Saturday, November 26, 2005

Black Friday Part II

The day after Thanksgiving is not Boxing Day, its Black Friday. Its the day the stores hope to make piles of money. To encourage people to give them lots of money they do lots of crazy things like open early, have ridiculously low prices on certain items and otherwise attempt to become between me and my money.

This explains why the alarm went off at 4:10 A.M. on Friday morning. At this time I discovered another meaning for Black Friday, it was really, really dark. The sun was not due up for some time and here I was rushing to some store like an idiot with my dear sweetheart. I won't burden you with the rest of the tale: the lines, the driving, the cold, or the vast amount of money we gave to various establishments. No, you don't need all the gory details.

Wait! Isn't this supposed to be a romantic site? Believe or not, as we spent the morning promoting capitalism, we also improved our relationship. We had lots of time in lines to talk undisturbed by children. We moved outside the comfort zone (and into the cold). We have some funny war stories to tell, like the one guy ... Oh sorry, back on topic. We were working on common goals. We have some shared successes to celebrate as well as some near misses to commiserate.

The point is, getting up early and spending a few hours with your sweetie is a great way to pass the time. However, we decided that no matter how good the sale, we are not going to any more 5:00 A.M. store openings; 6:00 A.M. is fine with us thank you very much. And a thermos of hot cocoa will definitely be on the list.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

The Free iPod Arrived

I know its not romantic on the surface, but just think how cool it would be to surprise your sweetheart with an iPod. Even better, the cost is in everyone's budget. Its simple to get started.

I know what you are thinking: Does this really work? I said the same thing to my friend when he first metioned it. I said, "I'll believe it when I see you with an iPod in your hands". Well, he got one and now I did too.

How does it work? After signing up for the iPod, you need to complete an offer. They have a list of 20 or so things you can choose from. A lot are credit cards, but there are others. Pick one that you either want or that can be canceled for minimal money. Some can be canceled for now money at all.

After that, get 5 of your friends to do likewise. Then you get a free iPod in the mail.

Monday, November 21, 2005

A Soft Answer Turneth Away Wrath

It is in the home that our behavior is most significant. It is the
place where our actions have the greatest impact, for good or ill.
Sometimes we are so much 'at home' that we no longer guard our
words. We forget simple civility. If we are not on guard, we can fall into
the habit of criticizing one another, losing our tempers, or behaving
selfishly. Because they love us, our spouses and children may be quick to
forgive, but they often carry away in silence unseen injuries and unspoken

Your sweetie should know how much you love them by how you speak. Do love and courtesy garnish your words? Do your body language and "tone of voice" communicate your appreciation for your sweetheart?

Here are two simple ways to improve communication. First, smile. I hve written about smiling several times. Smile at your sweetie. Second, look each other in the eye. It increases the feeling of sincerity.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Online Shopping Lists

Christmas is coming, consider yourself warned. And yes, that radio station has been playing Christmas carols since Halloween. What are you going to get for your sweetheart this year?Make a Note of It talks about the importance of keeping a list of those things your sweetie has been wanting. There are a couple of online places to keep track of such lists.

Amazon has a Wish List. It allows you to keep a list of all items available on Amazon. Of course, they are also make it easy to buy those items from Amazon.

Froogle also has a Wish List feature. Like the Amazon list, it allows you to create a list of products you are interested in. The Froogle list seems easier to share than Amazon's. Also, since it isn't pegged to a single supplier, it shows a price comparison of the product from various shops, which I like.

This Wish Lists can work two ways. First, you maintain a list of things you thing your sweetie is interested in. Second, your sweetheart creates a list and shares it with you. That way you can remove some of the stress of Christmas shopping.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Pay your sweetie a compliment

Pay your sweetie a compliment , just make sure it is a sincere one. Think of some physical feature you are attracted to, some talent they possess, or some other aspect of your sweetie that is really wonderful.

Now, instead of telling the compliment, write the compliment down and send it to your sweetheart via snail-mail. People of feel the need to argue with a compliment to keep from appearing arrogant. You can't argue with the written word. Also, it make the compliment seem more sincere as it has a physical incarnation. Talk is cheap.

Or you could just post it in our blog:
Sweetie, you have the most beautiful eyes. Our kids are so lucky to have inherited them from you.

For a funny compliment, see Surrealist Compliments For All

Friday, November 11, 2005

Veteran's Day

In Flanders Field
Originally uploaded by Madirakshi.
On this day when we honor veterans, let us also remember those who are in harm's way in service to their country. In a previous post, I talked about sending a package to a soldier. It would be a great way to honor and support those who are currently giving so much for their country.

In Flanders Field
In Flanders Fields
By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918)
Canadian Army

IN FLANDERS FIELDS the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

McCrae's "In Flanders Fields" remains to this day one of the most memorable war poems ever written. It is a lasting legacy of the terrible battle in the Ypres salient in the spring of 1915.
See the The Arlington Cemetery website.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Break the Routine

Sometimes we get trapped by routine. We do the same thing everyday, day-in and day-out. We are like little robots that get up, go to work, come home, eat, chores, kids homework. By the end of the day, we are so tired, we go to bed and start it all over tomorrow.

As I've mentioned before, this sort of thing can take the fire out of a marriage. Fortunately, by breaking out of the routine, just a little bit, you can start to fix that.

What to do to break out of a routine? Today, try thinking of the things you "used to do". You know, before the kids came. Maybe brushing your sweetie's hair or giving a foot rub. When was the last time you wrote your sweetheart a little love letter?

Well, back to kids and homework.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

New Mailing List: ferociousflirting

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As much fun creating the Romantic Tips for Married Couples page has been, its time to take it to the next step. I have spent years studying good relationships and practicing in my own marriage. This has given me a lot of good ideas and good experiences that I can share.

But I do not have the corner on the market on positive experiences and good ideas. That is where you come in. Subscribe to the ferociousflirting mailing list and share your experiences and ideas with other like-minded couples.

The mailing list has these features:
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If you have a great marriage already, please come and share your successes and ideas. If you want to put the fire back into your relationship then join in, ask questions and take advantage of the experiences of others.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

A Month of Giving Thanks

We did this last year and it worked out really well, so here it is again this year! We didn't have a cornucopia so we just used a large can. It was a great way to spend Thanksgiving.

Place an empty cornucopia somewhere conspicuous in the house. Maybe
on the kitchen table as a centerpiece, maybe in the living room on a
coffee table. If you have little ones, keep it out of their reach.
Then get a pad of multi-colored paper that is convenient to the

From now until Thanksgiving, pay attention to the things your sweetie
does for you and your family. When you notice something, write it on
a piece of the colored paper. Then fold the note over and place in
the cornucopia. Then come Thanksgiving, read the notes of gratitude
together as a family.

A couple of rules:
1 - No fair peeking.
2 - Put at least one in everyday.
3 - Don't peek at the notes until Thanksgiving day.
4 - Make each note specific.
BAD NOTE: laundry
GOOD NOTE: On Nov 1 it was so nice to have an ironed shirt to wear
to meet the boss.
5 - No peeking until Thanksgiving.

This could be great to include the entire family. Everyone could
participate by including notes of gratitude of the entire family.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Hidden Messages

We have been remodeling the basement. The previous owners had had a flood in the basement, but had not taken care of it. Turns out there was a bunch of mold starting at the floor and going up to the about three feet on all the drywall. I am having to tear out drywall, and some framing. Fortunately the mold is all taken care of now and the rebuilding has commenced.

As I was admiring our handy work, it occurred to me that we are going to be enjoying and using these wall for many years to come. Its not like the walls are going anywhere and we have no plans to move. In the future we can share and remember this time. The memories made all the more precious by the hard work it took to make it all happen.

We are going to make it a bit more romantic by adding a time capsule somewhere into the walls. Included will be a love note from each of us. That way when we see that section of the wall, we will be reminded of our love for each other. Nobody will every see or read them once the wall is sealed, but we will know they are there.