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Reignite the Romance
by Liddy Letterall

Most couples in long-term relationships end up stuck in a rut at some time in their lives and forgetting how much romantic fun they used to have together. Here are some tips on things you can do together to bring back the fun and romance in your relationship.

At home

Having a family needn’t put an end to your romance – you can have plenty of fun together at home when the kids are tucked up in bed.

Rent some films and have a cosy night in watching them with a bottle of wine and box of chocs. Dim down the lights and pretend you’re in the back row of the cinema!

Buy some flowers and candles, put on some soothing music, decorate your dining room like a romantic restaurant and make a special meal for two – together. Cooking is much more fun when you share it, and you can enjoy a wee glass of wine or gin and tonic while you work.

On a nice long, summer night, prepare a picnic dinner with all the traditional romantic picnic treats (champagne, strawberries, biscuits and cheese) and eat it al fresco. Turn your garden into a picnic area, with rugs (and cushions to make you more comfy), garden candles and a parasol or gazebo for some privacy.

Have a games night. Dig out all your favourite board games – you might even want to invent your own saucy rules for them!

Simply ban television for the night. Put on some music and let the conversation flow.

Have a bath with some luxurious bath essences and oils, go to bed early and just cuddle.

Look out your old photos and have fun reminiscing about the young and carefree days of your relationship.

Days out

Couples often don’t spend much quality time together during the day and their social lives tend to revolve only around nights out. There are loads of fun things you can enjoy together during the day though. If you’ve got time to spare on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon or during the week, have a go at these:

Go to a matinee performance at the cinema or theatre – and you’ll still have the evening free to go out.

Take a trip into the countryside and go for a walk. It’s a wonderful feeling to get out into the open air where there’s noone else but the two of you around. If you’re not a keen walker, simply go for a drive and find a nice spot to park up and enjoy the views.

Buy or hire a picnic hamper if you don’t have one and make a traditional picnic. You don’t need to travel far to enjoy it – even just go to your local park or have it in your back garden.

Go to the zoo – remember how much fun you used to have there as a child!

Visit a museum or art gallery. It’ll give you both something to talk about.

Just lounge about in a coffee shop all afternoon enjoying cappuccinos and cakes in comfy sofas.

Find a hotel or health club near you that has a luxury gym, swimming pool, whirlpool and spa facilities for non-residents/non-members and pamper yourselves all day.

Have a day out at the races. Get dressed up and make an occasion of it (but agree on betting limits beforehand)!

Take a trip in a hot air balloon. Lots of companies offer such trips now and they’re very romantic.

If you and your partner are active types, arrange a day of outdoor activities and adventures such as quad biking, archery, abseiling or clay pigeon shooting.

If there’s a funfair near you, go along and get on some of the rides – and treat yourselves to some candyfloss!

Nights out

Try spending an evening together doing something a bit different now and again.

Get some tickets for the theatre and go for a pre-show dinner beforehand. Be adventurous – have you ever gone to a ballet or the opera for example? You might be surprised at how much you’d enjoy it.

Go ten-pin bowling. When was the last time you did that?

Have some drinks at the pub – but not your local. Find somewhere different where you can relax alone together and chat away all night. How about a quiet wine bar for a nice bottle of Chardonnay or even Champagne if you’re feeling extravagant?

Go to a gig – not necessarily a massive rock concert. Sometimes smaller gigs in intimate clubs and venues are much more fun. And try something a little out of the ordinary. If you’re not usually into rock music, why not break with tradition? You’re bound to have a lively night out. Likewise, if you’re not used to classical or jazz concerts, why not give one a try? Sometimes these can be very relaxing.

Find out what evening classes are on in your local area and choose one that you both have an interest in. You’re bound to find something that suits both your tastes – cookery, dancing, language, art or even keep fit.

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Book 5 in the Xylon Warriors Saga

by Ruth D. Kerce

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Free Erotic Excerpt Story Gallery (short, sexy excerpts)

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Wanton Desire
Virgin Seeks Bad-Ass Boy
Flames of Arousal
His Carnal Need
Project: Silhouette
One Naughty Winter Night
Craving Lady Starr
Into the Storm
Her Feral Destiny
The Corset & The Cowboy
Adam 483: Man or Machine?
Depths of Desire
Diamond Studs
Her Feral Mates
Her Feral Pack
Sins of Adaven
Wanton Surrender
Young Stud
Her Feral Destiny
Candy Valentine

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-- November Direct Answers
     from Wayne and Tamara

Direct Answers appears in newspapers on six continents.

-- Direct Answers by Wayne and Tamara

From Joy:

"I married my high school sweetheart when I was 18, and he left for the Army. We had our ups and downs but always maintained love for one another.

In 2006 he deployed to Iraq as a combat medic. His Humvee rolled over an improvised explosive device, caught fire and he dragged his buddies out. My husband came home a year later, but he was never quite the same.

He would wake in the middle of the night punching the wall because he dreamed an insurgent was chasing him. Another time I woke to find him clearing the room, telling me to be quiet, they had found us. That's when the doctors diagnosed his PTSD.

Ten months later my husband deployed to Iraq for another 15 months. No major injuries occurred, but the loss of friends he couldn't save, the sight of missing limbs, the smell of burnt bodies, and killing people at close range danced through his head at night.

His number was six. The number of people he killed. He asked if that meant he was a murderer, and he would often cry himself to sleep over it. Upon his second return he went to a 16-hour-a-day desk job. One night he woke to a night terror, and anxiety led to a seizure. That day my husband's army career ended.

What my life became over the next year is hard to put into words. He turned to the Internet to battle loneliness and met a girl online. On our nine year wedding anniversary he left me for her. He said he loved her and didn't want to be with me anymore.

Later he returned. I told myself, if we survived war, we could survive infidelity. But he's bounced back and forth between the two of us. Yesterday he told me he feels we should be on our own, that it's not fair what he's putting me through. I was worth a commitment at 18, now it seems I'm not.

I feel I can't be vulnerable with him, because in the end he is just going to leave. Our marriage counselor says he is unable to turn the switch back on to experience loving feelings because of the trauma he experienced.

We have no children, only dogs. Everyone tells me and him one day the answers will come, that you will wake up and know what you need to do, and it will all make sense. I'm not so sure that will ever happen.

Am I too naÔve to realize, when your husband no longer wants you, it's time to walk away? Am I buying a fairy-tale that doesn't exist?"

Wayne & Tamara's Answer:

"Joy, people change, and it's not always of their making. It's terrible what happened to your husband. At the same time, that's what war is.

It's about killing people and seeing people killed and maimed. When you sign up for the military, that is what you sign up for. We know people enlist to learn a trade, to find employment, or to earn money for college. But that is not what the military is for.

Soldiers are recruited to fight wars. Your husband experienced what the military needs people for. The experience made him a different person. Now he is a man who can bounce back and forth between two women without deciding who he likes better. That's not love. That's want or need or convenience.

You are not an inanimate object, sitting on a shelf, waiting to be picked up, if that's his decision.

Your letter is what we call a permission letter. Permission letters are written by people who have suffered deeply. In effect, what they say is, "I gave and gave and gave. I tried and tried and tried. Can I get a divorce now? Haven't I given enough? Haven't I tried enough?"

Our answer is yes. You have."

Authors and columnists Wayne and Tamara Mitchell can be reached at

Send letters to: Direct Answers, PO Box 964, Springfield, MO 65801
or email:

Read an interview with Wayne and Tamara at: