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absent anniversary
September 21, 2009 4:06 AM   Subscribe

Myself: absent during anniversary. Boyfriend: potentially finding gifts around the house. You: help me!

I am going away for a short break next week, but it happens to coincide with my 3-year anniversary with my boyfriend. I also missed last years'; I was OS. This distresses me to no end, which is where you come in.

What potential "surprises" can I leave around the apartment for him to discover while I'm gone? They can come in the form of little notes, small gifts, etc, or a more elaborate treasure hunt. He has been very stressed at work lately, and want to potentially cheer him up when he wakes up/gets home. Preference for cheap/free/thoughtful, please!

Potential problems: we live together, and the living space is a cosy two-bedroom apartment. I will have a small window of approx an hour to plant all the goodies before I leave for the airport, but have plenty of time to myself in the week leading up to prepare.

I am a good writer, a not-so-good craftsperson, a mediocre musician, and a consummate purchaser of consumer goods. He is a geek with a wicked outdoors streak.

I can use Facebook or my mobile phone to send messages, if that helps to orchestrate anything.

Go crazy!
posted by chronic sublime to Human Relations (18 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
If I were in your shoes, I think I'd put together a compilation of my favourite photos from the past three years. You could either do it on his computer (leaving a note somewhere a long the lines of 'Dear lover: were you aware of 'x' folder on your computer? It's in there somewhere...') or printed out and hidden around the house (if you want a treasure hunt. The key, of course, would be to ensure that he knows there is treasure to be found...perhaps this is where the text messages could come in handy). I'd put a little note on each one about why I treasure this particular photo. And, of course, if he's the sort who would appreciate that sort of thing, some sexy bonus photos at the end, possibly with an IOU instead of a memory on the back.

As an extra, perhaps he would enjoy meals provided for the weekend? Something in the freezer to reheat or a pre-arranged delivery of a meal that he particularly likes. And his favourite beverage already stocked in the fridge would probably be appreciated.
posted by brambory at 4:28 AM on September 21, 2009


Places he will not normally look and you can direct him to via text: under your pillow or in your bedside cabinet - also readily accessible when he wakes up.

Behind books on a bookshelf.

Treats buried in the fridge or freezer.

Could a friendly neighbour drop a little note or card through the letterbox or under the door at unexpected times? (Obviously one wishes to avoid freaking him out and it depends on your living arrangements.)

Note in his coat pocket or change pocket or wallet.

Helium balloon with message somewhere unexpected? (Wardrobe, fridge, cupboard?)

Check he is in, then call local food place to deliver his favourite? A decent red wine can easily be hidden out of site, an ale doesn't need to be in the fridge.

In plain site: A new book hidden among others on a bookshelf (perhaps with a cover change?). A new CD in the CD player if you still use one, DVD in the DVD player, game in his PS3, etc. If iPod then could you get a little message of your own on their, hidden amongst the tracks?

(Foir the record I am much lazier than this in real life, and have never been convicted of stalking.)
posted by biffa at 4:34 AM on September 21, 2009


Where does he work? Maybe borrow/rent a cheap camcorder if you don't have one and record a loving/humorous message at his work place (his office? the breakroom, lounge, whatever). Or depending on what you two are into you make it progressively naughtier. So every time he's at work being stressed he can have a good laugh. But then again, it may backfire if he has a broken sense of humor. You don't even have to do it alone. If the coworkers are good sports, you could have a whole load of fun.

Safe option is to maybe create a photobook through winkflash.com.
posted by fairykarma at 4:44 AM on September 21, 2009


You could leave an engraved invitation for dinner with him that night, arrange for your favorite restaurant to deliver his meal, then order the same meal for yourself through room service and Skype so you're eating together. Halfway through the meal, have a friend bring by a dessert you made in advance.
posted by xingcat at 4:49 AM on September 21, 2009


I once hid 50 paper hearts with various messages on them throughout my boyfriend's apartment while I was away for an extended period -- he kept finding them even a year later and he loved it. Part of the fun was trying to find all 50!
posted by ukdanae at 5:34 AM on September 21, 2009


You could hide little notes under the lid of a muesli/coffee jar or a cream-cheese box etc. It's more suprising if you hide it in a way that leaves the outside packaging intact, or seemingly intact, eg.:
- buy a box of his favorite cookies. If he opens it and pulls out the inside package, he finds a post-it note stuck on the inside (plastic) packaging. You just need do glue shut the box again, shouldn't be too difficult
- buy a box of his favorite cereals. Carefully open box and cut a tiny opening in the cornflakes bag. Insert surprise (e.g. envelope with love letter) and seal cut with clear tape. Put bag back into box (place cut on bottom side of box), and glue shut.
If he's a geek, maybe he'd enjoy your love letters even more if they're written in some kind of code, e.g. binary? But maybe that's too geeky, YMMV
posted by The Toad at 5:36 AM on September 21, 2009


The photos and love-heart notes are the kind of ideas I'm looking for. Although I may struggle with the hearts: I did the "40 reasons why I love you" card for our first anniversary.

The food ideas won't work as well - I am well-trained in being Suzy Homemaker so there is already an array of tasty treats and beverages made/bought specially for him lying around the house. I don't think it will be that special.

Keep them coming!
posted by chronic sublime at 5:40 AM on September 21, 2009


My partner has done things like this several times when she's been away. She's either left notes and little gifts where she knows I'd find them or just has just left sweet messages and affirmations lying around in the open via post it note, including cute drawings (even though she's not really good at drawing). Always found these to be wonderful and nice to have around the house when I'm home alone. I still have one that's tacked up on the wall over my side of the bed.
posted by ursus_comiter at 5:49 AM on September 21, 2009


Before my partner or I are away on trips, I like to write love notes to be opened at specific times, e.g. 'on the plane leaving', 'day 3', 'on the plane coming home'. It spreads it out a bit.
posted by heatherann at 6:09 AM on September 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


You could take the batteries out of the tv remote or other small thing he uses on a daily basis and leave the first note for a treasure hunt. Leave riddles and such to give him something to do. Don't leave them just in the house either. Go out and put them at his work as well. Sounds like fun. Happy Anniversary btw.
posted by Mastercheddaar at 7:10 AM on September 21, 2009


How about hiding notes not just around the house, but also in places like jeans pockets, a laptop bag, wallet, etc.? It's lovely to be reminded of you at home, but I'm sure it'd be nice when he's stressed at work, too. (If he doesn't find it on his own, you can send him a text suggesting he look in __.)Most people are fans of real mail, too, so maybe you could post a letter/cool thing to arrive while you're gone, or enlist a neighbor to pop it in the box on the day you want him to get it.
posted by bibliophibianj at 8:35 AM on September 21, 2009


I always thought it was the guy (your profile says you are a woman) who is supposed to buy the anniversary gifts and whatnot. Anyway, I think most guys would be happy to find their girlfriend sporting some sexy new lingerie on an anniversary. Perhaps take a few pictures of yourself and either leave them around the house or email them to your boyfriend.
posted by KokuRyu at 8:41 AM on September 21, 2009


Make a treasure hunt. Leave one obvious note/gift that he will find, along with a hint to the next one.
posted by sporaticgenius at 8:57 AM on September 21, 2009


Naked pictures taped in interesting places.
posted by Jacqueline at 12:47 PM on September 21, 2009


Can you enlist a friend to drop off some surprises later in the week?
posted by jenfullmoon at 3:55 PM on September 21, 2009


while notes and other cutesy things are nice, anything suggesting or indicating massive quantities of wild sex upon your return will probably be more than adequate.
posted by teg4rvn at 4:20 PM on September 21, 2009


Thanks guys! You've helped to flesh out my vague idea of notes/treasure hunt. I think it will be a combination of little notes in odd places, with a shortened version of a treasure hunt: like finding mini kits of Lego.

Surprising him at work is hard: his office is at home (although he works for someone else), so I may have to nick the keys to the work van and place notes and perhaps a mix CD in the stereo.

He rarely checks the mailbox (once a fortnight), and no friends live that close by. He has to drop into my mum's place and check on her birds while we're away (mum's taking me for an impromptu holiday), so I may leave surprises there too. Perhaps not the best place for nudie photos. (Tips on taking nudie photos by oneself? That will be difficult!)

You've all given me little ideas and inspired me to flesh out my half-hearted idea. Although I've only marked a couple as best answer, everyone has helped. If anyone else has ripping ideas, by all means continue to share, especially for little silly trinket gifts.
posted by chronic sublime at 4:23 PM on September 21, 2009


silly little trinket gifts

origami stars!

Perhaps not the best place for nudie photos

The best place for nudie photos and risqué notes is in his pillow. Discreet yet unmissable!
posted by heatherann at 8:53 AM on September 22, 2009


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