Saturday, February 14, 2009

Last Minute Valentine's Day Gifts

Happy Valentine's Day!

If you've gotten caught unprepared, believe it or not there is still time to put a little something together for your loved one. Photos celebrating your relationship will always be welcome, and there are several different options for how to go about it. One way is to get a flash drive and load it up with your favorite photos -- and why not a red or pink flash drive while you're at it? This SanDisk Gator flash drive comes in red, pink, and black, and it comes in three sizes: 2GB for $14.99, 4GB for $27.99, and 8GB for $49.99. (As an aside, it astounds me that for $14.99, you can get a device with far more memory than my first Apple McIntosh computer had -- a measly 40M hard drive!)

It's too late to order one of these online, of course, but the SanDisk website helpfully provides a "find a retailer" link that indicates their products are carried by Sears, RadioShack, Best Buy, Office Depot, GameStop, Fry's, and EB Games. (Best of all, those won't be the stores jam-packed on Valentine's Day!) Even if they don't have these exact flash drives, they'll have others to choose from, and if you can't find pink or red, standard silver will work just fine. The nice thing about this gift is that it's both romantic (as long as you load it up with photos) and practical.

Or you can go the old-fashioned route of printed photos, with up-to-date convenience. Most people are using digital cameras these days, and we often don't bother to get prints anymore, which is kind of a shame. So you can either print your own if you have a photo-quality printer and photo paper, or you can upload a bunch of photos to either the Walgreens or CVS websites, pick up the prints in an hour, and buy an inexpensive photo album while you're there. You might get the kind that's small enough to fit in a purse or a laptop case so your partner can carry it around. If you have kids or pets, include some photos of them as well.

If you're crafty, another last-minute idea is a homemade "Valentine's pocket full of vouchers". I came across this idea on the FaveCrafts blog, in a post by guest-blogger Helen Bradley. I've seen the idea of giving homemade coupons before, but Helen has really put them together in an attractive package by utilizing heart-shaped stamps, hole-punches, and ribbons (follow the link for some images).

Even if you aren't crafty, you could take a simple manila envelope, make it up as if it's a love letter by addressing it and tying a red ribbon around it, and tuck some vouchers, a Valentine's Day card, and some photos inside. Vouchers can be for anything your partner will appreciate, such as "Take a night off from the kitchen!"; "You drink, I'll drive...." (another of Helen's ideas); "You choose the movie"; or "I'll take the kids out all day Saturday." Make them unique to fit your loved one's personality.

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