Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Planning Ahead for Valetine's Day

Valentine's Day is less than a month away. Of course, if you are like most people, you are just coming off from a big spending time in December. But you don't have to spend a ton on your "valentine" to make him/her feel special. To me, Valentine's Day can be blown out of portion in terms of amount spent on gifts. It's far more fun to see how creative you can be in expressing your love on this day.

Michael is smart. He has always cooked a great meal at home for me on Valentine's Day. It makes a lot more sense and is far more special than going out for a meal that is probably over-priced for February 14.

While it can sometimes be hard to dream up, I try to think of some kind of little, inexpensive (but thoughtful) gift to give Michael. He wouldn't really appreciate flowers. He doesn't care much for sweets of any kind. So, it does become a little more challenging.

Last year, I bought a clear glass vase at the dollar store and tied a red ribbon around it. I also got a package of place cards (at Dollar Tree in the wedding/party section). I thought of 52 reasons why I love him (from completely silly things to more serious ones) and wrote one on the inside of each card. On the outside of each card, I wrote the title "52 Things I Love About Michael." Then, I sealed the cards each with a Valentine sticker. (I got a whole sheet of them from Dollar Tree and had enough leftover to decorate the vase too.) To make it colorful, I used 10 different colors of felt tip pens (which I got free after rebate at Staples) to write the messages. The place cards actually came 50 to a package, so I used other little papers I had on hand for the remaining two cards and still sealed them with a sticker too. After all of the cards were done, I filled the vase. So, I had a cute, thoughtful gift for a little over $3.00! I told Michael that if opened one per week, he'd have a year full of great thoughts. However, he couldn't wait and ended up reading one each day. That still lasted nearly 2 months. It was definitely a gift that kept giving.

I don't know what I'm going to do this year. However, as you can see, whether you are planning to cook dinner or hand-make a gift, it takes some time and thought. Better to start working on it now. Then, you won't have to run out and buy an expensive (and probably, cheesy) gift for your Valentine at the last minute.

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