Love is in the air this week as the smooth transition from spending out on Christmas moves into the Chocolate and Flowers zone.
One of the oldest traditions in the Calendar, the Feast of St Valentine is now 1523 years old and traditionally commemorated the death of St Valentine who was martyred on February 14.
Many people feel under pressure to spend money on tokens to show their love for their partner, or a secret admirer on Valentine’s Day.
Even for people who love to get involved, many can agree that it is just another reason to overspend on flowers and chocolates – but showing someone you love them does not have to cost the earth. Being romantic is more often appreciated when it heartfelt rather than purchased!
Here are a few ideas to show that special person that you do not need to break the bank to show your love.
- Cover the room with love-note filled balloons for your significant other to pop.
Cut little slivers of paper and write down all the things you love about your partner or about you as a couple. Fill empty balloons with as many rolled-up notes as you want, and then blow up the balloons and spread them all over the room. Once the balloons are popped, your little love-note surprises will be there waiting.
- Bundle up with blankets and warm drinks, and go on a walk to watch the sunset.
It might be chilly outside, but nothing is more romantic than cuddling up in front of a sunset view.
- Build a cosy blanket fort for an all-day movie marathon.
Set up yours in front of the TV, make some popcorn, and cuddle up to watch movies for as long as you want.
- Cover your significant other’s mirror with Post-it notes listing all the things you love about him/her.
Make a heart shape with the notes, or spell out something fun and cute.
- Turn off all the lamps and overhead lights, and have a candlelit night instead.
What is more romantic than candles? Whether you have plans to cook a nice meal, watch a movie, or just hang out, do so with a bunch of candles lit. They will instantly make the ambience of the room feel more romantic and special.
- Surprise your loved one with breakfast in bed.
The old Classic – no need to spend hours making an elaborate meal. Raid your pantry and fridge, and whip up something easy (scrambled eggs are always good) but special. Bonus points for any food you can make into a heart shape.
- Fill a jar with future date-night ideas.
It is easy to fall into the same old routine when going on dates, so add creativity to your relationship by brainstorming a bunch of ideas. Draw an idea from the jar one at a time, and do whatever it says that night.
- Make a “Valen-timeline” of your relationship highlighting your favourite past moments together.
Print out photos you love from moments you have shared, and jot down the details of each event on the back. Try to remember as much as you can, so you both can look back on all the good times and compare memories. Hang them in order on a piece of ribbon, like a timeline, for him/her to find.
- Make a collage of mementos from your relationship-defining moments.
Grab a picture frame, poster board, or a canvas, and cover it with things like photos and ticket stubs from concerts or movies you saw together.
- Take your significant other on a scavenger hunt to all your favourite places, and spend the day visiting each one.
You cannot celebrate V-Day without some kind of cheesy poetry, so turn your clues into little love poems and hide them at each spot for your loved one to find.
- Give the gift of handmade love coupons.
Come up with a list of inexpensive things your guy/girl would love (a massage, a movie night when he/she gets to pick the movie, etc.). Make little coupons they can redeem whenever they want.
- Hide little notes all around your significant other’s home, car, coat pockets, etc. for him/her to find throughout the day.
You know how good it feels to find a dollar in your pocket, so imagine how sweet it would be to find random love-note surprises everywhere.
- Wake up early to do all the annoying things on your significant other’s to-do list, so you can spend the entire day together.
Little acts of kindness go a long way, and you will have extra time to spend together to do all the fun things.
Sometimes, just being there for our partners can make all the difference – especially in hard times – to spend the day together rather than spending money.
So, take one day away from the stresses of life, work and above all, money – by showing your partner how much you mean to them but most importantly, not feeling under pressure to spend out on elaborate gifts we all too often are dragged into being a part of in this day and age.