13 years of bliss.........

I was a child groom and this year (next week in fact) will be my 13th (unlucky for some) wedding anniversary.

I am of course easy to buy presents for (new running vest, new running shorts...new running....etc.etc.) but MrsH is a nightmare of the worst sort (thinks she's easy to buy for but not!). Now of course its easy to throw money at presents BUT what can I buy that will not completely undermine me (I'm currently in major planning for MrsH's 40th - next February).

Here's the criteria:
- She only wears one sort of perfume and has bucketloads
- Doesn't wear jewellery
- Hates my taste in clothes (she has a point - my idea of high fashion in my 1996 Hatfield Broad Oak 10k shirt)

I'm at a loss for ideas - any help muchly appreciated.


  • A mountain of chocolate
  • What about a surprise weekend away to a European city? You could get some cheap flights from easyjet or go etc. Unless Mrs Martin is also a keen runner, I don't think a weekend away to a marathon would count before you get any ideas!
  • Martin -- you could try paying for a day of pampering. Like massage, facial, manicure that kind of thing. Top it off with an evening out, nice meal etc. Or you could do it all at home. Offer to do the massage and facial (get a book) and cook the meal for her.

    One of the funniest presents the Mr "got" me was a whole load of redeeemable chore coupons!!! He made and printed his own "gift vouchers" which entitled me to ask for my share of the chores to be done so for example if it was my turn to clean the oven out (a job I hate) I'd "cash in" one of my vouchers and he would do it ... without all the whinging and whining that normally accompanies it. It was a brilliant idea and lasted for ages because I'd only "cash in" my vouchers at times suitable for me :o)
  • Cath - The idea of me giving MrsH a facial made me laugh. I have a vision of me standing over her with a pair of rubber gloves and a bottle of Mazola......oooeeeer!

    Love the idea of the chore vouchers - I think she would appreciate that a lot!!

    BK - Unfortunately I recently went to England and bought back a suitcase full of Cadbury's. We hate continental chocolate.

    Doob's - a trip to Rome is the mainstay of the 40th next year.
  • I'd opt for a day of pure pampering, hair, nails, massage etc followed by a nice evening meal. Failing that a weekend away sounds good to!
  • I think a top notch dinner at restaurant/hotel followed by a stay in a five star hotel would be nice. Have flowers and champagne waiting for you both in the room.
  • Traditional 13th anniversary present is Lace...but most lace stuff is pretty tacky. I think most ladies would appreciate the pampering idea - usually a couple of hours peace away from the kids is heaven enough!!
  • Martin -- the idea of the blokie giving the Mrs a facial tickled me too but honestly you'd be surprised how relaxing it is and plus she'd have the bonus of having the facial by someone she knows .... instead of having to discuss this years holidays etc etc. Oh and you wouldn't wear rubber gloves silly or use Mazola!!! Men! Nice clean hands and a bit of lavender oil is all you need!!
  • The voucher idea is a good one, but be careful what you offer, they 'cash' them in at the strangest times. ( Done that)

    How about an 'experience' gift? Tank driving, Hot air ballooning/ racing driving/
    Windsurfing lesson?What about a cute tattoo?
    Name a star after her?

    Worst pressie I ever bought Mrs Barkles?
    Easy, a pair of levi 501s in her pre kid size, and gave them 10 weeks after mini Barkles was born and she couldn't get into them.
    Second worst - offer of health and pampering weekend with her sister- " So I'm fat am I? And I suppose you will be out with your mates???"

    Remember- they don't think the same as us.

  • Top marks Martin for even thinking of doing something - it's our 14th next week and it'll be a meal out if we're lucky - by choice, I've got a heavy day at work and I'll be knackered.

    Anything that shows you've REALLY thought about her, what she likes, how she's been, what's going on in her life right now etc is always perfect. As a wedding anniversary is for both of you why not do something that will involve your relationship. What about doing something that you used to do when you first went out together, before the kids and the mortgage, or a walk together that ends with a wonderful surprise picnic that you've taken trouble over, champagne or her favourite drink and foods. Or an evening in with a video of her favourite film or a film that was big in your courtship and cook her a meal. Or go back to the church where you were married and renew your vows, with the vicar or just the two of you.

    Hope you have a great anniversary. And good luck with her 40th. My husband blew me away with mine earlier this year. I knew I was getting a beautiful ring but the day before he whisked me off to Paris for a French manicure so the ring would look good on me (!)- fantastic - and he made a collage with the children of photos and school reports etc chronicling my first 40 years - I still go all gooey when I think about it. Us girls, one romantic gesture and we're putty in your hands

    Happy anniversary !
  • Barkles --- I was laughing so hard at the "pampering weekend" that is SO true!! hee! funny!

    Martin -- what daisy dog said. Top marks :)
  • If she is the cultural type, perhaps get the two of you tickets to an opera?

    Other than that, I completely agree with DD. If it's romantic, then the Mrs will love it.

    Good luck,
  • Go to the opera, if you feel like being generous, go to see the ENO... They need all the money they can get!

    I always find the pub/curry option is a good move!?
  • Check how her sense of humour is doing after 13 years and present her with a new ironing board.Then half an hour later you arrange a limo. to turn up to whisk her away for a candlelit dinner, it works everytime,belive!
  • 'Funny' presents have a tendency to backfire. My husband bought me a Dyson for our wedding anniversary once. He did all the vaccuuming for months afterwards.

    Now here's a thought - cancel your training run.
  • Having been on a 4 x 4 off road driving course I can recommend it, really good fun.
  • Thanks all for your excellent responses - I always find buying presents difficult as I personally hate receiving things which have no thought attached.

    I actually just remebered that she mentioned a few weeks ago that Bryan Adams was coming to town so that looks like a possibility - although in terms of something she can have on the day I think I like the idea of dinner and the "chore" vouchers. Whilst I really like your ironing board idea old timer, the potential to backfire is too great!
  • Yayy! Martin I'm sure you won't regret it :)
  • Excellent idea Martin, happy anniversary!
  • Martin how about being her slave for the day? Mmmmmmm

  • Better get a babysitter first, if you know what I mean.
  • Slave for the day? hmmmmm

    How would I put that in my training diary? A hard day perhaps......fnar!...fnar!
  • Weekend in a posh hotel for just the two of you could be fun - try Superbreaks.com and see what they can come up with.
    Also, even if she isn't a jewellery wearer - who says she doesn't like it? I have a beautiful diamond and sapphire bracelet that hubby gave me a couple of Christmas's back and although it's rarely worn, it's often looked at and stroked.
    It's the having, not the wearing!!
  • Your posts for next weeks training shall be observed.
  • What's wrong with going out all day to play golf, then coming in late after a night at the pub and asking "where's my tea?". Trust me, I've been married 7 times I know what I am talking about.
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