Valentine’s Day is on its way. Now, whether you’re into the whole Valentine’s Day or you think it’s just some commercialized thing, trust me, no matter if she says she doesn’t care about it, she does! If anything, it’s a day to help remind you of your loved ones. Not that you’ve forgotten, but maybe forgotten to pay as much attention as you should. Just remember all they do for you. The least we can do is treat them to that one special day. It’s doesn’t have to be expensive and it’s a nice thing to do!

Those that say it’s become too commercial, just can’t get past the vision of flowers, chocolates and cinnamon hearts. But sometimes we just need to think beyond the cinnamon hearts. If you’re only relying on Valentine’s Day to show your partner some affection, you got bigger problems. But this post isn’t just about Valentine’s. I wanted to share a little story of mine that’ll hopefully remind you of how sometimes, just like in our finances, it’s often the simple actions you take regularly that mean the most.

Here’s what I did and it didn’t cost me a dime

A few months ago I came up with a novel little idea. Let me explain. You see, everyone’s always saying they don’t have time for this or time for that, and we were saying the same thing. But you make time for things that are important to you. So what do you do when you have no time? You shift your schedule to make it work.

As first-time parents, we’ve got our hands full. We both work full days, come home, spend time with our little one until she’s ready for bed – usually around 8pm or so. Then what happens? Well, we’re both graphic designers (don’t judge the site by its theme) and keep freelance jobs on the side. So every night after our little one goes off to bed, we’re rushing in a few hours of work, just so we can rush through an hour of PVRed TV and hopefully squeak in a handful of hours of sleep.

That is until Friday comes. Friday nights we just refuse to do any work. It’s our resting time after a long week. It’s a little treat to ourselves. But it still has us zoning in front of the TV all night. It’s nice, but it doesn’t always feel like we’re spending as much time together. So I thought I’d try and see…

What would happened if we shifted our schedules?

A few months ago, I thought I’d try something different. Instead of eating dinner with our daughter, as we normally do, this time, after my daughter was fed and put to bed, we started OUR dinner. Yeah we were pretty hungry by then, but we ate our dinner uninterrupted. Without worrying about what my daughter was going to eat or not eat. We were spending time together. Talking, laughing, cooking together. We wined and dined. And then yes, we watched a movie and then we… The point is, we got a good chance to spend some good quality time with each other. And we’ve been doing this ever since. Yes we could go out to eat, but it’s not always easy, trying to find someone to babysit your kids.

But there it is, just a simple shift in schedules that didn’t take much more time and energy. Sometimes you’re constantly working, and the world spins around you at a hundred miles an hour and you almost forget what’s important and right in front of you. Sometimes you just need to get a little creative.

So put away those iPhones and “i”-whatever gadgets you may have and spend some quality “we” time.

email