweetie feels with the gift only lasts for
a short time, regardless of the size and price of the gift. Some
gifts can bring repeated joy to the recipient, but that is a topic for
another day.

The bottom line is: You can score more points with small romatic
gestures randomly strewn throughtout the year than with a single grand
gesture. Emotions are fleeting. What was exciting yesterday becomes
routine and boring today. Do unexpected, simple, and inexpensive
gestures often to remind your sweetie how much you love each other.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Cut a Rug

When was the last time you danced with your sweetie? If you are like
most couples, you can't remember that far back. Tonight, clear a spot
and find some music of varying tempos. It is as important to have
some up-tempo music as well as the "bear hug" music. Then, spend a few
minutes dancing with your sweetheart.

Dancing is great for your both your hearts - the physical one and the
romantic one. For the physical heart, it is a wonderful aerobic
activity that will get your heart rate up. It burns lots of calories
and gets those endorphins going to make you feel good.

But don't forget the romantic heart. By the end of just a couple of
dances you both will be smiling, laughing and really enjoy being with
each other. Not only that, there is a lot of touching: hugs, holding
hands, the "bump" and so on. No better recipe for romance was ever

What about the kids? Unless you have teenage sons, they will be
jumping right in. Kids know a good time when they see it. You may
have daughters standing on your feet or a son "dancing" without his
even touching the ground. Its a great family "bonding" experience.

You say, "I am so self-conscious of my dancing". The best way to
overcome that it to make a game of it. There are no set rules for
dancing. Dancing only requires a willingness to try. Make up your own
dances based on everyday stuff: the lawnmower, the dishwasher, etc.
Just be sure to laugh at yourself.