Valentine’s Day – for many, a whirlwind day of romance, filled with flowers and candy and stuffed animals, candlelit dinners and decadent desserts. It’s a nice day, one that I enjoy very much. I value any moment designed to celebrate the love I share with my hubby, but this year we celebrated a little differently. Here’s how we stayed romantic and saved $525.
As I looked outside on Valentine’s Day this year, my view was a blustery snowstorm. It was cold and harsh outside, and the idea of dressing up in an adorable dress with heels…it just made me shivery and cold. All I wanted to was to stay home and snuggle up with my hubby and stay toasty warm!
So we decided to make this Valentine’s Day a frugal day and find ways to be romantic without spending a fortune.
How’d we save money on this Valentine’s Day?
We were already planning on keeping things lean this year. We’re focused on a few financial goals and have been making a few sacrifices here and there to make big financial leaps.
We had already decided not to give each other actual presents – we literally have everything we could ever want. I have all the Tiffany jewelry a girl could want, and we’ve run the gamut of true, romantic gifts over the years, so we saved our usual gifting budget of $150 each right there. $300 saved.
We’d originally planned going to a movie tonight. With tickets and treats, I wager we saved at least $60 by not going. Running total: $360 saved.
We planned on dinner out. By staying in, we saved at least $100. We cooked our dinner together and ate by candlelight next to a roaring fire. It was just the two of us, we had a gorgeous wine that I had in the cupboard for a special evening, and there were no other diners to disturb us. For desert, I made an almond cake from scratch and served it with a berry compote…and it rivaled any restaurant dessert, if I do say so myself. Running total: $460 saved.
With all the bad weather, I really didn’t want my hubby out driving around, so I asked him to nix the flowers he usually buys. Besides, the truth is, I hate cut flowers. Roses are nice, and I’ve kept a few petals from every bouquet he’s ever given me in a special box. But I always look wistfully at those dying blossoms, feeling sad that they die so quickly and that we really can’t enjoy them for more than just a few days. I’d rather have a potted plant that I could enjoy for years. So, absent flowers, we saved another $60. Running total: $520 saved.
And finally, while my hubby is known for buying Valentine’s Day cards ON Valentine’s Day (sigh), I pre-buy all of my cards at the end of each year, when they’re on sale. I actually have lovely and beautiful cards for him for the next several anniversaries, birthdays, and Valentine’s Days. We also write love letters and draw pictures inside the cards, which makes them into keepsakes that we both treasure. In each of our nightstands, we keep all of the cards we’ve given each other over the years. I’ve actually seen my hubby pull one out, open it up, and read the note inside, with a big smile on his face. So while many folks don’t think cards are a wise investment for holidays, I’m a big, big fan, because of how we do them.
Since the nice cards we buy cost about $6, and I typically pay about $1 per card, I figured I saved about $5 there. Running total: $525 saved.
All in, we saved:
Total: $525 and everybody’s safe, sound, and very happy.
Make Romance A Part of Every Day
My husband and I are romantic all the time. We’ve been married over seven years and though we’ve had our rough patches here and there, we are a lot like newlyweds. Romance is a part of our daily life because we simply don’t believe in waiting for special occasions to be romantic or drink champagne.
We had a Valentine’s Day that was just as romantic as if we’d spent the money, but we have an extra $525 that we can put toward retirement. I’d say that’s pretty awesome.