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5 quick frugal ideas for Valentine’s Day

1. BOGO lattes at Starbucks, February 14, 2-5pm

It's easy to do Valentine's day on a budget with some creativity
S. Savra DeCarlo

Starbucks is sweetening the Valentine’s deal by offering Buy One, Get One Free lattes on Friday, February 14, 2014, 2pm to 5pm. Bring along your buddy or Valentine, and share some good coffee. Call first to check if your local Starbucks is participating. More details here.

2. Learn your Love Language and how speak your Valentine’s language

An authentic and FREE way to share love is to learn the “love language” of your Valentine or your family. There’s a quick 10 minute Love Language profiler at 5LoveLanguages.com.

In case you’re not familiar, the Love Languages are five ways to show love: Words of Affirmation, Acts of Service, Receiving Gifts, Quality Time, and Physical Touch. We all express love in these ways, but chances are there are a couple that really make you feel loved. Speaking your loved one’s language can lead to closer relationships with one another.

After you take the quiz, check the site for some ideas or come up with your own creative ideas on how to speak it.

3. Make a lovely meal

Create a special Valentine’s-themed meal by putting a twist on foods you usually make. Cut fruit or food into hearts (sandwiches, pizza, pancakes, brownies) or make a meal with red, white and pink colored foods. Or stay in and cook your Valentine’s favorite meal and enjoy it together. Epicurious.com and the Smitten Kitchen have several good gourmet recipes for cooks and foodies.

4. Skip the restaurant, do dessert

Instead of heading to dinner in a crowded restaurant, stop by your favorite bakery or ice cream shop for a sweet treat to share. If you’re a gifted baker, whip up something yourself. If you do enjoy the idea of going out, try going for just dessert, or go out on the weekend for breakfast or brunch at your favorite place. You’ll skip the high prices and headache of long Valentine’s Day waits.

5. Savor life

Life is meant to be savored, like a piece of Dove’s chocolate—you set it on your tongue and savor it as it slowly melts, you don’t chop through it. It’s all too easy to miss a smile, the laugh of a child or the beauty of winter if you’re running through life like a racehorse. So take a minute to breathe, unplug and notice the loved ones around you. You may experience a beautiful moment or see something new that you may have missed.

Here’s to those moments. Happy Valentine’s!