Couple on a couch
Whether you have a lot of money or just a little, entertaining expert and author Allana Baroni shows us that with a little creativity, love actually is all around.
Love makes you high, baby, so why limit the buzz to just a few hours on Valentine's Day? I don't mean up your partner count (naughty!). Think boomerang effect—trade agonizing, overpriced gifts and fancy restaurant bills for personalized, romantic gestures given with sweet charity. Love and affection are universal, and you never need an excuse to be social, no matter what your romantic status. I hope these ideas inspire a few smiles.

Car Props
Public displays of affection are like romantic comedies: Yes, you cringe; yes, you secretly love it. Luckily, an announcement on the JumboTron isn't the only way to profess your love. Rewind to the happiest day of your life by decorating the car as if you were just married.

  • Grab lipstick, soap, shaving cream or liquid chalk and deface your windows with updated expressions of love: "Seven years, no itch!"
  • Print wedding photos on computer ink jet vinyl and stick them to windows
  • Plant mints in the glove box
  • Tie plastic bottles, streamers or old shoes to the bumper and take a spin around town
Then, spread the love by making donation to a marriage counseling service.

Small Is the New Big
Bring the love every day—or at least every week.

  • Deliver pizza for dinner in a sexy uniform
  • Sneak prizes and notes into his or her cereal box
  • Slip a sexy ring tone on his or her cell and assign it to your numberServe ice cream sundaes in bed—and don't forget the whipped cream!
Then, spread the love by volunteering together for your favorite charity.

Random Acts
Spread the love across your whole world.

  • Send a cupcake to the most abused person in your office
  • Walk your sick friend's dog
  • Volunteer at an animal shelter
  • Make some greeting cards for your local retirement home
  • Give way to other cars in traffic
Kiss Trap
Do you miss mistletoe 364 of the 365? Make a year-round kiss-on-demand substitute.
  • Grab a foam heart at the craft store
  • Decorate it with feathers and tie a card to it that reads "Kiss me now!"
  • Hang it anywhere you think it will be effective
Then, spread the love by volunteering together for your favorite charity.

Chocolate Tasting

Just like a wine tasting, only with chocolate. For extra love, make it a charity event.
  • Go on a safari to find unique chocolate—red chili-flavored, anyone?
  • Present your finds in jewelry boxes and glass frames
  • Encourage commentary ("a big, chewy, charming chocolate with great legs")
  • Feature a kissing booth, ever the favorite (a buck a kiss)
  • Add a lip balm buffet from scouring the 99-cent store
Then, spread the love by donating the money to your local food bank.

Girls' Night

Host a pajama and tiara party!

  • Enhance a deck of truth-or-dare cards with personalized challenges
  • Bring magazines and links to blogs and YouTube videos
  • Wigs and crazy makeup mandatory for embarrassing Facebook group photo
  • Shake up some fun cocktails

    Then, spread the love by making a donation from the group to a local women's shelter.

Spin the Bottle

Recycle this old bottle game by filling it with ideas for romantic fun.
  • Spray-paint an empty wine bottle so you can't see what's inside
  • Fill it with action cards ("take off an item of clothing!"), as sexy as you dare
  • Spin the bottle; the "winner" reads the card and follows the instructions
  • Make up new cards whenever you want
Then, spread the love by making a donation to your local recycling project.

Jar of Love

Fill a jar with sentimental, sappy, naughty objects that send a message. Here are some ideas:
  • Rubber band: For how flexible and understanding you are
  • Lucky penny: How lucky I was to find you
  • Lip balm: For all the making out we haven't done yet
  • Popcorn kernels: For how often you pop into my mind
  • Photo of you laughing that says, "You make me so happy"
  • Bandages: Because I trust you to help heal my boo-boos
  • Toothpick: I wouldn't pick anyone else
  • A Swiss Army knife with condoms tied to it: Because you're always prepared!
Then, spread the love by making a date to work at your local soup kitchen.

Cute Quickies
  • Retro-monogram: Carve your initials and a heart into a big tree in the backyard
  • Spoon party: Engrave a spoon with an anniversary date, then use it to spoon-feed your sweetie something sweet and sumptuous
  • Un-Christmas stockings: Surprise the family with heart-shaped pouches stuffed with toys, school supplies, stickers, cookies

Then, spread the love by volunteering on behalf of any charity that helps kids.

The bottom line is that romance, love, affection and kindness are more about heartfelt cleverness than accessing colossal cash flow. It's about the experience, not the expense! Now go out and spread the love, then tell us all about it!

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