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Heart Stoppers: 3 Gifts and 3 Dates for Your Valentine

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Heart Stoppers: 3 Gifts and 3 Dates for Your Valentine


It’s that time of year, everybody—Valentine’s Day. Some of us are spending it alone, and some with a partner. But Valentine’s Day is all about that second category– and I know how difficult it is to pull off a successful date or gift. It must be one with a lot of thought behind it that shows how much you care and love your partner. Sometimes, those gifts are the crux of your relationship– something created out of your creativity and love for your love. But– it can be tricky to find that “special” idea– it’s a good thing I’m here to help! With three gift ideas and three date ideas, you’re sure to find something to use this Valentine’s Day.

Gift #1: Burn a CD

If your partner is a big fan of music– there are plenty of those around– a custom CD will make a good impression! All you’ll need is a blank CD– you can get those at Walmart or any other big box store– and a CD burner, which is common in and around town. Professors probably have some, and by poking around, you can usually find some burners. Using iTunes or any other music source, you can download music, which is usually for a dollar a song, and burn it onto the CD. Download music that speaks to your relationship– either songs that you both listen to together, songs that remind you of them, or songs that describe the story of your relationship.! If you want extra points, make a custom CD case. Use an old CD, or buy one from a thrift store. – you can easily strip out all the paper from inside, and by measuring the old papers, you can make your own cover! Cardstock tends to work best. If you’re artistic, you can draw designs on and name the album. Try designing graphics for a cover if you’re better at Photoshop and digital design tools. Whichever way you make it, it is bound to be perfect, and I’m confident your loved one will agree!

Gift #2: Yearbook/Scrapbook

A yearbook is a good idea if you and your partner have been together for a year or longer! Like the ones we got in high school– it could just be recapping the year, using old photos, memories, and events to fill out the pages. While this may seem complicated, you can easily make it! Shutterfly has numerous services to create different books in different styles. It’s  similar to Google Slides or Canva, so the interface is familiar. You can also use numerous design studios to create your cover and styles. If this feels overwhelming, try a scrapbook instead. You can buy these from any craft hobby store– Michaels, JoAnn’s, Hobby Lobby, and other local ones. Stop by Walgreens or another store to print photos to stick in the book. If you have any little artifacts from your relationship: ticket stubs, bracelets, polaroids, or hair ties, that will also be helpful to stick in there.

Gift #3:  Drawings, Paintings and Crafts, Oh My!

For a much quicker present, turn to the creative fields! Usually, the best gifts involve using skills you’re proficient at to make a much more personalized gift. For those withartistic talent (in painting, sketching, sculpting, sewing, etc), making a creation is a great way to show thought! I’ve seen bracelets made, drawings of photos of the couple together, paintings of playing cards or tarot cards of the couple, plenty of different things! When you let your creativity flow, there isn’t a bad idea.

Date #1: The Georgetown Square

For Valentine’s Day, there can be no better date for Southwestern students than going to Georgetown Square! This hallmark of our town features plenty of local businesses, stores, restaurants, and museums. Grab a bite to eat at 600 Degrees Pizzaand stop by one of the numerous ice cream stops around, including the Baked Bear, All Things Kids, or Kilwins.You can visit plenty of shops to duck your head in with a loved one! Even if you don’t have a car, it’s within walking distance of campus. Just remember to pack some good shoes!

Date #2: FJS Movie Night

The movie night is a practice perfected by my friends and me, but it can easily apply to a date night! Be sure to bring a laptop with an HDMI port, have a romantic movie rented or bought, and some snacks. Head to FJS (or any other classroom space, but FJS has the best projectors and seats), go into an empty classroom, hook up your laptop to the HDMI cables, drop down the screen, and turn on the projector. Now you have your very own free movie theater to enjoy with your sweetheart! Remember to leave the room how you found it, and return all furniture and equipment to their rightful place.

Date #3: Cooking

Even though many dorms don’t have a public kitchen (looking at you, Ruter), many at Southwestern do, or even a kitchen in the apartment, which makes the date all the nicer! Pick a favorite recipe of your partner’s and surprise them with it, then make the meal together! This method will require some ingredients, so if you don’t have a car available, try to goad a friend into dragging you to H-E-B. After making the meal together with love, enjoy it! Make a dessert afterward for good measure. To wrap up the night, watch a TV show you both like or play a game– the opportunities are limitless!

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