February 1, 2010

Sweetly Creative, Sustainable Valentine’s Day Gifts.

Give your loved ones sweetly creative, inexpensive, sustainable gifts that will make them smile the whole year round.

These easy to make, creative, do it yourself Valentine’s Day gifts can be given to your lover, your child, your mother, or anyone you’re grateful to have in your life.

For even more smiles, you can make one or more of these gifts with a loved one for another loved one—spend an afternoon making a gratitude board for your spouse with your kids, or a Thanks Bank (see below) for your kid with your spouse!

Turning these projects into a shared experience makes the day—and the gifts—many times more sweet.

1. Thanks Bank

A Thanks Bank will remind your loved one that you’re thankful for them anytime they desire. You just fill the bank with thanks, and they can make a withdrawal anytime they want or need a reminder of how much you love them.

The basic design of this gift is super easy, though you can make it as ornate as you like.

* A decorative jar, a jewelry box, a decorated little cardboard box, a mason jar stickers on it, or whatever you’d like to use as the bank.
* Paper.
* A writing implement.

* Decoupage and images.
* Bedazzlements.
* Pictures of you and your loved one

How To:
1. Create the container as you like.
2. Take the paper and writing implement, and write as many thank you notes as you want. It can be anything from “I’m grateful for you!” to “I’m grateful when you…” For your kid that might be “…give me hugs.” For your lover, you might get uber creative. The more full you make the container, the more impressive the present, so really go for it. You want a container that’s practically overflowing with thank you notes.
3. Write a love note, a poem, a THANK YOU, or all of the above – and directions; “This Thanks Bank will be here for you when you want a reminder of how thankful I am for all the things you bring to my life,” or however you might want to say it.
3. Fill the container with the notes, and voila, you’re done!

2. Gratitude Board

A Gratitude Board can be hung on a wall, placed on a nightstand, or put on a personal or family Gratitude Altar.
* Board – wooden, card stock, cardboard, plastic, whatever you like.
* Paste or decoupage.
* Tissue or construction paper.
* Images; pictures, postcards, photos, Valentine’s hearts, etc.

How To:
1. Paste the board with paper as desired. This will serve as a background.
2. Paste images on in an aesthetically pleasing way.

3. Gratitude Journal

With this item you can give the gift of gratitude twice! Create a Gratitude Journal for your loved one where he or she can record his or her gratitude practice. To inspire creative flow you can pepper your reminders that you’re grateful for your loved one, and the reasons why you are, throughout the book.

* Journal with blank or lined pages, depending on your loved one’s preference.
* Writing implement.

* Decoupage and images.
* Beddazlements.
* Pictures of you and your loved one.

How To:
1. Write your gratitude for your loved one on random pages.
2. Decorate the journal as you like.

These simple, sweet, creative projects put you into the giving, and the gift! Of course, you can take these simple gifts and combine them with an orchestrated Valentine’s Day plan or any of the more traditional gifts, but keeping it simple, sweet, and fun may be just what’s desired.

Enjoy a memorable Valentine’s Day, and the sweet year that follows.

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Lasara Allen  |  Contribution: 12,560