I Heart Contests

January 10, 2012

in the generous life

I think we need a contest.   It’s been awhile.

I just received two copies of The Self-Centered Marriage (aff link) by Hal Runkel (author of Scream-Free Parenting) (aff link) so I’ve got one copy to share (sorry, but I tend to scribble in the books I’m reading, so really you don’t want my copy).  Looking at it here on my desk, I’m thinking it would make a nice prize.

So, ladies, let’s have your ideas and comments on how you celebrate Valentine’s Day (or other romantic times).  What did you do?  What did you make?  How did you plan it?  That sort of thing.  Let’s help each other with romantic ideas.  Valentine’s Day is a coming. (35 days and counting)

Leave your ideas as a comment to this post.  On January 23rd I’ll have my husband pick a number and the poster in that spot will win a free copy of The Self-Centered Marriage. (aff link)

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Take a moment and pray for our armed forces returning home ~ A Year for Peace at Home  Their marriages need our support. (from Winning at Romance)

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Be generous! Lori <><

{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

Misty January 10, 2012 at 2:33 pm

In the past we’ve done the card thing, some candy, an occasional dinner, etc. This year though I’m planning ahead! I don’t have all of my plans made yet but we will be doing the 10 Day Sex Challenge from One Flesh Marriage. With that I thought I would make him a card each day. I left up the white lights from Christmas so I’ll hang some hearts from them. I’m also thinking about a dinner that we can have at home. Still planning!

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laura January 10, 2012 at 4:21 pm

I’ve recently started a tradition of buying a piece of lingerie for VD. He loves it!!

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Jennifer January 10, 2012 at 4:26 pm

We like to do a fun experience on Valentine’s Day. Last year we bought 2 live lobsters and cooked them together along with a yummy meal. This year we are thinking about going horse back riding together!

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Yulander S. Brooks January 10, 2012 at 5:01 pm

My husband proposed to me on Valentine’s day 2003, although we did not get married until March 15, 2005. I always try to do something special that day for us. The second year of our marriage I planned a trip to Tennessee. I reserved a log cabin in Gatlinburg, that had the most prettiest scenery ever. My husband enjoys hiking and I thought that would be a wonderful way to celebrate Valentine’s and our anniversary. The first night we were there I had arranged for rose petals to be placed on the bedroom floor leading to the bed and candles to be lit just prior to us getting to our cabin. I had prepared a special dinner before we left our home so all I had to do was warm it up and serve it. We had an awesome time rekindling our fire that vacation. He got to do some site seeing and hiking and I won my husbands heart back all over again.

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Mair Hodges January 10, 2012 at 5:30 pm

Last year I made and decorated a mail box, for inside the house, and from Feb. 1st till the 14th I put notes, candy or special little gifts in it for my husband. I put the box right next to where he leaves his keys and would pull up the “pick up mail” flag so he would remember to look inside. I loved coming up with the ideas and hunting through the stores looking for ideas. He must have enjoyed it b/c I got the most beautiful flowers for Valentines day and we usually don’t get sucked into those kinds of “holidays”. We buy or find little things for each other on any given day.

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Gabrielle January 10, 2012 at 5:39 pm

I have 3 daughters so it is important to show them how a man treats them. My husband makes a big deal with roses, chocolates, etc. And we have a nice dinner in the dining room which consists of all red foods: spaghetti with red sauce or red (bell pepper) pesto, strawberrie salad with redleaf lettuce, port wine cheese spread, radishes, whatever i come up with that is red.

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Kim January 10, 2012 at 7:41 pm

Usually my husband ends up working 2nd or 3rd shift – so we don’t actually get to celebrate on Valentines Day but one that stands out is this. I bought strawberries and dipped them in dark chocolate along with a bottle of sparkling white grape juice. I had everything ready and waiting when he arrived home late one night in the bedroom with the champaign glasses we used on our wedding day. It was super easy and romantic and he was very impressed. Hope that helps someone have a cheap yet romantic Valentine’s Day!

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Liz January 10, 2012 at 7:59 pm

This year I hope to surprise him with some fun dice like you had a picture of in a recent tip. We usually have a special dinner at home or out – its near the anniversary of our first date too so we always have a bit of reminiscing to do.

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Heather January 10, 2012 at 8:20 pm

I bless my husband by freeing him from doing anything. He REALLY doesn’t like Valentine’s Day for various reasons, so I content myself to feel blessed by his love all year and not expect a celebration around Feb. 14th. We are going on a date in February, though–to the public library to do research on ancestry.com. (Our library has a subscription, so we can access the site for free! It’s a lot of fun to do genealogical reasearch.)

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Kari January 10, 2012 at 8:44 pm

Valentine’s Day is never really awesome, but I’m glad that you’re reminding us early this year. I need to try to get it together so we can have a fun one. I once had a Valentine’s Day Rock Band party back when everyone liked playing that game. That was pretty fun!

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Kit January 11, 2012 at 1:20 am

We don’t celebrate Valentine’s day and aren’t very romantic. For our anniversaryEwe take a vacation visiting museums and such. But we do go out to an expensive dinner. To me, romance is doing what we like best, even if it doesn’t include candles and wine.

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Christy F. January 11, 2012 at 4:30 am

Last year was our first married Valentine’s Day. I made hubby’s favorite meal- Lasagna, and set up a nice table outside. I just used our folding card table and a sheet for a table cloth. I set-up 2 candle sticks and the flowers he got me that morning for decor. We also love Coke, so I had a pack of glass bottled Cokes on ice for us. He really enjoyed the meal and the thought; however, what he enjoyed most were the comments at work. I posted a picture of the set table on Facebook, and some coworkers’ wives thought he made the dinner for me and ragged their husbands for not doing something like it for them. When they told him that he shouldn’t “show them up” he felt proud that his sweetie thought of it for him!
This year I’m making 12 date night envelopes to be opened each month of the year. [http://shannonbrown.typepad.com/life_in_general/2011/01/lets-go-on-a-date-january.html] February’s date is a couple’s massage followed by dessert at home. On the 14th I’ll place fabric hearts around the house, in his uniform, work bag, car, and office to remind him how much he’s loved throughout the day.

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Gina Parris January 11, 2012 at 7:33 am

OH MY GOODNESS! I’m blown away by all these amazing ideas! Feb 15, is my husband’s birthday and the next day is our twins’ birthday – so it takes some effort to keep it special. This year we will cook up something spicy in the kitchen together, have chocolates for all the kids and later I’m sure he will cash in some of the Love Coupons he got from me while he was still deployed. His favorite inspired the purchase of this awesome belly dancing outfit that he picked up in the Gulf. ha! We saw a belly-dancing show one time for his birthday (not sleazy just lovely) and it’s become a love trigger!

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Keri January 11, 2012 at 9:38 am

One year I made a “newsletter” with famous love poems, quotes, and inspirational messages, using a simple desktop publishing program and clip art. Reading all of these comments has inspired me to get more personal and specific this year!

As an aside, the ladies in our congregation had a Valentine’s Day cookie exchange last year (instead of a Christmas exchange — too hectic!). We all brought home a plate of assorted treats which our husbands loved, and we took plates of leftovers to couples and widows who are shut-in. It was great fun to spread the love around to many, not just our spouses.

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Joni January 11, 2012 at 11:18 am

Last year I filled my husband’s shower with red and white heart shaped balloons so that when he opened the curtain they spilled out. Each had a coupon or a note inside with a reason that I love him written on it. He had to pop each balloon to get his surprise. He made this activity last for several days and has kept the notes to read over and over.

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Char January 11, 2012 at 4:09 pm

I have been married for 13 years and I have TONS of cards saved from when we were dating up until now. I am going to make a collage of the covers and the sweet comments and make them into placemats. Get a piece of fun wrapping paper and arrange and glue them onto the paper. Then cover with contact paper. Instead of wrapping paper, you could also make them two-sided. I will probably do the later because of the number of cards :)

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Chyrlynn K. January 11, 2012 at 6:05 pm

For our 2 year anniversary I booked us a couple tickets for a brunch cruise at the San Diego pier. My mil watched our 3 kids for the day and we had a great time. We had to drive there from AZ, it was a great day.
For Valentine’s Day I plan on taking some Boudoir pictures for him.

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Tiffiny January 11, 2012 at 6:47 pm

Last Valentine’s Day I quilted my husband a very special pillow that had four hearts appliqued together on it, symbolizing the favorite color of myself (purple), him (blue) and our two boys (orange & green). He loved it and it sits on his side of the bed every day even though it matches nothing else in the room…hahaha :-p

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Becky January 11, 2012 at 10:30 pm

The past couple of years we rented a cottage with a private outdoor hot-tub – very romantic! ;) However I don’t think we’ll be able to afford that this sooo…part of what I’m planning – other than a quiet evening with a bottle of bubbly….is to put together some of the homework I did while doing the Respect Dare online class (excellent book I discovered thanks to this blog!) and print it out for my husband to read. He is the kind of guy that is really blessed by me sharing my thoughts, especially when about our relationship. Committing to doing The Respect Dare was actually a Christmas present to him – and now that I’m almost done (yes, it took me over a year!) I know he’d be blessed by my sharing parts of it with him.

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Karen January 12, 2012 at 5:17 am

The actual Valentine’s Day is celebrated as a family for us. We have 7 children, and we have made this a special family day that the kids (now much older) have come to anticipate. We do a huge special dinner, decorate and pull out the goblets, then we have a fun game night. For each other, we celebrate another day with a private time at home, making a card for each other, sharing our favorite candy, and then enjoying a very romantic evening.

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Alisha January 12, 2012 at 10:50 am

My hubby is not a big fan of Holidays. It’s something we used to really struggle with. But I’ve come to learn that it’s just the way he is. Over the years I’ve learned to not only accept this about him, but try to cater to it. Make everything very easy on him. And for Valentine’s Day, we both agreed that what we both would like most is STEAK! :) So we don’t exchange presents. He hates crowds, I’m not a fan either, so we just pick our own day and go have some steaks together every February. We’ve done similar things with other holidays. It really makes the Holiday more relaxing on both of us.

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Audra January 12, 2012 at 11:56 am

My favorite Valentine’s Day was my husband pretending like he was not able to get off work. I planned a girl date with a friend whose husband also had to work. When my “friend” showed up, it was actually my husband with roses. He took me up the canyon to have a fire and make me my favorite campfire dinner. We just enjoyed being alone and spending quality time with each other! It was so romantic!

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Aimee January 12, 2012 at 6:42 pm

When we were dating, we’d go to Whole Foods and pick up a baguette, some nice cheese and a bottle of wine, and munch while watching a movie. We recreate this “meal” for our anniversary and Valentine’s as often as we can. It is very romantic, and there are hardly any dishes to wash :) We also make valentines for each other – the goofier, the better.

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Sarah January 14, 2012 at 12:15 pm

Valentine’s Day has always been a tough one for us. It is sandwiched by our birthdays and falls on a time were we are usually recovering from the holidays and getting geared up for spring. So we do crazy budgets. Last year, it was three dollars and the pressure was off and we just had fun!

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Joy January 14, 2012 at 4:04 pm

For a number of years, when my (now college-age) boys were home we enjoyed an extra special dinner at home as a family. This was my gift to them … beginning with an invitation left on everyone’s pillow (requiring ‘nice clothes’ and to be prompt!). We enjoyed using our rarely-used china and crystal and our very best manners! There are fond memories in this momma’s heart of reserving that special night as a family knowing that the day would come too quickly when those boys would grow up and be gone. The day has come. Now, I have plenty of other extra-special things planned for my main guy this year!! I heart Valentine’s Day. I especially look forward to coming back to this post near the end of the giveaway to read all the comments. Lots of really great ideas here!!!

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Beth January 15, 2012 at 10:56 am

We usually don’t do much for Valentine’s Day. My favorite one was actually when we weren’t even technically together. :) My husband has always loved scavenger hunts, and he was feeling pretty down that particular year. I decided to make him a scavenger hunt on Valentine’s Day to cheer him up a little. I can’t even remember what was included anymore, but I remember that it worked, and that the reason it worked is because I thought of things he loved and things that made him happy. I think that’s what’s important – what does your husband love? Do that! It’s the “smallest” things that are often remembered and cherished the longest.

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Maribeth January 16, 2012 at 5:11 pm

we aren’t keen on making Valentine’s Day a big event, but we don’t generally ignore it either. So we leave little love notes for each other all day. Just reminders throughout the day of how much we care, how happy we are together, that sort of thing.

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Mary January 16, 2012 at 5:33 pm

We normally don’t do anything and this year is sure to be no different. But we’re going to Disney a couple weeks before so we’ll make sure we celebrate there. It is our happy place!

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Juliette DeTemple January 17, 2012 at 3:30 am

We keep it simple…… Dinner home, maybe even takeout and snuggling for tv!

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Donna January 17, 2012 at 4:34 am

I always enjoy just staying home, turning off all electronics (with the exception of music), and make one of my husbands favorite meals. We aet together by candllight and enjoy each others company. Music just really speaks to my man’s soul so I play his favorite stuff (usually praise and worship) for him.

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Gabby January 17, 2012 at 7:45 am

Once, I bought a bag of chocolate kisses and took the little white paper that comes with each kiss and replaced them with my own with little messages and coupons. And wrapped each kiss again and resealed the bag as if it where from the store. He had a surprise message with each kiss he ate. He loved it. I remembered this story because I recently found out that after many years, he still haves those little papers saved in a box.

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Laura January 17, 2012 at 8:20 am

Every year, my husband always waits until on his way home to purchase flowers so they are discounted. Last year my kids were old enough to understand more about Valentines day, so he took the oldest 2 with him shopping and they each picked out a bouquet the liked to give me. Melted my heart. And I always plan a nice dinner at home, something I don’t fix very often so it makes it more special. And I make sure it’s ready(or close to ready), when he gets home from work so he can just walk in and unwind.

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Lin January 18, 2012 at 6:19 pm

My husband and I like to go to a cabin and just ‘chill out’ for a few days, away from job, kids, responsibilities! We do exchange gifts, and depending on the current budget, they might be inexpensive or a little more special. We never give elaborate gifts, but try to get something that means something to the other one.

When the children were small, and we couldn’t arrange to get away, we would just go out for a nice dinner alone.

Last year my husband had just come home from open heart surgery, so he couldn’t shop. He wrote me a ‘love letter’ and decorated it. It is very special to me, and I really treasure it.

This year, we are hoping we can again do the ‘cabin in the woods’ getaway! But whatever we do, it will be special and full of love.

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Janyce Dickhoff January 18, 2013 at 8:18 am

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