Those grand romantic gestures you see in movies might be very inspiring but they’re definitely not cheap and not everyone is swimming in dough. You might not have finished your studies yet so you can’t get a full-time well-paying job, your family might be going through a transition like moving into a bigger home, or you just had a baby and an expensive anniversary would throw you off balance, or maybe you’re simply living paycheck-to-paycheck at this point in your life.
Frugal and thoughtful are not two contradictory notions, in the end, the greatest reward is being with the person you love and supporting each other. Life is full of reasons to celebrate: birthdays, graduations, promotions and yes, anniversaries but that doesn’t mean you should go bankrupt.
Here are our ideas on how to celebrate love when your pockets are not exactly overflowing:
Record a Video for Your SO
This is the perfect time to tell them what you appreciate about them, to express genuine feelings that you don’t have the chance to anymore because of the hustle and bustle of daily life.
You can write your thoughts down as in a letter and then record yourself saying them. If you’re not particularly good with words you can seek inspiration from a ton of love quotes from famous authors, from novels, movies, songs, you name it. Just be careful that you don’t overdo it, that your message still sounds genuine, still sounds like something you would say. When they fell in love with you, they probably knew you weren’t a poet, it will be far more touching to just hear you speak from the heart.
You can recollect important moments from your relationships and how that made you discover qualities they had that went far beyond your expectations, how your feeling for them grew stronger over the years, talk about happy moments in your life and how happy it made you to see them smiling and that they were there to share the joy. In case you’re good at video editing, you can add photos and clips from other videos you filmed together. Then you can either send it to them or make some popcorn and pretend you want to watch a movie with them and play it. We guarantee that it will bring tears to their eyes.
Serve Them Breakfast in Bed
Not all anniversary gifts have to be expensive. You can just get them a nice bouquet of flowers and make them breakfast in bed. And who doesn’t enjoy breakfast in bed? Your SO will get to wake up from their cozy slumber and enjoy a delicious meal from their favorite person in the world.
The best part is that breakfast is easy to cook, so if you’re not exactly chef material, don’t wait until dinner to impress them. Give this romantic day a good start with a thoughtful breakfast. You should plan what you want to cook ahead of time and get the ingredients. In case you want it to be a surprise so they shouldn’t see the ingredients in the fridge, you can wake up early and buy them. Maybe get them a couple of their favorite magazines or newspapers.
You can make eggs on toast with bacon and cut a heart shape into the slices of bread with a cookie cutter. Or you could avocado on toast with a pinch of crushed red pepper or perhaps a cream cheese prosciutto bagel with some orange juice and coffee. Whatever it is they like to eat and you’re able to put together. Don’t forget to add some sweetness with chocolate treats.
Make a Special Dinner at Home and Watch a Movie
A “dinner and a movie” date doesn’t have to take place outside your home. You can cook them something special at home. Perhaps try to recreate something that was on your wedding menu or, if you’re not married, you can make what you had on your first date. Let them know you’re going to make them dinner. When it’s time to eat, put on some nice clothes and sit at the table.
You can even put on a couple of songs that are significant to you two and dance to them. Then it’s time for a movie. Since you’re doing this for them it could be one of their favorite movies or that one that they’ve been trying to get you to watch with them for ages. Some classic options are Roman Holiday, Sleepless in Seattle, Before Sunrise and The Notebook but you know their tastes better than us. There are plenty of lists online to choose from.
Try Your Hand at Some DIY
When people hear DIY they think they have to be particularly crafty or it’s going to turn out bad. But that’s not true, there are lots of romantic ideas that are easy to do.
Here’s one: you can make a romantic storybook. You get one of those sketchbooks for artists because they have hard covers and use thicker paper, preferably with a spiral. Then you stick pictures that remind you of special moments in your relationship and underneath you write what these pictures remind you of and how they make you feel. It’s better to first write it in pencil and go over it with a pen so you avoid making mistakes and the writing looks nicer.
You can add lyrics from songs, poems, quotes from movies, things that go with the romantic theme of your gift and on the last pages you add pictures of plans you have for the future, places you’d like to visit, how you’d like your home to look, the kind of family you’d like to build together, things like that.
As you’ve seen from just these four ideas there are plenty of ways to celebrate this special day without spending a lot of money. Relationships are about love and effort and what matters most is that you took the time to do something for the person you love. You can wait until the weekend and do several of these ideas in one day. Dedicate the whole day to just being together and doing nice things for each other.