You may have heard the adage about how ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder.' However, couples who are in a long-distance relationship, especially one where the next time there will be a physical face-to-face meeting is unpredictable or not for a while, may have a difficult time feeling connected to each other.

There is a limit to what both people can do because of the distance and perhaps, a time-zone difference. Daily catch up and conversations via phone calls, video chat, text messages, Snapchat, and the like are great, but there is so much more that can be done to keep the spark in the relationship from dying out.

There are so many more fun activities that you can do with your long-distance sweetheart to stay connected until the next time you meet in person in addition to your usual chats.

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Send them gifts

This does not have to be an extravagant $100 care package or a lavish bouquet. It can be something as small as a handwritten card and some homemade cookies – after all, it is the thought and the sincerity that matters.

You want to give something that they cannot buy and only something that you can give. Think about insides jokes you’ve to have together and give something that reminds you of them.

For example, one of my friends sent his girlfriend her favorite cupcakes from the local bakery along with a cute message on the back of a picture of them and had it delivered to her dorm room the first Friday of every month. Even she moved 2,000 miles away; he was able to bring her home every time she had a bite.

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Go on a walk together and have a scavenger hunt

Even though you are miles apart, you can still take a walk together and have fun while doing that.

All you need is a live video sharing app on your smartphones – such as Facetime, Skype, or even Snapchat live video -- and some creativity Go on an introductory walk of the new neighborhood(s) to welcome them and show them what’s around. If you have already done the “introduce your significant other to your new neighborhood” walk, do it again with a challenge.

Go out with a list of categories that you made for each other and see who wins. Some good creative categories can be things that cannot be found in my area – like snow if you recently moved from a hot area, or maybe palm trees if you recently moved to a tropical area, someone wearing a shirt from a local sports team, or a doppelganger of a mutual friend.

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Fall asleep to each other’s voices

If time zones make it hard to coordinate live activities, try a recording. Send them a voice or video recording of yourself reading them their favorite novel or singing them their favorite songs.

You can even upload it as a private video on Youtube, so they do not have to download large files. They can use it as their bedtime story or relaxation music.

This is such an easy activity, yet incredibly meaningful. What better way to end the day than to be lulled to sleep by your significant other?

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Cook and have a movie date together

Have a night where you try out each other’s recipes or try to teach the other how to cook it. One of you can do the main entrée while the other decides the dessert.

It can be done using video chat or over the phone. If neither of you is swift in the kitchen, there are alternatives.

Services like BlueApron and other pre-packaged meal boxes make it easy to coordinate meals and cooking times. Online browser extensions such as Showgoers for Netflix or Netflix party, allow you to watch the same Netflix show at the same time.

If you prefer the old fashion way, you can both rent the same DVD and press play at the same time. Websites like surfly.com and samesurf.com allow you to browse the same website at the same time as if it were on screen. Now you can both have a lazy night in together!

Whether you are separated because of school, career, family issues, or something out of your control, try these ideas to keep the relationship fresh and full of surprises. The best thing is that they are free or relatively inexpensive and easy to change up, so you can feel free to do them as many times are you like.

Image credit: pexels

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