Photograph by Sister72

Valentine’s Day. It can put quite a bit of pressure on a girl (or a guy) to live up to their partner’s romantic expectations. Cards, gifts, nights out… What’s expected and what’s too much? This year, I’m going to plead “green” and make it a DIY Valentine’s Day. Nothing bought, well nothing other than some organic food, and no commercial extravaganza pandered to.

I’m not quite sure what I’ll go with on the day, but here are some of my ideas for romantic gestures that don’t cost the earth.

The Caring Gesture
Nothing says “I love you” like a cup on tea in bed in the morning. My darling is up first in the morning and so I’m hoping that I’ll be sitting up in bed drinking lovely organic rooibos tea as Valentine’s Day dawns. My romantic gesture to him will be to get up straight after my cup of tea to cook him a lovely breakfast before he heads off to work.

The Crafty Gesture
Make something yourself to really put meaning into your gift. It’s easy to stop by the shop and buy a Valentine’s card and a bunch of flowers. It takes a lot more effort to make something individual and personal for your lover. I think that this Glass Bottle Oil Lamp (full details of how to make at Instructables) would make a great gift and would look perfect on the table at our Valentine’s Day meal.

The Earthy Gesture
I always prefer a living plant to a bunch of cut flowers. Here’s an idea for giving your beloved a tiny living reminder of your love to keep on the fridge door. Make a small magnetic plant pot from an old credit card and plant it with something small, like chickweed, from your garden, or your local park. Instructables tells you how to do this.

The Romantic Gesture
How do I love thee, let me count the ways… I’m not sure whether that quote is accurate, but you get the idea. Write poetry for your sweet to let them know just how you feel. If you’re like me and aren’t particularly poetic, don’t worry about rhyming or anything like that. It’s incredibly romantic to be given a love poem written just for you. Swoon!

The Sexy Gesture
Take erotic photographs of yourself for your sweetheart, just be careful about where you store the images.

The Fun Gesture
Go foraging! If you want to keep it a secret you could speak to your partner’s boss and arrange for them to have the day off on the quiet. Then arm yourself with a copy of Food for Free and head off (with a picnic, of course) to forage for Velvet shank mushrooms, tender new nettle growth, chickweed and Jack-by-the-hedge. Plan a romantic evening meal around your finds! Have a plan B for dinner just in case you don’t find much.

The Epicurean Gesture
This idea can go hand in hand with the foraging trip suggested above, or just put some effort into sourcing locally produced organic food that you can turn into a beautiful meal. This gesture will go down particularly well if you’re the one who doesn’t usually do the cooking.

All that’s left is for me to with you a very green Valentine’s day with your lover, and remember that it’s not about the stuff, it’s about showing how much you care.