Our First Wedding Anniversary – Gifts and Plans

The first year being married is a long and special one. To celebrate, each couple has one, single opportunity to plan a memorable event, and we lived ours in a way that fit our own story. We booked a well-thought out relaxation retreat spent with our adventurous puppy.

As frequent Colorado campers, we chose to book ourselves an anniversary weekend at Beyul Retreat in Meredith, Colorado. As tradition states, we then shared gifts themed with paper.

Our tiny cabin at the retreat had everything you’d need for a romantic and cozy weekend with the one you love most. Beyul has done a remarkable diligence creating a peaceful village of various-sized cabins to accommodate families, friends, and couples. Each cabin is equipped with a fireplace, parking area, microwave/fridge, bathroom, and VERY cozy bedding.

It was the perfect balance of a reset-by-nature and a relaxing weekend away from home. We (my husband, actually, hehehe) chopped our own firewood to create our own warmth. We had access to wifi in the check-in building, but couldn’t bring ourselves to check our phones once. We had a tiny, Beyul branded bathroom that reminded us that with the outdoor territory, the pipes may freeze when they aren’t left dripping.

Call us abnormal, but it was absolutely perfect for how we wanted to spend our first anniversary as husband and wife.

Features of the Beyul Retreat included:

  • HOT TUB: Able to sit 10+ people at once, the temperature allowed for anyone sleeping in winter cabins to warm up immediately. We had the hot tub to ourselves for a couple hours accompanied only by mimosas, but eventually made some friends in there as well.
  • COLD PLUNGE: An ice cold tub sitting in the middle of the snow doesn’t seem like something I would submerge myself into willingly, but after hours in a hot tub and a lovely stranger telling you the cold plunge shows you what life is about, I HAD TO get in for the experience. It was amazing.
  • SAUNA: The third step in the most relaxing swimsuit session I’ve ever had was a beautifully modern sauna with a changing area and towels readily available.
  • YOGA: While staying at Beyul in January, there was a complimentary retreat with free yoga classes 3-4 times per day. Within each of the cabins’ welcome books, you can see these classes are plentiful in the summer as well, which means we’ll have to return!
  • INTIMATE CONCERT: Surrounded by warm lights and bean bags, we listened to live music that was so beautiful, I was in tears upon closing. We were graced with an exceptional performance by the Tierro Band with Bridget Law and spontaneous dancing throughout the night.

Additional activities we took upon ourselves were to cook our own food over the fire and snowshoeing to partake in backcountry snowboarding with our puppy. Families were sledding throughout the retreat, and all guests were required to show proof of a negative covid test to allow social mingling within the community areas.

After leaving, we celebrated the closing of our anniversary with our gifts to each other. Tanner (my husband) gave me a beautiful memento of our wedding date using the exact coordinates of our elopement’s vows. He made the framing himself with wood he chopped up, and for lack of a better term, he “nailed” it 😉

My paper gift was sub-par compared to his (as usual), but added to the art of relaxation and planned a hot stone, cupping, and CBD oil massage for us. I printed out the voucher on paper and called it a win. This means we get to continue the celebration of our first anniversary weeks after our retreat!

Other fun paper ideas suggested by my friends included plane tickets, concert tickets, and paper signs, including stars on a significant moment/day. Nobody had suggested printing out special coordinates, which made the gifts we actually shared even better.

Here’s to hoping everyone’s marriage is graced with a special weekend like the one we had at Beyul Retreat. I hope that you find relaxation and solitude with a romantic weekend, ignoring any distractions that take you away from the one you love. I hope that the paper gifts shared can provide inspiration to your own ideas. Please comment if they do– happiness grows when shared with others.

Signing off, Mrs. Lyday

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