Originally created 02/13/01

Gifts for your valentine

Flowers wilting? Chocolate melting?

Wondering what to give your true love this year?

Why not try something a little different? In an attempt to help take the pressure off, the Xtreme Teen Board came up with suggestions for thoughtful, inexpensive gifts for Valentine's Day.

Most involved personalized gifts, such as creating a custom cassette tape or CD with your significant other's favorite romantic songs on it. Still others included spending quality time together instead of material gifts. Small but meaningful was the guideline - and meaningful doesn't have to mean expensive. (Remember, if it's personalized, it's not "cheap," it's "meaningful.") Don't make the gift generic - pay attention to things your true love likes.

Two suggestions for girls were bracelets: personalized, beaded bracelets and charm bracelets.

"They're simple, cheap, and you can keep adding to them," teen board member Emily Gray pointed out. "If you buy a charm bracelet, with a single charm on it for Valentine's Day, she can get more charms from anyone: friends, family."

Despite being a traditional gift, flowers weren't a particularly popular suggestion. If you do buy flowers, go for something other than red roses, board members suggested. Tulips and tiger lilies are popular, distinctive blooms that may not be as expensive.

If you want to make a grand romantic gesture, take a page from American Beauty - no, not that creepy video-camera idea. Try setting out illuminated candles on your sweetheart's front lawn in the shape of a heart - or even two interlocking hearts. Note: If you try this one, be careful not to set anything on fire.

Small gestures of affection are good bets. Have your boyfriend's car washed and detailed; prepare a picnic complete with sparkling cider in champagne glasses; or rent a classic love story on video. Good bets include Roman Holiday, Breakfast at Tiffany's, Love Story, Romeo and Juliet (the Franco Zefirelli version, not Baz Luhrman's), The African Queen and Funny Face. Or try more modern classics such as Say Anything, When Harry Met Sally, The Best Man, The Princess Bride or 10 Things I Hate About You.

Sweet and funny also is a good way to go.

"I asked her what kind of car she wanted - and then I got her a Matchbox 2000 Corvette," board member Michael Hammond said, while discussing Valentine's gifts from previous years. "And I gave it to her with a poem."

Reach Alisa DeMao at (706) 823-3223 or ademao@augustachronicle.com.


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