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8 Tips For a Cheap, But Very Cheerful Valentine's

Love is in the air, so let’s celebrate the romance and leave the price tag aside, says Emily Manning.

Usually by the time Valentine’s Day rolls around, the frugality and depression of a post-Christmas January has passed, but that shouldn’t mean it’s time to splurge again. Read on for our tips on how to have a cheap and very cheerful Valentine’s.

Think outside the (chocolate) box

Set a budget, say €10, with your partner and see how creative you both can be when keeping costs to a minimum. We have friends who started this tradition a few years ago, and it has now become a major marital competition! Both husband and wife agree that the time, effort and thought they now put in to coming up with something fun and special, is far more significant than when they could just pick up a quick card, box of chocs or flowers on a whim.

Take a trip down memory lane

After years together, children, bills and all the daily details, it’s easy to forget all the wonderful memories you have shared together as a couple. What better time is there to pull together lots of mementoes, photos and reminders of your relationship? Pick up a pretty frame, or a keepsake box, and display these important souvenirs somewhere special.

Cook your loved one their favourite meal

A night out in a nice restaurant may be stretching your budget, particularly if you add in the cost of a babysitter, so why not try recreating a favourite meal at home?

I could recommend you cook together, but in this house that wouldn’t end with romance, so instead I suggest you pull out all the stops, try something new and dress up as if you were going out – then cosy up for a candlelit meal for two in the comfort of your own home.

What about trying Spaghetti Bolognese or veggie stir fry followed by Heart cookies? Yum!

Find more recipes here!

Bake some sweet treats

Cupcakes, cookies, a big chocolate cake…yum! We all seem to associate chocolate and sweet delights with February 14th, but you could save some serious cash by making your own rather than splurging on the inflated cost of a heart-shaped, red-ribboned box of Valentine’s chocolates.

If you’d love nothing more than a weekend away or a spa day with your beloved, make the most of Groupon offers and similar discount deals. Going midweek will usually bring the price down, compared to weekend rates, so make the most of a little luxury with your Valentine.

Spend time together

This may seem obvious, given that we’re talking about Valentine’s, but it’s often so hard to get a little downtime to just be in each other’s company. It’s so easy to get caught up discussing bills, work, the kids, or just flopping exhausted in front of the television.

A day trip, or even a sneaky afternoon off, is the perfect antidote. Try a walk somewhere quiet and calm to recharge, or visit the National Gallery or one of the National Museums for a fantastic, free cultural experience.

Have a movie night

Stockpile all your favourite movies, or a selection of romantic Valentine’s picks, and snuggle up on the couch. Add a glass of wine, some treats and you’ve got yourself a grown up cinema night at a fraction of the cost.

Be a Valentine’s ninja

Leave little love notes for your partner to find – in the fridge, on the bathroom mirror, in the car, on their pillow… the list is endless! Your notes could be the top 10 reasons why your love them, funny reminders of past Valentine’s, compliments, a thank you for the little things they’ve done, a relevant love quote, or even a joke – the choice is yours and your other half is sure to appreciate both your sentiments and your stealthiness!

Having a romantic, memorable Valentine’s without blowing the budget is definitely possible. It really is the thought that counts when it comes to showing your loved one how much you care – and that doesn’t cost a thing.

Written by Emily Manning for eumom


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