Dearly beloved, Valentine’s Day is nearly here again, and of course we’re panicking. We have no idea of what to get our loved ones and we’ve saved no monies. This means we’re clueless AND cashless. We need some romantic ideas and they need to be very, very inexpensive.
Every year I ask Eric what he wants for Valentine’s. Every year he responds with the same answer, and I will leave you to your imagination because this is a family friendly blog and I cannot type that sort of thing out.
So I guess we’re not completely out of ideas when it comes to special, romantic events. But sometimes we’d like to spruce up the usual festivities, yes?
And this is where a normal blog would give you a list of great ideas for your special night. But I’m not a normal blogger, honestly. Assuming I could come up with a hundred romantic ideas, they could all be terrible for you.
Here’s the thing about being in a relationship– what counts as romance and caring varies wildly from person to person. What speaks love and delight to me might make a normal woman throw her husband out of the house for the week. I’d probably clap my hands with joy if Eric came home with the vacuum I want.
(Note to Eric: don’t actually buy it. It’s $500 and once I’m done being happy I will take that thing back to the store for a full refund.)
So we’ll skip all my crazy ideas and get right to the point where you find what your spouse needs, without my interference.
How to find romantic ideas for your beloved:
Sit down casually with a magazine or two. Be near your dear one.
Casually peruse the magazine and pretend like it’s full of very interesting articles.
Say something like, “Picnics. Such a nice idea,” like the magazine has an article on them. (See how tricky I am?)
Notice how your lover responds. If he wrinkles his nose and starts lecturing on ants and food spoilage, then you know he’s not into picnics. Move along. Find another “article” and gently murmur something about trips to San Francisco, the temperature at the top of the Hancock Center, or how delicious the new restaurant in town sounds.
(I found this blog post, and it actually has some pretty good ideas if you have zero of your own.)
Continue suggesting completely random things until your help mate finally, finally indicates some interest in a subject/event/activity.
You are now getting closer. You’re discovering what this wonderful creature in front of you finds exciting and romantic. Now you just need to dial it back until you can afford it this year.
But wait. We’ve already determined there’s no money this year.
Okay, maybe you can’t actually get what your beau wants this year. But you at least have an idea, the slightest direction, to head. If nothing else, you can say, “Honey, I love you so much. And I’d love to buy you a monster truck for Valentine’s Day, but it’s not in the budget. Here’s an adorable toy version!”
Of course this isn’t as good as a real monster truck, but it’s waaaaaaaaaaay better than a tie he doesn’t want.
But wait again! Now you know what he loves, and you hate it!
Ah, here’s the terrible truth about being in a relationship. Sometimes you literally loathe what they adore. This is where the love comes in. The love part goes with what makes them happy, not you.
I know. It’s painful.
You may mail me hate letters when you’re out in a deer blind, freezing off your toes because your husband wanted a “romantic” hunting date. Or, feel free to mentally shoot darts at a photo of my face while you hold your wife’s purse and wait outside the women’s dressing room at Macy’s.
I’m sort of sorry. But the whole point of this exercise was to make our loved ones feel loved, right? Some times that means you freeze your butt off in a deer blind or have to go shopping. But here’s the thing– if we do this right long enough, then eventually we become those sweet old couples who hold hands and walk through the park. It takes lots of sacrifice to get there, but I’m pretty sure it’s worth it.
Eventually. Maybe not today. But a thousand small choices on their behalf will eventually lead to a life of love.