After the big celebrations surrounding the last four holidays - New Year's, Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Halloween, Valentine's Day can seem a rather tame affair. Unless you're in elementary school, you probably won't have a big party or put up a lot of decorations. But of all the holidays of the year, this one might mean the most for your marriage.
So how can you make it a special day for your wife? What if money is tight or you can't get a babysitter for dinner? Relax. There are a lot of ways of showing your wife how important she is to you. Here are 10 things every husband should do for his wife on Valentine's Day.
Wake her up with a kiss
OK, so maybe the morning breath part isn't so sweet, but waking your wife up with a kiss tells her she is the first thing you have on your mind today. If she gets up before you, leave a pile of Hershey's kisses on her nightstand the night before. She'll understand the message.
Tell her she's beautiful
You might tell her she's beautiful all the time, or you might forget as the years pass by. After all, doesn't she already know how attractive you find her? Not necessarily. All women want to be told they look beautiful, so don't neglect to tell her on Valentine's Day.
Hide a love note in her purse
It doesn't have to be long, poetic or fancy. Just a simple note that says, "I love you," can mean the world to her because it's from you. Hide it in her purse, her wallet, her pocket or some other place you know she'll check before the day is through.
The nature of the surprise isn't important. Maybe you get her a bouquet of flowers or you ask her out for lunch or you come home early from work. Any kind of surprise is sure to be appreciated.
Text her throughout the day
If you can't spend the day together, remind her as often as you can that you're still thinking of her. Sending her texts is an easy way to do this or leave a voice message on her phone. An idea for your texts: each one could list a different way or reason you love her.
Do the dishes-laundry-vacuuming
Every woman has a chore pet peeve. Do you know which one your wife doesn't like? If you do, take time to do that chore before the day is through. Even taking out the trash without her asking can mean a lot. If you can get the chore done secretly, leave a note for her to find telling her "Happy Valentine's Day" or "I love you."
Do something nostalgic
As kids, you looked forward to Valentine's Day because it means decorating boxes or bags and getting notes and candy from all your friends. Bring back that excitement by recreating the magic for your wife with this fun surprise: buy a box of children's Valentine's cards and a bag of candy. Address all the cards to your wife and attach a piece of candy to each card. When your kids start comparing what they got for Valentine's Day, make them all jealous by whipping out a box your wife gets to have all to herself.
Light some candles
Candlelight makes everything feel more romantic. If you can't go out to dinner, wait until the kids are in bed then light some candles, turn off all the other lights, and scoop some ice cream or some other dessert for the two of you to share.
Ask her to dance
You may not love dancing, but there are few women who would say no if their husband were to ask them to dance. Turn on a song that reminds you of your wedding or your first date and reminisce about those memories while you turn slowly on the spot. Candlelight makes dancing more romantic, too.
Give her a token of your appreciation
Traditionally, it's nice to present your wife with some sort of gift for Valentine's Day. Some years, though, finances might be tight so consider what resources you have and try giving her a homemade gift. Can you craft a small jewelry box or write a song? Could you make her favorite treat or detail her car?
Pull from your own talents and skills and you'll come up with a gift she'll appreciate far more than any store-bought figurine or shiny new necklace.