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Every year I face the same struggle as Valentine’s Day approaches.

What in the world can I get my love this year that is meaningful, sentimental, loving and not what I gave him on a past holiday?

Sedona Red Rock News Managing Editor Trista Steers MacVittieI have no idea how couples who’ve been together forever, such as the Huckins featured on Page 1A of today’s Sedona Red Rock News, keep ideas fresh and exciting. Maybe they stop caring about the holiday, give up on gift giving or begin recycling ideas they used in the past in the hope the other won’t notice.

Well, I’m about two Valentine’s Days away from trying to sneak in another cute picture of us hiking, a story about one of our adventures or a list of things I love about my husband. Hey, the list could technically change every year, so it will be different.

I hoped to fall back on my old standby — tickets to a hockey game — but due to the lockout cutting the season in half, it just didn’t seem as exciting as year’s past.

Just when I thought I would again be scrambling at the last minute to come up with something — or buying him a tie-dye T-shirt, which is what he got for our first anniversary — the perfect, original, personal idea popped into my mind.

It’s sweet, fits us as a couple and symbolizes our time together — all of which won’t be obvious to anyone who sees the gift but doesn’t know the story behind it.

Sorry, I can’t tell you what it is. He will likely read this editorial before Valentine’s Day on Thursday, Feb. 14, and I don’t want to ruin my surprise.

Like any other holiday involving gifts, it’s not the price tag that matters; it’s the thought behind it.

Women, and even some men who don’t want to admit it, want something that symbolizes their special, one-of-a-kind bond with their partner.

My husband would be perfectly happy without a gift, and probably even a card — that’s more my thing — but the look on his face when I give him something I know he appreciates or sees the same symbolism behind is worth the search each year to find something great.

It’s just one more way for me to tell him I love him and am forever grateful for the love we share.

Remember to make your sweetheart feel special not just on Valentine’s Day, but every day, because you’re lucky to have each other. The gift of true love from your partner is the best gift, any day of the year.


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  • Barry Allan

    I don't think there is a single love potion or formula that keeps a relationship strong, Trista, but I will share what has worked for Katherine and myself for 35 years. 1. We are 99% compatible and working on the remainder. 2. We've operated as a team from day 1. 3. Every day is Valentine's Day and our gift is each other. 4. Mutual respect. 5. We create "dates"--Costco date; go-for-a-walk date, etc. 6. Each of us is very independent so "long leash" and "space" is recognized and respected. 7. We do little things for each other, but they add up. 8. Humor is a huge part of our lives. 9. We care for each other when health is a problem. 10. We support each other with affirmations when good things are accomplished or happen.Life is never totally rosy, but we work on it together.

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