"I used to be obsessed with the TV show 'Dexter.' My then-S. made me a blood slide box like the one Dexter kept for all his victims.
He put a bunch of slides in with room for more if I wanted to add some later, and on the slides were pictures of our shenanigans.
Inside was an instruction booklet titled 'Romantic Birthday Dinner' and beneath it were all the ingredients (bread, jelly, peanut butter) so I could cook it myself. I always dreamed of going as a kid, but my parents were always like, "We're not paying to eat overpriced chicken nuggets in the dark with animatronic animals." Fast-forward to when I'm an adult and dating this guy for 2 years.
The best part for me was the 'instruction manual' -- it was overly detailed and technical (he used the world 'emulsification' like twice) with step-by-step picture guides. "My boyfriend kept all of our tickets and maps and receipts from our Euro trip and made me a scrapbook with our pictures and all of the things we had collected along the way. We're in Chicago for my birthday and he surprises me by taking me to Rainforest Cafe.
"A crate of one of my favorite beers, which I'd told him had been discontinued. "Last year my now-husband and I were visiting his sister in Vermont and walking through a wood shop where a man was selling his hand-carved items.
He was very proud of himself for finding it, and I had to explain that it had only been discontinued on tap. There was an absolutely gorgeous wooden jewelry box -- all ornate compartments and scrolls, just beautiful. We went back home to Massachusetts and on our anniversary, my husband gave me the jewelry box. He had seen my expression when I looked at it, even though I never said a word.
Now she is grateful to him every day when she parks her car and has a safe, short walk to her apartment." 2. He bought me a vacation care package full of sunscreen, aloe vera, SPF lip gloss, a book to read on the beach, travel-size toiletries, travel converter, gum, flip flops, bug spray, and some small first-aid things.