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Valentine's Day Gift Ideas, Usual and Unique

Crib our gift list, and add your suggestions.

Two years ago, a dear friend sought my advice on what to get his girlfriend for Valentine's Day. His idea? A lamp. Because nothing says I love you quite like a lamp....

Don't get me wrong — I'm all about practical gifts. But when it comes to Valentine's Day, I believe sentiments or surprises should come from the heart, and be about the person you love, not about fulfuling their lighting needs.

After a little bit of coaching, my friend settled on a necklace from a local artist. His girlfriend loved the gift, not only because it was pretty, but because it would remind her of him throughout the day, even when they were apart.

Remember too, Valentine's Day doesn't have to be about spending a lot of (or any) money. The way to a loved one's heart can be found through something simple, like a heartfelt handwritten Valentine or a homemade dinner.

Here are a few Valentine's Day ideas, spanning the realm of sentimental to materialistic. The list certainly could be longer, so please help add to it by leaving your thoughts in the comments section below.

  • A handwritten (or drawn) note or card
  • A mix CD
  • Dinner, out or at home
  • Flowers (roses, or not)
  • Chocolate, mmm, chocolate
  • Breakfast, possibly in bed
  • Take a cooking class together
  • A stuffed animal, book or game
  • A Betta fish (nothing says love like a solitary fish that fights to the death)
  • Manicure and/or pedicure, massage gift certificates
  • iPod gift card
  • Sporting event tickets
  • Jewelry
  • A coffee mug from a local potter, plus a pound
  • Boxers with hearts on them
  • A lamp (I kid... see above)
Ryan Grannan-Doll February 06, 2012 at 02:47 PM
I'm taking my girlfriend to a Boston College women's basketball game this week! ANd before that, yummy sushi!
Grahame Turner February 07, 2012 at 12:46 AM
I might suggest these, for someone who A) likes video games and B) likes flowers: http://www.thinkgeek.com/homeoffice/gear/e731/
Wendy Schapiro February 07, 2012 at 02:04 PM
ThinkGeek is one of the best gift sites on the internet, imho. There is no holiday for which it is not appropriate to buy a gift from there for your lovenerd. :D
Grahame Turner February 07, 2012 at 03:58 PM
Glad I'm not the only one! It is a great resource for unusual, interesting, but always excellent gifts. Maybe it's just the people I attract, but everyone I know seems to have a little bit of a nerdy side. I for one would be blown away by one of these: http://www.thinkgeek.com/geektoys/plush/a9e0/?srp=4 (I am also a huge fan of the "Portal" series)
Wendy Schapiro February 07, 2012 at 04:09 PM
My brother and his wife got me an Enterprise (newer version) pizza cutter from ThinkGeek for Hanukkah, one of my favorite gifts of all time.

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