I clicked over to a “Valentine’s Gifts for Him” list and it included items like socks, belts and sunglasses. I thought about Brad and the things he likes, but also the things he likes to receive. Sure, my husband likes to wear interesting socks.
Exhibit A: Hashtag Socks
But, I highly doubt my husband wants me to give him socks for Valentine’s Day. They don’t really say, “I love you,” in any manner that could be construed as romantic. “I love you, now cover your toes in argyle.”
So I thought about some of the things I think Brad would like (without any input from him) and made a list. Honestly, we don’t exchange Valentine’s Day gifts anymore, we cook an awesome dinner together and give each other cards. For the past few years, he’s brought me flowers at work but Valentine’s weekend (and Friday the 13th) are moving weekend so flowers would be in danger this year! (If you do flowers, give one fewer flower and donate that cost to save a kid), so this list isn’t extravagant.
1. Tickets. If your guy likes sports, get him tickets to see his team play. Send him to see he favorite band if music is his thing. Does he like cars? Get him tickets to a car show, Brad goes to the Cleveland Auto Show for his birthday each year. If he’s a movie buff, movie passes. You get my drift right? Just make sure not to get him tickets to see something you like and he doesn’t, I would never buy Brad tickets to see Swan Lake or some other musical because that’s not his thing.
2. Beer-related items. Don’t get him a 6-pack and call it a day, find something interested or unexpected. Things like vintage bar signs or a bottle opener from his favorite brewing company.
3. An experience with you. If you get your guy tickets to something, it doesn’t mean you have to go with him. Sometimes it means more if you set up a guys day for him (after Valentine’s Day of course). An experience for the two of you is another thing, like touring a brewery or something you’ve always talked about doing (sky diving, rock climbing, taking a CCW class, whatever).
4. If it must be clothes, it must be very unique/thoughtful/something they’ve mentioned. For Brad, that might be a cool t-shirt from CLE Clothing Co. Or in the case of my dad, I bought him a real bow tie (for his birthday, but still a gift example). Something you know he’d love but not buy for himself… in most cases that is not socks.
5. A cute inside joke. These types of gifts draw on something that’s unique between the two of you, something related to a nickname or a story you share.
6. Food. I consider whatever Valentine’s Day dessert I make to be a gift for Brad because I come up with something special based on things I know he likes. For example, last year I made dark chocolate peanut butter hearts. If your guy has a favorite candy or if he likes something that is hard to find.
7. A gadget or tech accessory. A new phone, smart watch, speaker, fitness tracker, something they may have had their eye on. Or an accessory for something they use, a new lens for his camera, an awesome set of head phones, the “swagger” gaming mouse that lights up.
8. Toys. Mind out of gutter now. Although related to idea #5, toys could include a variety of options. Nostalgia is always a good route, if he had fond memories of drawing on an Etch-a-Sketch or playing with Matchbox cars, those things can bring a smile to his face. Toys could also be something that feeds a hobby of his, a fun item for his beloved car or new discs for frolfing.
9. Manly accessories. I was hesitant to add this because guys are tricky when it comes to jewelry. Brad’s a watch guy and that’s pretty much it, but accessories could include cuff links or some other jewelry your guy might like. Maybe maybe a wallet, but it should have something in it like a picture of the two of you or tickets to something.
10. Your undivided attention. Put down your phone, ignore Facebook (or your blog) and spend some quality time with him.
Unless you’re 100% sure that he wants it, I would steer clear of any gift the makes him work such as tools or necessities like socks and underwear. Thoughtful is usually the best route for gift-giving.
What might you add?
Have you ever given or received a really awesome or really weird Valentine’s Day gift?