Ahhhh I’m seeing red. And roses. And lots of hearts.

Hallmark is at it’s happiest and the red ink on everyone’s printer is being drained.

So, I think there should be some tips for the broke-yet-happy couples in the world as well as the single folks out there who might need some helpful hints on how to enjoy a holiday that is basically designed solely for the happy couples of the world.

Here goes.

Broke yet happy couples

Make homemade chocolates. Easy enough. Sure, you have to buy the funny little plastic molds and the bags of chocolates. But they’re kind of fun to make. Who doesn’t like melting chocolates and actually having a reason to do it? You can get fancy and get different colored chocolates. Make all kinds of sappy, sentimental, sweet-toothed treats.

Go-to option #2: flowers. So freakin’ simple, yet so damn effective.

OK so I’m going to go a little out-of-the box on this one. I’m just going to put it out there. Feel free to throw it back if you aren’t feeling it. But listen. If you’re really broke and you can’t afford the candy or the flowers or the nice dinner out, then just skip all that and go for dessert. And by dessert I mean a can of whipped cream. I’m not going to tell you what to do with the whipped cream. I have faith that you will figure it out all on your own.

If you aren’t into that sort of thing, I kind of like the idea of funny gifts for this holiday. For me, it just seems hard to take the holiday so seriously when pictures of fat, semi-naked cupids are staring at me. And those stupid message hearts. Sugary goodness, yes. Easy to take seriously, no. Besides, real gifts are for birthdays, anniversaries, and that jolly holiday season that I love so much and seriously miss already. But then I think about spring coming and I’m happy again. Unlike all those unsmiling Bostonians out there

OK, so this one came to me after a recent alumni weekend in which my girls and I stayed in a hotel for free because one of my roomie’s father’s gets free hotel rooms as part of his work benefits. Does someone you love get free hotel rooms? If yes, give them a call. A free hotel room is a free hotel room. And Valentine’s Day is all about being with each other, not how much money you spend while you’re together. Feel free to use that line when your girl/guy yells at you for being cheap.

All my single ladies (and men)

How to deal? Few methods.

There’s the buddy system. As in grab your closest single buddy and have a fun day together. There’s the strength in numbers plan if you have a solid group of single friends that you can get together with.

But, honestly, don’t feel like you even have to acknowledge the holiday. Treat it like another Arbor Day: a holiday that generally goes unnoticed until a week later when you look at the calendar.

This year the big day falls on a Sunday. You know what Sunday is in grad school language? Homework day! Yay! Blech. Gag me. No, but seriously. It’s good that it’s on a Sunday. Do your homework that’s due the next day that you’ve been putting off all week (crap, there goes the New Year’s resolution), hit the gym, do some grocery shopping. It’s a Sunday. Treat it as such.

Don’t want to ignore Big Red? Then don’t. Power to ya. Nothing wrong with finding yourself a date for the day or night. This is your chance to score a free meal, free candy, maybe even free flowers, all because it’s a holiday that you personally have nothing to do with.

So yeah, for those of you actually celebrating the holiday, Valentine’s Day definitely doesn’t have to be a break-the-bank kind of day. A good rule of thumb to follow: the cornier something is, the more sentimental it might turn out to be, and the cheaper it probably is.

And in case anyone is wondering, I enjoy chocolate with caramel and yellow tulips.

About The Author

Lindsay Milgroom is a Blast columnist

Leave a Reply