Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, and if it’s a significant one for you (like your first married Valentine’s Day or your first engaged Valentine’s Day) then you probably really want to make it count. Even if you don’t typically celebrate the holiday I encourage you to embrace it this time around. In fact, maybe it isn’t a significant holiday for you, but why not make it one?
From where I’m sitting the best way to make something special is to actually make it. So if you want a special Valentine’s Day there are three homemade components that you need: a card, a dinner and a dessert. You might prefer to skip making dinner and opt for going somewhere fancy, but I tend to favor a night-in free of battling limited menus and wait lists. So if you’re willing, here is all you have to do to up your Valentine’s Day game.
You take a piece of cardstock or construction paper, fold it in half, and you’re already halfway there. Your skill level with paper and scissors and glue will determine just how intricate your card is, but even a simple heart glued to the front is all you really need. Why? Because people don’t make things; people buy things. So as soon as you make something, with your own hands, you’re already winning. It also helps if you take the opportunity to fill the card with nice words. Hallmark cards never say what you really want them to say anyway, so now is the time to bare your soul in the name of love. Or at least be cute.
This one is easy because you can do it together. I’m a big proponent of couples cooking together. A surprise dinner is great too, but when you make it together you get to have fun. You get a glass a wine, you turn on some music, and maybe you dance in the kitchen. You can try a more advanced recipe and you can spend what you would have spent on a meal out on getting really high quality ingredients. You’ll get a sense of accomplishment, you’ll get to make a memory, and you’ll get to eat at the most exclusive little bistro in town.
Desserts are romantic and special because they are a luxury, an indulgence. How often do you really have or make dessert? Probably not often, but it is a nice way to finish a meal. Again it’s a great chance to try something new and to make something rich and decadent. Me, myself I’d save the dessert as a surprise and make sure to pair it with a nice drink.
And just like that, voila. You’ve made a nice evening for you and your sweetheart, you didn’t have to spend a lot of money, you didn’t have to buy a cliché teddy bear, and you still got to make the celebration special.