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Reimagine Valentine’s Day

Pep up love’s official day with these inspired twists on old traditions


by Janice Holly Booth

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It’s not that we hate Valentine’s Day—we hate that the longer we’re with someone, the harder it is to conjure new ways to celebrate, especially if we’re not made of money, like Angelina Jolie who once bought Brad Pitt a waterfall as a token of her devotion. Expressing your love doesn’t have to cost a fortune, be excessively complicated or require the services of a realtor. Instead, take a time-honored tradition and transform it with a clever twist.

     See also: What's Love Got To Do It

Instead of a Valentine’s Day card…

Make a free video message at Animoto where you can easily combine images, videos and music to make a truly personal greeting for the one you love.

Create a booklet listing all of the reasons you love your partner (beyond the obvious like “you always keep the ice trays filled”). Dig deep. By focusing on your partner’s awesome qualities you’ll spend less time thinking about her/his shortcomings; in turn, you partner will be deeply touched and you know where that leads.

Write a message on your body in such a way that your partner has to “unwrap” you to read it all. Yup, that leads to the same place, too.

Instead of dinner out…

Set up a table for two at home…in the bedroom. Bust out the good china, use grandma’s priceless candlesticks, drape some gauzy fabric over the lamps. If this is the year to go all out, hire a chef who’ll cook your meal and take care of the clean up while you’re busy getting busy.

Or, forget the babysitter and make it a family night. Order take-out for everyone, and enjoy a Valentine’s Day picnic on a blanket on the floor. Use the Valentine’s theme as an opportunity to talk about the importance of family, gratitude and love. 

     See also: The One Sure Way That Ignites a Love That Lasts

Instead of balloons…

After your partner goes to sleep the night before, plaster the inside of his/her car with love-themed sticky notes.

Live in a place where there’s snow on the ground in February? Grab a can of red spray paint and write your love message large in the snow. 

Instead of just a dozen roses…

Buy those flowers, but then tape a note to each stem describing an outing for each of the upcoming 12 months—things you don’t normally do together on a regular basis. Think dinner cruise, murder mystery dinner, fly-boarding, stand-up comedy, bungee jumping, Segway tour, painting classes—whatever screams “fun!” for you and your beloved. We like this twist the best because it keeps the spirit of love alive all through the year, not just the one day marketers have decided they’re going to shoot Cupid’s arrow at you and hope it sticks. 

Photo Credit: Gallerystock