By Andrea Boley

Each year that passes describes an epic celebration. You and your spouse have made it another year without killing one another. But really, the passing of another year should be a time to remember why you got married in the first place and a time to share your love for one another. Anniversary celebratory customs vary within different cultures. Traditionally specific themes are used for each year. The theme can influence a party and the gifts greeted by guests or the gifts exchanged between the married couple. It can be difficult to be creative and thoughtful with the gifts each year.

The traditional themes for the first 15 years are mostly textiles. First year is paper. So a great option to give as a gift is a homemade scrapbook or favorite book. The fifth anniversary is wood, so anything related to wood is an option to consider. Find something meaningful that relates and think outside the box. Personalized gifts are always cherished; you could create wooden photo frames or coasters. Tin and aluminum come in at the ten year mark. These metals help to symbolize the malleability and flexibility of a good and healthy relationship. A fun way to commemorate another year together is to create a CD of songs that remind you of your spouse and the relationship you share. Place it in a tin along with other goodies to keep up with the tradition. The 15th anniversary is known for crystal. Watches are common gifts, as well as personalized crystal glasses.

The 20th anniversary is one of the big stone anniversaries. It is traditionally known for china; elegant and delicious like your love for one another. Create a personalized anniversary plate or trinket box to commemorate your special day. After 25 years, it’s time to break out the silver. You’ve been married to your soul mate for a quarter of a century, that’s definitely a monumental occasion to celebrate with enthusiasm. The silver signifies radiance and brilliance, and the obvious gift choice is a piece of silver jewelry.

The 30th anniversary is set apart with pearls by its side. Beautiful and elegant, a pearl necklace is a common gift. At 35 years, coral makes an appearance. Take some time off and take a trip together. Explore somewhere tropical and simply enjoy one another’s company. Rubies signify an inner flame and passion, which makes them suitable for the 40th anniversary milestone. If jewelry really is not your thing, consider taking a trip somewhere with ‘Ruby’ in the name. Another gemstone makes its debut at the 45th anniversary mark, as sapphire steps in. And one of the most well-known milestone anniversaries is the 50th, the golden anniversary. Gold is strong and durable, signifying optimism and wealth, a very fitting metal to mark 50 years together. A half a century is a long time to be together, so it’s no wonder that the 50th anniversary is the most celebrated one of them all.

No matter how long you’ve been married or the gifts you decide to give, never forget to show your spouse how much you love them. Each day should be a reflection of your love for them. Each anniversary is just the icing on the cake, another special day to celebrate life together and give cheers to many more wonderful years.

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