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Putting the 'Man' into 'Romance'

Keeping Love Alive

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And yes, because with little children romance often has tobe planned, even if you think that only spontaneity if romantic. Something assimple as setting aside 10 minutes every night to discuss the day over a cup ofhot chocolate can be a romantic experience. Children should certainly witnessromantic encounters between their mother and father; it shouldn't be somethingonly done in private. Otherwise, they will never learn how to be romantic intheir future relationships. They need to know that loving time between mom anddad is very important.

Moderator: In your experience, does anyoneactually like breakfast in bed?

Michael Webb: I don't know of many people whodon't like breakfast in bed. It's a very simple, yet sincere way of lettingyour sweetheart know that you'll do things to please them. And don't stop atbreakfast in bed, you can have dinner in bed too. Or lunch outside on the frontlawn. Or on the fire escape, if you live in the city!

Moderator: Doesn't elaborate bed-eating getmessy?

Michael Webb: It all depends on how big a slobyou are! You do have to be careful with the sort of food that you prepare. Butyou can go to department stores and buy breakfast bed tables for just a fewdollars. And the ease and cleanup is magnificent.

Moderator: If you try to do somethingromantic every day, won't it start to be taken for granted, and the only thingyour partner will notice are the times when the romantic token is missing?

Michael Webb: Never. It depends on the sort ofromantic things you are doing. If you are doing elaborate, well-planned-outcelebrations on a daily basis, that will eventually get old. But the verysimple things of just calling in the middle of the day to say hello, a warm hugwhen you see each other at night, good-night kisses, falling asleep whileholding hands, are the sort of romantic rituals that keep relationships strongand exciting.

Moderator: What's a good way to add aninteresting twist to the obvious but effective act of giving flowers tosomeone?

Michael Webb: For a very special occasioninstead of spending all the money on the dozen roses that everyone else does,go to your photo album and find a photograph of your wife's wedding bouquet.Bring that to the florist and ask them to recreate it, and give those flowersalong with a note that says you want to marry them all over again.

Question from GIVEMEURLUV: Hi! Is there any sort ofadvice a teenager could use to be romantic? Teenagers don't have a ton of cashor time -- so what can we do?

Michael Webb: Again romance doesn't need totake a lot of time or money. A simple thing like taking a piece of chalk anddrawing a Valentine note on the sidewalk is a great way of expressing yourlove. Instead of buying that box of chocolate that can be rather expensive, notto mention fattening, get an assortment of flavored jellybeans, blindfold yoursweetheart and feed them the jellybeans, asking them to guess the correctflavor. You can assign a point system for each one they guess correctly, andafter they accumulate enough points you award them their prize, whether it's a10-minute backrub or going out for an ice cream cone. You can either order or makea pizza yourself, in the shape of a heart. Doesn't take any extra time butgives a very clear message of who you are thinking about. You can buy yourfriend their favorite magazine, count the number of pages in the publication,and then go to a word-processing program, type out a love note that includes aword counter so that the note equals the number of pages in the magazine. Printout each word on a label and then put the labels throughout the magazine.

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