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20 Easy and Affordable Valentine’s Day Gifts

20 Easy and Affordable Valentine’s Day Gifts

According to statistics, the average amount spent per person on Valentine’s Day is £119. This may be beyond the reach of some consumers, however, who struggle with more stringent financial restrictions and minimal disposable income. This does not mean that you cannot celebrate Valentine’s Day in style, as there are a number of unique, affordable and simplistic gift options through which you can express your feelings. Whether you want to invest in products, share experiences, or create gifts from scratch, you do not need a lot of money to make your loved one feel special. With this in mind, let’s take a look at 20 Valentines’ gift ideas that are ideal for those on a budget.

1. Jammy valentines and shortbread hearts

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    Hearts and flowers remain the classic Valentine’s Day offering, although there are numerous interpretations of these gifts in the contemporary age. Take these heart-shaped, jam-filled biscuits and delicious shortbreads, for example, which express your love in a way that treats your loved ones.

    2. Coconut ice and retro sweets

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      Coconut ice, another delicious treat, merges a unique and delicate taste with the color of love. Along with a host of retro sweets and chocolate bars, these products offer a fun and affordable Valentine’s gift that is ideal for anyone with a sweet tooth and a sense of nostalgia for a bygone age.

      3. A personalized ordinance survey map

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        You and your partner are likely to have a favorite location where you have spent quality time together and either launched or developed your relationship. Valentine’s Day is the ideal time to rekindle these memories, and what better way to do this than with a personalized ordinance survey map that includes the coordinates and snapshots of your chosen location, alongside a message and beautiful cover photo?

        4. A Cocoa Pod

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          British company Chococo is renowned for its affordable and unique confectionery creations, with the iconic Cocoa Pod representing the apex of these efforts. At 19 centimeters in length and filled with fresh cream and a number of delicious individual chocolates, this entire package can be purchased for less than $30 and is sure to delight your loved one this Valentine’s Day.

          5. Well-designed trinket box

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            One of the key trends in modern retail is the development of multi-functional products, which combine stylish design with a clearly defined purpose. These are usually expensive, although there are affordable options such as trinket boxes which feature simple and alluring designs, storage space and are available at less than $40, depending on the size.

            6. Personalized bottle of champagne

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              We all know that good quality champagne costs money, but there are some brands and vintages that are more affordable and even discounted for Valentine’s Day. Companies like Create It Now even offer you the chance to personalize bottles by adding the name of your partner, a song verse or a declaration of your love.

              7. Cheaper and more meaningful flowers than roses

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                Some people carry a sense of cynicism when it comes to Valentine’s Day, primarily because the cost of popular items–such as roses–soars during the build-up. This is particularly true when you buy online, but this does not mean that you cannot invest in beautiful and meaningful flowers without spending a fortune. Orchids are a viable alternative, for example, as they also represent love and strength while they are far longer lasting than roses. They are cheaper too, especially if you buy from a local, independent florist, where even lavish bunches can be purchased for less than $20.

                8. Dance class with your partner

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                  With shows such as “Strictly Come Dancing” dominating television ratings in the UK, dance and its many wonderful formats has become increasingly popular. With this in mind, why not take a one or two hour dance class with your partner this Valentine’s Day, and strive to learn the basic principles of classic and exotic rhythms such as salsa or the tango? Check your local listings for availability and price, although you should not expect to pay more than $8 per class.

                  9. Scavenger hunt

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                    If you want to spend the day with your loved one, but are restricted by a budget, you should consider planning a scavenger hunt. Start by placing romantic clues in envelopes and distributing these along a meaningful route that charts your romantic journey together (alongside some small and cost-effective gifts), you can enjoy an incredible experience that culminates with a picnic or favorite dance.

                    10. A progressive dining experience

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                      Although this is a relatively unfamiliar concept to some, progressive dining is an American concept where successful courses are prepared and consumed at different locations. This can add a sense of adventure to the typical Valentine’s Day dining experience, as you move from one location to another and take in your favorite sites, sounds and culinary influences. To reduce costs, consider including an outdoor course at your local picnic spot and visiting an intimate restaurant only for appetizers or dessert.

                      11. Couples photo shoot

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                        Photographs offer an incredible opportunity for you to create and share memories, so you should consider booking an intimate and romantic couples photo shoot this Valentine’s Day. Available through providers such as Red Letter Days, they can be enjoyed at multiple locations while costing as little as $40. Not only will you get some quality time up close and in each other’s arms, but you will also have some stylish mementos of the day.

                        12. Romantic woodland walk

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                          Communication is crucial to any relationship, although maintaining this can be quite challenging over time. Valentine’s Day provides an ideal opportunity for you to rekindle your sense of intimacy, and one of the best and most affordable ways to achieve this is to take a scenic woodland walk in your favorite part of town. As you walk along a picturesque nature trail and take in the fresh air, you can reconnect and communicate openly.

                          13. Shopping for the day at a local flea market

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                            Shopping is a universal past-time enjoyed by both men and women, although the cost can quickly accumulate when you purchase goods in an expensive city center or High Street complex. If you want to treat your other half to a quaint and unusual shopping experience, you should consider spending the day at a local flea market. Where else can you buy unique and vintage items for a pittance, while having enough left over to enjoy a long lunch or early evening supper?

                            14. Create your own spa hamper

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                              While spa hampers and trips to luxurious treatment centers may be desirable Valentine’s Day gifts, they are also expensive. You can reduce costs to less than $50 by replicating the classic spa experience at home for your partner simply by filling a woven picnic basket with inexpensive candles, simple bubble bath and an exfoliating facial mask. Include a washed and heated towel to add a neat finishing touch.

                              15. Make homemade chocolate covered strawberries

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                                If there is a single visual image synonymous with Valentine’s Day, it is a chocolate covered strawberry. You can create these from scratch, without being forced to pay inflated High Street prices. Simply melt a package of chocolate chips at a low heat, then add oil and a small amount of milk to create a smooth texture. Remove from the heat before boiling and pour into individual ramekins. Dipping a strawberry in each before leaving to cool for three hours in the fridge. Serve with cream for a more intense flavor.

                                16. Make your own marzipan sweets

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                                  On a similar note, you can also recreate your partner’s favorite sweets and customize them according to their tastes. You can buy a selection of basic marzipan hearts for a couple of dollars from a local confectionery shop, and spend a little more on individual bags, glitter and sprinkles. Then create unique and colorful packaging that showcases considerable thought and attention to detail.

                                  17. Record a digital message or declaration of your love

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                                    The simplest romantic gestures are often the best, and creating a digital declaration of your love can serve as a breathtakingly easy and affordable Valentine’s Day gift. Whether you record a simple message, a personalized poem, or a small dramatic performance, the key is to focus on your delivery and employ simple video production techniques to create the ideal mood.

                                    18. Craft a jar of cheap dates

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                                      In the absence of expensive and large-scale gestures, it is important that you create romantic and thoughtful gifts that give hours of joy. Instead of investing in a single night out on the town, why not craft a decorative jar that is filled to the brim with small gifts and personalized dates for the future? You can write or print your dates out on card-stock paper, using paper clips to attach them and optimize the space. Then place these in a single jar that has been decorated with glitter and tied with a single ribbon, and present this as your Valentine’s gift. The type of experiences that you include will depend entirely on you, but take care to customize ideas that are tailored for your loved one.

                                      19. Count the ways you love someone

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                                        Cryptic heading aside, this is the type of gift that enables you to express yourself in an incredibly creative fashion. Start by writing out 52 unique things that you love about your partner on note paper or paper cut-outs, before gluing each one of these to a card from a standard deck. You can order these how you like, and then use a hole punch and some decorative ribbon to bind them together. A gift that keeps on giving, this is something that your loved one will cherish forever.

                                        20. Make memory candles

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                                          Love brings a lifetime of memories, and capturing these is integral to a long and happy relationship. Making memory candles enables you to achieve this quickly and easily as you take your favorite photographs and display them around the perimeter of a plain candle holder using see-through contact paper. You can use either colored or black and white photographs depending on the precise look you are trying to achieve, and can make a set for less than $20.

                                          Featured photo credit: Martin A Photography via flickr.com

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                                          Last Updated on November 15, 2018

                                          Success In Reaching Goals Is Determined By Mindset

                                          Success In Reaching Goals Is Determined By Mindset

                                          What do you think it takes to achieve your goals? Hard work? Lots of actions? While these are paramount to becoming successful in reaching our goals, neither of these are possible without a positive mindset.

                                          As humans, we naturally tend to lean towards a negative outlook when it comes to our hopes and dreams. We are prone to believing that we have limitations either from within ourselves or from external forces keeping us from truly getting to where we want to be in life. Our tendency to think that we’ll “believe it when we see it” suggests that our mindsets are focused on our goals not really being attainable until they’ve been achieved. The problem with this is that this common mindset fuels our limiting beliefs and shows a lack of faith in ourselves.

                                          The Success Mindset

                                          Success in achieving our goals comes down to a ‘success mindset’. Successful mindsets are those focused on victory, based on positive mental attitudes, empowering inclinations and good habits. Acquiring a success mindset is the sure-fire way to dramatically increase your chance to achieve your goals.

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                                          The idea that achieving our goals comes down to our habits and actions is actually a typical type of mindset that misses a crucial point; that our mindset is, in fact, the determiner of our energy and what actions we take. A negative mindset will tend to create negative actions and similarly if we have a mindset that will only set into action once we see ‘proof’ that our goals are achievable, then the road will be much longer and arduous. This is why, instead of thinking “I’ll believe it when I see it”, a success mindset will think “I’ll see it when I believe it.”

                                          The Placebo Effect and What It Shows Us About The Power of Mindset

                                          The placebo effect is a perfect example of how mindset really can be powerful. In scientific trials, a group of participants were told they received medication that will heal an ailment but were actually given a sugar pill that does nothing (the placebo). Yet after the trial the participants believed it’s had a positive effect – sometimes even cured their ailment even though nothing has changed. This is the power of mindset.

                                          How do we apply this to our goals? Well, when we set goals and dreams how often do we really believe they’ll come to fruition? Have absolute faith that they can be achieved? Have a complete unwavering expectation? Most of us don’t because we hold on to negative mindsets and limiting beliefs about ourselves that stop us from fully believing we are capable or that it’s at all possible. We tend to listen to the opinions of others despite them misaligning with our own or bow to societal pressures that make us believe we should think and act a certain way. There are many reasons why we possess these types of mindsets but a success mindset can be achieved.

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                                          How To Create a Success Mindset

                                          People with success mindsets have a particular way of perceiving things. They have positive outlooks and are able to put faith fully in their ability to succeed. With that in mind, here are a few ways that can turn a negative mindset into a successful one.

                                          1. A Success Mindset Comes From a Growth Mindset

                                          How does a mindset even manifest itself? It comes from the way you talk to yourself in the privacy of your own head. Realising this will go a long way towards noticing how you speak to yourself and others around you. If it’s mainly negative language you use when you talk about your goals and aspirations then this is an example of a fixed mindset.

                                          A negative mindset brings with it a huge number of limiting beliefs. It creates a fixed mindset – one that can’t see beyond it’s own limitations. A growth mindset sees these limitations and looks beyond them – it finds ways to overcome obstacles and believes that this will result in success. When you think of your goal, a fixed mindset may think “what if I fail?” A growth mindset would look at the same goal and think “failures happen but that doesn’t mean I won’t be successful.”

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                                          There’s a lot of power in changing your perspective.

                                          2. Look For The Successes

                                          It’s really important to get your mind focused on positive aspects of your goal. Finding inspiration through others can be really uplifting and keep you on track with developing your success mindset; reinforcing your belief that your dreams can be achieved. Find people that you can talk with about how they achieved their goals and seek out and surround yourself with positive people. This is crucial if you’re learning to develop a positive mindset.

                                          3. Eliminate Negativity

                                          You can come up against a lot of negativity sometimes either through other people or within yourself. Understanding that other people’s negative opinions are created through their own fears and limiting beliefs will go a long way in sustaining your success mindset. But for a lot of us, negative chatter can come from within and these usually manifest as negative words such as can’t, won’t, shouldn’t. Sometimes, when we think of how we’re going to achieve our goals, statements in our minds come out as negative absolutes: ‘It never works out for me’ or ‘I always fail.’

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                                          When you notice these coming up you need to turn them around with ‘It always works out for me!’ and ‘I never fail!’ The trick is to believe it no matter what’s happened in the past. Remember that every new day is a clean slate and for you to adjust your mindset.

                                          4. Create a Vision

                                          Envisioning your end goal and seeing it in your mind is an important trait of a success mindset. Allowing ourselves to imagine our success creates a powerful excitement that shouldn’t be underestimated. When our brain becomes excited at the thought of achieving our goals, we become more committed, work harder towards achieving it and more likely to do whatever it takes to make it happen.

                                          If this involves creating a vision board that you can look at to remind yourself every day then go for it. Small techniques like this go a long way in sustaining your success mindset and shouldn’t be dismissed.

                                          An Inspirational Story…

                                          For centuries experts said that running a mile in under 4 minutes was humanly impossible. On the 6th May 1954, Rodger Bannister did just that. As part of his training, Bannister relentlessly visualised the achievement, believing he could accomplish what everyone said wasn’t possible…and he did it.

                                          What’s more amazing is that, as soon as Bannister achieved the 4-minute mile, more and more people also achieved it. How was this possible after so many years of no one achieving it? Because in people’s minds it was suddenly possible – once people knew that it was achievable it created a mindset of success and now, after over fifty years since Bannister did the ‘impossible’, his record has been lowered by 17 seconds – the power of the success mindset!

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