Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Avoid a Rough Valentines Day

"What did you do for Valentine's Day, Sandy", asked Heidi.

"Oh, nothing much," sighed Sandy. "Dave brought home some flowers and take-out and we watched some movies at home."

"Well, that sounds like fun I guess," said Heidi. "At least he remembered to recognize Valentines Day. My husband forgot and at the last minute ran to the store and bought a box of heart shaped candy."

"Still, that's kind of thoughtful," Sandy surmised. "Who doesn't like chocolate?"

"People who are allergic to chocolate!" exclaimed Heidi.

A lot of people out there view Valentine's Day simply as a made-up occasion sponsored by the greeting card companies. Regardless, it is one day where your special someone would like to be recognized as being someone that you really care about. If you ignore the "holiday," you are going to have a problem.

Buying the right gift is the big dilemma. Much like a birthday or anniversary, you want to provide something that has meaning. It doesn't have to cost a lot of money -- in fact, some of the best gifts out there are available for under $100.

The big mistake that you can make is just randomly selecting something that someone else deems a "romantic gift." An elegant piece of gold jewelry is romantic - unless the receiver of the gift doesn't wear any gold and prefers silver. A weekend away at a ski lodge is romantic - unless the recipient despises the cold and prefers warmer surroundings.

The key is to listen. Are there any gift items that they have mentioned? Are there any activities that they have wanted to do with you? Have they used the phrase "I wish you were more romantic?" Has your special someone ever mentioned something romantic that one of your friends did for their spouse?

For me, I really enjoy it when my wife gives me a thoughtful gift that comes with a card that expresses her feelings. All of us have busy lives and very few of us take the time to tell our significant other how we feel about them. This applies to men and women alike. Even the most macho guy wants to know that he is important in the eyes of his lover.

This year, take the time to find just the right gift. Investing in a thoughtful, creative and romantic gift will be remembered forever.

Friday, January 11, 2008

The Most Popular Romantic Gifts -Women

What are some of the most romantic gifts that women want for Valentines Day, an anniversary or birthday? We did some research on the internet and asked friends, family and coleagues and here is our top 10 list (no particular order):

- Jewelry (Diamonds of course followed by heart pendants)
- A planned Romantic Getaway
- Favorite Flowers
- Perfume (also her favorite - don't guess)
- A day at the Spa (no kids)
- A Romantic Dinner (at home #1 followed by an intimate restaurant)
- A thoughtful gift (something she has mentioned before).

If there is one commonality amongst these items, it is that all of them require some time and thought on the man's part. That's why a romantic dinner cooked at home scored higher than dinner in a restaurant. It's also why planning a surprise romantic getaway with planned activities scored high as well. Women love when a romantic evening has been completely planned out (hotel, romantic items for the room, babysitter, transportation).

The surprise factor was also important. Planning something that you know she would like but does not expect. Basically, women want to feel loved and . Doing special things (in any capacity) to make a woman feel loved and cherished and appreciated is the ultimate romantic gift!