Frugal Ways To Say I Love You This Valentine’s Day

man with valentine's day balloon



February 14 may be Valentine’s Day but that doesn’t mean you have to break the bank to say, I LOVE YOU. Valentine’s Day is one of the most commercialized times of year next to Christmas in my opinion.

Romance is in the air this time of year and when you walk into any shop you will know why. Everything from chocolates, fragrances, jewellery,  lingerie, sexy lotions and potions to unique Valentine’s Day gifts such as furry slippers and cupid shaped candles scream at you to buy me, buy me, I’m the one.

Personally we don’t bust the budget on Valentine’s Day because every day is a special day in our relationship. Yes, OK it sounds cheesy but it’s true. That doesn’t mean we can’t plan something romantic for each other. If your woman says she doesn’t want anything for Valentine’s Day, don’t take it literally, do something or risk her heart being broken even if is a hand-written note.

In my experience, I’ve found some women anxiously await what their significant-other has planned for them; but wait a minute, Valentine’s is not just for women. I wonder if women realize how stressful it can be for a man to pick out the right gift, very! Likely why my wife has made me the happiest man alive, easy-going, no stress and I love her!

Although to be fair many women get just as excited to tell the man in their life how much they care and want to do something as special. Nowadays you can even find Valentine’s gift baskets for him and her which I think are a sexy great idea, even better if you can make them and fill them up yourself. Think of the money you can save personalizing a gift basket with items you know your partner will actually use better yet, use together.

We generally save money all year in our projected expenses account through our family budget for special occasions and this one is no exception. As a couple we plan to do something together on Valentine’s like going out on a hot date even if it is just dressing up and going for a walk arm in arm sipping a white hot chocolate from Tim Hortons.

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We also plan something special and frugal behind the scenes as a surprise for each other. I’ve learned over the years that the wife does not like flowers for Valentine’s Day as she feels they are a waste of money if you can’t get at least some time to enjoy their beauty.

That hasn’t stopped me from laying rose petals that I’ve found at the dollar store trailing up the stairs into to the bedroom, onto the bed. The red and white candles were lit and soft music was playing in the background with the light scent of cinnamon filling the air.

I mean, are you really smelling the roses at the point where you are both standing arm in arm in the bedroom staring into each others eyes? Probably, far from it as you are enjoying the company of someone you are deeply in love with. I’m sure you are more interested in what’s happening next than what’s happening with the freshness of your flowers.

Of course you could place an ad on Kijiji to see if anyone has any roses or other flowers from a one night gala, celebration, wedding or birthday they are selling for your “love project“. You might be surprised to see that someone is willing to sell them off just to recoup some of the money they spent, flowers ain’t cheap. Remember your wedding day? Ok, you can stop laughing now but a rose is a rose, is it not?

I’m just saying that you never know what’s out there. My wife would prefer a garden full of roses rather than a bouquet of red roses once a year that would last a few days and cost me at least one hundred dollars and then some. I make it a priority to make sure that every summer she gets her roses and a multitude of other flowers to compliment our landscaping. That way she can enjoy them for months and I get a happy wife.

Not all couples are the same and what works for one might not work for another. You know your partner so finding the right gift for the right price all boils down to what displays your affection the best. For some it’s with a gift for others it’s with a kiss.

You don’t have to run out looking specifically for cheap Valentine’s gifts but if you use your imagination you can enjoy a sexy night the frugal way. Don’t be afraid to look online for coupons, coupon codes or in your local flyers because there’s no shame in saving money when shopping for a gift. Since we both have optimum cards we have used Shoppers Drug Mart Optimum points in the past in order to redeem for cologne, fragrances and make-up for $0 cost.

In 2010 Canada produced a whopping 12 million stems of roses or one million dozen roses, according to Stats Canada. Did you know that red roses cost the most amount of money during the Valentine’s holiday?  Opting for a mix of different colour roses and alternate type flowers in the arrangement might be a frugal option?  Don’t forget to check online to see if there are any coupon codes for flowers as well. If you can save a couple bucks or free delivery why not.

What do the different colour roses mean? 

  • Red- symbolic of love and steamy passion and the most popular of roses, Hot, Hot, Hot!
  • Yellow– symbolize friendship and joy
  • Blue- symbolizes mystery
  • Orange-symbolizes desire, passion and enthusiasm
  • Pink – Symbolize admiration, joy and appreciation
  • Whitesymbolizes purity, innocence and honour
  • Lavender-symbolizes love at first sight


Frugal Ways that Say I Love You on Valentine’s Day


Romantic Candle Centrepiece Valentine's Day

  • Design a centerpiece with a red candle, rose petals, and tea lights which you can use for a romantic dinner or any other place in your home where you want to exude the romantic ambience
  • A handwritten poem with words spoken from the heart is always a romantic touch

homemade marmalade Valentines Day for him

  • Get Crafty and make something special for the Man of The House like this jar of marmalade found at Kate’s Creative Space

valentines dinner ideas

  • Create a Frugal Holiday Dinner Table fit for a romantic, fun evening of good food like at The Beauty and Brains

I can't smile without you

  • A toothbrush with a special Valentine’s Note “I Can’t Smile Without You, Happy Valentine’s Day”  is simple, quirky yet romantic at best found at Pinterest

heart rolls cinnamon rolls Valentine's Day

Mr.CBB's Valentine's Orange Ricotta Pound Cake
Mr.CBB’s Valentine’s Orange Ricotta Pound Cake

A simple note to say I love you

For me the best Valentine’s Day Gift is being able to simply say, I love you, I’m in love with you and there’s a special place in my heart for you.  Sounds easy, but I am just like every other man who will go out of his way choosing a gift or trying to put something together even if it is writing a Valentine’s Poem or sending a Valentine’s e-card just to make her smile a little more than she already brightens my day every day.

Discussion Question:

What are some frugal ways you say I love you to that special person in your life?

Do you have a story or a question you’d like to share on CBB? Email me at

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  1. Best gift I ever received was my first daughter, born on my 25th birthday. As far as flowers are concerned, I would much prefer a living plant, which will continue to bring pleasure, long after the special day is over. As far as so-called special days, I always preferred a surprise on an unexpected day, rather than a gift dictated by society. It’s over 20 years since I had a spouse, have only vague memories of Valentines day, so now I focus on my grandkids, who love me unconditionally, and I them.

    1. My wife would agree with you 100% Mary… she doesn’t like when I buy her flowers she would rather have a plant that will live on.

  2. Yes I like this post! I decided to do chocolate covered strawberries for Valentine’s Day. The chocolate and strawberries were so inexpensive. Everyone loved them.

  3. What an awesome post 🙂
    I tell my honey I love him everyday!!! Valentine’s day is another day I get to spoil him, remind him of how much I love him and how much he means to me.
    This year I am making his favourite dinner, filling an old heart choclate box full of heart cut outs with notes of why I love him, bought a few small bags of his fav candies, making chocolate covered strawberries and a few hours of picking out all the green rice krispies of the xmas box it will be white and red rice krispies cut out using a heart cookie cutter.

  4. The best gift I ever received was a box of heart shaped chocolates with my engagement ring in it. The best gift I ever gave (besides my undying love) was when money was tight and I sold my skis to buy my husband a coat. I had quit work to be a stay at home mom and money was really tight.

  5. i don’t really care for flowers either, and if i do like them they are the nice 5.00 bunches i see at cash registers, we usually make hand made cards, and ever year i make a coupon cooklet for hubby and he just loves it! We do not go nuts with spending $ on valentin’es day it is just anoter day to us, but s everyday is special and we show our love for one another every day as it grows stronger and stornger.

  6. The best gift I ever got was from my mom! She used to blow me a kiss every day when I was in kindergarden and I would pretend to hide it in my pocket for later, then one day she gave me a little silver heart she said was a kiss ans put it in my jean pocket every day when I was little! A few years ago she dug it up and gave it to me:) The worst gift was seeing a guy I was dating out with another girl!!!!!….. I was all dolled up tho and nothing was going to ruin my night LOL

  7. Now that I’m all grown up I don’t appreciate flowers either. It drives me wild that they cost so much and they’re gone in a week. When I was a teenager my Dad would get me flowers on Valentines Day, it meant a lot to me then 🙂

  8. Great post! We really don’t overdo things for Valentine’s Day either. Last year, the hubs got me some local flowers, and it was fun to have tropical Caribbean flowers vs the typical roses. This year, I just asked him to cook me a nice dinner. He’s a great cook, but he doesn’t often get to do it due to school etc. 🙂

  9. Hubby and I will have a special home cooked meal and a nice chocolate dessert and we will probably go to a movie (courtesy of FREE tickets from General Mills). I am thinking those heart-shaped cinnamon rolls might be a lovely breakfast along with a hot cup of tea. After 24 1/2 years of marriage, we both understand that a good relationship is about more than roses and chocolates.

  10. Two years ago my husband brought me a potted rose, a favorite bottle of wine, and a book. Three gifts – but I tried to make it easy – it was my birthday, our anniversary, and valentines within 4 days! One celebration, not three.

    1. I was born on May 9. Every 7 years my birthday falls on Mother’s Day. Talk about getting ripped off in the Special days department. My family KNOW that forgetting is not optional and they try very hard to make it special in their clumsy, Mom usually does everything, sort of way. One year my daughter made me a cheesecake(in aluminum foil pans) – I loved it because it was the first cheesecake she ever made and it tasted great because of that.

  11. Very sweet, Mr. CBB. We don’t really do the commercial Valentine’s Day stuff. We will get some stuff for out daughter, but Dollar Store quality works fine for her. I’d rather go out on a not so busy night. You should show love to each other every day, not just on Valentine’s Day.

  12. I would kill my bf if he spent a lot of money on roses. I like flowers but I think they are super overpriced at Valentine’s day. In all honesty I’d rather have a plant so that I can enjoy it all year. Most of all the cards with little stories that the bf has written mean so much more to me then gifts.

  13. Well I can’t really think of the best gift I’ve ever given or received since I haven’t often celebrated Valentines Day but if it’s just the overall best gift it’s Adam. He is the best gift I’ve ever given and received 🙂

  14. Hmm…this year for valentines hubby will be cleaning the interior of my car….lol…..Its what i really want…..and i will be getting hubby a new pair of running shoes….as his last pair are a year old now and about to fall apart…:) We aren’t super romantic…..our idea of a romantic date…is a quiet night in with a bottle of wine and no screaming children 🙂

    1. What, you have him clean the interior of the car. I would surely think you would do an oil change on his vehicle hahah.. a pair of shoes don’t count.. labour for labour .. I’m laughing so hard! Hey, I won’t complain with a bottle of wine, magical that stuff can be 😉 enjoy your V-Day Joanne!! 🙂

  15. SO CHEESY! Haha. But really sweet. We aren’t big spenders for V-day either, but always manage to make it a memorable night. This year I named a star for him using a deal of the day coupon I received in an email. $9. Heck, yes. Just don’t tell him. It’s a surprise.

  16. I really like the idea of buying flowers for the garden come spring…. I love roses but I prefer that they have roots and actually smell like roses!!!! Ever take a sniff of the florist roses???? Not a nice smell…. I swear you can smell the chemicals used to grow them…. No thank you!!! The other ideas are cute! For the most part we have just gone the card route although one year I got some flannellette with teddy bears and hearts on it and made him a pair of boxers that I hid in his drawer…..He thought it was funny and enjoyed the warmth. One year I got to come home from hospital with our firstborn on Valentines Day, then 2 years later his sister was born on Good Friday(also April 1st) and 5 years later his brother was born on July 4…our Yankee Doodle Darlin’. See a trend here????? The kicker here… birthday…..Dec 25……..

  17. Best gift was my kids & Hubby,best gift given….hmm sent my Hubby to his fav. hockey team game,The Maple Leafs!!

  18. those pins are beautiful. I don’t have a very expressive BF but he is building a freaking house for me right now!! and dealing with tons of things to make my life easier so if that doesn’t scream I love you I don’t know what does.

  19. Best gift so far is my Engagement ring (means he wants to spend the rest of his life with me 😀 ) Best gift I have given is the donations over Christmas to a family of five who lost their whole house in a fire and clothing to the clothing bank.

  20. Good thoughts & ideas Mr. CBB! We budget for things like this throughout the year, but we don’t let the commercialism get to us or dictate our spending. We buy a little something for each other, but you’re right that each day is special. We tend to focus more on our anniversary in terms of spending. I find what really means the most is when I get here something I know she wants and also just simply spending time with her or doing things for her. That goes much further that just going out and buying roses.

    1. That’s why she loves me so much lol. I want to be her best guy ever and vice versa… it’s a great relationship. I clean, I cook, and we work as a team. Today I’m making Sun dried tomato bread for us for Valentine’s….

  21. This is great! I love all the tips on how to save money on an expensive day. We always try to do v-day as inexpressive as we can.

    1. Thanks Loretta,
      It’s more about being together and doing things together. Sometimes couples get so caught up with work and the outside world they forget about the reason they are in love… spending time together is a must.

  22. Looks like you found some winners on Pinterest! Did you know that the size of the domestic cut flower market has decreased rapidly? China has taken up growing them as a cash crop and they are dominating the market. A good friend in university grew up on a flower farm.

    1. Honestly that does not surprise me at all. I’ve never seen a flower farm before, that would be interesting. I just love flowers even know the original names, me mum taught me when I was young as UK is big on flowers as well.

  23. The best gift I ever received was my children and the best gift I have ever gotten was I would have to say was when i helped a family out christmas time by sponsoring them! 😀 TY!

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