6th Wedding Anniversary

Particularly in modern times, six years of marriage is an achievement in itself. A couple has been together for a significant length of time and now, hopefully, has a good understanding of the other person's strengths, weaknesses, likes, dislikes, hobbies and pastimes.

Read on to find ideas for celebrating your sixth wedding anniversary together.

Traditional Gift: Iron/ Sugar

Iron

One traditional sixth anniversary gift is iron. Of course, we know iron is an extremely strong metal of huge importance to the manufacturing industry. It gave rise to the Iron Age and the Industrial Revolution, and is the basis of steel. It was known as "the Metal of Mars".

Although iron is incredibly tough in its various forms, it is also malleable and, in the right conditions, can be moulded, shaped and reformed without it breaking.

Perhaps this in itself makes it a good symbol for a couple who have spent six years together. Hopefully the marriage is still strong. There may be the risk that one or both partners can become set in their ways, but with the hope that there is still room for change and reshaping of character, attitude and relationship, should any cracks be showing which need to be addressed.

Based on its physical characteristics, iron has come to represent human strength, obstinacy, fortitude, honor, courage, sharpness of body and mind, tenacity, and confidence in power. Many of those traits would be useful characteristics in a marriage, although obstinacy could get you into trouble.

Iron gifts ideas are plentiful, though buying a steam iron could land you in some trouble! Gifts could be practical or decorative, either for the home or the garden. Perhaps an iron sculpture, a sundial, a horseshoe, a trinket box, bird feeder, or trivet.

Sugar

Whatever kind of bad name sugar has for itself these days, there's no denying most people can easily succumb to a sweet treat now and again (or more often!)

Sugar has been around for millennia, and is now used in a wide variety of foods and drinks. Most people consume sugar every day, either by choice or without realising the extent to which sugar is present in our modern foods. Therefore, a sugar-based gift needs to be more special and creative if it's to be fitting for celebrating an anniversary.

Perhaps gifts involving sugarcraft and sugar sculpture could be given, or alternatively very fine sweets and confectionary.

For those with a sizeable chunk of money set aside, perhaps a vacation to Brazil to see the Sugarloaf Mountain in Rio de Janeiro may be the order of the day.

Don't forget those for whom sugar is a definite no-no, such as diabetics. If you still want to give sweet treats, consider sugar-alternative gifts containing other natural or artificial sweeteners instead.

Modern Gift: Wood

For as long as we've had trees, people have found ways to cultivate wood for both practical and decorative uses.

Wood represents both strength and longevity, both characteristics desired in a healthy marriage. A tree takes many years to grow, and at six years a young tree will still be tiny in comparison to what it will be in decades to come. Yet it still has deepening, increasingly strong roots, anchoring it to the ground and enabling it to withstand some pretty fierce storms.

There's virtually no end to the range of gifts which could be given made from wood.

How about a personalised wooden sign created with pyrography? Perhaps an elegant piece of hardwood furniture for the home, some decorative items for the kitchen or bedroom, perhaps a kissing bench for the garden.

Associated Gemstone: Amethyst/ Turquoise

Amethyst

Amethyst is said to promote calm, balance and peace, as well as eliminating impatience. Of course, it's up to you whether you believe it has these properties, but regardless of this, there's little denying amethyst is a very attractive purple or violet quartz crystal.

Amethyst is the birthstone for February; perhaps something to consider if the dates fall this way.

It comes in a range of colours from a light pinkish violet all the way through to a deep purple, sometimes with secondary hues of red or blue.

It was used as a gemstone by the ancient Egyptians, and the Greeks believed drinking vessels made from amethyst could protect against intoxication. A belief that the semiprecious stone promotes healing and cool-headedness led to mediaeval European soldiers wearing an amethyst amulet, while Anglican bishops may wear an episcopal ring set with an amethyst.

Tibetans consider amethyst sacred to the Buddha and make prayer beads from it, and the quartz stone was a sign of royalty in the Middle Ages, used to decorate English regalia.

Amethyst is the official state gemstone of South Carolina.

The monetary value of amethyst dropped significantly in the 18th century when large deposits of it were found in Brazil. The colour now determines the rarity and hence potential desirability of the stone. That said, amethyst is a beautiful gemstone and any piece of jewelry set with it is sure to be appreciated.

Turquoise

The turquoise gemstone comes in a range of colours from blue to green, including Persian Turquoise which is a sky blue historically favoured by the Persians.

Beliefs attributed to turquoise include its help to the owner to start new projects, to warn the wearer of danger or illness by changing colour, and protecting the wearer from falling. It is said to bring happiness and good fortune, and promotes spontaneity in romance, stimulating romantic love.

Turquoise jewelry can be purchased. It is worth noting that genuine turquoise does require some maintenance in order for it to remain at its best, including avoiding solvents (including perfume), and prolonged direct sunlight. Turquoise may be quite soft and so can be damaged by contact with harder or sharper objects, including other gemstones.

Associated Flower: Calla Lily

Calla lilies are available in a range of colours, including classic white, yellow, orange, pink, rose, lavender and dark maroon.

They can be grown in the garden in most areas, although this requires some planning and is better down if the anniversary is in the summer, when they naturally flower.

Alternatively, they can be bought as cut flower arrangements from any good florist.

Calla lilies represent magnificent beauty.

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