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For the record, I do not believe that Valentine's Day is a Hallmark holiday.

Call me materialistic, but I will never condemn any day where I am showered with champagne, flowers and little candy hearts that acknowledge that I am indeed HOT STUFF, no matter how much money Hallmark makes off of it. But...when it comes to Vday shopping, the last place you'll find me is in a Hallmark store.

I, my friends, prefer to travel the Vday gift road less traveled, procuring gifts that are somewhat off the beaten path. Sure, flowers and chocolates are swell and dandy, but this year, surprise her with something she'll never expect and I promise you fellas, you'll be handsomely rewarded.

Here are a few choice ideas to get your creative juices flowing.
Heart shaped box of chocolates? Been there, gotten that.
A lovey dovey pair of candy elephants will show your lady that you're cute, you're quirky, and you'll never forget her.
Marzipan Elephants in Love, Dean & Deluca $24

Buying a gal a new handbag can be daunting. A cute red or pink wallet will show her that she's priceless.
*Extra credit if there's a gift card tucked inside to her favorite store.
Colorblock Leather Zip Wallet, Coach $168

Instead of treating her to Ryan Gosling's abs à la The Notebook on Blu-ray, treat her to an actual notebook, personalized with her name on it. Triple check that it's spelled right.
Love Stories Journal, Minted $16

Again, I have nothing against Hallmark, but I'll always have a soft spot for handcrafted cards. If you're artistically insecure about the state of your stick figures, give her a card featuring artwork drawn by a pediatric cancer patient.
It will warm her heart and the proceeds will help give back to kids living with cancer. Two gifts in one.
Puppy Love Greeting Card drawn by Alyssa from Corpus Christi, Texas, MD Anderson Center Children's Art Project $3.

Girls, wondering what to get your guy? Two words. Beer. Chocolate.
He'll love the perfect pairing of spicy chipotle chili peppered ale with a brick of bittersweet chocolate that will keep him feeling all manly. And, chocolate and hot peppers are both aphrodisiacs...just sayin'.
Rogue Ale's 22oz Chipotle Ale, Made in Oregon $6.75
Swiss Bittersweet Bar, Lindt Chocolate, $3.85

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Samara Sanchez

About Sammy

Sammy Sanchez is a Miami based freelance writer, greeting card designer, and self-professed USWeeklyholic. Sammy loves tall coffee light frappuccinos, vino not from a box, and Mark Ruffalo...not necessarily in that order.
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