Without fail, every February 14, love fills the air as candy, flowers, and gifts are exchanged to express the love and affection shared between lovers and special people in our lives, this is the time of the year when we witness a great deal of rush in our local Gift Market. There are many tales behind the history of St. Valentine’s Day, but the general consensus is that it started during the early 1400s when a man smitten by love penned a message proclaiming his love to a special woman in his life. During the 15th century, a Valentine greeting depicted a drawing of a knight and a lady, with an arrow sent from Cupid to pierce the knight’s heart. Original Valentine’s Day gifts consisted of handmade cards and love poems that summed up the true feelings between lovers. As years passed, commercial Valentine greetings contained delicate messages and were constructed of the finest papers embellished with satin, ribbon, and/or lace. Today’s Valentine cards are typically accompanied by gifts of candy, flowers, perfume, jewelry, and other creative tokens expressing eternal love for that special someone in your life. As time evolves, so does the art of gift-giving. While many still prefer giving/receiving traditional gifts, others are becoming more creative in selecting that perfect gift that says I love you in a non-traditional manner. If you are looking past traditional gift items or desire to meld tradition with creativity, here are a few suggestions to express your sincerest feelings toward the special love in your life. Try a non-traditional approach to those coveted roses. Buy her a dozen roses and place a pearl inside each rosebud. As the rosebuds open, the pearls will be revealed as an extra surprise. Take them to the jewelry store and have them strung into a necklace – something your true love will be able to hold onto once the roses are gone.
If funds are sparse, instead of a traditional expensive dinner in a restaurant, take her somewhere she will never suspect. Pack a picnic basket filled with her favorite treats, a bottle of wine, and candles. Take along a couple of blankets, a battery-operated CD player, and several romantic CDs. Drive to the park or somewhere with a secluded atmosphere and treat her to a picnic for two. Surprise her with a small token of your love – something you have made for her on your own.
Say “I love you” for 12 entire months with a coupon book filled with favors that she can redeem throughout the year. Choose a different favor for each month of the year that she can redeem on any day of the month. Suggestions include a foot massage, a back rub, cleaning up after dinner, a night out alone, etc.
Finding a perfect Valentine’s gift for that special man in your life is sometimes difficult. I ran across a wonderful idea that was shared by a housewife who found it harder and harder to grab some quality time with her husband. She came up with a plan to make the 14 Days of Valentines a whole new way of celebrating the holiday. Starting with February 1, she did something special for her husband each day. A few suggestions include a candlelight dinner, running him a bubble bath complete with candles, leaving a love note on the bathroom mirror, sending him flowers to work, giving him a massage, watching a movie together while cuddling, and hiding a love note in his lunch box. With a little imagination, you can fill up the 14 days with special moments he will remember all year!
Hershey’s Kisses automatically say, “I Love You.” Try a new twist to a traditional gift by carefully unwrapping each kiss, taking out the paper tag, and replacing the tag with your own handmade messages that start off by saying, “I love you because…” – think of as many different reasons as you can come up with. Then carefully wrap the kisses back in foil with their new tags clearly displayed through the top of each kiss.
Purchase a dozen roses you are accustomed to buying on Valentine’s Day but do not give them to her on the stems. Instead, create a romantic atmosphere by running her a hot bubble bath complete with candlelight, soft love songs, and fragrant bath oil. While she is enjoying her relaxing bath, gently pull the rose petals off of the stems and sprinkle them from the bathroom door to the bedroom, creating a path for her to follow. Sprinkle several petals on the bed and one long stem rose on her pillow. Enhance the magical night by purchasing some exotic massage oil and treating her to a massage she will never forget!