A Tale of Love

Posted on Oct 13 2013 - 7:43pm by Nicole Smith

Today my boyfriend and I are celebrating our One-Year Anniversary. A year ago today we went on our first date…and as they say, the rest was history.

He and I are a dating site success story. We initially met on OKCupid several months before our first date when he messaged me, but things didn’t go anywhere between us. About a month or two later, he messaged me again because we both were looking at each other’s profile daily, and he figured it was worth another shot.

Obviously there was mutual interest in each other, and the first message between us wasn’t meant to go anywhere. It wasn’t our time yet. We both believe that things happen when they’re supposed to and not a moment sooner. So we feel that we clicked the second time around because we were meant to.

We became close very quickly, but he realized that he still wasn’t ready for a relationship, and I understood, even though it was hard for me because I really liked him. However, we kept talking and texting, leaning on each other when needed, and a month later we went on our first date.

From the moment I set eyes on him, I lost my heart. I gave him a hug as soon as I climbed out of my van and it felt right. From that first hug I felt safe and secure, something no one else has made me feel. And then I kissed him and it left us both with racing hearts. It wasn’t planned. I hadn’t thought about it. It just happened…and I’m glad it did. People can judge me for it all they want, but something compelled me to kiss him at that very moment, and I did. We still laugh about it because it was so shocking to both of us. And it showed on both of our faces that night.

The day was a raging success. It was so easy to be around each other. We talked..and laughed. We knew it was the beginning of something special.

To say the past year hasn’t been easy would be an understatement. We had to struggle with living so far apart. Also, it has been filled with drama from outside sources. We felt like certain forces wanted us to break up…but we didn’t. We kept holding on and believing in each other. We fought for us because we were far happier and more secure than we had ever been before. We both had FINALLY found the relationship we’d always wanted..one that built us up and didn’t tear us down.

I can honestly say that he brings out the best parts of me and mellows out the worst parts, like my moodiness. He can calm me down like no one else can. A simple hug from him can ease a panic attack. Sleeping beside him at night makes me feel safe. I don’t feel alone anymore, and I don’t mean in a physical sense. I feel like I found my other half, the yin to my yang.

Even though we celebrated our One Year Anniversary a month ago, on this exact date because that’s when he messaged me for the second time. And we became immensely important to each other, so we mark that as the beginning. But our One Year Anniversary of our first date is today, and that deserves to be recognized.

I’ve been searching for awhile for something special to give my boyfriend. I don’t have a lot of money, so I decided I wanted to make him something. But I didn’t know. I went on a Pinterest search, as I so often do, and came across this project below on the site Life Love Lauren, and I fell in love with it. (Thank you, Lauren, for sharing this idea with all of us. My boyfriend loved it.)

Open When Letters

I did borrow some of Lauren’s ideas as far as card topics go and  I tweaked some to fit my boyfriend and I’s relationship. Like her, I’m not going to share what was said on each card, but I will share with all of you what the outside of my envelopes say, so you can figure out what to put on yours. And if you do, please link back to me so I can read your posts. I’d love to see what you come up with. I think this is such a beautiful idea and a way to make our significant others feel good.

Open When…

You want to know my dreams for our future

You need a reminder of what makes you a great dad

You need a reminder of why you love me

You need a reminder of why I love you

You need a hug and kiss from me

You’re feeling insecure

You need to talk to me

You’re missing me

Before you fall asleep at night

You need a smile

I’m sad and you don’t know what to do

You need a reminder of why we’re worth fighting for

69 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Athena October 14, 2013 at 3:02 am - Reply

    Wow – Today is my anniversary too! 23 years! I never thought I would do anything for more than 10 years – yet the time has flown. Congratulations and I totally love this idea!
    Athena recently posted..Holiday of Surprises GiveawayMy Profile

  2. Bryttani November 10, 2013 at 10:50 pm - Reply

    I just finished making this for my boyfriend. No special reason, but just because I love him. I hope he loves it!!

    • Nicole Ireland November 11, 2013 at 1:11 pm - Reply

      I’m sure he will. I think it’s an extremely sweet idea that can make our significant other’s feel loved. And it can help them get through the rough days.

  3. Bryttani November 10, 2013 at 10:52 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much for the idea Lauren!!

  4. katrina November 12, 2013 at 6:22 am - Reply

    i love this idea, i feel like i need a little more help with making the letters inside tho…suggestions?

    • Nicole Ireland November 12, 2013 at 11:57 am - Reply

      What ideas do you have so far? I’m more than happy and willing to help you out because I know how much a loved one appreciates the gift.

      For me, some of the letters include reminders of things.

      For example, in the one about our future, I wrote a list of things I see for us, getting married, having another baby, etc.

      The one about him being a good father includes a list of all the things he does for our kids because, as a parent, he forgets what he does for the children….or he downplays it like his actions mean nothing.

      As for how to deal with me when I’m sad, I told him what I need during those moments when I can’t tell him because I don’t want to talk.

  5. Rebecca Taylor November 21, 2013 at 3:54 pm - Reply

    Hello, me and my boyfriend also met on a website and talked then we lost touch but i always thought about him and yhen he messaged me and we hit it off..we have had our shares of ups and downs but i feel like we are meant to be..i love this idea

    • Nicole Ireland November 23, 2013 at 4:27 pm - Reply

      Sometimes we lose touch with who we’re supposed to end up with because the timing wasn’t right at first. Sounds like that’s what happened with you and your boyfriend.

  6. lauren December 16, 2013 at 6:43 am - Reply

    I love this idea so much but could never think of enough envelope ideas so thank you so much for actually listing your titles, that was all i needed to get ideas rolling. I am working on this for my boyfriend for christmas. Just curious, about how long were your letters? Im typing mine out first and some if feel like are novels where others are very very short

    • Nicole Ireland December 16, 2013 at 4:45 pm - Reply

      Hi, Lauren!

      To be honest, I don’t think there’s a right answer to this question.

      For me, I used cardstock and wrote each one by hand, so they weren’t as long as they would have been had I typed them out. I actually made them fit the size of the envelope and most were two-sided. That being said, I could have made some of them much longer than I did.

      I think you should write as much as you want and are comfortable with. Trust me, whatever you put into it, he is going to love. My boyfriend was so incredibly touched that I took the time to sit down and write out notes for him. And he does read them when needed. I have no doubt that yours will be a huge hit too!

      Merry Christmas!

  7. Meggie December 22, 2013 at 7:37 pm - Reply

    I am a teen. Would it still work for a friend or sister of mine? What kind of letters should they be? Obviously I can’t do “what makes you a great dad” cause I don’t have a boyfriend. How many letters do you recommend? By the way, I love this idea! great ideas like this are hard to come across! You’ve been really helpful!

    • Nicole Ireland December 22, 2013 at 8:07 pm - Reply

      Meggie,

      I’m absolutely thrilled you love this idea. I did, too, when I found it on Pinterest.

      This would absolutely work for a friend or sister. In fact, my boyfriend’s daughter asked me to write her a set of these kinds of letters to help her get through her tough days. She’s a preteen and already dealing with struggles that I didn’t have to deal with at her age. Though I haven’t made the letters yet, my ideas for her would be:

      Open When You Don’t Feel Pretty
      Open When You Need a Reminder of Your Good Qualities
      Open When You Want a Happy Memory
      Open When You Want to Know Why I Love You
      Open When You’re Scared
      Open When You’re Feeling Insecure
      Open When a Boy Breaks Your Heart
      Open When You’re Fighting With Your Best Friend
      Open When You Are Nervous
      Open When You Feel the Need to Fit In
      Open When You Need a Laugh

      These ideas can work for your letters too! I’m sure as a teen you know how hard it can be to feel good about yourself at times and it helps to hear from someone that loves you what is great about you or what makes you beautiful. You can tell your friend or sister those same things. You can also tell her how amazing she is so when someone breaks her heart she knows it’s that person’s loss and not her fault.

      If you need more ideas, please leave another comment or feel free to email me at frugalmaine@gmail.com and I will respond as quickly as possible.

      Also, as for how many letters, any amount is good. I would recommend somewhere around 8 to 10. More if you can. But remember it’s not the quantity that matter with this. It’s the thought. Your loved ones will be so touched that you took the time to sit down and do something so personal for them.

      • Meggie December 22, 2013 at 8:26 pm - Reply

        Thanks! You were such a big help! I’m going to make these for my best friend for Christmas and I’ll let you know how she liked them! Thanks again!

        • Nicole Ireland December 22, 2013 at 9:03 pm - Reply

          You’re very welcome, Meggie! I think your best friend is going to LOVE them and I look forward to hearing from you about how much so.

  8. Taylor December 24, 2013 at 1:28 am - Reply

    Do you have any ideas for letters to your mom?

    • Nicole Ireland December 24, 2013 at 1:43 am - Reply

      Hi, Taylor! Great question. Here are my suggestions. I’ve included some that deal with being a grandparent, as well.

      Open When You Miss Me
      Open When You Are Having a Bad Day and Need a Laugh
      Open When You Want to Know my Most Cherished Childhood Memory
      Open When You Want to Know Why I Love You
      Open When I Make You Mad
      Open When You Want to Know How Good of a Grandparent You Are
      Open When You Want to Know Why I Admire You
      Open When You Want to Know How Much I Appreciate You

      Let me know if you need anymore ideas. I’m sure I can come up with more.

      Have a happy holiday.

      • Katheryn January 30, 2014 at 4:48 am - Reply

        What are your ideas for divorced parents? My parents recently got divorced and want to do this for them but of their own. Just want them to know that I still love them even thought they aren’t together.

        • Nicole Ireland February 1, 2014 at 4:18 pm - Reply

          Katheryn, I think it’s a great idea to create these letters for your parents even though they’re divorced. As a divorced parent, it hurts to think of our children hating us or being disappointed in us because of our divorce. I think you will bring great joy to your parents’ lives by giving them this gift.

          I do have a few recommendations that are similar to what I’ve posted. All you really need to do is change the wording a bit.

          You could have one that says “Open When You Want a Reminder of Why I’m Not Mad at You”.

          Open When You Want to Remember a Memory We Share
          Open When You Want a Laugh
          Open When You Want to Know Why I Admire You
          Open When You Want to Know Why I’m Proud to be Your Daughter

          Let me know if you need some more ideas.

  9. Brittany December 24, 2013 at 10:25 pm - Reply

    Thank You so much for all the ideas for the envelopes! I’m leaving for boot camp soon and I plan on doing this for all my family members. Happy Holidays!

    • Nicole Ireland December 25, 2013 at 2:32 am - Reply

      Brittany, that is an awesome idea. I’m sure your family is going to appreciate those letters while you’re gone.

      Good luck at boot camp! And Happy Holidays to you, as well.

  10. ivy romero December 28, 2013 at 7:06 am - Reply

    Hi! Can you give me ideas on what to put inside the envelopes? :) I’m really having a hard time thinking what to put at it, I want him to appreciate what’s inside.;)

    • Nicole Ireland December 29, 2013 at 4:27 pm - Reply

      What you put on the inside of the cards depends on what you’re writing on the envelopes.

      For example, if you have one that says Open When You Need a Reminder of why I love you, you can list a bunch of reasons why you love your significant other.

      If you have one that says Open When I’ve Made You Mad, you can write about how you don’t mean to and that you love him even during your bad moments and that he needs to be patient with you.

      An Open When letter about memories would include a treasured memory from your relationship.

      If you need more ideas, please feel free to leave another comment about what the outside of your envelopes say so I can give you more ideas.

  11. emily January 2, 2014 at 7:30 pm - Reply

    Thanks so much for the idea I think its amazing I’m definintly going to make them for my boyfriend (:

  12. Cory January 3, 2014 at 4:25 am - Reply

    I like the when you need a hug one but not sure what to put on the inside for that one. Any ideas? Thank you :)

    • Nicole Ireland January 3, 2014 at 3:18 pm - Reply

      Hi, Cory! Thank you for stopping by.

      On the inside of the hug envelope, I told my boyfriend that if ever he needs a hug, all he has to do is walk up and give me one or ask for one because one of the things I love about him is how he hugs me. And how I feel safe when his arms around me.

      So you could talk about what your boyfriend’s hugs mean to you. This also works for when you’re not around to give him one when he needs it. I would even suggest adding in a picture of you two with your arms around each other as a visual representation of hugging. It’s something for him to focus on.

      You could even tell him to close his eyes and picture how you smell and the feel of your arms around him.

      I hope that helps.

      • Cory January 7, 2014 at 4:11 pm - Reply

        Thank you! It was very helpful :)

  13. Shylee January 20, 2014 at 12:20 am - Reply

    Yesterday was my 7 year anniversary with my honey, im deffinately going to do this :)
    Thank You! very sweet idea

    • Nicole Ireland January 20, 2014 at 11:25 pm - Reply

      You’re very welcome. I hope your honey loves them.

  14. Sarah January 20, 2014 at 1:16 am - Reply

    I think this is an awesome idea! I’m debating on whether to make this for our anniversary next month or right before he ships out to boot camp.

    • Nicole Ireland January 20, 2014 at 11:26 pm - Reply

      That’s a tough one. My advice? While they would be wonderful for your Anniversary, I think they would be extra special for when he goes off to Boot Camp because it gives him something to read while he’s gone. You could make it part of a surprise going away gift basket or something. Just my two cents. I’m sure no matter when you give them to him that he will love them.

  15. Melissa January 20, 2014 at 3:09 am - Reply

    My fiance and I also met on OKC :). Been dating 3+ years, getting married June 2015. Glad to see another success story! Love this post.

  16. Britteney January 31, 2014 at 4:32 pm - Reply

    This is such a great idea!!!! I was hoping to do this for my fiancé for Valentines Day because this is our last one before we get married and I want it to be extra special but unfortunately I don’t have the funds to do something big, and this is such a great idea! Thanks for listing the categories I can’t wait to see how he likes this!! I once did another one I saw on Pinterest, the one with reasons why I love him in a pill dispenser for every day of the week and he loved it! So km hoping he loves this even more, thank you again! God bless

    • Nicole Ireland February 1, 2014 at 4:20 pm - Reply

      Britteney, I can tell you this from my own personal experience. It doesn’t matter how much you spend. If he loves you, as I suspect he does, the homemade stuff will mean more. It did to my boyfriend. Everything I’ve made him has made him teary-eyed. They touch his heart in such a profound way, and I love to put that smile on his face.

      And congrats on the impending nuptials. May you both have a long, happy and loving marriage together.

  17. Erica January 31, 2014 at 5:58 pm - Reply

    I really like this idea! I think I am going to do this for Valentine’s Day. I am stumped on what to put for before you fall asleep and if you have had a long day…any suggestions?

    • Nicole Ireland February 1, 2014 at 4:23 pm - Reply

      Hi, Erica.

      What I did for the “before you fall asleep” letter was write about how my boyfriend is my last thought before I fall asleep, and how I love waking up beside him each day. Of course, you don’t wake up beside your significant other each day, that won’t work. However, you could say I can’t wait to wake up beside you every day.

      As for when you have a long day, you could say something about having your SO call you so he/she can hear your voice and feel their stress slip away. Or you could tell them to come to you for a backrub, hug, kiss and I love you because when you get those things they always make you feel better.

  18. Lee Ann January 31, 2014 at 6:17 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much for such a lovely idea! My boyfriend and I live in different countries and this is perfect for the moments that he needs a little reminder of our goals, our love, and why we are worth fighting for!

    • Nicole Ireland February 1, 2014 at 4:23 pm - Reply

      Hi, Lee Ann! I hope your boyfriend loves these letters as much as my boyfriend did. And kudos to you for maintaining a long distance relationship. They aren’t easy but are totally worth it.

  19. Ana Estrada February 1, 2014 at 7:24 am - Reply

    I came across this idea on Pinterest and I fell in love with it. I had been trying to figure out something to do for my boyfriend when he came to visit me, since hes stationed in VA, while I’m studying here in Texas, and this seems like the perfect thing since the distance really gets to us sometimes. I was wondering however, if you had anymore ideas for the “open whens..”

    • Nicole Ireland February 1, 2014 at 4:29 pm - Reply

      How about “Open When You Want to Know Why I Admire You”? I suspect that you admire your boyfriend a great deal for serving his country. I think it would mean a lot to him if you wrote a letter that talks about how much you admire that sacrifice he makes and how proud of him you are.

      Also, are you moving to be with him once you’re done your schooling? You could reword some of the letters currently listed. You could say “Open When You Want to Know What I Want Us to Do When I Move to Be With You”. Or if you plan on having children, you could have one that says, “Open When You Want to Know What I Will Teach our Future Children About Their Dad”.

      Let me know if you need more ideas.

      • Ana Estrada February 2, 2014 at 6:21 am - Reply

        Hmm would you mind sparing 2 or 3 more? (:

  20. Brittni February 3, 2014 at 12:14 am - Reply

    I absolutely love this idea!! I had no idea what I was going to give my boyfriend on a college students budget and this is so perfect! I love all these Idea! I hope he Likes what I have to say! :)

  21. Kaitlyn February 4, 2014 at 4:35 am - Reply

    I absolutely love this idea! My boyfriend’s birthday is coming up after Valentine’s Day, so I’m going to do a week of celebrating by giving him something every day from the 14th to his birthday (the 19th.)
    I was wondering how you went about doing the “When you need a reminder of why you love me.” I don’t want to sound conceited or rude or anything when I write, so i was wondering if you could spare an example or two! I would be extremely grateful!

    • Nicole Ireland February 12, 2014 at 9:39 pm - Reply

      Kaitlyn, I don’t believe you will sound conceited if you mention all the reasons you boyfriend has told you why he loves you. That’s what I did.

  22. Katti February 4, 2014 at 8:34 pm - Reply

    This is a great idea, my boyfriend and I have been living together for nearly 2 years but now he’s got to move to another city to work and I can’t follow him because of my school… So I think this will be a great way of reminding him of how much I love him when he’s not feeling it because of the distance :>

    • Nicole Ireland February 12, 2014 at 9:40 pm - Reply

      I’m sorry to hear that your boyfriend is moving. Long distance relationships are hard and they take a lot of work, but they are very rewarding and can make your relationship that much stronger.

  23. Jo-elle February 12, 2014 at 9:21 pm - Reply

    While this post is a great idea, your thoughtful answers to all the comments has been even more helpful. I love the envelope topics for a daughter; my daughter is 14 and I’m divorced from her dad, and I think these would be lovely for her! Thanks so much for the ideas!

    • Nicole Ireland February 12, 2014 at 9:41 pm - Reply

      Thank you for the kind words. I love all the comments I receive and I’m absolutely blown away by how many people have found this post and love the idea. I’m glad I can help everyone come up with ideas to make these letters work for them. And I’m sure your daughter is going to love them. My stepdaughter has asked me to write them for her when she goes away for her class trip. I think it’s a great idea.

  24. Chelsea February 13, 2014 at 8:58 pm - Reply

    I love the idea! My boyfriend and I have been dating for almost 3 years but I know he is the one. Just wanted to get some help on what kinds of things you wrote on your letters like “open when you want a hug and a kiss” and “open when you want to talk”…. Thanks for your help!

  25. Amanda February 15, 2014 at 10:09 am - Reply

    Thank you so much for your help with the titles! I did this for my boyfriend for Valentines Day. We’ve been working on our communication and I think this will help!

  26. Corey February 21, 2014 at 4:33 pm - Reply

    I just saw this on Pinterest and I can’t thank you enough for the ideas. My boyfriend is deploying in a few days, this will be our first deployment. I want him to know how much i care about him

    • Nicole Ireland February 23, 2014 at 3:46 pm - Reply

      You’re very welcome. I’m sure these letters will make your boyfriend extremely happy and will help him get through his deployment.

      And I want to thank you because you just gave me an awesome idea for a post regarding deployments.

  27. DeeDee March 5, 2014 at 7:56 pm - Reply

    I love this idea! I think I will have to make a set for my son (about to turn 12)….and hubby (23rd anniversary is coming up), my Mom,…so many possibilities! Thank you for sharing.

    • Nicole Ireland March 6, 2014 at 4:15 pm - Reply

      You’re very welcome. These letters work great for all loved ones. I’m glad you are going to make them for two special guys in your life.

  28. Shyanne April 3, 2014 at 12:33 am - Reply

    What kind of paper for the letter?
    Like a card or line paper or construction?

    • Nicole Ireland April 3, 2014 at 12:47 am - Reply

      I used cardstock. I’m sure you could use whatever you have on hand, though.

  29. Liese April 8, 2014 at 5:11 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much for this idea! I love it!

  30. Shwetha April 25, 2014 at 10:14 pm - Reply

    Hi Nicole,

    Wonderful idea and I just loved it. It’s my husband’s birthday next Month and my Mom’s birthday day after and for both I prepared these letters and I hope they would Like it :)

  31. Christine April 29, 2014 at 2:41 pm - Reply

    Hi Nicole!

    My boyfriends birthday is next week and I really want to do this however I am not creative at all. what should i put in the ones that say before you fall asleep at night, when youre missing me….etc

  32. Kcas May 14, 2014 at 9:23 pm - Reply

    I saw these letters and thought they would be perfect for my sort of Long Distance Relationship! It’s a weird story but we met over an app and 2 years later we are still talking and our relationship has grown like crazy. In a month or so Im shipping a package to him just so he can finally have something from me and I feel like these would be perfect for it but I was wondering if you could throw out any ideas on some creative “long distance” envelopes. For example, I’d love to do the “When you need a hug” envelope but he hasn’t hugged me yet but I still want him to get something like that. I’m just not quite sure how I’d do that! Anyone’s input is welcomed :-)

  33. Holly May 14, 2014 at 10:14 pm - Reply

    Hello,
    My son is getting ready to head off to bootcamp and I have to say that I am not handling it well. Do you have any ideas for envelopes for my son while he is away at bootcamp? I want to be as supportive as I can be. By the way, thank you for doing this it’s really nice of you.

  34. Kaleigh July 10, 2014 at 9:48 am - Reply

    I absolutely adore this idea. My boyfriend and I have been involved in a long distance relationship for over 4 years. We are separated by 1800 miles but couldn’t be any more in love. I recently just got back from visiting him and I plan on inserting a picture of us with each letter I write along with a scrapbook of our last eat visit. Thank you so much for posting this wonderful idea. I’m so excited that I’m starting my letters immediately.

  35. Theresa July 30, 2014 at 3:29 am - Reply

    I found this today and I am really excited to use it! I have two different people that I would like to use this for. One is for my sister that has been diagnosised with stage 3 and 4 brain cancer. The other is for my 11 year old grand daughter that has anxiety issues and is bi polar. Could you giveme suggestions for these two different tales of love? Thank you and this was such a blessing for me.

    • Nicole Smith July 30, 2014 at 11:04 pm - Reply

      Thank you, Theresa, for your message.

      Both of your situations are very unique and require a different take for sure.

      Here are my suggestions.

      For your sister, these are my suggestions in addition to the ones listed within the post:

      Open When Your Feeling Defeated
      Open When You Don’t Know Why You Should Keep Fighting
      Open When You Need to Know Why You Inspire Us or When You Need to Know Why You’re Our Hero
      Open When You Feel Down
      Open When You Need a Laugh
      Open When You Want to Know What Our Favorite Memory Together Is

      Here are my suggestions for your grand daughter.

      Open When You Feel Frustrated By How/What You Feel
      Open When You Need to be Reminded You’re Not Alone
      Open When You Are Anxious and Afraid
      Open When You Need to Know How Proud of You I Am
      Open When You Need a Reminder of How Strong You Are
      Open When You’re Sad

      I hope these ideas help.

  36. Tracy Kriegel September 11, 2014 at 5:48 pm - Reply

    I love this idea, with the letters. I am going to do it for my boyfriend !!!
    I was not able to subscribe to your new posts??

    • Nicole Smith September 11, 2014 at 5:55 pm - Reply

      Tracy, I hope your boyfriend loves the letters.

      Did you enter your email under the Subscribe to Blog via email? Once you enter your email address, the page refreshes and should say: “An email was just sent to confirm your subscription. Please find the email now and click activate to start subscribing.”

      I just tried it and was sent the activation email. I clicked the link included in the email and it takes me to a subscription management page.

      Could you tell me what is happening for you that way I can fix it? Thanks!

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