• Bill and I have a tradition people always comment on. We waited for that first kiss until the day he proposed to me. From that first kiss forward, we always kiss after we say grace at every meal no matter where we are or who we are with. We’ve never missed a kiss in over 25 years! If we even look like we are going to get distracted and forget, one of our kids will scream out, “The kiss! The kiss!”
  • Dick and Kathy explain their marriage ritual: “We were married on the twenty-second of August, and we celebrate each month on the twenty-second. We do something special. It’s not necessarily a big thing, but it is every month. This past month, in June, we were married 430 months.”
  • Read aloud to each other at a certain time, perhaps in bed or while one of you does the dishes.
  • Kiss when you say hello and goodbye or anytime you exchange the keys to the car.
  • Go to sleep holding hands. Even if you actually go to sleep at different times, meet at the bedside to pray or kiss.
  • Take an evening or morning walk and talk.
  • Establish an evening activity: dinner each night by candlelight, coffee each night after dinner, a game of chess or cards each night by the fireplace. One couple created a very unique morning ritual: “For twenty minutes every morning, it’s just the two of us enjoying a breakfast by candlelight. It’s especially romantic during the winter when everything is dark and we talk by candlelight only.”
  • United Marriage Encounter trains couples to “dialogue” daily by writing on a topic for ten minutes and then talking about it for ten minutes. This laid a fantastic foundation for us and has been instrumental in saving rocky marriages and strengthening solid ones by providing intimate emotional connection.
  • David and Vera Mace, the founders of The Marriage Education Movement, also have a daily ritual. David has prepared breakfast and brought it to Vera every morning of their marriage.
  • One of our favorite stories of a marriage ritual comes from a couple who decided that every time they made love, they would put a dollar in the bank and save toward their second honeymoon. Often he’d walk in from work and say, “I got a dollar!” and she’d respond, “I know how to spend it!” Then off they’d go to the bedroom. This ritual happened week after week for years. If they were in a boring business meeting, all she had to do to end the meeting was to slide a dollar bill across the table—business meeting over! Year after year they traded dollar bills back and forth, enjoying satisfying sexual intimacy and adding money to their bank account. For their fiftieth wedding anniversary, they went for several weeks to Hawaii, stayed in all the best places, ate at the nicest restaurants, and enjoyed the most exciting adventures and activities. Their daughter picked them up at LAX, and she said, “At baggage claim Daddy pulled out his wallet, took out a dollar, and said to Mama, ‘Want to start saving for Cancún?’ ”

Rituals are like a great investment. If you do something romantic every day, all those expressions of love are banked away for a rainy day. If things get tough, you have accumulated a wealth in the love bank—and it has accumulated interest!

Written by Bill and Pam Farrel

Bill and Pam Farrel

“Pam and Bill Farrel are relationship experts, co-directors of Love-Wise, international speakers, and authors of 45 books including best-selling Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti. ” They are popular speakers for Breakforth, Promise Keepers Canada, Family Life Canada, and have been guests on 100 Huntley, It’s a New Day and Focus on the Family Canada.