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Think outside the box (of chocolates) this Valentine’s Day


We’ve barely had time to settle into 2018, yet it’s already time to think about Valentine’s Day. Whether you think it’s a silly day or embrace it with all its pink heart-shaped sparkle, it’s a fun excuse to flex your creativity and show those closest to you how much you love them—without chocolate.

Chocolate isn’t really the healthiest (or most creative) thing to give to your valentine(s). It’s loaded with sugar, fat and calories. And since you’re killing it this year with your healthy goals for 2018, why not keep the ball rolling and stretch your creative muscles this Valentine’s Day with these better-for-you gift ideas!

Pamper with a gift subscription

Does your valentine love beauty products? For guys and gals alike, subscriptions like Birchbox are always a fun, customized gift to give. If they’re into cool socks (because who isn’t?), you can even get a Sock of the Month subscription. If your true love is also a book lover, try the Book of the Month club. If your Valentine loves pets, there’s a subscription for Fido, too.

Get out your fancy pen

Ah, is there anything more classic than a good old-fashioned love letter? We think not! A handwritten Valentine is never unappreciated, and this day is a great excuse to write thoughtful notes to not just your significant other, but also family, friends and coworkers. Bonus points if you add heart-shaped stickers on the envelopes.

Gym bag swag

Does your significant other always complain about losing their water bottles or earbuds at the gym? Why not make a little bag of gym goodies for them to enjoy—full of healthy snacks, a spare set of earbuds, a foam roller for their sore shoulders, and a water bottle customized with a picture of your face on it. Just kidding! The picture is optional, but it might score you brownie points.

Mix tape comeback

Just because cassette tapes are a thing of the past, doesn’t mean the sentiment has to be. Make a list of your favorite love songs to give to your valentine (or your crush!) and put them on this clever “mix tape” that’s secretly a USB drive. Just like a real-life cassette, the songs can be replaced—so you can make it a tradition to add new songs every Valentine’s Day.

More than a bouquet of flowers…

Give your special someone a whole garden! Fill a basket with fancy gardening gloves, a few gardening tools and an array of seasonal flowers to plant in the garden. And why stop at flowers? Pick up a few vegetable seeds so everyone can enjoy this healthy, delicious gift that keeps on giving.

So whether you love Valentine’s Day or think cupid should mind his own business, it’s always fun to show those close to you that you appreciate them. If you choose to dazzle them with a surprise on Feb. 14, be sure to think outside that box of chocolates. If all else fails, you’re never too old to give (or receive!) a classic kid-friendly Valentine.