Valentine’s Day Ideas to Enjoy with Your Pet

Whether single or just not in the same location as your sweetheart, spending Valentine’s Day alone can be a bummer. You might be alone, but it doesn’t mean you have to be completely lonely, though! Consider spending some quality time with your pet dog or cat on Valentine’s Day so you remember how much love there is in the world.

Spending time with pets can be therapeutic on so many levels, even if you aren’t sad. You can play, go for a walk, have a play date with friends and their pets, go to the pet-friendly pet supply store, or just snuggle up and watch a movie together. Consider these special ideas for spending Valentine’s Day or any day with your favorite pet.

•    Relax – Veg out on the couch and watch a movie together. Enjoy snacks that you love and give your dog or cat some of their favorite treats, too.

•    Visit – Take your pet for a visit to a friend or family member’s house so you can all enjoy the evening together.

•    Shop – Go buy some presents for yourselves! Take your pet to your local pet-friendly store or boutique and pick out a few cute or cool new items, treats, or toys.

•    Play – Even if you don’t go anywhere at all, spend some quality time playing ball, chase, keep-away, Frisbee, or your pet’s other favorite game.

•    Walk – If nothing else, take your pet for a walk around the block. You can enjoy a peaceful stroll and clear your mind. Plus, the exercise is great for both of you!

No matter what you decide to do for Valentine’s Day, be sure to spend a few special moments with your pet. Pets are a very meaningful part of the family and sadly are not around forever. Take advantage of the time you have together, take some photos, and enjoy the memories you create!

Valentine’s Day Cards, Messages, Greetings, and Wishes for Loved Ones

Valentine’s Day is a special time to enjoy with the one you love. It’s also a great time to share Valentine’s Day greeting cards, e-cards, and messages with those you love. Even if you don’t have a significant other, you can still share special thoughts and greetings with your family and friends. Your Valentine’s greeting can be as simple as a phone call or an email or as involved as a handmade Valentine card. You can even send a Valentine SMS text message to your family, friends, or significant other.

When it comes to expressing your emotions, Valentine’s Day is a great time to do it. You can handwrite a love letter to your sweetheart for Valentine’s Day, or use an existing love letter template to help give you some inspiration. You can also let your family and friends know you are thinking of them on this love-filled holiday.

 

Consider these tips and suggestions for things to say on Valentine’s Day:

Valentine’s Greetings for Mom, Dad, Stepmom, Stepdad, Mother-in-Law, and Father-in-Law
Even if you don’t mention it all the time, you should reach out to your parents once in a while and let them know how much you appreciate them. Try these sweet things to say to your mom, dad, stepmom, stepdad, mother-in-law, or father-in-law for Valentine’s Day, either in person, on the phone, or via greeting card or Valentine e-card:

–    Happy Valentine’s Day! Thinking of you and hoping you have a special day.
–    Thank you for all that you’ve done for us. We love you! Happy Valentine’s Day!
–    Wishing you lots of love today and always!

Special Valentine’s Day Wishes for Grandmother and Grandfather
Be sure to keep in touch with your grandparents, especially around the various holidays. Your grandmom and grandpop will love hearing from you. Consider sending a Valentine through the mail especially for your grandparents. Here are some things you can say in your card:

–    Wishing you all the love in the world and everything that’s wonderful today and always!
–    Happy Valentine’s Day! Sending all our love and wishing you happiness!
–    Just wanted you to know you are in our thoughts. We can’t wait to see you soon! Happy Valentine’s Day!

Romantic Things to Write to Your Boyfriend, Girlfriend, Husband, or Wife for Valentine’s Day
Sharing your thoughts and emotions with your significant other is the most important part of Valentine’s Day. The gifts and candlelit dinner are so material, but the way you feel is what matters most. Be sure to express your true feelings with your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day, whether you write them in a Valentine card or speak them out loud. Here are a few suggestions of romantic things you can say or write to the one you love:

–    Sweetheart, you make every day incredible. I love you and look forward to forever.
–    Happy Valentine’s Day to the one I love.
–    So glad I have you in my life – you make me so happy and I hope I do the same for you.
–    You mean the world to me. But you know I don’t need a special holiday to tell you that. 
–    I’m so in love with you! Happy Valentine’s Day!

Sweet Valentine’s Day Sentiments for Friends, Colleagues, and Everyone Else
If you would like to wish your friends and colleagues a special Valentine’s Day, you might consider sending a Valentine’s Day text message (SMS) or posting a Valentine message on your Facebook page. You can also make a phone call or send real valentines if you feel so inclined. If you have a friend who recently became single, it would be a nice gesture to make a personal contact with that friend on or around Valentine’s Day. Remember to focus on the positive – especially your excellent friendship!

What is the most romantic thing anyone ever said to you? Please share it in our comments below if you don’t mind!

Best Selling Author of Romantic Comedy Says Romantic Notions Run Deep

Always the Baker Never the Bride“When I pick up a book by Sandra D. Bricker, I know I’m going to have to strike a delicate balance between two certain facts,” writes Sherry Ann Braddock from Covington, Kentucky. “#1: I’m going to laugh my rear end off, and #2: the romantic in me is going to be absolutely thrilled!”

Bricker receives a high volume of reader mail via her Web site that reads just like this one. From her first inspirational romantic comedy, Love Finds You in Snowball, Arkansas, unleashed on readers several years ago, she’s been inspiring them to find that same delicate balance between hilarity and a belief in happy endings—A fact which begs the question: What makes Sandra D. Bricker so funny, and yet such a hopeless romantic?

Always the Baker Never the Bride“Ah, the question of my lifetime!” she says with a chuckle. “But the truth is I have no idea why I look at things the way I do. I’m always the person who will find something funny about the most un-funny things, often to the complete horror of the people around me. But my romantic notions… those run deep, all the way back to a goofy teenager growing up in Cincinnati, Ohio.”

Bricker’s “first love” came in the form of a burning crush on a local Cincinnati musician. “His name was Gary, and he was beautiful!” she exclaims. “Dark hair, blue eyes, tall and lean, really funny, and just as sweet as they come. Of course, the fact that he was a musician didn’t hurt either. How romantic is it to look up at a stage from the second row, and feel like every song is being performed just for you? Of course, I didn’t figure it out for a few years that every other girl in that audience felt the exact same thing!”

And when she says those first romantic notions ran deep, she isn’t kidding. “A few years later, I fell in love for real with—guess what!—a musician. Dark hair, blue eyes, tall and lean … Well, you get the idea. And he was the love of my life. He never grew tired of teasing me about my former crush. ‘Look, I know I’m no GAAAARY!’ he would say, just to embarrass me.”

What ever happened to the man she labels the great love of her life? “He died in a car accident some years later,” she says sadly. “I often imagine that we’d still be together to this day if not for that heartbreak. But then experience has kind of taught me that heartbreak so often plants the seeds of deeply-rooted romantic notions.”

Those seeds of romance, whether planted by heartbreak or her penchant for “sappy old Doris Day and Cary Grant movies,” have paid off in a big way for Bricker. She has won multiple awards for her books over the last few years, and she is now considered a “best-selling author” since being named as one of Doubleday Book Club’s Top 100 Best Sellers. In fact, in 2010 alone, the author has created quite a bit of buzz with the release of three romantic comedies, all receiving high acclaim.

The Big 5-Oh! from Abingdon Press greeted the year to stellar reviews and propelled the author to #3 on amazon.com’s list of Most Downloaded; and Love Finds You in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California from Summerside Press brought the author’s passion for the era of classic film to the forefront. But September’s publication of Always the Baker Never the Bride took Bricker to new heights.

“It was released in September,” she says, seemingly a little stunned by the news even now. “It went into its fourth or fifth printing before the end of the year, and Abingdon came back to me and asked me to write three more novels based on those characters and set in the same location. It was just astonishing! … In a great way, of course.”

Always the Wedding Planner Never the Bride, Always the Fashionista Never the Bride, and Always the Baker Finally the Bride will be released by Abingdon Press over the next couple of years, starting this fall.

“This is what I love about Sandie’s books,” says Rachelle Gardner of WordServe Literary Group, Bricker’s agent for the last couple of years. “She is the consummate romantic, and she’s so funny that you always close one of her novels feeling really, really good. There aren’t many authors in the inspirational fiction market these days who offer readers what she does. She sort of re-created a very specific niche, and she continues to fill it with book after book.”

“Sandie is one of the sharpest, funniest people I know,” says David Page, a special friend to the author for more than ten years. “Combine her wit with that deeply romantic thread running through her—the one that makes her cry at commercials or make up a happy ending for a movie before she’s finished watching it—and there you have it. It’s impossible not to see the connection between the person of Sandie and the author of Sandra D. Bricker. There’s really no one like her, and I think her readers sense that in a big way.”

It would appear that Bricker cherishes her readers just as much in return. An avid supporter of organized book clubs across the country, she has recently lent her name (and countless free copies of her books as well) to The Book Club Network, a new organization devoted solely to providing support and fellowship to readers and book club members. “They have created an awesome community,” Bricker says, “where readers can meet and discuss books. Plus—Score!—Fred and Nora St. Laurent run some really fun contests, with great prizes.”

If readers haven’t tried a Sandra D. Bricker novel yet, and they would like to, amazon.com is hosting a full week of FREE Kindle downloads of Always the Baker Never the Bride, starting on Friday, January 7. Hilarity, heart-pounding romance and a happy ending almost certainly guaranteed!

 

“Rugged Men” – Your Man Could Smell Like: McGraw Silver Cologne and Pure Nautica Cologne

Some men are cologne men. And often cologne men have their cologne: the one that they put on when they were young men and wore until they became old men. A mere sniff of a certain man’s cologne can bring with it a whole lifetime of memories.

Introducing your man to a new cologne for Christmas, birthday, anniversary, or Valentine’s Day could be a risky proposition. Fortunately, neither the McGraw Silver Cologne or the Pure Nautica Cologne try to re-invent the wheel. Unfortunately, both smell very similar.

The McGraw Silver is the third cologne issued by the House of McGraw, named for Tim McGraw, country artist and star of the recent film The Blind Side. McGraw presents himself as a rugged country star, although his cologne speaks to a more urban lifestyle. The overwhelming scents in this cologne are sandalwood and a hint of musk – this smell almost overwhelms the rests. Careful sniffing will also detect the promised notes of lavender and general “woodsiness.” This is a pretty heavy cologne, so should be used with caution.

My biggest issue with the cologne is the packaging. The bottle tries to force a black leather top onto a glass bottom in an attempt to “signify Tim McGraw’s country style in an urban environment,” but it just looks disjointed and cheap. Not to mention that it is tiny. 1 oz will set you back $24.50 and 1.7 oz $31.50. On the plus side, it can be found at most drugstores – perfect for holiday procrastinators, or at Amazon.com or the official Tim McGraw Store. A little goes a long way with this cologne so perhaps it’s worth it, but I think the Nautica is the better deal.

Pure Nautica contains many of the same scents as the McGraw Silver, with a touch more refinement. It’s a little lighter, which allows one to smell more of the notes including Mandarin, Ambergris, Driftwood, and Patchouli. There’s even a hint of Suede which can be very lightly detected. This scent wraps you up and makes you feel relaxed and at home. It’s also the kind of scent that, worn by the right man, could get your heart racing a little bit.

The bottle is classy and simple: five white lines cross a basic square glass bottle. And at 50ml for $49 or 100 for $65 you are definitely getting your money’s worth. It can be purchased at the Nautica Web site: www.nautica.com or at local retailers including Macy’s or even on Amazon.com. If you’re looking for a solid gift for a classy guy, this cologne is a good choice for standalone or stocking-stuffer.

Heart-Shaped Food for Valentine’s Day or Romantic Occasions

Candlelight, wine, cooking together – all of these things can be romantic. Heart-shaped food can also be a special way to show you care. If you are looking for a fun way to step up your meals on Valentine’s Day or another special occasion, think about making a meal featuring heart-shaped food, whether for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, or just a snack. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

You can come up with creative ways to serve heart-shaped food for any meal. Just use your imagination! Try these suggestions for heart-shaped food you can enjoy for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, or snack time.

 

Heart-Shaped Breakfast Food
Heart-shaped food for breakfast can be a lot of fun, especially if you decide to make it as part of breakfast in bed. Breakfast in bed can be a romantic way to start your morning, especially on Valentine’s Day or your anniversary or birthday. Consider these heart-shaped breakfast foods:

–    Heart-shaped Pancakes
–    Heart-shaped Eggs
–    Strawberries, sliced in half with stems removed
–    Cereal in heart-shaped bowls

Heart-Shaped Lunch Food
Lunch can be a little challenging when it comes to finding a delicious meal to enjoy with a heart shape, but just use your imagination and you will find lots of creative ways to serve a romantic heart-shaped lunch. You can easily make your sandwiches into hearts with a cutter, but there are other options for you to try as well. Consider these heart-shaped lunch options:

–    Heart-shaped Grilled Cheese Sandwich
–    Soup in heart-shaped bowl
–    Homemade calzone or Stromboli shaped like a heart
–    Homemade pizza shaped like a heart

Heart-Shaped Dinner Food
Dinner is the meal that most people associate with romance. You can enjoy a romantic dinner for two with a heart-shaped theme for a side dish or entrée. Consider these ideas for heart-shaped dinner items:

–    Meatloaf sliced like a heart or individual  meatloaf shaped like a heart
–    Chicken parmesan, with chicken breast trimmed into a heart shape
–    Heart shaped pasta with shrimp or other seafood
–    Heart-shaped biscuits
–    Heart-shaped Ravioli

Heart-Shaped Desserts and Snacks
Don’t forget dessert! Heart-shaped desserts may be some of the easiest to create. Think about all your favorite sweets and go crazy making them for your sweetheart or for a special meal together. Here are a few heart-shaped desserts to consider:

–    Heart-shaped sugar cookie cutouts
–    Heart-shaped cake or pineapple upside-down cake
–    Chocolate-covered pretzels
–    Strawberry Shortcake with strawberries trimmed like hearts
–    Heart-shaped candy

Your whole meal doesn’t need to be shaped like hearts, but you can easily accent the meal with one key entrée or side dish that does feature a lovely heart shape. If you are stuck and can’t find a suitable type of food to make into heart shapes, you can still dress up your dinner table for the romantic holiday or special occasion. Consider serving your meal on heart-shaped platters or even on your fancy china with drinks in crystal glassware.

What other heart-shaped food ideas do you have? Please share them in our comments so other readers can try them out and enjoy!

What to Do When You Are Single on Valentine’s Day

Being single on Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be a drag. You can still have fun or simply ignore the date and all the buzz behind it. If you are newly single, you might find Valentine’s Day a particularly tough day to get through. Even if you aren’t in the best mood when February 14 rolls around you can still have fun with your friends, family, or pet. Consider these ideas for what you can do on Valentine’s Day if you are single.

Rather than feel sorry for yourself about being single on Valentine’s Day, find something to do that makes you feel great. Make this day your chance to be selfish. Do what you want. Buy something. Go somewhere. Order your favorite foods and enjoy them. Hang out with friends you haven’t seen in a while. Remember, not every suggestion will be the right fit for you personally. Check out these ideas for things to do on Valentine’s Day and see if you can find one that works for you.

1.    Get together with a group of single friends and go out for dinner or drinks.

2.    See a movie with your friends or family.

3.    Spend Valentine’s Day with your dog. Take your dog to a dog park or dog beach, or simply go for a nice walk around town.

4.    Watch movies and dig into your favorite impulse foods and drinks, whether chocolate, ice cream, pizza, beer, wine, or something else entirely.

5.    Go bowling with a group of single friends or family.

6.    Go on a first date with someone if asked or if you find someone appropriate to ask out on a date.

7.    Order Chinese food, sit around in your pajamas, and watch sports, movies, or episode reruns of your favorite show.

8.    Cook a meal at home that you’ve always wanted to make – whether turkey, ham, or something more exotic.

9.    Bake. Make yourself some yummy treats to enjoy and share with your neighbors, friends, family, or coworkers.

10.     Go shopping. Why not? Buy yourself a few special Valentine’s Day gifts – you deserve it.

When all else fails, you might consider a mini vacation or last-minute cruise over Valentine’s week or weekend to take your mind off of things. Get out, meet some new people, and have some new adventures. It could be just what the doctor ordered.

Again, all of these ideas are not perfect. In fact some are flawed… you don’t want to become a couch potato who gorges on takeout, sweets, salty snacks, and junk food. But one day of selfish self preservation probably won’t hurt! In fact, it may be just what you are needing right now. So don’t feel sorry for yourself that you are single on Valentine’s Day. Feel happy that you are free and independent and able to make your own choices and live your life the way you want it. Most likely you will only be single for so long, so take this time to do things for you and enjoy them.

Valentine’s Day Breakfast Ideas, from Breakfast in Bed to Brunch

Valentine’s Day doesn’t always have to be about dinner and a movie. Why not celebrate with your significant other in a more relaxing and intimate way – breakfast in bed! You can also enjoy breakfast at your favorite local diner, brunch at a fancy restaurant, or even a simple breakfast of donuts and coffee. Here are a few Valentine’s Day breakfast ideas to give you and your sweetheart a wonderful start to Valentine’s Day.

No matter if you prefer to cook, indulge in breakfast pastries, or go out to eat, these Valentine breakfast ideas should give you some options to ensure you have a lovely and romantic breakfast together. Check them out and choose the one that works best for you and your lover.

Breakfast in Bed on Valentine’s Day
Few things in the morning can be as romantic as breakfast in bed with the one you love. No matter which one of you does the cooking, you can really enjoy some romance while indulging in your favorite breakfast foods in the comforts of your bed. For a successful breakfast in bed experience, you might want to have a breakfast in bed table on hand, which is great for carrying and for use as a table. Be sure you have juice, fresh fruit, coffee or tea, and some of your favorite breakfast items, whether pancakes, waffles, bacon, sausage, eggs, hash browns, home fries, breakfast pastries, or even cereal.

Valentine’s Day Heart-Shaped Pancakes
Nothing says love like heart-shaped pancakes on Valentine’s morning. Use a pancake shaper with a heart design to create your perfect heart-shaped pancakes for breakfast. You can make chocolate chip pancakes, strawberry pancakes, blueberry pancakes, or regular buttermilk pancakes, or even search for other recipes depending on your tastes. The heart shape of your pancakes makes all the difference!

Valentine’s Day Breakfast Sandwiches with Heart Eggs
Using the same tool as you would use to create heart-shaped pancakes, you can make heart shaped eggs to go with bacon and cheese on a croissant, English muffin, or bagel. This perfect and romantic Valentine’s Day breakfast sandwich is sure to start your morning off with a romantic note. What guy doesn’t love a good breakfast sandwich?! You can make split yolks, sunny side, egg white only, or even scrambled egg hearts. Be sure to fry up some potatoes on the side for a yummy complete meal.

Belgian Waffles for a Romantic Breakfast
What can be more deliciously romantic than rich Belgian waffles with chocolate, strawberries and whipped cream? Whether you go out to order them or make them at home, this decadent dish can be a great choice for a romantic breakfast on Valentine’s Day or anytime. If you have a Belgian waffle maker at home, or if you plan to get one, be sure to check out recipes so you have all the ingredients you need. You might even end up making Belgian waffles with ice cream!

Valentine’s Day Pastries or Donuts and Coffee
If you want to take the lazy approach and simply snack on some sweets for Valentine’s breakfast, consider going to your local bakery or Dunkin Donuts shop to stock up on some delectable sweets like donuts, muffins, Danish, and other yummy breakfast pastries. You can also pick up coffee and tea or make a pot at home. The most fun part will be sitting around in your pajamas eating goodies for breakfast!

Valentine’s Breakfast or Brunch at a Restaurant
Sometimes going out to eat is just easier all around. If you prefer to go out for breakfast or brunch, you should be able to find a nice variety of choices for your first Valentine’s meal of the day. Consider your favorite local diners as well as fancy establishments that might have a Valentine’s Day brunch buffet. You can also skip right to lunch if you aren’t a fan of the morning menu.

Valentine’s Day breakfast can be anything you want it to be. You can even skip right over it if you like. Spending time together in the morning can be just as rewarding if not more so than spending time together in the evening. Getting your day started with some breakfast can often give you more energy for whatever you plan to do during the day. Whether you decide on a Valentine’s breakfast in bed, breakfast or brunch at a restaurant, or something in between, you will be sure to start your day off nicely.

Valentine’s Day with the Guys: Things to Do with your Friends or Sons

Valentine’s Day often comes with a lot of baggage. The truth is, you don’t have to do something just because February 14 rolls around. But if you do want to do something, you can enjoy a variety of activities for Valentine’s Day, even if you are just spending the day with the guys. Whether it is a group of your guy pals or parents and sons spending time together, consider some fun and low-key Valentine’s Day activities to enjoy.

Remember to keep the ages of the people in your in mind as you plan your Valentine activities. Here are a few suggestions:

•    Have a Valentine’s Day pizza party.

•    Get together with your favorite group of guys and play video games all day.

•    Watch a bunch of action flicks.

•    Order your favorite takeout food and just relax.

•    Try archery or go to a shooting range if you feel comfortable doing so. (Use caution!)

•    Spend the day with your dogs and go to a dog park, dog beach, or other attraction.

•    Find a brewery where you can enjoy your own complimentary tour and tasting.

•    If it’s warm enough where you live, play a round of golf or go fishing.

•    Watch sports on television or go to a game near you.

•    Check out your local entertainment schedule to see if there are any concerts that day.

These are a few ideas of things to do on Valentine’s Day with the guys or with your sons. All suggestions may not be appropriate for all ages or all people involved, so be sure to talk with your friends or children before you set any of the details in stone. Of course, you don’t have to do anything on Valentine’s Day if you prefer to spend it as just another day of the week.

 

Valentine’s Day Activities with the Girls

Valentine’s Day is a special time to enjoy with those you love. If you don’t have a significant other, or if you are married and have young daughters, you might change your plans a little bit to include your girlfriends or daughters in your special plans on February 14. For a memorable time, consider these Valentine’s Day activities to enjoy with the girls.

Before you get started planning a day full of activities to enjoy on Valentine’s Day, keep your budget and availability in mind. You can plan a single short activity for Valentine’s Day with your girlfriends or daughters or you can come up with a whole itinerary for the day or even for the weekend. Consider these suggestions for things you can do with just the girls on Valentine’s Day or Valentine’s weekend.


•    Have a nail painting party.
Create your own lovely manicures and pedicures.

•    Enjoy spa treatments at home. Do your own facials, pedicures, and other fun treatments.

•    Plan some time at the spa. Actually set up appointments for massages, facials, or other treatments at your favorite local spa.

•    Do makeovers at home. Take turns applying makeup and styling each other’s hair at home.

•    Dig into pints of ice cream and watch some movies. Whether you choose chick flicks or another movie genre is up to you entirely!

•    Go out to dinner. Find a nice place where you can relax and enjoy some great food and drink. Consider a Spanish restaurant, Chinese food place, or delicious Italian bistro.

•    Plan a wine, cheese, and chocolate night.
As long as everyone in your group is old enough to drink, this should be a fun and festive way to celebrate Valentine’s Day.

•    Bake Valentine cookies together.
You can also make handmade candies, pastries, or other special treats. Decorating is half the fun!

•    Make handmade valentines.
If you have young daughters, making cutout valentines may be one of the most fun and interesting crafts to do on or leading up to February 14. Help your girls make a special valentine for their daddy!

•    Make handmade jewelry. Whether you choose beads, embroidery floss for woven bracelets, shells, or something else entirely, making handmade jewelry can be great fun for the girls!

These are our top suggestions for things to do on Valentine’s Day with your girlfriends or daughters. If you have other ideas or suggestions, please share them in our comments below!

Christmas Date Ideas – Romantic Activities with Your Sweetheart around the Holidays

Christmastime is here with us again. It can be the most magical time for anyone who wants to enjoy a special date around the holidays. Christmas can be one of the most romantic times of the year to have a fun outing with your special love. During the Christmas season, love is all around. With just a little time and creativity, you can find some great Christmas date ideas for your and your sweetheart to have fun around the holidays.

Holiday date ideas this time of year can range from dates on a shoestring budget to sky is the limit Christmas date ideas where cost is not an issue. There are all kinds of great wintertime date ideas for those lovers who want to either spend their Christmas Eve date indoor or enjoy their Christmas Day date in activities like Christmas concerts or shopping. You can also plan Christmas themed activities in the week or two following the holiday, as many people take off from work during this time.

 

Consider these suggestions for fun and romantic things you can do with your sweetheart around Christmastime.

Decorating Together – One of the top priorities of the holiday season for many people involve decorating the Christmas tree. You can spend some special time together decorating the tree, eating Christmas cookies, and sipping your favorite wine with Christmas music playing in the background.

Playing in the Snow – Some of the most fun wintertime date ideas remind you of your childhood. Have fun building a snowman together or even having a snowball fight. You can build a snow igloo or find other fun activities to do outside with your sweetheart. Snow adds an air of enthusiasm and excitement to your holiday date ideas.

Ride in a Horse-Drawn Carriage – Find a local place where you can enjoy a romantic ride in a horse-drawn carriage. This can make the bleak winter more memorable and adventurous for your special winter dates. Especially if you are just getting to know your date, the wintertime is a good opportunity to enjoy your privacy on a romantic date to see if any sparks fly. When you think of the holidays, do not just think about family, shopping, gifts, and parties. Try to make this holiday a great backdrop for romance.

Ice Skating – Another wintertime date ideas is to go ice skating together so you can exercise your hearts both physically and emotionally. There are many outdoor ice skating rinks all over the place for you and your winter date. While having fun with these great holiday date ideas you can also burn off the extra calories that you put in during the office party or Christmas Eve with your family.

Christmas Shopping – A useful and still enjoyable date idea for the Christmas season and the month of December is to go Christmas shopping with your sweetheart.

Enjoy the Holiday Lights – The holiday season inspires many families to decorate their homes with gorgeous, twinkling Christmas lights and decorations. Try going to the loveliest shops where you can enjoy the Christmas lights, adding some spice to your romance. Viewing the holiday light displays together can be very romantic indeed.

Go for a Winter Walk Together – Walk hand in hand with your winter date to enjoy some special time together. You can take a nice evening stroll with your sweetheart or start off the morning with a little outdoor exercise. Walking together holding hands is a wonderful way to get to know a new love interest or to enjoy special feelings with your longtime love.

Sing Christmas Carols Together – Singing carols is a fantastic Christmas Eve date idea or better still as a Christmas Day date activity. Remember “Silent Night” and “Away in a Manger”? Magnificent Christmas carols remind everyone that it is Christmas again. You can spice it up by including family members and your neighborhood. Whether you walk around outside singing to your neighbors or if you prefer to sit inside around the piano, you can have a lot of fun with your sweetheart or even with your families and a group of friends. Don’t forget the hot cocoa and holiday cookies!

Snuggle up and Watch Christmas Movies – Consider renting some holiday movies or checking out what is playing on television. Snuggle up with your sweetheart under a blanket and enjoy some cookies and milk or cocoa. You can enjoy a bottle of wine or a bowl of popcorn with your sweetheart. You can also make a trip to the theatre for a big screen performance.

Do not just dream about a white Christmas with your sweetheart. Make your Christmas as special as can be by spending time together enjoying the holiday season. The list of romantic holiday date ideas is endless and limited only by your imagination and your budget. Bake Christmas cookies with your winter dates, or wrap gifts together with your Christmas Eve date.

Spending time relating in the holiday season is a wonderful stress reliever for you and your sweetheart. You can include great lighting and cool music in order to give you some great precious holiday memories. You can also have special holiday events in the park or better still make a tour to homes where you can share your love with the less fortunate members of our society.

Stocking Stuffers for Guys

Filling a holiday stocking for your husband, boyfriend, or son is a nice tradition every Christmas. To be sure you are choosing the best stocking stuffers for guys, consider your special guy’s favorite things – sweets, gadgets, jewelry, and so forth. You can come up with a theme for his stocking or simply include as many of his favorite things as you can fit!

The size of the stocking determines the number and size of the cool stocking stuffers you’ll be able to include. Stocking stuffers for guys are available at just about any kind of store – grocery stores, drugstores, mass market retailers, and even online shops like Amazon. When you go out shopping for stocking stuffers, try to make a quick list to get you started, but keep your eyes open for other small items to place in your husband’s, boyfriend’s, or son’s Christmas stocking.

Best Stocking Stuffer Ideas for Guys
Consider these suggestions for cool stocking stuffers for your husband, boyfriend, or son:

•    Candy
•    Chewing Gum
•    Car Air Fresheners
•    Razor Blade Refills
•    Cufflinks
•    Gadgets
•    Beer Clip Bottle Opener and Money Clip in One (Item features an image or design and up to three letters engraved on gold colored metal foil)
•    Gift Cards
•    Small Toys or Trinkets
•    Travel Games like Chess, Scrabble, or Zobmondo! Would You Rather…? (a game of sick and twisted questions where you must not only answer the questions but also correctly predict what other players would say)
•    CDs
•    Movies (DVDs or Blu-Ray Discs)
•    Socks
•    Boxers / Underwear
•    Face Wash or Moisturizer
•    Cologne or Aftershave
•    Cool Keychain
•    Batteries or Rechargeable Batteries
•    ChapStick
•    Christmas Ornament
•    Sporting Event Tickets or Concert Tickets
•    Universal Remote Control
•    Nice Pen Set
•    Tools

Desk gadgets are another option you might want to consider. Buckyballs are a set of 216 powerful, rare Earth magnets, each with two poles so one side attracts while the other repels. Unlimited creations are possible with Buckyballs, which have been called “Silly Putty for the 21st century.” I received a set of Buckyballs for the purpose of review. My husband has enjoyed tinkering around with them for the past half hour and I think he might take them to work with him. (For more information and to purchase, see www.getbuckyballs.com.)

The list above is just a selection of example stocking stuffer goodies for guys. You can use your own creativity to come up with other ideas for things you can include in your son’s, husband’s, or boyfriend’s Christmas stocking. If you and your sweetheart are exchanging filled Christmas stockings, consider setting a budget or limit for your stocking stuffers. Some items can get very expensive, like razor refills, jewelry, gift cards, and electronics.

Romantic Love Letters: Tips on Writing and Sending

Romantic love letters are something to cherish for a lifetime. Some people hold onto them still, even after the relationship has ended or after meeting someone new. The power of a romantic love letter is incredible, conveying and evoking emotion with only written words. If you would like to spice up your relationship or share your feelings with the one you love, romantic love letters are a wonderful way to express how you feel.

You don’t need to be an experienced writer to write romantic love letters. In fact, as long as you write from your heart, the most important thoughts and feelings will come through in your letter. Consider these tips to help you in writing romantic love letters for your boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, wife, or other love interest.

 

Tips on Writing Romantic Love Letters
Whether you are writing your first love letter or your fiftieth, try these romantic love letter writing tips:

•    Send a love letter to keep a long distance relationship closer to your hearts. Even if you’ve got the distance between you, romantic love letters will allow you to express your feelings while making the other person feel good about your relationship.

•    Write your love letters by hand and send through the mail.
Even though we have instant communication with email and text messaging, consider sending your love letters through the mail so your sweetheart can look forward to something other than bills and junk mail.

•    Spray a little of your perfume or cologne on the love letter.
Adding your scent to your written words plays upon the senses as well. The lingering fragrance will remind your lover of you and it makes you closer to almost being there.

•    Write a rough draft of your letter if you are nervous or unsure of what you want to say. Even the best writers get tongue-tied or face a bout of writer’s block. Even when writing a romantic birthday card note or letter, you can write a draft of what you want to say on a different piece of paper so you don’t damage the card or stationery with any mistakes.

•    Write your romantic love letters in different colored ink for a fun burst of color. You can try colors like red, pink, purple, blue, and green for a fun change from black and blue ink. If you are feeling especially playful, add a sticker or two for added fun.

•    Include photos of yourself or of the two of you with your love letter. Your significant other will appreciate the new snaps you send of the two of you or even ones of just yourself. It helps to minimize the distance between you.

•    Write from the heart. Let your emotions do the talking.
Let your significant other know things like:

o    I miss you.
o    I can’t wait to see you.
o    You’re always on my mind.
o    I love you.
o    You give me butterflies.
o    I am counting the days till I see you again.
o    You’re the guy / girl of my dreams.

•    Spruce up the envelope of your love letter with a lipstick kiss or an old-fashioned wax stamp. Sure, it is just a detail, but why not focus on every detail of your romantic love note being perfect? Sealing wax and stamps are a romantic and elegant way to seal a love letter. The way the envelope looks is the first impression your letter will make on its recipient.

What other love letter tips and tricks do you think are important? Please share them in our comments below.