After doing a quick pinterest search for “Wedding Anniversary Ideas,” I discovered there isn’t much out there for couples with kids or the staying-at-home types. Now doing a 5 mile hike in the mountains might be a great way to celebrate an anniversary. But it isn’t a cost effective way for us to celebrate our anniversary for one. And given our mid-November wedding date, outdoor activities are not going to be our go-to plans.
I am sure we aren’t the only ones who want a simple family-friendly way to celebrate our wedding anniversary. So here are ten ideas I came up with after scouring the internet and my brain for special ways to honour our wedding day!
1. Have Something You Ate On Your Wedding Day
When you planned your wedding and reception, there were probably a few special food items included. We, for example, included perogies at the breakfast for our gift opening. (Waffles and perogies for breakfast, for the win!). At our reception I was delighted to host a hot chocolate bar, with many special candies and toppings. I am sure our children will love to share the tradition of making a special hot chocolate with us, every year on our anniversary.
So whether you had date squares, donuts, or cupcakes… or even a particular chicken dish, have something from your special day again.
If you don’t want to, or can’t order from the place that catered your wedding, consider buying the ingredients and working with your spouse to attempt to recreate the dishes from your wedding. This is another fun way to get children involved, because they will love to help out in the kitchen!
2. (Related) Order a Miniature Version of Your Wedding Cake
This is another idea the kids might like to help with! So one way you could do this is by just ordering the top level of your wedding cake. Or, like the above idea, you could try to recreate it at home.
We had two cakes made, one with a Frozen design, and the other a printout image of a stained glass Trinity that I coloured in and took a picture of. When we have more children, we could easily have the Trinity image put onto another cake and shared between our family. Or I could see about the image being put onto an ice-cream cake. We could totally finish that on our own without the help of more kids…
Speaking of images put onto cakes, another way to do this would be to have a wedding photo (or the photo of you cutting the wedding cake) placed onto a new cake. Cake-ception! If you wanted to do this yearly, you could even have someone take a picture of you cutting the cake with your wedding cake photo, and then put that onto next year’s cake.
I hope you like cake!
3. Dance to Your Wedding Song
One of my concerns about the reception was having an awkward first dance. So I made sure it wasn’t awkward.
I made my husband spend a long time prepping for our first dance as a couple. First, we picked a song we could waltz too. Next, I watched various waltzes and other wedding dances on the interwebs. Then I taught the Badger the waltz moves I knew from school plus some various tricks I had picked out from the videos. Finally, I choreographed the intro to the song, and then we worked together on the other basic moves. Although only the first 20 seconds or so were choreographed, because of all our practice, my husband was able to lead me through the rest of the song effortlessly.
Possibly, you didn’t put that much effort into preparing for the dance. Either way, you probably spent some time picking the song. And it could be a lot of fun dancing to it as a couple again on your anniversary.
We renew our baptismal vows every Easter. So why not repeat our wedding vows again on our anniversary!
Bonus points if you go to church as a couple on your anniversary. We try to go to the parish we were married in on the week/end of wedding anniversary every year. Although with Covid stipulations, we may stick to our current home parish, at least being in church that week and on the day is very meaningful to us.
5. Watch Your Wedding Video and Go Through the Pictures
I might be wrong, but I don’t think people re-watch their wedding video very often. We have been married 4 years so far, and I have only seen it once. So our wedding anniversary is a good occasion to bring that video up and take an hour to view it again. And perhaps since we won’t be visiting the church we were married in, repeating our vows while watching the video could be a way to honour the spirit of the visiting-the-parish-of-our-marriage tradition.
After watching the wedding video, spend some time going through your wedding photos. If you have children, tell them about some of your memories of the day.
6. (Related) Recreate Some Wedding Photos for Your Anniversary
Although you could do this with a professional photographer, I imagine just doing this at home. And it doesn’t have to be wearing the clothes worn at the wedding either. The challenge to recreate wedding photos is more about copying poses of the earlier shots and having fun together. We took some photos by the river landing, so perhaps we can revisit there one year. However, we also did some Disney princess style shots. We can definitely recreate those at home, and with our kids! Even if the location isn’t the same.
Celebrating your anniversary should be about having a great time as a family and making more memories. Not about being stressed about getting it perfect. So I only recommend this anniversary idea if you know you can let lose and just have fun!
7. Learn a New Skill Together on Your Anniversary
Have you said “I have always wanted to learn how to…?” Well make your anniversary an occasion to do it!. Some interesting skill options include drawing, baking, sewing, card tricks, or even lock picking! If you can’t agree on a skill as a couple, spend some time leading up to your anniversary working on a skill, then share your projects and what you have learned with each other on your special day. Another way to adapt this activity is to simply work through some puzzle books together throughout the day. The BadgerDad and I like to do crosswords while we wait for meals at restaurants. It is the only time we do crosswords, but it makes the time special to us.
Perhaps you would enjoy delving into the word of language. Using the phonetic alphabet, or morse code as a family could be fun. Sign language is also a helpful skill to have. Otherwise, pick any language your family is interested in! There are plenty of free language options available through websites and apps like DouLingo.
8. Make a Bucket List – Then Do Something From It
Spend one anniversary creating a Bucket List of things you would like to do or try together. Then pick one to do in the coming year. Bring out the list again every anniversary. And spend some time planning how you can make one of those dreams happen together every year. This way, you are giving yourself something to look forward to in the coming year as a couple.
While you may not actually do any of the actions on your actual anniversary, the day is still made special by the time spent choosing and planning an activity.
9. Paint Wedding (Anniversary) Icons
In traditional Byzantine weddings, the couple is presented an icon of the Theotokos and of Christ by their parents. Ours were a gift from the Ukrainian Sisters of St. Joseph. And they are beautiful icons in the centre of our icon corner.
There are a couple ways to come about utilizing these icons in honouring the anniversary of your marriage. First of all, if you don’t have wedding icons, use your anniversary as an occasion to get some. Then have those icons blessed on your anniversary. (You can also ask to be blessed on the occasion of your anniversary). The second way you can use these icons to celebrate your anniversary is to spend some time researching the icons and their significance. For example, our icon of the Theotokos is one of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. The third way is to find colouring pages of the icon and trace and then paint them. Or if you are feeling ambitious, write the icon by copying it without these aids.
Even spending time praying together before these icons is a great way to spend some of your anniversary.
10. Staycation to the Max
So, first of all, we never went on a honeymoon. But if you did, a fun way to spend your anniversary could be recreating your honeymoon at home. (Or, even if you didn’t go on one like us, having a second homey-moon). Spend the days prior to your anniversary setting your home up to mimic a hotel. Have the house clean (or store clutter away in boxes for the week if necessary), and meals prepped in advance. For further immersion, you could print some local delivery menus and put them in a small binder or folder.
Our “honeymoon” was spent playing the new Pokemon games that had come out in the same month. One way we can recollect that experience is by playing some more Pokemon together. And a way we can celebrate that with our kids is pulling out our plush Pokemon and turning our home into a safari! Creativity is the limit when it comes to recreating your honeymoon at home.
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