Unique Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas for Her

Valentine’s Day has been celebrated here in the United States for over 300 years. It’s a popular and happy holiday, particularly for couples who are romantically inclined. However, it can also be stressful. People often feel pressured on Valentine’s Day to find a way to adequately express the depth of the affection they feel. As a result, you may end up spending a lot of money searching for something unique to buy, something different to do, or something impressive enough to demonstrate just how much you love and appreciate your special person.

While I would certainly not recommend waiting to the last minute to think about the Valentine’s Day gift you want to give, nor would I recommend using your local supermarket for a store bought card and plastic wrapped roses, I can say with confidence that you can find small and sweet ways to acknowledge the subject of your adoration that will carry just as much meaning as a grand gesture.

There are two key guidelines to follow when looking for unique Valentine’s Day gift ideas for her:

  1. Make it personal
  2. Put in a little effort

When your gift reflects her individual tastes and preferences, you are telling her how intimately you know her. And when your gift shows that you had to put in time and thought, you are telling her how much you care. This is what romance is all about – it’s not about the money.

Classic Gifts With A Twist

Red roses, chocolate-covered strawberries, champagne and sexy lingerie have become rather predictable gifts for Valentine’s Day and while they are sure bets, they are also fairly banal so don’t make the cut for unique Valentine’s Day gift ideas for her. Why not play a bit with the classic ideas?

FLOWERS: For example, instead of sending roses, get her favorite flowers instead. These days, our access to flowers is not confined to the seasons so that’s no excuse. Spring flowers such as tulips and hyacinths are readily available and can be the harbinger of warmer weather and bluer skies. Of course, if you don’t know her favorite flower…. well, you should!

CHOCOLATES: Sweets are a lovely Valentine’s Day gift for her, but there’s no need to be restricted by the ubiquitous chocolate-covered strawberries. A little research on the web will reveal all kinds of fun and unusual chocolates to treat her with. When she opens our precious “jewelry box” of bonbons, she will behold an array of shiny “gemstones” that are as beautiful to look at as they are delectable to eat.

Our one-of-a-kind French bulldog chocolates are an adorable and unique Valentine’s Day gift for her and you can’t beat the charming packaging.

The old-fashioned “conversation” hearts can be a nostalgic Valentine’s Day sweet gift for her. Pair it with a Victorian-era Valentine’s Day card asking her to “Be Mine” and some tea roses that looked like you picked them from Grandma’s garden, and you have a very traditional gift with an old-time feel that makes it seem fresh again!

LINGERIE: Instead of lingerie, think about something else in a sexy, satiny fabric. How about a silk blouse in a bright ruby red, sapphire blue or emerald green? Be sure to get the size right! If you don’t want to splurge on satin sheets, satin pillowcases are a real treat and women like them because they help keep our hair in place while we sleep. Besides, they feel wonderful against the skin.

CHAMPAGNE: Champagne is very festive, but maybe it’s not her preferred drink. Think about gathering the ingredients to make her favorite specialty cocktail, or visit a local distillery where they are making artisanal gins and whiskeys and enjoy an afternoon of tastings. Remember, it’s not about giving a gift that the holiday dictates: it’s about giving a Valentine’s Day gift that is personal to her.

Surprises Big and Small

Organizing a surprise definitely takes time and effort and if your sweetheart likes spontaneity, then this could be the perfect way to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Surprises can come in lots of packages. There is, of course, the grand display: tell her to pack a weekend bag, pick her up at work and go to the airport headed to Paris, Milan or Reykyavik! But there are many ways to surprise and delight that are more modest.

For example, what does she do every day? Let that guide your gifts. You could present her with a Starbucks card (or put the app on her phone and hook it to your account for a week or months worth of morning coffees), or get her a subscription to a wine of the month club. Gifts that give more than once are truly memorable.

Show her you love her by doing some of the chores she does every day: make the bed; clean the kitchen; take out the recycling; plan, shop and prepare a nice meal; walk the dog; pick the kids up from school, etc.  Gifts like these take effort on your part, and give her the precious gift of time. She can choose how she wants to spend it.

Leave little hand-written love notes where she will find them all day long on Valentine’s Day. Put one in her wallet, in her briefcase, on the bathroom mirror, in the fridge, in her lunch bag, in her underwear drawer, in the car, on the alarm clock in the morning, etc. Anywhere she will discover them through-out the day. You’ll be reminding her multiple times how much she means to you. And isn’t that the point of a Valentine’s Day gift?

Take it Public

Valentine’s Day gifts for her are often shared in private. Why not make a statement with a public display of your affection? Send a gift to her at work. This will surprise her and bring attention from her co-workers. Go to her work and take her out to lunch. Kiss her in public. Hold hands while you walk.

Do something she enjoys with her. Take her to her favorite store and participate in the shopping experience, whether it is testing perfumes, looking at jewelry, or trying on clothes for example. How about getting side-by-side pedicures and manicures? Sign the two of you up for a wine tasting class, or a cooking class, or a lecture at the museum, or a sporting event. One year, Jehv came to an exercise class of mine and it was hysterical watching him as he tried to keep up with the tough work out. He is very physically fit, mind you, and he never had much respect for what he perceived as the “girlie” gym classes I went to. But after taking this class with me he was rather chagrined and he let me know how much he admired my strength and stamina.

Tell her why you love her

Although the meaning of red roses and other Valentine’s Day gifts may be readily apparent don’t miss the opportunity to use your words! Make it personal if you can. If you do give her a card, take a little time to write something yourself. Although the card will hold the sentiment, to make it personal it needs your own touch. You can never go wrong if you simply tell her why you love her.

Note that while the focus of this post is on unique Valentine’s Day gifts for women, many if not most of my ideas can easily be translated into unique Valentine’s Day gifts for men. This holiday is traditionally about gifts for her, but why be mired in convention? Believe me, your guy will be thrilled to be acknowledged on Valentine’s Day. Remember, the same guidelines apply: make it personal, and put in a little effort. Happy Valentine’s Day to all!

How Well Do You Know Peanuts?

Before you eat another peanut, test your knowledge by taking this quick quiz and learn something in the process!

Whether you’re The Nutty Professor or Nut Job, almost everybody loves peanut butter, right? But people tend to be very particular about how they like to eat it

We surveyed our Manhattan Fruitier family to see how much variation we would find when we asked the question:

“How do you like your peanut butter sandwich?”

The first big surprise was that one person hates peanut butter! Another surprise was that quite a few of us liked it the same simple way: on two slices of bread with either grape jelly or strawberry jam, although people were quite specific in their preference for chunky/crunchy versus smooth/creamy.

A few of us gave quite detailed descriptions:

– On whole grain bread, smash a banana on it and cover with crunchy peanut butter and a pinch of salt, then put the whole thing in the toaster oven.

– Butter a single slice of toasted white bread and spread smooth peanut butter and mixed berry jam on top. Must have it with a glass of tomato juice.

– Only eats peanut butter (crunchy) on celery sticks.

– Lots of chunky peanut butter, lots of grape jelly on  untoasted white bread. The peanut butter has to be spread all the way to the very edge of the bread and the peanut butter and jelly has to be on both  slices of  bread.

– Open-faced on multi-grain toasted bread with smooth peanut butter, sliced banana and drizzled with honey.

How do you prefer your peanut butter sandwich?

6 Distinctive Gifts for Mothers of Every Kind

This Mother’s Day, surprise and impress with a gift that is beautiful, elegant and exceptional—just like Mom. Manhattan Fruitier offers Mother’s Day gifts suitable for all different types of mothers.

For the Early Riser

Early Bird Breakfast

This is the mother who rises with the sun to enjoy a healthy breakfast in the dawn of the new day. While we cannot promise a beautiful sunrise, we can surely supply the breakfast with our appropriately-titled Early Bird Breakfast Basket, so named for the included granola from Early Bird Foods of Brooklyn, NY. Also in this gift: walnut bread, peach preserves, Clementine juice and a rose with vase. This is a breakfast to cherish for the mother you cherish. Continue reading

Meet our Maker of the Month: Harbor Sweets

Doug ad Phyllis.jpg
Doug Burritt, National Representative and Phyllis B. LeBlanc, Owner and CEO of the most wonderful
Chocolate factory in New England, Harbor Sweets.

Over the past 27 years Manhattan Fruitier has been passionately seeking the best products to fill our gift baskets – the freshest of fruit, the most fragrant of flowers, and of course, the most phenomenal chocolate we can find.  Since Day One, we’ve proudly placed Harbor Sweets chocolates in our baskets and we are eager to send our thanks and appreciation as this Salem, Massachusetts company celebrates its 40th year. We think they are wonderful– not just for their chocolates but also for their commitment to charitable giving.

Harbor Sweets has a few sweet stories we’d like to share with you.  After all these years of partnering with Harbor Sweets, we decided spring is just the right time for a personal visit up the coast to Salem. We got to see first-hand how their Sweet Sloops chocolates and the Easter Rabbits we feature are created and to meet the chocolatiers we’ve admired over our many years together. Continue reading

When is a Berry Not a Berry?… When It’s a Straw-berry!

Strawberries in season summer - June - August

Strawberry season extends from June to mid-August and now that summer has hit its peak, it’s fun to share the sheer uniqueness of one of the world’s favorite fruits. The beautiful, fragrant and healthy strawberry is more unusual than you would think.

Unlike true berries, like blueberries and cranberries that hide their seeds inside, the strawberry is the only fruit in the world that shows its seeds on the outside.  These little yellow ‘seeds’, about 200 of which adorn one strawberry, are actually separate tiny fruits themselves and known as “achenes” (ah-keens). The achenes contain the actual seed of the strawberry and they’re packed with bountiful nutrition and antioxidants.

Continue reading