Romantic Vignettes

There are men in the world who think romance is giving up the toy in their McDonald’s Happy Meal.”

That headline caught my attention. Reading further, I discovered it wasn’t a passion-fueled rant from a romance-starved sweetheart. And not someone’s view that romance is dead?

I encountered several short vignettes of men gone romantic.

My sweetheart keeps a journal of stories about me and us. When I’m feeling bad, especially every month, he’ll pull out his journal and read or reread some stories he’s collected. My whole body just melts.

My now former ex-boyfriend offered to pick me up from the airport. When I came down the escalator thinking we’d just rendezvous at his car at the curb. He was standing there with a bouquet of flowers. I’d never been greeted like that before but I have many times since.

I’m very conscious of the large neck scar from cancer treatments. While looking for a large necklace to conceal the scar, my sweetheart took the necklace, turned me to face him and said, “From the moment I first saw you, I knew you were the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. That scar is a reminder of how strong and amazing and beautiful you are. Never hide that.”

I was hustling back from the restroom to board my flight when I ran into my sweetheart’s arms. Not satisfied with a good-bye at security, he’d bought a ticket to get to the concourse, begged and pleaded his way to the front of the line, sprinted like an old Hertz commercial, arriving at my gate just in time for a prolonged good-bye.

Each of these Romantic Interludes was unique and unexpected. They Romanced their sweetheart in a way that touched her/him deeply. And they created a shared memory.

The possibilities for romancing your sweetheart are unbounded. Taking action is now up to you.  Robert

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Rainforest Cafe Date

Would your desired dinning destination defeat your budget? Create a Romantic Interlude to span the gap.

You’d like to dine at the Rainforest Café. Your budget won’t permit flying to the nearest location for dinner.

But your budget may allow for creating your own Rainforest Café – at Denny’s.

Invite your sweetheart to a safari at the Rainforest Café. When seated, produce 2 safari hats, a stuffed monkey and a safari brochure. Tell your sweetheart you’re creating your own Café. Order appropriate food and chat about jungle places you’d like to visit.

You’ll have fun and create a special shared memory.

You can modify this idea to your shared taste in dinning destinations. Get creative and design your own: California Pizza Kitchen at home, Cheesecake Factory at your local diner, Texas Roadhouse and a local buffet.

Where are you designing? Robert

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Romance: Definitions Change

What does Romance look like?

As a teenager, Romance may look like an adult’s wonderland to which you aspire. Romance means being swept off or sweeping the object of your interest off their feet. There’s a Cinderella-esque aura about it.

Enter the world of dating Mr./Ms. Right and your view of Romance changes. Romance passes from a world about which we fantasize to a world in which we become active participants. It includes flowers, moonlight walks and holding hands.

Longer term relationships again change your view. Romance may lose it luster as carefree living becomes responsibilities and bills. Now you release dreams of moonlight strolls, and cherish a quiet supper at home.

Romance will not always look the same.

It changes as we go through life. It grows and matures. It may sparkle less but it may become more comfortable and realistic. Dreams of white tablecloths and dinner at The Mark, become a treasured summer evening on the porch.

Maybe you feel Romance has been tarnished with the aging of your relationship. You may be concerned the loss of the 18-year old’s “oh-wow” view of Romance means Romance is in a coma.

It isn’t in a coma. It’s changed. Your very definition of Romance has changed. It’s different, and that’s healthy.

Realize, Romance doesn’t have to be grand and expensive. It doesn’t need to block out the presence of everyone except your sweetheart. And you don’t need it to engender visions of stardust and rainbows.

No matter your station of Romance, remember:

  1. Romance changes with maturity;
  2. Changes in what you consider Romantic is neither right nor wrong; and above all,

Not matter how you define Romance, never ever give up on Romance and being Romantic. Robert

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Romance During KP

KP? Are you familiar with the word? Do you wonder what KP has to do with Romance?

Fixing dinner together can be fun. Cleaning up afterwards is sometimes a solitary job. Even if both of your pitch in, it’s still a chore.

It’s a chore unless you create a Romantic Interlude while on KP duty.

When it’s time to start cleaning up after a meal, ask your sweetheart to take a 5-minute break before starting the task at hand.

Head into the bedroom and dress for the occasion in: swimsuit, or shorts and tank top, or PJs. Something which will add humor and frivolity to the job. Have fun with it – Robert

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No Surprise Romance

You may find this amazing. Some people, possibly your sweetheart, don’t like surprises.

If true, how do you romance someone who’s uneasy when you create an unexpected Interlude?

During an interview on keeping Romance Alive after Valentine’s day, Ashley Manta discovered there are three key characteristics. One of those is “being present”.

Being present means:

  • Staying engaged in the moment with your sweetheart;
  • Keeping your sweetheart the center of your universe;
  • Listening, then ask interesting questions based on your sweetheart’s previous answers.

Maybe you’d like to surprise your sweetheart with a weekend getaway. You could require your sweetheart to decide your destination by asking, “where’d you like to go for a romantic weekend getaway”?

Your introverted sweetheart’s response might be, “I’m good. We don’t need to go anywhere.”

OR

You could start the conversation, “is there some place in the world you’ve always wished you could go?”

I’ve always wanted to visit New Zealand’s Southern Alps,” might be the reply. Staying with your sweetheart, you follow up with, “what is it about those mountains that attract you?”

You continue to explore this attraction to the Southern Alps, asking probing questions.

  • What would it be like to experience snow in July?
  • What would you imagine us doing in the Southern Alps?

This continuing dialog might reveal the attraction to the Southern Alps involves snuggling together in front of the fireplace in a cozy cabin watching the wonders of a snowstorm.

Now take your sweetheart’s dream vacation idea and create a realistic romantic weekend in the mountains near your home.

Staying present in the conversation physically and emotionally, results in:

  1. Sharing a Romantic Interlude of imaginative dreaming, and
  2. The birth of an idea for a future Romantic Interlude you know your sweetheart will enjoy.

And no surprises for your sweetheart because together you created a Romantic Interlude to share. Robert

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Stitch Together Your Memories

Last time I blogged about Don and Becca @HalfHalfTravel and how they stitch their romance together. Follow Don and Becca’s lead. Create your own stitched image.

Take a couple photos of each of you separately in front of your favorite vehicles. Make sure they’re facing the same direction. Find the best photo of each of you.

Stitch the photos together so it appears you’re snuggling close together in front of a unique auto. It’s a memory you’ll share of a project you worked on together, something unique to your relationship.

And if you’re looking for stitching software, search online for free programs like Hugin or Image Composite Editor or Autostitch. Let me know how it goes for you. Robert

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Stitching Together Your Romance

“Becca, you wouldn’t believe the job offer I’ve received. It’s my dream job. I just can’t turn this one down.”

Becca’s reaction to Don’s news wasn’t what you’d call enthusiastic. She started analyzing this kink in their relationship.

  • What was going to happen?
  • How would they survive?

Truth was, Don’s voice betrayed his struggle with the same anxieties.

They were already working their four-month relationship around Becca’s international travel. Don’s dream job added 12 months of the year travel. How could they possibly keep it together with jobs keeping them continents apart?

First, they used the time together before Don first boarded that big metal bird, to decide whether their relationship was worth pursuing, worth keeping alive. The answer – YES!

When Don left on his first trip to Europe, Becca decided to find a project they could work on together despite the separation.

The idea started with a, “what’scha doing” text. Don sent her a photo of his European cup of coffee. Becca took a picture of hers. In a moment of inspiration, she stitched the photos together, melding two mugs into a single one –  half Becca’s and half Don’s. She put the resulting picture up on her Instagram account.

Encouraged by great responses from friends, Becca stitched together another photo: their eyeglasses joined into a single frame.

Soon these globetrotting, photography enthusiasts were collaborating on strategical poses for individual pictures taken continents apart. They’d splice the two photos into a single, shared pose and post them on their @HalfHalfTravel account.

Don and Becca found their “us” project to help overcome the physical separation and keep their Romance Alive.

What shared project could you and your sweetheart start to help keep your Romance Alive? Spend some time exploring different ideas. You could be stitching your relationship together, creating shared memories to keep your Romance Alive.

Would love to hear about your shared project(s) which help keep your Romance Alive. Robert

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