Congratulations! You’ve been together for an entire decade and you’re certainly not the same people you were when you made your promises.

You’re better because the marriage has shaped you into a partnership.

Together, you’ve learned how to balance separateness and togetherness.

You’ve undoubtedly negotiated changes in work and in your family life.

You’ve gone through so many things together and you should feel proud.

Your marriage has stood the test of time. 

Wondering what to give your husband or wife after 10 years together? 

The traditional gift for this anniversary is tin, with the modern gift being diamonds.

Alternatively, you could give something that is silver or blue. But none of this will means anything if your partner doesn’t feel your affection through gifts themselves.

Do your gifts often fall flat? 

If so, it could be because your partner experiences love in a different way. Dr. Gary Chapman came up with five love languages and you can take a test online to discover yours and your spouse’s love language.

It’s always a good idea to give in a way that utilizes more than one of the love languages because most people have a primary and a secondary language.

For the love of words

If you wanted to keep with the tradition of giving in, you could give your partner an Irish tin whistle and some lessons or an instruction book. Inside, you could add some words of affirmation, such as, “You are the music in my life,” or “You are my favorite melody.”

If your partner really does experience love best via beautiful words, here is a project that utilizes the traditional gift of tin and will please anyone with this love language: between now and your anniversary, notice all the amazing things your partner does and write them down on little pieces of paper.

This can include anything from “you put two screaming toddlers into their car seats while speaking nicely to them,” to “you look beautiful in your pajamas, even though you think you don’t.”

Take a tin can and wrap some rope around it, completely covering the metal, and use a hot glue gun to secure it.

Your tin can should now look like a stack of rope.

Punch two holes in the top with a nail and a hammer, making sure to bang out the sharp bits on the inside of the can. Then, add a hanging wire. Put a little piece of fabric or felt on the wire that can be flipped in a certain direction to indicate when the can is full.

Now, add your love notes and hang the can out of reach of any children, moving the indicator to “full.”

You have just created your own private mailbox for love letters to each other!

Nobody will be the wiser, so you can make your love letters as juicy as you like.

Make sure to create a place to store love letters that have been received, so that the can will be free for new letters.

Turn your love into actions

If your partner experiences your love through acts of service, inventory the tin cans in your pantry and restock whatever is low.

Order custom stickers that say, “this is the last one,” or use a marker to write this on the can that is in the very back of each set.

Attach a grocery list to the inside of your pantry door and teach everyone in your family to add the name of the final item if they are the person to get the labeled can.

Make sure the list is checked whenever someone goes to the store.

This way, if someone picks up the last can of tomatoes and adds it to the list, it will be replaced right away.

Remember to indicate the can at the back of the new set.

If you work the system, restocking your pantry will be almost automatic.

You won’t run out of anything again.

This will be a burden lifted from your household and your spouse will appreciate your loving him or her in this way. 

Make use of your time together

If your partner feels most loved when you spend quality time together, it might be fun to take an afternoon to do crafts with tin cans.

Make some votive lights by punching holes in the sides of clean cans with a hammer and nail, then hang up the cans with wire.

The atmosphere created by these little votives is quite romantic.

You could share a bottle of wine in their light.

Alternately, try this fun and therapeutic exercise: sit down together and think of the things in your life that you wish you could get rid of – a mean boss, an upcoming event, or a bad situation that you’re facing, perhaps.

Decorate several tin cans with paint, paper, and glue so that they represent those things, then stack them up in the backyard.

Play bowling, allowing your frustration at the negative things in your life to decrease with the falling of each can.

Keep going until you feel better.

Watching the face of a grumpy relative fall over and over again will lift your spirits – you’ll see! 

Use your hands

If your partner’s love language is physical touch, fill a tin with things that create wonderful sensations on the skin.

Add anything else you can think of that might feel nice. (Try out each item on the inside of your forearm first!)

Have some massage oil on hand and give your partner a wonderful afternoon by alternating each item with a massage on different parts of the body.

See what feels the best.

For extra fun, take a washable marker and create a “sensation map” on your partner’s skin by writing your discoveries, such as, “this part is ticklish,” or “add love here.”

Be creative and have fun!

And congratulations on your 10 year wedding anniversary!

You two have made it. 

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