Non-Traditional Valentine’s Day Ideas

Valentine's DayValentine’s Day is less than a week away, and it seems like every year the pressure to do something bigger, better and more romantic grows.

When my husband and I decided to start dating seven years ago, we had to wait to go on our first date. He was about to start his second semester of college, where he lived on campus without a car. I was in my senior year of high school and was busy with academics, sports and other activities. Our first open evening was five weeks later- February 14th.

I could almost hear Luke’s eyes roll through the phone when he realized our first date would be on Valentine’s Day. My husband is one of the sweetest, most romantic guys I know. And he hates Valentine’s Day.

The way he sees it, Valentine’s Day is a fabricated holiday where people (particularly men) are required to spend a certain amount of money on their sweethearts. He dislikes being told to buy me flowers and chocolate and jewelry , instead of these gifts coming spontaneously from the heart. And if he doesn’t invest, suddenly he’s a bad boyfriend, or an un-romantic spouse.

When I was growing up, Valentine’s Day was a family holiday. Both my grandmothers carefully scheduled sending cards in the mail to make sure their grandchildren would receive a special card on Valentine’s Day. My parents never went out for dinner, instead we’d have a family date. Breakfast for dinner, game night, pizza and a movie, something all four of us could enjoy. Valentine’s Day was about spending time with those you love, not just the one you love.

Looking for some alternative ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day? Check out these ideas.

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Gift Ideas for the Hopeless Romantic

Gifts for Hopeless RomanticsTen Gift Ideas for the Hopeless Romantic

I’m a hopeless romantic. Being a hopeless romantic isn’t just about falling in love, it’s about seeing the best in the world around you. Hopeless romantics see the beauty in everyday, ordinary things and believe in the extraordinary. We’re dreamers and idealists, sentimental and thoughtful, finding beauty all around us. These gift ideas are for any hopeless romantic in your life, not just a spouse or significant other.

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Freezing and Defrosting Your Wedding Cake


How to Freeze Your Wedding CakeOne week ago, Luke and I celebrated our first anniversary. While I was looking forward to dinner and the other things we had planned, I was most excited to enjoy a slice of wedding cake and reclaim space in my freezer!

Of all the wedding traditions, saving the top tier of the cake is one of the strangest. In the states, tradition dictates couples enjoy a piece of cake on their first anniversary. I understand British couples save their cake until the birth of their first child. Historically, British couples send cake to guests unable to attend the wedding- there are even special mailing boxes for this exact purpose. Wedding cake in England is usually fruitcake, which is practically indestructible.

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The Eleventh

The Eleventh: Why we celebrate our anniversary every monthThe eleventh is a special day for us. It is the day in January we became a couple, and the day in October we became husband and wife.

Last January, nine months before our wedding day, we celebrated January 11th for the last time. We decided to make our fifth and final celebration the best, splurging for dinner at a local French restaurant and dressing to the nines despite the windy January night. It was a beautiful evening, a celebration of the past, and a celebration of the very near future.

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