When we first got married we thought it would be fun, on each anniversary, to give each other a gift based on what Hallmark (that seems to be who published the lists we found) said was the gift for that year. And it was fun, for about 5 years...
Year 1: Paper: we bought each other a plane ticket to visit an old friend in Michigan
Year 2: Leather: we each got a new pair of shoes (I know it's a stretch, but I recall we both needed shoes and had fun picking out a pair, with leather, that we might not have bought had it not been an anniversary gift)
Year 3: Cotton: we happened to be on a missions trip in the DR for this anniversary so we each got a souvenir/gift...Prince Charming got a DR flag for his office and I got a cute little sarong to wear over my bathing suit.
Year 4: Rice: we went out for chinese food
Year 5: Wood: we bought an entertainment center for the house
You can see that we were sometimes practical, sometimes extravagant and sometimes at a loss (ie Chinses restaurant in year 4). After year 5 the lists we found only went every five years, by the time we got to ten neither one of us wanted a gift made out of tin, nor did we feel like being creative. That year our present was Miss M. We had talked about going on a cruise to celebrate 10 years but instead God blessed us with answered prayer and I was 3 months pregnant and violently nauseous for our anniversary. But boy was Miss M the best 10 year gift EVER!!
So this year was number 14. We decided about a year ago that we were going to forego gift giving for each other for all holidays except birthday and Christmas, and those are up for discussion each time they occur. Now I am better at following that rule than Prince Charming, for our non-gift Valentine's day I got 2 dozen roses, he got nothing. For our non-gift Fathers/Mothers day I got flowers and a gift card to a favorite store, he got nothing. So for this anniversary I reminded him, we're not getting each other gifts, we'll go out on a good date instead.
So last night we went to Princeton. I thought we were doing a cheap fun meal, instead he planned a dinner at La Mezzaluna. It was fun, but not cheap. Dinner was delicious, and since we didn't waste any money on silly gifts that neither of us really need, he decided we could go for it for dinner. I was so glad he did, it was nice to eat in such a nice place. No people dressed as cows, no standing at the counter asking why you got fries instead of apples, no free coupon for a kids meal, no screaming children, sliding boards, or kids menus with crayons!
Then we took a walk, hand-in-hand, in the drizzle. It was silly and romantic and fun. We didn't really talk about the kids, just enjoyed conversation about life and even some dreams we have for our future (corny, I know).
When I got back in the car he handed me a gift...he told me he looked up year 14 and found it on the internet...ivory...so what did I get???? A bar of ivory soap :)