It’s Heart-Healthy Month at Hospitality Health ER, and while we always want to promote healthy lifestyle choices like exercising, dietary changes, and smoking cessation to boost healthy hearts, February is also the perfect month for promoting happy hearts. With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, here are a few personalized ideas that will melt your loved ones’ hearts.
The best part about these Valentine’s Day ideas is that they can be used for anyone you love and they’re fairly easy to do. Each surprise should take a couple of hours of prep time or less. And if you have the time, you can do all four!
Valentine’s Day Gifts Straight from the Heart
#1 “Reasons Why I Heart You” Fortune Box
Purchase a medium to large heart-shaped box of chocolates from the store. Before you say, “Chocolates? That’s not original,” keep on reading. We don’t always remember to express in words exactly why our wife, husband, daughter, or son mean so much to us, but here’s the perfect opportunity to do so.
- On a piece of paper, write down the person’s name and something that you love about them. For example, Little Janie: I love the way you laugh when you’re being tickled; or Max Jr.: I love the way you help out your little sister. You can even think up some reasons that add a bit of humor to the gift, like Wife, I love that you put up with my late night snoring, aka “hog calling.”
- Cut out the reasons into paper tags, just like fortunes in fortune cookies, and place them into the empty chocolate box.
- Tie a bow around the box to make it extra special.
- When you’re sitting down for breakfast or dinner on Valentine’s Day, give the box to your spouse and kids to open and pass around.
- Have them take turns pulling and reading aloud the different reasons you love each of them.
This is sure to warm their hearts. And interestingly enough, it can be good for you too. According to a study by Dr. Kory Floyd, Professor of Communications at Arizona State University, expressing positive feelings has proven beneficial for the immune system, cholesterol levels, and blood pressure. What a great gift all around!
#2 Memory Balloons
Want a priceless way to tell someone you love them? Instead of going down the the same old route with stuffed animal and jewelry, show them you love them this Valentine’s Day by recalling your fondest memories:
- Write a list of some of your favorite memories with each family member on a piece of paper.
- Buy packs of pink and red latex balloons. Make sure you get at least 10 for each family member.
- The night before Valentine’s Day, bring your memory list, a Sharpie and the latex balloons to your local grocery or party store.
- Have the balloons filled with helium and tie a balloon string to each.
- As the balloons are filled, write one memory on each balloon with your marker. For example, 2014: Eating funnel cake at the beach with you while telling corny knock-knock jokes. Repeat this until all your memories are written down on the balloons.
- While your loved ones are sleeping, place the relevant balloons in each person’s room and let them flow to the ceiling.
When your loved ones wake up, their spirits will rise in true Valentine’s Day fashion. Once you hear the “Awwws,” tell them to pull one balloon down at a time and read what each one says. You can even record the surprise on video.
#3 Proud to Be Post-Its
If your family isn’t into the mushy love stuff like flowers, bears, and candies, here’s one way to personalize Valentine’s Day without being overly sappy. All it entails is a bit of thinking and some Post-it Notes. Yes, Post-it Notes. It may sound a little silly, but we guarantee it will go a long way:
- Create a title page by writing “Why I’m Proud to Be Your Parent/Spouse Today” or “Why I Love Being Your Parent/Spouse” on a piece of paper.
- On each Post-it, write down a reason why you’re proud to be the spouse, father, etc. For example:You are a sensational artist.
- When they’re asleep or out of the house, post the title page on their bathroom mirror and the Post-it notes right underneath in a heart formation.
Because this requires more thought, you’ll see that this simple-yet-creative idea may turn out to be more meaningful and longer lasting than last-minute roses purchased from flowers.com.
#4 Valentine’s Day ‘Spread the Love’ Table Spreads
If you’re really in a rush and don’t have much time to write down all the reasons why you love someone, you can spread the love quickly, simply, and uniquely by creating a vibrant Valentine’s Day spread. It’s so easy, and you can still personalize it using some good old-fashioned Valentine’s Day goodies and chotchkies from the grocery store. Here’s how you make it original:
- Buy two or three bags of each person’s favorite candies, preferably Valentine’s branded, to stick with a Valentine’s Day color scheme. If you want to be healthy and opt for less candy, grab some Valentine’s Day confetti from your party store to replace some of the candy.
- Buy one bouquet of flowers and any other Valentine’s Day knick knacks you think your family members may like.
- When your loved ones leave the house or go to bed, place the flowers in center view (perhaps on the kitchen table or island).
- Spread LOTS of candies, confetti, and knick knacks on the tops of any visible surface– counters, kitchen tables, coffee table.
And voila—you’ll have a glistening Valentine’s Day spread for your family to arrive to. It’s that easy. Creating a festive sight for your family is really all you need to do to show you care.
Remember, a happy heart is a healthy heart, so make sure you make time for the ones you love this Valentine’s Day and every day.