Feb 102011
Authors: Robyn Scherer

It’s that time of year again. It’s time to spend inordinate amounts of money to show those you love that you care. Or is it?

Let’s face it, most of us don’t have the funds to drop a lot of cash on someone else right now.

And guys, you get hit hardest on this day. You are expected to spend money on flowers, dinner and gifts. This one day could run you $100 easily, and I’m guessing most of you don’t have that.

This Valentine’s Day, figure out creative ways to show those you in your life (doesn’t have to be a significant other) you care about them.

For many people this will mean more than dozens of flowers or diamond bracelets. Sure, those things are nice, but a well-thought-out date is nicer.

Don’t have the money to go to a fancy restaurant? Create the moment at home. Tell the person you want to impress to meet you at your house at a certain time. Before he or she gets there, make a nice dinner, light some candles and pick up a small gift. Or better yet, make one. A bottle of wine wouldn’t hurt either.

Make sure you both dress up. Nothing says I care about you more than looking presentable. Ask your date to dress up as well, and compliment each other throughout the evening.

Gentleman, I’m not going to say flowers are a must, but the number one complaint I hear from other females is they never get flowers. You don’t need to buy three-dozen roses, but even a single rose is nice. If you have a “greener” girlfriend, give her a potted plant that will last.

I know a lot of people feel they need to give chocolates, but my advice is this: don’t.

Guys, giving us a huge box of chocolates will just result in us feeling depressed and overweight later. If you want a dessert, try making chocolate- covered fruit. It’s very easy and you can make just enough for the two of you.

Maybe something like a book is what you know she has had her eye on, or maybe it’s something free like a personal massage. All people love massages and they can mean a lot.

Girls, you aren’t off the hook on this day either. Although the day is generally about us, you need to put in effort as well. Offer to help your guy with laundry, or give him a small gift you know he will love.

If he’s into cars, find a book about the history of his favorite muscle car.

The bottom line is that you don’t have to spend a lot of money on Valentine’s Day to show those in your life that you care for them. Be creative and don’t fit into the cookie cutter mold for the date you plan. People love to be doted on, and the more creative you can be, the more it will mean. Everyone loves a fun, spontaneous date.

This advice applies to singles as well. Take your friends out on a date, or have a group dinner date. You will all feel loved, and have a fun night as well.
Robyn Scherer is a graduate student studying integrated resource management. Her column appears Fridays in the Collegian. Letters and feedback can be sent to letters@collegian.com._

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