Real Romance on Valentine’s Day

Real love just happens to be our stock-in-trade. We witness many declarations of love and commitment every year. So you’d think that would make us experts at one of the most romantic days of the year, right?

True confession: Dean and I aren’t that crazy about Valentine’s Day. I love getting flowers when I least expect it and Dean enjoys finding little love notes tucked into his suitcase when he’s traveling for work.

Those small things at unexpected times are what keep the spark of romance alive in our marriage, now 13 years and still kicking.

Everyone approaches Valentine’s Day differently, and the same is true for how couples keep romance kindled after their wedding has become a memory.

Newlyweds: The real experts

So on this most romantic of days, we asked a few Sweet Pea couples to share how they keep the fires of romance burning in their lives.

Alyssa and Joe had a gorgeous wedding last year at the Milwaukee Art Museum and just returned from a honeymoon to Thailand and Cambodia. Here’s what Joe had to say on the topic:

One thing I can think of is, every night before we go to sleep no matter how bad/good/exciting/boring/sad/happy our day was, we always give each other a kiss and say I love you.”

That goodnight kiss really does seal the deal, doesn’t it? I have to admit that Dean and I share this ritual, too, and we highly recommend it as a way to stay connected through thick and thin.

Next, we’ll consult Ashley S., talking about life with hubby David. The two have a lot on their plates these days as they prepare for the arrival of their first child:

“When my husband leaves for a work trip, I make him snack bags with his favorite treats along with hidden post-it notes with funny messages. I love waiting for him to find them so that he knows I miss him and thinking of him. I also like stopping by his office with his favorite coffee to surprise him and give him an extra jolt for his work day.”

Who wouldn’t love that kind of pick-me-up? Next we’ll check in with Ashley Q., who married Jeff all the way back in 2013 and whose life has expanded to include their adorable 3-year-old, Caden.

“We love showing each other affection. There is never any shortage of kisses and hugs between us. We kiss each other at least three times whenever we say goodbye, and we are always hugging and kissing when together. It’s always amazing how much a warm hug can seem to just melt all our problems away AND WE LAUGH… ALL. THE. TIME. We tell the silliest stories and jokes, that no one else seems to understand, but we will both be cracking up about it. Hugs, kisses, and laughter, that’s how we keep our romance alive.”

We can personally attest to Ashley and Jeff’s ability to keep laughter at the fore in their lives, having spent time with them last summer and getting to meet Caden, who stole our hearts.

Newlyweds: Keeping It Lively

Good humor is what 2017 bride Lucy W. shares with her handsome hubby, Chris. Lucy cracked us up all day on her wedding, especially during our pre-wedding interview with her, when told a side-splitting story about their engagement, which centered around a rather humdrum meatloaf dinner. She declared it the “unsexiest” proposal dinner ever. OK, we agree, but Chris made up for it by hiding the ring in an ornament and involving their pooch, so he scores on that account.

“We’re not very romantic at all. I mean, you heard the meatloaf story. Lol. Our version of romance would be tagging/sending each other funny memes on social media and taking turns ordering and paying for pizza. Maybe once in a while if there’s a cute/sappy meme (something along the lines of “tag someone who makes your day brighter”) we will throw that in just to really cement the romance.”

We’re glad to see that Lucy’s dry wit will be in full force as she and Chris welcome their first child into the world.

Lastly, it’s time for Whitney and Blake, whose destination wedding in Galena, Ill., is still one of our absolute faves. Why? Because these two are some of the best human beings you’ll ever meet. Funny. Kind. Sweet. We’re so excited for these two as they also get ready to bring their first little one into their lives.

Keeping the romance alive after the wedding is always hard for anyone. Blake and I like to clear our own expectations for each other and have an understanding that things won’t go as planned most of the time. That is the single best advice we had ever received. But buying a fun dessert at the grocery store as a surprise or surprising each other with “just because” gifts always help Blake and I to know that we still care even when there aren’t big “special moments” to celebrate. Just knowing that the little things are really the most special always help Blake and I to keep the romance alive all the time throughout our relationship!

So, there you have it. Notes, affection, pizza and “just because” gifts. We’re glad to see that our way of keeping connected and being in love doesn’t always have to be fireworks and grand gestures (though once in awhile that’s OK, too!)

We hope you’re celebrating romance in just the way you want today, and let us know what keeps romance burning in your relationship!