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July 2007

One More Chance

When I first met my wife she was working at an art gallery downtown. She had no idea I was interested in her or that she was going to become my wife. But of course I knew better. She thought it was the art I was there for. I went every day. I would have been there around the clock but I think she might have caught on that I wasn’t really interested in the art shown at the gallery but in actuality my interest lie only with her. While at the gallery there were quick glances at a painting, then much longer glances at her. She truly was, and still is, some 40 years later a piece of rare art. I don’t know if she just took pity on me one day (it is my guess she was catching on, but to this day she will not admit it) she asked if I would like to have coffee this one particular afternoon. Trying not to show my surprise (as if this happens to me everyday; you know, being asked to have coffee by a stunning woman) I said the one and only thing that came to mind...

""I can’t today I have an appointment"". Her eyes became as big as marbles when I said no. She looked puzzled. And rightly so. Making a quick exit and stunned by the absurdity of what I had said, knowing full well I had blown probably the only chance I had with her, I searched my brain for “what to do”. I once again did the very next thing I thought of. Nothing. Too embarrassed by my quick negative reply and fast departure out the gallery door I just couldn’t go back. Not now. It would be weeks before I summoned the courage to return. One Friday I decided I had to give it one more chance, and this time I decided I would march right in, look her straight in the eyes and ask her out. No staring at paintings and statues of cherubs for me. It was her and only her that I had thought of during that 2 week period of torment. And so I did just that. I went to the gallery, walked right in. She looked happy to see me. I smiled. She said Yes! 40 years later, 5 kids, 3 grand kids and she still is the most beautiful woman I have ever seen.

Our thanks to T. D. Knight for this post.

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Arrgh Matey, Time To Find Us Some Booty?


Long before the word “booty” meant a quick tryst in a usually uneventful relationship, the term was most commonly known as “treasure” by pirates of old; i.e. Gold, Diamonds Emeralds and the like. “Arrrgh Matey, time to find us some booty!” the Captain would say as they headed for some god forsaken patch of land or, heaven forbid, to pillage some unsuspecting village. Which brings me to the point of this post. A customer of ours just recently planned a Pirates Romantic Evening complete with costumes and ale. She purchased two of our Sheffield Mint Pewter Tankards. She had one inscribed “Captain” and the other “Wench”. In addition she purchased our Loves Treasure Message Bottle gift for later in the evening as a surprise gift!

One part of the evening we thought was most comical was dinner. Having planned the dinner well in advance it was presented at the table but no utensils were used. They ate with their hands and guzzled ale from the tankards. She went on to say that the magical part of the evening was, after a bit of coaxing, her “very conservative” husband really got into the character. They had a wonderful night and plan on doing a different themed evening a few times a year - and why not? Use your imagination and come up with a theme you and your partner can have some fun with. Let them know it is OK to role play and to let the evening find its own course.

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Why Hire a Wedding Planner?

Not that long ago a wedding planner or coordinator was considered to be for the rich and famous only. But not anymore. More and more “everyday couples” are hiring wedding planners in preparation for their big day. Why? Why not just do it yourself and save the money? Most couples are very busy. Either finishing college or working on their careers or both. With the amount of hours that must go into planning a wedding some couples just do not have the time and want to be able to hand over some of the major planning to someone they can trust. Most wedding planners are well versed in negotiating contracts with the reception hall or location, caterers, the cake designer and all of the 100’s of little and big things that must be addressed and taken care of before the big day. In addition a wedding planner is a great source for the couple to go to when they have the plethora of questions that they need answers to. Like who pays for what? In the past the bride and the brides family not only coordinated everything they paid for everything as well. That is no longer the norm. With that in mind and the fact that many couples pay for their weddings themselves or both families chip in, why not get the best deal you can for the services you will need for your wedding? A good wedding planner will help in negotiating the best deals for your event. What does a wedding planner charge? Their fees vary. Best thing to do is get a recommendation from a friend who has just had a wedding, or if going online or using the yellow pages meet with as many planners as you need to until you find the one that will really listen to your needs and desires and someone you feel you can trust and afford.

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What is Sweetest Day?


For you folks that didn’t grow up in the Midwest and aren’t that familiar with this special holiday, it began over 60 years ago during the depression years. A gentleman in Ohio began giving small tokens of friendship to the homeless, orphans and others who needed a bit of kindness to help make it through a turbulent time. Over the years Sweetest Day evolved into a romantic holiday where lovers’ exchange cards and tokens of affection. It is celebrated the third Saturday in October.

What will you do on this day? Start planning something special now. Will you send a romantic gift? Prepare a romantic dinner? Buy balloons? Send a card? Make your Sweetest Day so special that your partner will remember it forever? As we have pointed out in other articles on this site you don't have to spend a fortune to show someone you care. Sometimes "less is more" when it comes to romance. With Sweetest Day you are given a blank canvas with which to design a beautiful day together. Maybe you will go for a walk in the park and picnic there with warm blankets (it gets cold here in the Midwest by October!) Cuddling in a blanket while having a romantic picnic is always fun! Or perhaps dinner out, and then an evening at home with the lights out and the candles on! You could send a romantic gift along with an invitation to a Sweetest Day Bubble Bath that evening when your lover gets home. Whatever you decide, cherish your time with the one you love. Don't forget the other 364 days either!

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Cupid, Love and Mystery

While doing research for today’s post I learned that Cupid isn’t just a Valentine’s Day character but he actually is derived from Roman mythology. Who is this “Cupid” anyway and where did he come from?

Read on:
Cupid is the God of erotic love. Usually found boasting a little white undergarment, wings and a bow and arrow, he is equated with the Greek God Eros and the Latin God Amor. In today's culture Cupid is usually depicted firing one of his arrows in the hopes of stirring romantic love between two people. Legend says if Cupid’s arrow hits you, you will fall in love with the next person you meet. Which I suppose could be interesting depending on where you are at the time!

There are several different theories of Cupid’s parentage.

  • Son of Mercury and Diana
  • Son of Mercury and Venus
  • Son of Mars and Venus
  • If nothing else it seems as though Mercury has been busy : )

    The most popular belief is that his mother is Venus the Roman goddess of love. It is depicted often in poetry, art, literature and myth.

    So the next time you pick up that Valentine’s Day card with Cupid on it be careful, you never know if he will be just around the corner waiting to fire off one of his arrows right at you!

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    Jewelry Boxes, Perfect for An Anniversary Gift!

    Today’s post is all about Jewelry boxes and why we love them for gift giving especially on an anniversary or other sentimental gift occasion.


    Lets start with the Lille' Musical Jewelry Box. I must say this particular jewelry box is my absolute favorite. Not only does it boast a beautiful melody (Laura’s Theme) it has a velvety soft interior, mirror and loads of room for all of your treasures. The finishing touch? A working lock and key! If you’re feeling overly generous fill it with a few beautiful bracelets, earrings and necklaces so when she opens this special gift she will not only have the box she will have some additional gifts as well. Which brings me to my point at the beginning of the post that jewelry boxes make great gifts for an anniversary. You can load the box with sterling silver pieces for your 25th wedding anniversary. If following the modern anniversary gift table for a 6th wedding anniversary the gift category is wood. And if following the traditional wedding anniversary table year 5 is also wood. This piece can be engraved as well. Making it a perfect sentimental gift.


    Other choices in this category are the Avonlea Jewelry Box with customizable brass plate. The top tray is removable for storing lots of goodies.


    The grand daddy of them all is our Brooke Edition jewelry box. This Jewelry box stands alone in quality and beauty. Soft luxurious fabric will keep all of your fine jewelry pieces safe. Upon opening your Brooke Jewelry Box you will see a large size mirror, room for rings and other pieces. Second drawer opens just beneath and can accommodate larger pieces as well.

    A rich rosewood finish gives this jewelry box an heirloom quality that will not go unnoticed.

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    Kama Sutra Products Old Favorites and New Releases


    The Kama Sutra line has been around for well over 25 years. In that time they have consistently offered exceptional products. We love the Kama Sutra Earthly Delights Gift Box. Formally known as the Kama Sutra Gift Tin the outer packaging has been totally re-worked and looks spectacular. Filled with full sized versions of Kama Sutra Honey Dust, Massage Soufflé, Spearmint Pleasure Balm, Massage Oil and the Original Oil of Love it makes a great anniversary, wedding shower or romantic weekend gift.

    Looking for something a bit more discreet? Check out the Kama Sutra Weekender Kit. It contains sample size versions on honey dust, pleasure balm, oil of love and more. In addition Kama Sutra launched their new Body Soufflé’ Massage creams. They are lick-able lusciously flavored water based moisturizing creams and are perfect for a scrumptious sensual massage.

    Looking for a great massage oil? Something not too greasy, and smells heavenly? Check out their Kama Sutra Massage Oils. Offered in 5 different scents that are massage oil perfection in a bottle. Not sure which massage oil to get? Take a look at the Kama Sutra Massage Therapy Kit. This offering has all 5 massage oils in a smaller trial size.

    Kama Sutra will be releasing additional new products for 2007. As soon as they are available we will have them on to purchase and will mention it here as well.

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    Finding Love The Second Time Around

    A Second Chance

    I don’t think we forgot our vows; I think we forgot to live up to one another’s traditional, yet fanciful expectations. We had (and still have) two great kids, but we grew in different directions. It ended long ago. Even now, guilt still haunts me at times.

    I met and played at romance with a few women as I tried to figure out – "what next"? I never did accomplish the figuring, blindly oblivious to "what next" rushing at me while I numbly did the necessary things to keep my job and continue to blithely play at perfunctory romance. Other ladies dropped off the radar screen with barely a notice by them or me. She alone was on the radar screen. Hey! How did this happen? I never saw it coming.

    Two previously married adults, without lofty, storybook expectations looked across a small, candled table at each other, wondering aloud about how we managed to create a frenetic, yet comfortable relationship that provoked us to wonder aloud, fearful of what expectations might do to "what next". It was obvious to each that a paucity of expectations created sufficient space to prod and poke, massage and manipulate "what next". Previous relationships had taught us well: don’t expect too much, take and enjoy what is offered, give and enjoy the taking and remember well the causes of divorce.

    Meaningful, yet easy I love you’s, gentle, unprovoked touches, smiles and glances, small gifts and gestures to make the other feel wanted and happy. Another candled dinner, an expected decision and an engagement ring with the inevitable consequences finds us today saying easy I love yous, gentle touches, smiles and glance, small and now colossal gifts and gestures consistently nurturing a happy, grateful couple whose romantic past is not littered with toxic expectations.

    We wish to thank Dion Wheeler for this post.

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    Sentimental Messages Releases The Legend Of The Treasured Rose


    Sentimental Messages has just released their new edition of message bottle gifts. The Legend of the Treasured Rose© will take your breath away. You may want to grab a few tissues before reading the Legend (see below). It will certainly tug at your heart. The treasure chest has been laser engraved with the Treasured Rose pattern along the bottom of this beautiful wood chest. You are provided the option of also having your gift recipients’ name engraved on to the treasure chest! The message bottle includes your very own message, or you can choose from one of our stock messages. The message is printed on fine parchment paper, then rolled into a scroll and placed into the bottle. The legend speaks of the captain placing the rose petals that have fallen into a glass bottle, we have done the same. The 12” glass bottle has been filled with real rose petals that have been freeze-dried. This process allows the petals to last a very long time, years in fact if kept in a cool dry place. The outside of the bottle boasts the Treasured Rose motif and around the bottles neck is a satin ribbon with the Key To My Heart keepsake. The bottle is placed into our faux suede presentation bag and the Treasured Rose Motif and name are also laser etched into the bag. After all the components have been placed into the chest we have also included a long stem feathered silk rose and a copy of the Legend Of The Treasured Rose for your gift recipient to read when they open the chest.

    The Legend Of The Treasured Rose

    There is a legend born long ago of a Captain that sailed the seven seas. Just before leaving port he was given a rose by his true love. Its beauty he thought was unmatched by anything he had seen before. He placed the rose in his cabin and gazed at it often. After some time had passed the rose began to wilt and one by one the petals fell from what was once its mighty stem. When all the petals had fallen the Captain gathered them and placed them in a glass bottle. That night he took a piece of parchment and began writing about his true love and the beauty of the gift he was given. When done, he rolled the parchment into a scroll, placed it in the bottle and sealed it with a cork. In the morning he took the bottle to the bow of the ship and threw it into the sea hoping it would find its way back to her. Some say that The Treasured Rose Bottle washed ashore and in to the hands of his true love. Others say it is still out at sea waiting to by found. Whichever you believe, The Legend of the Treasured Rose© lives on today because no matter the distance, hardship or sacrifice nothing can break the spirit of true love.

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    © The Legend of The Treasured Rose is Copyrighted by Kemper Lake Group. The Legend of The Treasured Rose is an original work by Arlene Brown and may not be used, reproduced, copied electronically or via any other medium without expressed written permission. All Rights Reserved

    Gifts For 25th Silver Wedding Anniversary


    After twenty-five years what can you get your partner that he/she doesn’t already have? LOTS! The 25th wedding anniversary by both the modern and the traditional gift tables note that silver is the gift choice for this landmark year. We love the idea of something for the person to wear and something for the home to commemorate this special year. We have blogged about clocks before, but it bares repeating that an anniversary clock on ANY anniversary but especially on the big ones, 5, 10, 15, 20, 25 and 50th wedding anniversaries are a spectacular gift choice. Consider getting the clock personalized. As for jewelry we love silver bracelets and rings. Inscribing them with Always and Forever, or Forever Yours and the like adds that extra special touch. Consider a watch for a man or silver cufflinks if he wears them. Also coming more and more into vogue are money clips. A silver plated money clip with his initials is a great choice. Don’t forget to see out silver plated fortune cookies. Perfect to send with a special customized fortune for your gift recipient. Gold plated fortune cookies are available for 50th wedding anniversaries.

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