Valentines on A Budget – 5 Tips to Save You Money!

Valentines is officially HERE! and while today may be the BIG V-Day, most people may opt to do something small today, with a bigger celebration more than likely starting tomorrow night and on through the weekend, right??

Valentine’s is the next most popular-est holiday, outside of Christmas. As soon as Christmas is over you can almost guarantee the week or two after, stores will begin to fill up with red, pink and white balloons, bears, candies and roses galore…I mean, that’s just how it rolls.

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However, while Valentines is a day that everyone (well not everyone, but you get it) uses to express their undying love and affection for a significant other – it can also be extremely COSTLY! Yes, LOVE really does cost a thing, especially on V-Day.

And that alone can be a little disheartening as everyone may not have the Benjamin’s to splurge on LOVE. Therefore, I’m going to give you 5 tips of how you can keep the cost down on the world’s most LOVE filled day.

Scavenger Hunt

Valentines Day is the perfect day to tell your significant other how much you love them and while words are great – ACTIONS are better. Get some nice paper, preferably construction paper. Fold it in half and cut along the fold line to make hearts, make sure you use different colors – it just makes the activity more fun and expressive.

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Write nice things you love about your sweetie on each one and put them all over your living space (preferably in places you know they always go). You might want to let them know you’re doing this and tell them you’ve placed little love notes throughout the space and send them on a little hunt to find it. Or, it can be a complete surprise. You can do it while they’re sleeping, to up the ante – you can tape little pieces of chocolate on, to make the surprise even sweeter.

Handwritten Letters

I know this is a bit old-fashioned, especially with the boat loads of technology we have today. Taking out time to sit down and actually write a letter shows that you not only care but it’s the sincerest affection to give. You can write a love note to anyone; your kids, your spouse, a good friend, boyfriend, girlfriend or just to let someone know how much you appreciate them. The fact that you took out time to do it, will be the greatest gift of love and adoration shown.

Image Credit: Pexels

Plan a Date night in Your Kitchen or Dining Room

Now, I know some people may already sit down to have dinner together, but V-Day is an extra special day that causes for an extra va-voom to your dinner/meal conversation. Use your phone to create a V-Day playlist to serve as your background music. Light a couple of candles or string a couple of lights around your chandelier or alongside your wall (get those creative juices going).

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During your meal, don’t talk about work or any outside disturbances. Use this time to talk about each other. What made you fall in love and etc. And if you’re flying solo, no worries plan a night with the kids (no phones, no talk about work) use that time to tell them something special about themselves and etc. Just keep the talk about LOVE. If you don’t have kids, then invite some friends over and chat it up.

You also don’t have to buy any expensive dinners, cook whatever you got in the fridge or cabinets because this moment isn’t about the food but being amongst those you LOVE.

Movies Anyone? – Favorite V-Day Classics

If you’re an avid follower, then you know I LOVE LOVE LOVE movies. What better way to settle in on V-Day or whenever you decide to celebrate it than with a good ole love classic and some popcorn. Listed below are a couple of my faves in no particular order…

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  • Valentine’s Day (2010)Julia Roberts, Ashton Kutcher, Jamie Foxx
  • Serendipity (2001)John Cusack, Kate Beckinsale
  • Pretty Woman (1990)Julia Roberts, Richard Gere
  • Love and Basketball (2000) Sanaa Lathan, Omar Epps
  • The Notebook (2004)Rachel McAdams, Ryan Gosling
  • Titanic (1997) Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet
  • An Officer & A Gentleman (1982)Richard Gere, Debra Winger
  • 50 First Dates (2004) – Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore

Spa Day – INSIDE

As a people I honestly don’t think we do enough self-care routines (I’m totally preaching to the choir on this one (AMEN!). So why not create your own spa day inside. Light some candles, turn on some soft music and create a bubble bath for one or two (wink..) You don’t even have to have those high-priced soaps that do all the special things – if you got some body wash that’ll do just fine for creating the bubble effect. Get you a glass of wine (sparkling or other) and just RELAX! And follow-up with a good skin care regimen.

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I know Valentine’s day may not be a big deal to some people’s world and that’s okay as it doesn’t take a holiday to show LOVE. However you choose to spend V-day, just make sure you’re showing yourself some love and/or spending time with the people you do. Time is precious and LOVE, whether a holiday or not is worth giving.

Glazed Cherry Bread
Looking for something delicious and different to whip up for V-Day? You’ll love this cherry bread recipe made with delicious maraschino cherries. To get the full recipe and view the video of how it’s made visit Tastes of Lizzy T.

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Beware of Coupling Season! Are you a Victim?

picture above courtesy of bing

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If you don’t know what coupling season is, then let me ask you a question – Do those sappy movies for Christmas such as “A Husband for Christmas”, ” A Kiss for Christmas,” “Getting Married for Christmas” make you sad or angry? Do you find yourself feeling utterly alone and disappointment with your “single” status when other specific holidays roll around, such as Thanksgiving, your birthday and let’s not forget the one day in which everyone shows love – V-DAY! also known as Valentines Day! ❤️

If a month or a week before these holidays hit surface; you find yourself feeling like you want or need to be booed up with someone special or these holidays put you in a somber mood, because either your friends are booed up or married and there you are all alone with no one under your arms to even chat with…PLEASE DON’T LET IT! 🙄

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Coupling season as I call it, is the desire to only want to be with someone when a special holiday or event rolls around and with such movies named above playing for Christmas and the millions of candy and balloons displayed for V-Day – it’s like the world is sending us a signal saying “We’re terrible people for being alone or not paired up with someone special for these very sporadic and short seasons” all those images can make us uneasy with being single and satisfied and put us in a place of being destitute and desperate and because we really desire someone to fulfill this ONE DAY event, we break down our walls and begin to settle for anything – including the guy or woman we “purposely” let go  because they didn’t have any goals or anything to bring to the table. Coupling season can  suddenly make their previous conversations begin to sound good and the guard you put up towards their behavior is justified by “Well, maybe they didn’t really mean it that way.” WRONG!! 😲

They did mean it that way and NO!, they’re still not the “perfect” person you so desire them to be in a relationship either…..so…..WAKE UP! 😴

I can’t tell you how many times, I’ve fell victim to the coupling season, I mean I would get downright depressed; in which would lead me on a desperate search through my phone contacts for “past” relationships that I purposely cut off, only because I didn’t want to be alone. And NO, I was not about to send myself flowers, chocolates nor balloons on V-Day…..Really,???? Like for some reason, that gesture always made me feel weird. And yes, I do know some people that have actually done it and still do it…..smh….😕

Listen, if you’re not booed up, then just because Valentines Day is days away, doesn’t mean that you have to lower your standards just to get hooked up for one day. Girl Please and Boy Bye! Why settle for one day; the one thing you have to realize is this:

 It’s only one Day – Not a Lifetime! ❤️

Valentines Day comes once a year, do you really want to get depressed over that? Yes, I know it may seem sad to go in the store and see all the balloons, bears, cards and boxes of chocolate or the men and women in there whom are shopping for “special loved ones” a.k.a boos that is, but don’t let that get to you. It’s a Day, Not a Lifetime and if I can really be honest?, half of those people are going to go back to being who they truly are the following day.  If you really want to know what love is, just look in the mirror at yourself. True Love starts with you – the candy, balloons, bears and chocolates is not a necessity and do not guarantee love.

❤️ Know who you are and stick to your guns 

As stated above, when those holidays would hit – I would run to the nearest person I axed just so I wouldn’t be alone. In doing that, I soon realized that there was a disconnection in me that I still hadn’t worked out yet because if I had, I would’ve been content and complete with not having anyone on V-Day or any other holiday! Don’t allow a simple holiday knock you off course for waiting for what you really want. Trust me, your time and energy is valuable – don’t exhaust it on something or someone that isn’t worth it, stick to your guns.

Society fills our egos, hearts and heads up with what should happen at a particular time in our lives and if we hadn’t done that BIG thing by a certain age or if we don’t have someone special by the holidays, especially valentines day – then there’s something majorly wrong with you. But I’m here to tell you, there’s nothing wrong with you; you are absolutely fine and no, you’re not the only one celebrating V-Day alone – open your eyes and look around you, there are plenty of people whom are doing it and wilding it out with just a party of one.

So, enjoy being you and being content and satisfied with who you are. I can’t tell you when your “prince or princess” will appear but I will tell you this – good things always come when you least expect it too. Enjoy life, don’t rush or put unnecessary people in places that they don’t belong. You got this all by yourself, I do it all the time and I can’t tell you how happy I am about it. I realize my worth and I also realize the price my worth cost, in which can’t be bought for just one night. Grab your worth by the horns and stick to it – even through coupling season. ❤️

VALENTINES TO ME

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager

 

Don’t have time to read?, You can listen to this post via Sound cloud below: just press the orange button to play!

Jalen Bailey is Baking Cookies & Taking Orders for V-Day!

Picture above courtesy of bing

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About a year ago, I wrote a story about a phenomenal then 8yr old young man by the name of Jalen Bailey whom was cooking up pies and cookies in his kitchen, and these weren’t just any ordinary cookies and pies for the local bake sale at school or church but  had become a lifestyle job for Jalen, whom was destined to make his passion into a profit that would help both he and his mom. Jalen Bailey was using his gift of “baking” to its fullest potential. I wanted to re-share this story to shed even more light on Jalen and his skills and to inform you of how you can get your very own order from Jalen’s bakery. Now that Valentine’s Day or V-Day as I like to call it is fastly approaching, you too can get your hands on some of Jalen’s delectable sweets for either yourself or that special someone in your life. Jalen’s bakery has been doing so great, it caught the eye of Rachel Ray, YESSSSS! the number one chief herself asked Jalen to be a guest on her show. You can read all about Jalen and his reason for baking below as well as watch his appearance on Rachel Ray. I’ll have links below so you follow Jalen’s Bakery Journey and while you’re at it – you can get your yummy order in as well!!

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jalen bailey

 

“I said I wanted to be a millionaire. I thought that wasn’t possible but now I think it is.” Jalen Bailey

Those are the words of 8-year-old Jalen Bailey who started in a baking company called “Jalen’s Bakery” right out of his mom’s small kitchen. Seeing how tiny their kitchen and house was, Jalen decided to put his gift to work by baking and selling cookies –not to get new toys, but to buy his mom a house.

According to HUFF POST, Jalen doesn’t use a cook book, but bakes all of those yummy goods from scratch! This includes his specialty peanut butter cookies, banana nut muffins and vanilla cake in a jar. Just the thought of all of those goodies are making me hungry. The prices for the treats range anywhere from $5 to $15 dollars. He and his mom will even deliver them too you (but only if you’re local).

Jalen’s mom, Sharhonda Mahan, who is a single mother, is his biggest supporter and a business-owner herself. So for Jalen starting his own business didn’t come as much of a surprise to her. According to Sharhonda, Jalen has been receiving many requests for orders and has also baked for his first event in which a vendor offered to purchase a bigger stove for him to keep baking more and more tasty goods.

“He’s very excited. It seems like the more orders he gets, the more excited he gets and the more serious he gets about his business.”

Seeing how passionate and driven her son has been for the past two years about baking and the many requests which floor their door, Sharhonda recently started a GOFUNDME page so that Jalen can start shipping to customers nationwide. The goal is $10,000 for Jalen to own a house, raise funding for college, give back to the community and learn the life of being a young entrepreneur. While this seems like a tall order for an 8-year-old; with Jalen’s drive, his mom’s support and their now booming business, I believe he will be able to complete everything on his list and more.

To keep up with Jalen and find out what he’s cooking up next, you can follow him on one of the social media sites below:

Follow Jalen on his Instagram page entitled jalensblog here

You can place your order for V-Day on his website here 

Get daily motivation, and see his latest recipes on FB here 

The goal of 10K was met, the link to the GoFundMe page above is new and was created so Jalen can help and give back to the community, his goal 2 months ago was to raise enough money to be able to giveaway 200 coats and socks to kids in need. But please visit the page as there are other philanthropy goals that Jalen is doing. What an Inspiration, Way to Go Jalen!!!

 

Roshonda N. Blackmon – Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager