Free & Frugal Ways to Celebrate Your Anniversary

Whether you and your spouse are romantic or practical, deciding how to celebrate a wedding anniversary is both exciting, fun and maybe even a little intimidating because you want things to be perfect. Regardless of whether you choose a quiet, private celebration or a large one involving the whole family, remember that the observation of your anniversary is a celebration of you and your spouse’s love for one another. Read below for some unique ideas as well as more traditional methods.

Method 1 of 4: Go Sweet and Romanticwedaniv4

1. Go to a wishing well. Get a roll of pennies from the bank and then take a picnic lunch to a local wishing well. You can each take fifty pennies and then begin throwing them into the well, making a wish on each one. You can have secret wishes but say at least a few of them out loud.
2. Travel abroad. There’s a reason that so many people want to travel abroad to celebrate anniversaries. There are many amazing things to see in the world and seeing them together will bring you closer together and create memories to last the rest of your lives.
3. Set up your own drive-in movie theater. If you have a big enough yard, or know someone with a big enough yard, get a projector and a relatively small screen (easily rented from business supply companies, as these are used in meetings and conferences). Set this up in the yard and then pull up your car. Have food and popcorn and candy. You can even invite other couples or family members to join you, if there’s enough space.
4. Upgrade your rings. Make a physical expression of how your love has changed for the better as time has gone on by upgrading your wedding rings. Choose the new rings together. You can even try to make something with the originals. Either tie them together with ribbon and frame them in a shadowbox or have a jeweler melt them down to form part of a new pair of custom rings.
5. Write each other letters. Remind yourself of years past by writing each other letters. Try to write a letter every day for the year leading up to your anniversary and then exchanged them on the day. You can write about all of your memories, how you feel about them each day, all the little things that you appreciate, or pretty much anything else that you feel is right.
6. Pass on your memories. Consider making a scrapbook to pass on to your children and grandchildren. Make the scrapbook the story of how you met and fell in love, the trials you faced together, and the joys you’ve shared. Consider including letters or notes with practical advice on how to handle marriage and the hurdles of life.

Method 2 of 4: Be Quiet and Relaxedwedaniv1

1. Paint pottery. You can paint each other gifts at a Make-Your-Own-Pottery studio. Consider painting plates which can be mounted on your walls or coffee mugs which you can use each morning. This is a nice, quiet way to spend time together being creative and making something that you can use for years to come. You don’t have to be Picasso either: many places will have paints which are meant to cover an entire item, rather than making a particular image, as well as stamps and stencils so that the activity is accessible at any skill level.
2. Plant something. Plant a tree or other long-living plant together. You can plant it in your yard, in a place which has significant meaning to you, or in a local forest. Consider a coast redwood, which is the tallest living organism. What a testament to your love!
Check with your local parks department to make sure that the plant isn’t invasive. They may even let you put it in a public park.
3. Pick fresh berries. Go to a local pick-your-own berry farm and pick berries together. You can enjoy the quiet or talk about your memories together.
When you’ve got enough berries, you can then bake a pie or cobbler. Enjoy it with some ice cream while you watch a movie or sit in front of the fire.
4. Create a gift box. Try to give each other a box of small gifts. These gifts should all remind you of your partner and the relationship you’ve shared. It should be a sort of summary of how you perceive your relationship, so put a lot of thought and effort into it. Use whatever comes to mind when you think about the significant points of your relationship or what you love about your partner.
Maybe include a rubber duck for when you proposed to her by the pond in the local park, a coffee cup with a print of an art piece from the museum where he took your on your first date, or a drink umbrella for that time you both got caught in the rain and took shelter under an awning.
5. Write each other a book. Write a short book which you feel summarizes your relationship and how you feel. Any material you want to include or feel appropriate is fine. You can make the books by hand, by filling a blank journal, or you can find a local or online self publisher and get a real book printed.
Fill it with poems that remind you of your partner, pictures of the two of you or places you’ve gone together, letters you’ve sent or which describe your feelings about your marriage, a message to your past self about how much your partner will mean to you, or a message to your partner or yourself in the future confessing your hopes for what things will be like.

Method 3 of 4: Stay Traditionalwedaniv2

1. Pick a memorable gift. You can simply get a gift which has significance to both of you. Another option would be to follow the traditional gifts for specific anniversaries, such as silver, gold, etc. It is also possible to agree on a combined gift, such as a large purchase that you both want. A new television could be an example. If you want to go with the traditional gifts, here is the list:
5th: Wood
10th: Tin
15th: Crystal
20th: China
25th: Silver
30th: Pearl
40th: Ruby
50th: Gold
60th: Diamond.
2. Renew your vows. You can repeat your vows together over a candle-lit dinner, or you can throw a big ceremony. A ceremony would be particularly nice for couples who did not have money for a big wedding when they first married.
3. Watch your wedding videos. Another popular way to spend a wedding anniversary is to sit down together and watch your wedding videos. This will let you laugh about the things that were so stressful and seemed so horrible at the time, while also serving to remind you of the feelings associated with that act of love. You can watch together or with other people.
4. Experience it all over again. One popular way to celebrate your wedding anniversary is to have dinner at your wedding reception location. This will remind you of all of the happy memories of that night. Consider calling ahead and ask the cook staff about the possibility of recreating the meal eaten at your reception, if it isn’t still on the menu.
5. Go on a basic trip. Cruises are popular ways to celebrate anniversaries. These remove the stress of traveling abroad and give you time to just enjoy each other’s presence in a relaxing environment.

Method 4 of 4: Be Wild, Fun, And Creativewedaniv3

1. Go geocaching. Geocaching is a fun activity where strangers hide treasures and then list the GPS location for other people to find. This is a great way to celebrate an anniversary in an unconventional way: you’ll get a rush of excitement and have fun doing something new together.
Note: When you find a geocache, you’re supposed to replace the treasures that you find and take home.
2. Play paintball. A fun game where you put on armor and shoot each other will little bullets made of paint, paintball is exciting and a great way to break out of your daily routine. You can put together a few teams and play with friends or you can team up with your spouse to go against strangers. There are many places where you can go to play paintball and they usually have equipment rentals.
3. Make each other a mix tape. Well, okay, not a tape. This isn’t 1988. But you can make each other a playlist or a CD which includes songs that make you think about each other or your relationship. Try to make a playlist which tells a story about your feelings as you met your partner, dated, fell in love, got married, and how you feel about them now. You and your partner can listen to the playlist made for you whenever you’re having a hard time or have to spend time away from each other.
4. Watch a movie: with a twist! Rent the first movie that you went to see together. If you don’t remember what the first movie was, you can watch one that you know you saw early on in your relationship. Make a date of it by having dinner, popcorn, soda, and candy. You can do this just the two of you or you can invite along your family to celebrate as well.
If you can, rent out a local theater to show this special movie.
5. Write notes to strangers. Sometimes, life gets awfully hard. Not everyone has a great spouse like you do to help them through life. Inspire these lonely people by writing encouraging notes and then hiding them for strangers to find, under tables in restaurants or inside of books at the library. Write the notes together and share them with each other and then hide them together.
You can write messages like “Someday you’ll meet someone who loves you as much as I love her” or “Don’t worry. He’s out there. You’ll find him.” or “I didn’t think I’d find love either. I was wrong.” or “I’m so happy now. You will be too. Just wait.”

While there are limitless ways to save big and still celebrate your anniversary, I hope that some of the ways listed above get your creative juices flowing. Remember to always put your marriage as a top priority in your life and celebrating your anniversary is important. Don’t let circumstances allow you to neglect celebrating the wonderful union that you share. Where there is a will, there is a way!

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