This morning BBC Coventry and Warwickshire Local Radio had me on to talk about Valentines Day ideas on a budget. I explained how lucky I am to be married to one of the most wonderful and romantic men in the Universe and then went on to give some ideas that Daddy and I have used in the past (or are going to use this year!). I had been asked to prepare a Top Ten List but only got to explain three of them, so here they all are!
Make Food Heart Shaped.
Buy a Cookie Cutter and cut heart shaped sandwiches, lasagne, vegetables, slices of ham... anything that is going to be eaten. If you do it without your other half knowing then they will know you were thinking of them when they finally eat the food and who doesn't like to be thought about?
Give a Photo Gift.
Take a photo of you or your children proclaiming their declaration of love (Like Tara's) or an important place to you or the recipient. I love the idea of marking an important date and this is what I used for inspiration for Daddy's gift this year. I used the date of our wedding anniversary, a Flickr users photos and some effects in an art programme on the PC to create something which I'm rather proud of.
Give Seeds not Flowers.
I do love getting and giving flowers, but if you are looking to do this on a budget buy a packet of seeds or a plant instead. They tend to last longer and you can decorate the pot of the plant or even create an envelope for the seeds to replace the one they come in. Use your best handwriting or make the most of an art programme on your PC to write the name of the seeds out all fancy and print onto the envelope.
Make a Meal Special.
It might be breakfast in bed, you might take lunch to them or make a special favourite meal and use the posh plates. This is also something great to do with the children, you could have them be the Servers or take part as who doesn't love dinner on a posh plate?!
Do a Chore.
I hate putting the bins out, but as it's one of the chores that Daddy does this Valentines day I will take care of it so he doesn't have to. In the past Daddy has done my least favourite chore for the day and it means so much because he knows that his actions show how much he loves me. Oh and don't forget that if this cold weather keeps up that scraping the car is a great chore!
Make some Personalised Sweets.
You could make up some Home Made Chocolates, or maybe melt candy canes left over from Christmas together to make a heart or take the outer wrapper off a favourite bar of chocolate and replace it with a home made one. Just don't forget to write your declaration of love on the inside of the outer wrapper.
Go ahead and bake something. Cupcakes, cakes, bread, biscuits are all gratefully received if baked with love. You can make them heart shaped (use that cookie cutter again) or write on them or just present them with a little love note.
Give a Voucher.
I don't mean you have to go out and buy a gift voucher for a favourite shop (although a voucher for a favourite Coffee shop is a nice way to show you are thinking of someone) but make a set at home. They might be for a lay in, doing the dishes, having a take away, a favourite dinner, a massage or anything else you think that they might appreciate. Of course you can always enter the competition to win an Experience Day Voucher too...
Take the Day Off or Come Home Early.
The other evening Daddy surprised us by coming home early. It was great to be able to spend a little more time with him and this is a great way to spend Valentines too. You could do something you keep meaning to do (visit a local attraction maybe?) or just spend the day together watching romantic films.
Write a Love Letter.
A proper hand written love letter doesn't cost much but means the world. From our early courtship I have every single letter, card, postcard and note that Daddy sent me and apart from one that was stolen with Daddy's wallet (I say they were after the note, he claims they were after his cash) he has every single one I sent him too. It's special because you took the time out to do it and it's very romantic to tell someone why you love them.
I have a list of Thirty Valentines suggestions which are under £5 and if you'd like any further ideas, don't forget to check out my Valentines Pinterest Board!