How The Grinch Stole Valentine’s Day??

Does your wife or girlfriend gently remind you about Valentine's Day any opportunity she can? My wife does too, so you are not alone. In fact, February 14th is a $20 million holiday of husbands, boyfriends, and secret admirers profess their love for some lucky lady, with the average person spending $150.


Is Valentine's Day A “Hallmark” Holiday?

I thought I would have a little fun with this post.  After all, how many holidays & festivities can a fictitious green creature steal while we sleep during the night?  One question I've always had is if Valentine's Day is a “Hallmark Holiday” that is a day popularized for corporate profits, etc.

There is actually a lengthy history to Valentine's Day that is celebrated in various ways across the globe.  In a nutshell, it actually started as a Christian holiday and slowly transformed into a romantic holiday beginning with the British poet Geoffrey Chaucer in the late 1300's.  Valentine's Day as we know it, got it's legs in England in the 1700's.

So after this exhaustive research (thank you Wikipedia), I can officially confirm that Valentine's Day is not a holiday invented in the 20th century.  So guys, myself included, it is okay to use this day to treat your wife special.  I don't understand the psychology of the opposite sex & their affinity for V Day, but do it out of love and not purely obligation.  Also make sure this isn't the only day of the year to treat your special lady.

How The Grinch Would Steal Valentine's Day

So if the Grinch could steal Valentine's Day, how would he & where would he begin?


Money Spent On Valentine's DayAmong adults, what is considered one of the most ubiquitous gifts on February 14th is a dozen roses.  It's estimated 1 of 4 men purchase flowers for their loved one.  I remember in high school being able to purchase various flowers that would be delivered to the homeroom of your lovely lady.  Next to big red hearts, red roses are the dictionary definition of Valentine's Day.  There are an estimated 250 million flowers, 200 millions of these are roses, sold for Valentine's Day.  It is the #1 holiday for florists.  About 73% of all flowers sold for Valentine's Day are purchased by men.

What does this mean?

Three words.  Supply and Demand.  A dozen roses can cost double this week of the year compared to the other 51 weeks out of the year.  I bought a couple individual stems once for my wife and I paid more this inflated rate.  So I personally haven't purchased roses for Valentine's Day since then.  Instead I try to buy smaller bouquets through the year for the same price I could buy 12 roses for.  I'm sure in the future I will buy some more roses (or a cheaper flower) on Valentine's Day, but not this year.

If roses are the keystone to your relationship or Valentine's traditions, then go ahead and do it.  My personal principle is to not pay inflated prices for any product because it's the cool thing to buy if I don't need it.

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I bought my wife a nice necklace for Valentine's Day when we dated.  She's not a big jewelry person, so I probably get off easy in this arena.  I view gifting jewelry on Valentines Day in two ways, (1) you play your cards wisely & romantically by giving your special someone a unique Christmas gift a mere 50 days earlier so you can surprise her on the 14th and/or (2) you are crazy in love & like to spoil her.

Being in love is a great feeling, but can lead to some interesting decisions.  Think of the crazy foods & activities that you were willing to try once upon a time, all in the name of love.  Let's focus on interesting financial decisions for a moment.  Jewelry can become an expensive commodity real quick!  All that glitters is gold & gold costs a lot of money. 😉

If you want to give the newest Pandora charm or earrings with her birthstone, it's best to be proactive & know what the going rate for such items is before the last-minute “Get Me Out Of The Dog House Valentine's Frenzy” begins.  Like roses, jewelry might appreciate in value for some unknown reason surround February 14th every year.


Money Spent On Valentine's DayWhen all fails for Valentine's Day ideas, you can never go wrong with a candlelight dinner (bonus points awarded for live music).  To make it more special, I personally like to stay-in & cook.  I'm good at making a few dishes but it takes me 30 minutes to accomplish what takes my wife 10 minutes.  So before I know it, cooking the meal turns into a duet.  Basically I find the recipe and get all the ingredients out of the cupboard & she cooks it up and makes the presentation look pretty.

That all being said, I will be taking my wife out.  It will just be to a simple restaurant that we normally don't go to.  We haven't made reservations (plus it's not in the budget this year), so I can tell you it won't be candlelight with a violin player.  But it will be enjoyable nonetheless, as it will double as our monthly date night.

So let's see if the Grinch can take that away from all of us in Whoville!!

Cards & Candies

Money Spent On Valentine's DayThese are the most common gifts.  Up to half of women will receive candy or a card as part of their special treatment on this day.  Who didn't enjoy making Valentine's boxes and exchanging cards in elementary school?  There is a whole variety of candies available to give to someone whether it's a loved one, classmate, or coworker.  I always like it because I can gift candy & other tasty junk food that we do not buy the rest of the year.  She gets to eat most of it, but I'm always more than eager to “taste test” to make sure it isn't poisonous.

Regarding cards, I try to make handmade ones whenever I remember too.  I'm by no means artistic (unless you consider stick figures cool), so my cards are more comedic than masterful.  But it's the thought that counts.  That's what I'm told at least.

So I try not to do the same thing all the time when it comes to gifts & candies.  To avoid predictability.  One fun part of Valentine's Day, is the element of surprise.  I don't want February 14th to be a rote tradition.  I cannot escape observing February 14th, so surprises are a way to keep it new.

Pet Goodies

Money Spent On Valentine's DayThis is increasing in popularity.  It didn't even cross my mind until I saw the local news talk about it this morning.  Approximately 20% of pet owners will buy a gift for their furry friend.  I don't think the Grinch would be opposed to this, he has a canine helper after all.  But being who he is, he will wait for the Whovillians to go to be to steal the Valentine's gifts of the Who dogs.

Are You A Grinch?

Reading this, are you thinking you might be a Valentine's Grinch?  I do to a certain extent.  I don't want to be known as stingy on Valentine's Day.  Although I'm not going to spend anywhere near the $150 that the average person is estimated to spend on their loved one, I will do my best to make my wife feel more special than usual on this day.

Just as the Grinch realized the true meaning of Christmas (Hint: Not Material Goods), he also realizes the true meaning of Valentine's Day.  It is a day to show your adoration & love for the person that makes your heart tick or keeps you on the straight path.

So on this February 14th, buy or make her something special & at the very minimum tell her you love her.  That doesn't require $150.

What Are Your Valentine's Day Plans?  Have You Been A Grinch In The Past?

Thanks For Reading,




Josh founded Money Buffalo in 2015 to help people get out of debt and make smart financial decisions. He is currently a full-time personal finance writer with work featured in Forbes Advisor, Fox Business, and Credible.