Despite what some of the haters might say, Valentine’s Day is fun. A special day to express love for someone special is one of the nobler traditions. But the average person spends almost $150 on Valentine’s Day! There is no need to turn what should be an enjoyable evening into something to regret because of the price tag.
Most of the time what causes overspending is not social pressure but a failure to plan–in fact, prices are specially raised to capitalize on that very fact! So, plan ahead, and there might be more wiggle room in the budget once it’s all over.
For example, it’s free to write a letter or hand make a card. Printing it out will be touching, but something handwritten is tough to beat. Keep it short if a long letter is intimidating, or consider hand copying a poem (“Bright Star” by John Keats would be a good choice, for example). Even if though it was written by someone else, the gesture of writing it out will be appreciated much more than Hallmark’s silly limericks.
Chocolates get expensive around February, and roses are not of the winter season, so they’re not exactly cheap either. But most big red boxes of chocolates contain surprisingly little to eat, and mostly serve as a big gesture.
So why not instead set up a display of red and white M&M’s? They’re just as inexpensive as ever, and when put in a bowl or a mason jar, they fit the season perfectly. Also, try a single red rose – it’s subtle and sweet, and says just as much as a dozen. Deliver them to the office (or the work-from-home office) so they can think about how much they appreciate it all day long.
With restrictions on in-person dining varying from county to county, why not turn your home into your favorite restaurant? Some mood lighting, those dishes you don’t use every day, and delivery from your favorite local restaurant (or your sweetheart’s favorite restaurant) can make the evening special. Or, why not save some dough and cook at home? Go for broke on one great recipe with all the trimmings and cook it together.
That’s key as well: meet in the middle. Don’t make him (or her!) hate every minute of a day that’s supposed to be about both of you. You fell in love; surely you can find something you both enjoy that won’t break the bank!