Monday, February 08, 2010

Ten Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas In A Recession

A freelance article I wrote recently posted here: Ask Matt and Tamsen

Ten creative and heartfelt ways to celebrate Valentine's Day in style! And these are not gender-specific.

10. A Letter from Future You – Tell your partner "I’m happy with where we are" by writing a letter sent back from yourself in the future: the things you've enjoyed, what life is like (have fun with this one) and how you still feel. It’s personal, inexpensive and not without sentiment.

9. A Mini MP3 Player – Load it up with your partner's favorite songs. Yep, a hi-tech mix tape but still sentimental. It’s re-usable so it’s green!

8. Dinner Chez Vous – A nice meal made by you, with candles and an inexpensive bottle of wine (plenty are rated 87 points and higher for under $20) says "I care." And "I hate crowds, too." Dinner for two, no matter where you go, is an opportunity for intimacy.

7. A Trip to Victoria’s Secret – Let’s face it. Asking a man to purchase lingerie or women's shoes is like asking the mechanically uninclined to buy car parts. So take him to VS and let him help you pick out the perfect items. And a quick web search can score you some coupons: like SPRING10 gets you $15 off $100.

6. A Night Alone - Get a sitter if you need one for your kids or your roommates, and just find some quality time together. No work, no distractions, and no regrettably big bills when it’s over. These are the times you’ll remember; not the trinkets. A meal at a nice spot off the beaten track and at an off-peak time will provide you the best chances for quiet time. Otherwise, see number 8.

5. Digital Picture Frame - Load it up with your personal selection of digital photos. They’re not expensive and you can select the memories. Some offer the ability to load MP3s so you could add a soundtrack and even record a few personal messages. Just be careful if they’re taking it to work!

4. Spend the Day Together – This may sound obvious or easy, but when’s the last time you both took off a weekday to just hang out together? There are a billion things you can do that don’t cost a lot of money – museums, parks, libraries, malls, movies - do whatever you both enjoy during the day, when everyone else is piling into the restaurant waiting areas that night, looking at their watches instead of each other.

3. Donate – Take what you would have normally spent on your Valentine’s Day evening/gifts and make a donation together. There is always someone who needs help. And it will be another sharing the love moment that neither of you will forget.

2. The Ultimate Personal Gift – nothing says “I love you” more than a personally written song, poem, note, photo or drawing. We’re all creative beings so dig deep down and you’ll find something. As long as it is expressive and honest, it’s a win. And humor is fine if you have difficulty with the prose, mush or can’t master a stick figure. And every computer these days comes with the tools to create!

1. Dinner Party: Potluck – What?! Personally, I think the best way to spend Valentine’s Day is with your single friends. Holidays are depressing enough for many; make this one inclusive! What better way to share the love?


Anonymous said...

Thank you Mike for sharing.Wish you in hand before a Happy Valentine's day.

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One Wink at a Time said...

Great article Mike. You are so creative.
Incidentally, my hub and I had our first date 20 years ago on Feb. 17. Each year we combine Valentines Day with it and go to dinner at the same restaurant where we went that fateful night. We sit at the same table and up until last year, almost always had the same waitress even. We look forward to it every year. On the way there we listen to a mixtape of the songs from our early courtship. (Am I making you sick yet?) ; )
And nearly every year of those 20, there have been hazardous driving conditions!

Mike said...

Not sick at all. That. Is. Awesome! Happy first-date anniversary!

Erik Deckers said...

Yeah, we ended up going to my in-laws for dinner. While we had steak, it was, well, dinner at my in-laws.

Hank hendricks said...

Flower are the best for gift giving occasion...and use for whatever occasion.

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