The topic of the month is service here at Marriage Laboratory, and the challenge of the month is to ask your spouse what loving acts you can do for them each week and then do it.
But what if your spouse (like mine) can’t think of anything? Or says something like, “Maybe keep the door closed when you’re going to the bathroom?” (. . .happened to a . . . friend of mine . . . .)
Or what if your spouse had a hard week and you’re just looking for a way to make them smile again?
Then why not do some loving acts just because? Just to make their day?
But what to do? Gotcha covered friend. Below is a list of 46 loving acts of service just to make your spouse smile.
Note: I did first post this list during our “gifts” month, and then I got comments like, “These would actually all work for spouses whose love language is service.” And I thought, why yes, they would. So I guess maybe this list should be called gifts of service and should cover just about any love language 🙂
46 Loving Acts
- Do their least favorite chore. Starting the list off with a real doozy of a good time. But you’d be surprised at how effective this one could be. Think of your least favorite chore. Now imagine your spouse doing it. See? See the power here?
- Send them a handwritten letter in the mail listing 10 reasons you love them. So simple, but imagine their face when they are flipping through the bills and find your letter. Aw, that face is the best!
- Plan out your next date night. Pick an activity, restaurant, movie- whatever you are into (if you are into the stay-at-home date variety check this action out). Hire a sitter. Or go nuts and plan a month’s worth of dates.
- Make a heart-shaped meal. Virtually unlimited options here. Breakfast: heart-shaped pancakes or eggs. Lunch: heart-shaped sandwiches. Dinner: heart-shaped pizza or cookies. (Hey, cookies for dinner is a thing.)
- Compliment them every hour on the hour all day long! I love this one. It would be impossible not to have a better day if someone was texting you compliments every hour.
- Write a sweet message for your spouse on the bathroom mirror. Waking up to love and appreciation? That’s a good way to start the day.
- Watch a movie or show you’d rather not watch but that they love. It is beyond me how someone can “not like” Gilmore Girls, but apparently it’s possible. Means all the more to me when we can watch it together.
- Sneak a different love note into all of their pants’ pockets while they are asleep (the clean ones). The fun lasts for days!
- Massage night. Who doesn’t love a massage?
- Buy them a gift card to their favorite store. Doesn’t have to be for a lot of money, but its a lovely gesture.
- Do something to solve one of their problems. If she is having trouble with one of the kids- take that kid out on a special date and give your spouse a little break. If his nice shoes are hard to get into, buy him a shoe horn. The best kinds of gifts are the ones specific to your spouse.
- Leave their favorite candy in their car with a nice note.
- Coupon book. Make a few cards saying “this card is good for . . .” and then write out a few nice favors- a massage, a favorite meal, one day of no chores, etc. Classic gift and totally free. Just make sure they really cash in!
- Order lunch for your spouse while they are at work from their favorite restaurant. Fun surprise 🙂
- Have a candlelit dinner for no reason. Wouldn’t take much effort- just adding candles to your normal dinner and maybe your favorite sparkly drink, but it sets a great romantic tone.
- Send them a little video of your kids saying “why we love daddy/mommy.” What a way to brighten their day!
- Plan out a few fun sexy times ideas. Write them down and let your spouse know what is in store for that week or month. For a few ideas on how to make intimacy fun- check this post out).
- If your spouse works, let them just veg for 20 minutes all by themselves when they get home from work. No kids, no responsibilities, no strings.
- Surprise flowers or chocolates. Can’t go wrong with the classics.
- Wash and/or vacuum out their car and fill it up with gas. A nice gesture and so helpful.
- Send them to take a nap uninterrupted. This one would be especially appreciated by the parents of young kids out there. Can I get an amen?
- Take over putting the kids to bed and send your spouse off for some self-care time. This one miiight be my favorite of the just because gift ideas list. I’ll get back to you . . .
- Write a poem for them. You don’t have to be a talented writer to write an acrostic poem of their name. Or if you are musically inclined write them a song!
- Get up early and surprise your spouse with a nice breakfast. Double points if you give it to them in bed.
- Stick a love letter in their bag or purse or somewhere where they’ll discover it. You just can’t go wrong with love letters, they fill just about any love tank. If you need some prompts, check this action out.
- Send a gushy text. Don’t hold back on the gush. If you need some direction, here are 40 loving text ideas.
- If you aren’t the one who usually cooks, surprise your spouse by bringing home dinner. Maybe give them a head’s up that they have the night off 🙂 Or take over dinner cooking for the night.
- Let your spouse sleep in. This works especially well on weekends and is always GREATLY appreciated by both spouses at the Davis household. Particularly when it is done without keeping sleep score 😉
- Surprise your spouse by taking them out to lunch. Always a welcome surprise.
- Make your spouse’s favorite treat while they are out of the house and surprise them when they get home.
- Make a short video for your spouse detailing some cute little things they do that you love. Send it to them and make their day.
- Take interest in a hobby of your spouse’s. Woodworking? Sewing? Tweeting? Blogging? Ask them all about it and to show you their latest projects.
- Schedule a “yes” day. What is a “yes” day? Its a day where you say yes to all of your spouse’s requests that day! Donuts in bed? Yes. Watch sports all day? Yes. Work on unappealing house projects? Yes! Watch 5 episodes of LOST? Yes!! (hopefully they’ll return the favor with this one on another day 😉 )
- Buy them a book they’ve mentioned they want to read. Or check it out at the library for them. Extra credit if you read it too.
- If you know they love a certain dish at a restaurant, try making a copycat version of it for them at home. My friend has done this for me, and it felt so special and awesome that she remembered and went through all the effort to make it.
- Have a movie ready to go of something they’ve mentioned they have wanted to watch. Go ahead and throw in their favorite snack or treat for good measure.
- Send them out of the house while you surprise clean the house. This would mean A TON if done by the partner who usually cleans less than their spouse. Excuse me while I daydream of this one . . .
- Draw them a picture. I have a friend who draws his wife hilarious little cartoons on the regular and it is never not awesome.
- Run an errand for them they’ve been putting off. Oil change, post office, returning something to a store, etc. Once Rich returned something for me I had been meaning to for a while and it turned my frown right upside down!
- Plan a whole afternoon filled with their favorite things. Favorite activity, sport, food, show, etc. The possibilities are pretty endless here.
- Make them a compilation of songs that they like or remind you of them. I almost wrote “make them a cd,” but then realized that would date me. I guess “make them a Spotify playlist” would be what the youngins would do these days.
- If your spouse usually makes the bed, make the bed!
- If your spouse is the one who usually watches the kids- take the kids! For a night, a day, or for an hour and force your spouse to go do something fun. (this one is my favorite EVER).
- If your spouse likes to talk, ask them for all the details of their day from beginning to end. As a quality time love language-r, this would make me feel very loved.
- Arrange a guys night or girls night for them with their friends. Text and invite all their friends to go to a certain restaurant or friend’s house and surprise your spouse!
- Prepare a bubble bath. This could be just for them- in which case include their favorite book and drink. Or you could join in 🙂
Hopefully those ideas are getting your brain moving for what loving acts your spouse would most appreciate. After all, the very best gifts of service are those catered specifically to your spouse.
Which do you think your spouse would most appreciate? Which would you most appreciate?