How does one handle special days such as Valentines while still maintaining frugal and minimalism ideals? I'm really stumped. February and March are usually the months when I'm at my cheapest. I've begun saving up for the taxes that will need to be paid in April, I'm tightening my money belt after spending too generously over Christmas, not to mention that I'm still focusing on my financial goals for the new year.
For the most part I am not a card giver. Not only do I think cards are a waste of money but they are also a waste of resources. For birthdays I save a tree by giving a gift (in a reusable bag) and skip the sappy card that usually does say "it" right anyway. So a card just seems out of the question. I find it absolutely silly to spend $2 (often more) on something that is going to be read and then thrown away (hopefully in a recycle bin). Really, what is the point in that? Now if the recipient lives miles away that would justify a card. If the recipient lives in my house can't I just give him/her a hug and say, "Happy Valentines. I love you so much!"
How about a gift? I suppose I could make some lotions, soaps, and the like but my family already has free access to my "goods". Chocolates? Like we really need that (ok, yes I do need chocolate although I don't NEED chocolate....I'm sure you know what I mean) . A cute red and white stuffed animal?In my opinion stuffed animals are on the top ten list of useless clutter. Flowers? Almost perfect (I love flowers) however my son doesn't want a bouquet of daisies. Plants? Even better than flowers and something my son WOULD appreciate but my husband probably would not. A special dinner? Yep, Hubs would love that.
Yesterday I received a Valentine from my grandmother and of course I had nothing for her (one of these years I will remember that she ALWAYS has a Valentine for me). Today my mom showed up with a box of chocolates (which by the way are so yummy that I retract my earlier statement on chocolate) and a card. When I mentioned to my daughter that I'm not really good at buying valentine gifts I got an eye roll and a, "Yeah, I know." Really? I'm hurt. Hmm...I'm feeling like a bit of a scrooge here so I'm giving in and tonight I will be going shopping. Everyone might get a plant (with the exception of Hubs)....along with a homemade card. I have markers and construction paper. I also need to make a menu plan for my main man.
How do you show the special people in your life that they are loved and important to you without compromising your budget or minimalism (spell check won't allow me to write 'minimalistic'...is it not a word? I think it should be) ideals? Or do you let your ideals slide as proof of your love?