Thursday February 11 2016

5 Ways to Make Valentine’s Day Extra Special on a budget

By Jaq Deweyi

Is it more important to love … or to be loved? I believe we both agree with George Eliot’s words, “I like not only to be loved, but also to be told I am loved.” And Valentine’s Day is the occasion when you can experience both. But with only two days left, the pressure that comes every February 14 should not overwhelm you and stop you from showing your loved ones just how much you care about them despite your financial situation. Whether you’re in a relationship or single, there are simple ways to make Valentine’s Day extra special for the ones you love, not to mention yourself. And it doesn’t have to cost a fortune or be extravagant. Here are five creative ways to tell your partner, “I love you.”

1. Don’t forget
It’s important to mark your calendar now because the worst thing is to be caught off guard struggling last minute to make the day feel special. Don’t be like my friend Ronnie who got dumped for forgetting the day last year. By the time he realised he hadn’t made a call and had to get flowers, it was 10.00pm. Poor guy rushed to find flowers but could only get the plastic ones with red lights. By the time he delivered them, she had concluded he was cheating and it was over. Start thinking about what special thing you will do now. Whether you are making a phone call at midnight, making a special dinner, creating your own card or taking your boo to the parents, now is the time to plan so that everything plays out smoothly.

2. Create time and be present
Love with diamonds and a five star meal is neither a necessity nor necessarily a meaningful expression of love. Sometimes the best Valentine’s Day gift you can give is time together, doing things that have nothing to do with work, raising a family or paying bills. It’s such a big deal if you’re usually stretched for time and you give up the whole day to do absolutely nothing but spend the entire day in bed, with your phones off, just enjoying each other. That is the ultimate romantic gesture, especially if you’re usually stretched for time. Without spending money, your partner will feel valued. And if kids are already in the picture, don’t forget to take the kids to granny or find a babysitter for them so that you’re truly alone.

3. Be spontaneous.
Do the unexpected and thrill your beloved with a surprise. The best thing to do it is by participating in the #JustThe2OfUs valentine promotion on Kfm and the Daily Monitor’s Heart to Heart magazine. You just need to share a selfie of you together or for the surprise element, just go to the kfm page and say the craziest thing you have done for love. Even with an empty pocket, just doing that could help you surprise your beloved in style with a romantic dinner, a scenic view of Kampala, a movie for two, an island trip, and so much more. So stop worrying about your financial situation and concentrate on how to make the day special. Remember Valentine’s Day is all about expressing your love, so go the extra mile to prove there’s no one you’d rather share this day with.

4. Anything is better than nothing!
Whatever you do, do not leave your partner empty-handed. A card, flowers and chocolate are all clichés, but they are clichés for a reason, they are effective. Just be creative with the way you do it. You could put some little heart candies in your spouse’s shoes or give your wife a dozen roses and on each stem attach a note for a future date. But, of course, whatever you choose to give or do depends on how long you’ve been seeing one another and what level of romance you want to bring to the day. Just make sure you get them something to show thoughtfulness.

5. Say “I love you”.
You don’t need to leave the house to make Valentine’s Day special. Since the day is about celebrating your love. You can both decide to reflect on your relationship, relive the laughs, the romance and all the little things that have made it so special and spice up the conversation by saying “I love you”. It doesn’t cost anything but it says and means a great deal. So, don’t be shy, say it a lot during the time you are together so that your lover knows how you really feel. He or she will appreciate your honesty and it will mean more than any gift could. Happy Val’s day!

DEWEYI’s Guide to love