Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Guys, plan now for a stress-free Valentine's Day

Guys, ignore this story at your peril

Rather than wait until Feb. 13, why not make plans now for a stress-free Valentine's Day?Sure, you laugh, it's not even February. Why should I worry about Valentine's? But you know it's coming, and she knows it's coming.

Ignore this advice if you want, fellas — let's face it, most of the burden of this holiday falls on men. But if we save even one procrastinator from sitting in a traffic jam at a grocery store waiting to buy roses on his way home Feb. 14, our mission will be a success.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

• FOUR-DAY GETAWAY: Valentine's Day is on a Tuesday. Now is the time to arrange time off from work and plan a minivacation to celebrate your love and, as a bonus, Abe Lincoln's birthday on Feb. 12.

• DINING: Make reservations now so you won't be sharing the holiday with Shaun and other undeads at Winchester pub. Kathryne Castellanos, Brennan's marketing director, says the restaurant already is booking for Valentine's Day and the Feb. 11-12 weekend. Wait till the week of Feb. 7 to make Valentine's reservations and you'll either be eating dinner at 5:30 p.m. or dining at Sonic.

• CARD: Design your own. Decorate it with photos, mementos (real or fabricated) and words that mean something to both of you. Or at least buy a card before the pickings are slim — just don't forget where you stash the card.

• FLOWERS: At many offices, the receiving of flowers is a big deal. You'll be the florist's friend if you place your order now. In addition, many florists offer discounts and guaranteed delivery times if you shop early, according to Lisa Crawford, owner of the Flower Corner shops. Or get a plant. Shop around for a decorative flower pot that fits your love's decor, whether it's unicorns, NASCAR or bunnies.

• EXTRAVAGANZA: This could be the year of the big gift. Leave a small gift — chocolates, love notes, cards — each day beginning Feb. 1, so she'll know you have something special planned for Valentine's Day. And the payoff better be good, because her friends will want to hear all the details Feb. 15.

• LOVE POEM: Write a love poem or recite one. Try memorizing Samuel Taylor Coleridge's Love. Coleridge's ode to Genevieve is very long, but you get to say: "bosom heaved," "blushed with love and virgin shame" and "wild and hoary."

• JEWELRY: Whether you want an engraved engagement ring or a name set in diamonds on a platinum chain, personalization takes extra time. Shop before the crowds jam up your favorite kiosk in the mall.

• BREAKUP: If you barely survived the holidays together and the thought of Feb. 14 makes you squeamish, break off the relationship now. It's the kind thing to do.Perhaps both of you will find someone Valentine's-Day-worthy before the big day.
Chron.com Guys, plan now for a stress-free Valentine's Day

No comments: