Valentine’s Day seems to have become synonymous with ridiculously-priced roses, sugary chocolate, and expensive jewellery. Like many holidays, sometimes the true meaning can get lost amongst the desire to find a nice gift. But there are many ways to make the day all about love and spending time with those you care about. If you give each other gifts, there are plenty of more eco-friendly, affordable and practical gift options as well. Most family members love homemade gifts from the children in the family and I know my son loves to make crafts for others too. If you like to bake, you can also make some special chocolate treats at home instead of buying some. And if you’re lucky enough to live in a warmer climate where flowers grow outside year-round, a bouquet of local flowers gets me so much more excited than an $80 bouquet of roses shipped from miles away. Here is a round-up of some eco-friendly Valentine’s Day gifts.
- Handmade Felted Hearts: Last year I sewed some simple real felted hearts for my son, and I plan on doing these pockets this year. They are both easy to do and he loves playing with them all year round.
- Homemade Treats: Choose your favourite recipe and make a few batches to hand out to family and loved ones. We’ll be making some healthy chocolate brownies (posting the recipe soon!) as well as these Red Velvet Cake Truffles.
- Date-Night-In Basket: Make up a little basket or bag for a date night in with your partner. You can create some super cute coupons for date nights like these monthly ones. Add your favourite bottle of wine (or non-alcoholic drink), some local cheeses or snacks, and whatever else suits your fancy:)
- A Bottle of Local/Organic Wine and Good Chocolate: I’m a sucker for some good organic wine and dark chocolate. We don’t drink too often (some days more than others) so when we do, we try to purchase wine from local wineries or breweries, or pick up a bottle of our favourite organic wine. There are tons of awesome sustainable, fair-trade organic chocolate companies to choose from and many come out with special holiday flavours. Theo Chocolate has two amazing new red fruit flavours out for Valentine’s Day, and Green & Blacks Spiced Chili is also delicious.
- Healthy Cookbook: If your partner loves spending time in the kitchen, pick up a healthy cookbook you know the whole family will get a lot of use out of. I’m currently loving the Oh She Glows cookbook, and we’ve already pre-ordered Dreena Burton’s latest family cookbook, Plant-Powered Families.
- Books About Love: We love to read in this house and I’ve already picked up an inexpensive, cute little book for my son for Valentine’s Day. Some books about love that would suit the day well and that we all enjoy in this house are: Wherever You Are: My Love Will Find You, Guess How Much I Love You, Lost and Found, Snuggle Puppy, You Are My I Love You, and Happy Valentine’s Day, Curious George.
- Natural Art Supplies: Like I’ve mentioned before, we are big Stockmar fans and just love their natural art supplies. The beeswax crayons are amazing and last for ages. The watercolour paints paints also allow anyone (children or adults) to create the most beautiful watercolour paintings. With kids, we use literally 1-2 drops mixed with water and that is enough. These supplies cost more than conventional ones but go a LONG way and last for years. Check out your local Waldorf school as they normally have the best deals on Stockmar art supplies. Bella Luna Toys is another great resource.