I saw something the other day that said the two top desired gifts for Valentine’s Day were, wait for it, a new car (yes, really), and a holiday.
Now I like a new car and a holiday as much as the next person. Actually that’s a lie, you can keep the car, I’ll take the holiday over a car any day of the week, but neither of these are suitable for Valentine’s Day in my opinion. This is a classic example of our desires getting way out of control, whatever happened to chocolates and a card?
Perhaps I’m not the best person to be writing an article about Valentine’s Day. I’ve been with my husband for 19 years this year and we have never really celebrated it, I can remember one year I think when we exchanged homemade cards. I don’t like being told when to do stuff, so like a rebellious teenager I refuse and pretend I can’t hear the Valentine’s noise all over the media. If I did though, I’d want it to be something small and thoughtful, or an activity that would have a positive long term effect on my relationship.
Here are a few alternative ideas for Valentine’s Day…
A Day Minimising Your Home
So tidying doesn’t really sound all that romantic, but nesting does. Making your home somewhere you both want to spend time is important. Your home should be a sanctuary away from the noise of life ‘out there’. By getting rid of stuff you don’t need, you create more physical and mental space where you can nurture a great relationship.
A Sharing Dinner Out
There’s something very intimate about sharing food, I guess from an animalistic point of view it’s a bonding experience. I’m also a big advocate of experiences instead of gifts, and a meal out gives you the opportunity to reconnect with each other and catch up with where you both are in life. Here are ten restaurants in Edinburgh where you can share great food.
A Small But Thoughtful Gesture
If nothing else Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to show your partner how well you know them. What do you know about them that nobody else does, use that as a jumping off point to make a small but thoughtful gesture. I love wool socks (god, that sounds old!), if someone buys me a pair of wool socks I know they must know me really well. Perhaps it’s a favourite chocolate bar, a piece of music, a film….
A Day Spent Planning Your Future
Making a living every day gets in the way of having a life. The biggest gift you can probably give each other is the chance to sit down and discuss what you both really want from your future and start making plans. Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to treat yourself to those few hours (a whole day?) to dream again.
A Romantic Meal Cooked Together
If you don’t fancy jostling with every other couple for the best table at your favourite restaurant, stay at home. I love eating out, but I also really enjoy a well cooked meal at home. Visit your local butcher for steaks, or your fishmonger for scallops or lobster. Have something you might not always order when you’re out because of the cost. When you stay in, you can afford to treat yourself. Buy the good wine, light the candles, and indulge yourself.
A Day Sorting Out Your Finances
It’s an activity most of us dread, but there are so many long term benefits it might just be worth investing Valentine’s Day to reap the rewards. Many a couple have split up because of money stress, take control of your finances and you might just find that your relationship benefits as much as your bank account. Read about our financial detox here.
Flowers & Chocolates
If all of that sounds a bit deep, at least revert back to basics. A nice bunch of flowers (not roses!) or a box of handmade chocolates will always be well received.
How do you spend Valentine’s Day?