By Jena Mays
Here we go again. With February 14th bearing down on us, the commercial machine is ramping up to make another killing off Valentine’s Day. But that doesn’t mean you have to buy into the commercialization of your affection for that special person in your life. In this article, I’ll reveal eight ways to show love that don’t cost any money at all.
Valentine Day Date
A memorable, romantic Valentine’s Day date doesn’t have to drain your bank account. In fact, those dates where you go the extra mile to be creative and original are going to be far more meaningful and touching than simply turning up at your local restaurant. Here are four commercial-free Valentine’s Day date ideas to get your juices flowing …
- Have an indoor picnic — pack a picnic hamper, load it with club sandwiches, and set a blanket on the floor. If you want to get fancy, throw in a bottle of bubbly and scented candles.
- Have a bake date — invite your significant other into your kitchen and have fun baking together. Experiment with new and different goodies, then finish the date off by chowing down on the fruits of your labor.
- Binge watch date — we’ve all got that favorite show we could binge all day. Find out what your partner’s is and set up a binge watch date, complete with popcorn and other TV snacks.
- Have a paint date — painting has become very popular lately, largely due to its ability to help us relax and unwind. Set up a paint date by gathering the paint supplies you’ll need, preparing some appetizers and drinks, and then letting your joint creativity take free reign.
Creative Gift Ideas
Making your own Valentine’s Day gift is bound to touch the heart of your loved one. Here are four great suggestions …
- Make a memory scrapbook — put together a scrapbook that’s filled with memories of your journey together thus far. You could include such things as photos of the two of you together, movie ticket stubs, memorabilia from special events you’ve shared, and cards you’ve previously given each other.
- Make a playlist of your sweetheart’s favorite songs — include tunes from their childhood to evoke warm memories. This is a cost-free gift that your loved one will be able to enjoy every day — and every time they do, they’ll think of you!
- Make a coupon book, filled with activities the two of you can do together — you could include such things as coupons for a massage, doing the dishes for a week, or cooking a romantic dinner.
- Write a romantic letter — there’s something special about receiving a handwritten letter, especially in this age of tweets and Snapchat messages. It communicates that you value the recipient enough to spend time on the message. Fill that message with heartfelt expressions of how you really feel toward your loved one, and you will create a gift that he or she will treasure for years to come.
Places to Visit
Want to go on a date this Valentine’s Day? There are lots of places to go that don’t require spending money. Here are four of my favorites …
- Take a hike — if the weather’s fine on Valentine’s Day, there is no better way to take advantage of it than taking to the woods. Spending time in the great outdoors has its own special magic, so go explore a new hiking trail with your loved one this Valentine’s Day. Be sure to prepare well by wearing proper hiking shoes (wear them in first so you don’t get blisters), plenty of water, and a nutritious picnic so you’ve got energy for the return trip.
- Have a museum date — it is amazing how many interesting, often quirky museums are dotted around the landscape. Many of them are free entry or simply require a voluntary donation. Do your research online to find a museum that will appeal to both of you, and then make a day of the event. An example of a free museum to visit is the Alamo Museum in San Antonio, Texas. There you’ll learn plenty about dedication, passion and resilience, three key qualities for a lasting relationship.
- Party at the Park — take advantage of the attractions and facilities on offer at your local public park facility this Valentine’s Day. Pack a picnic, grab a frisbee, and go unleash your inner child together.
- Stroll around the neighborhood — usually we are so busy that we don’t appreciate what is right on our doorstep. Valentine’s Day is an opportunity for the two of you to stop and smell the roses. So, why not take a slow, casual stroll around the neighborhood? Pick some flowers, notice the nuances of your neighborhood, and simply share your time being happy together
Check out these tips on how to maintain a healthy relationship.
Ways to Show Appreciation
Valentine’s Day is a way to show how much you appreciate your partner. So, rather than simply spending some money, look for opportunities to show how much you appreciate them. Here are three ways to do just that …
- Do their chores for them — make February 14th a day that you take on all of their chores. Allow him or her to stay in bed, get up when they choose, and do absolutely nothing all day while you take care of everything.
- Create a “What I Love About You” booklet — on each page write a separate response to the starter …. “What I love about you.”
- Be vulnerable — when you show vulnerability to your partner, you open yourself up. That shows that you truly trust them. So, be vulnerable and share your hidden self with your partner.
Rather than buying into the commercialization of Valentine’s Day this year, why not step back, show some originality, and personalize your expression of love and appreciation for your loved one in real, meaningful ways? Make use of one or more of the suggestions provided here to make this Valentine’s Day a real treat for your special someone.
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