Thursday, February 12, 2009

Love is in the Air

With the approach of February 14th, St. Valentine's Day, the advertisements promise that Love is In the Air.
We live in a society where individuals' sense of entitlement leads them to believe they are “owed” expensive things, therefore they disdain the simple gifts and think they are not worthy of acknowledgement. Let's not encourage that mentality. Let's take the time to show love and appreciation to those around us. Here are some ideas to help you share love and laughter with your family and friends during the commercialism that surrounds February 14th.
The garments featured in this post are all from, available now at significantly reduced prices.

Warm Chocolate Rum Cake with Roses and Raspberries
Find out how to make this delectable dessert at ZoeBakes. I love recipes that are illustrated!

13 Inexpensive Ways To Show Your Love
(with grateful acknowledgement to

What's an expensive gift if we don't pay attention to each other? Here are 13 ways to show your loved ones you truly care about them.

1. Write a love letter (see this wonderful sample at Pensieve — it got him the girl and 20+ years later, it’s still her favorite valentine of all time).

2. Write a poem.

3. Take your loved ones to a picnic on the beach, park or some pleasant but secluded spot.

4. Rent family-friendly movies, make a fire in the fireplace, dim the lights, make or buy a tiny cake for two or dip some strawberries in chocolate, serve some sparkling apple cider in crystal flutes.

5. Read or recite poetry while you massage your loved one’s feet. Get a tiny book edition to make it easy to hold in one hand.

6. Make a special dinner at home. Think small portions and ingredients you don’t use everyday. Don’t go out to a crowded, noisy, expensive restaurant. Where’s the sweetness in that?

7. Tuck a heart-shaped cookie and an “I love you” note in your loved one’s lunch bag.

8. Also for the lunch bag or briefcase or even the front seat of the car, place a few Hugs and Kisses chocolates in a decorative cellophane bag or other pretty container with a promise for more at home.

9. Do a chore your loved one would normally have to do. (Do it well! Don’t make your loved one have to redo it or clean up your mess. The thought only counts so far in this case.)

10. Remember the phrase “As you wish” from “The Princess Bride”? It meant “I love you.” Use it or come up with your own phrase and see how quickly your Bride or Prince Charming figures out what you truly mean.

11. Pick out a book and read it to your loved ones or to each other before bedtime.

12. Create a vase or box full of 365 heart-shaped slips of paper. On each heart write a reason why you are in love, a compliment, an “I love you,” a promise for a kiss, etc. and fold in half. Each day, for an entire year, your loved one gets to open a heart. You can make it as platonic or as explicit as your relationship allows.

13. Make the decision to make your loved one happy year-round. Base all your actions on whether it would make your loved one happy. It will do wonders for your relationship and soon, without even realizing it, your loved one will reciprocate. (c=

Plus a few more...

14. Write a thank-you note. If you tend to go through yards of paper and lead trying to figure out what to say, here's how, including sample ideas.

15. Pay It Forward With a Letter
It doesn’t take much to brighten someone’s day. Even a postcard will let them know that someone remembered them, that someone thinks they are special, or that someone loves them.

16. Did you ever wonder what to do with a blouse you love that doesn't match any of the current skirts in your wardrobe? Did you ever see a pretty skirt going for a song but knew the colour or style wasn't quite right for you? Have you considered which of your friends for whom it might be PERFECT? Who can you bless with the unexpected gift of something new to wear?

17. HOST A PICTURE PARTY. Make Love Cards.
  • If you have a digital camera, host a picture party. Invite your family or friends to bring 3 or 4 favourite or attractive objects.
  • Provide a selection of basecloths, such as a tablecloth (ironed), satin robe, blanket, or a length of fabric.
  • Clear a surface to work on -- table, couch, bed, floor.
  • Work together to create collages of your objects and take photographs of them.
  • Upload the images to your PC. Crop, colour treat, and print your pictures on glossy photo paper. (If you don't have software to do this, download the free photo enhancing program Picasa.)
  • Think up ways to share your love cards, distributing them right away or instigate a pass-the-love-around postcard chain. (The ladies in my family share a mini "101 Hugs" book which periodically turns up in someone's letterbox.)
You'll find a variety of love-themed crafts at

What are some of your ideas for showing love to those you care about? Can we stretch this list to 20 items? Email BoutiqueNarelle(at)

Remember this dessert from last year? It will taste just as good in 2009. See Boutique Narelle's Valentine Special 2008 for more ideas.

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