Looking for Non-Candy Valentines Gifts for the Kids? #Ideas

Looking for fun Valentines Day toys and games for the kiddos? Since we are stuck indoors (too cold to be outside for long, and the pandemic is keeping us from being out and about), you’ll want to have boredom busters. Not to mention, no way you’d want to fill the kids up with candy when they can’t burn off all the sugar, haha. CHeck out these fun finds, you are sure to find something you will love.

ARTS & CRAFTS

iLY Pura Loom Bracelet Maker from WeCool Toys

Making beautiful friendship bracelets doesn’t have to be difficult! The new iLY Pura Loom Bracelet Maker by Activity Kings is the easiest way to make the most beautiful and trendy friendship bracelets! Learn different techniques to make a variety of textured and colorful bracelets for you and your friends! Create colorful twisted designs with beads, charms & more! It’s easy to create, wear, and share with your BFF! The combinations are endless, the only limit is your imagination! Ages 6+, MSRP $19.99.

STEM/SCREEN FREE EDUCATION

Smarty PAD™

The new Smarty PAD™ interactive LED tablet gives preschoolers and kindergarteners a new way to play and learn with 12 smart games and age-appropriate curriculum. Motion sensors give the lightweight tablet an innovative spin, encouraging unique sensory play. Smarty PAD™ speaks in both English and Spanish as kids play with colors, patterns, ABCs, and numbers up to 25. Smarty PAD™ teaches phonics, language, early math, and beginning coding, nurturing small motor development and critical thinking. Positive reinforcement, helpful encouragement, and over 100 different responses keep kids engaged every time they play. Ideal for kids 3 to 6 years old. MSRP: $34.99.

Smarty JOJO™

The Smarty JOJO™ is a super-charged interactive airplane that gets high-energy preschoolers learning on the go. Motion sensors encourage physical activity while JOJO teaches directions, shapes, colors and opposites. JOJO’s kidspeak conversation also nurtures emotional intelligence, calling out feelings and helping kids recognize their own emotions. Bi-lingual JOJO speaks in English or Spanish. The newest SMART technology enables JOJO to identify colors. “Can you find something blue?” “Yes, you can!” Over 150 random actions and reactions make the experience different every time a child plays!  Ideal for kids 2 to 4 years old and $24.99.

Smarty FLUTTER™

Flycatcher’s Smarty FLUTTER™ learning toy teaches preschoolers on-the-go as they fly through a room or a yard. Smart Technology identifies colors, and kidspeak conversation calls out feelings, helping kids recognize their own emotions. Fun missions teach right and left directions, shapes, and opposites. Motion sensors encourage active physical play. Over 150 random actions and reactions make the experience different every time a child plays. Smarty Flutter™ also speaks in both English and Spanish. Ideal for kids 2 to 4 years old and $24.99.

STRESS FREE TACTILE FUN

Insta Studio Hands-Free Video Station from WeCool Toys

The new Insta Studio by WeCool Toys has everything one needs to shoot their very own viral videos. Equipped with an adjustable base and rotating head to shoot at the best angle possible, this device allows kids of all ages to shoot viral videos hands free! Kids can use their Insta Studio to shoot all types of videos. From cooking, crafting, and sliming, children have the freedom to create fun videos. Includes fun and trendy backgrounds, mixing tools, various slimy compounds, and sparkly mix ins! The only limit is your imagination. $19.99, 4 and up.

Angry Putty from Crazy Aaron’s

Turn your frustration into fun! Angry Putty™ features a unique formula that builds resistance as you play. This amazing putty actually absorbs your tension— getting tenser and tenser with each stretch—to leave you feeling happy and relaxed. The line includes three skus’, Hot Head, Stress Ball, and Drama Queen.

scenty putty

Holiday SCENTsory from Crazy Aaron’s

Cozy up with these four delectable holiday scents featuring fun SCENTsory texture that will joy to anyone’s world. The line includes two skus’, 4” Jingle and 4” North Pole. MSRP $3.50

Vibes SCENTsory Putty from Crazy Aaron’s

Vibes SCENTsory® putty is great for gamers, all-night study sessions, and anyone who is craving a little more intensity from their SCENTsory® experience. This collection features bright colors and bold scents that are perfect for powering up. The line includes Jam Session, Flower Power, Crunch Time.

Mixed by Me kits from Crazy Aaron’s

Mix up your very own custom-colored Thinking Putty! Each kit includes 5 tins of clear putty, 3 color concentrates, 3 special effects, and an instructional mat—everything you’ll need to make cool colors that are all your own! You can even use the included colored pencils to decorate your tins to match. Two sets to choose from, Holographic and Glow in the Dark.

SUSTAINABILITY

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Shore Buddies Plush Line

Shore Buddies stuffed animals collection are made from 100% recycled plastic bottles. The bottles are collected and sorted by recyclable collectors before cleaned and shredded into plastic flakes. Some of these flakes are used for the Shore Buddies’ stuffing, others get melted and turned into polyester yarn for the soft outside. It takes six plastic bottles to make one 12″ stuffed animal and the line features a fun array of characters including Sammy the Seal, Stephen Seagull, Shelly the Sea Turtle, Emma the Whale and Finn the Dolphin. Each of the five Shore Buddies also has its own unique authentic sound when pressed. All ages MSRP 19.95

Cargo Plane from Green Toys

All systems go! The Green Toys™ Cargo Plane is filled with freight and ready to take flight! This bright yellow and blue flier features a three-wheel design and handle on the body, so little pilots can easily go from taxiing on the ground to soaring in the sky on an eco-friendly adventure. Access the spacious cargo hold through a flip-down door that doubles as a ramp, perfect for loading up the included Green Toys™ Mini Car or anything else imaginations want to stow away. Great for indoor and outdoor play, the super-safe design has no metal axels or exterior paints or coatings. Made in the USA from 100% recycled plastic with no BPA, phthalates, or PVC. Packaged with recycled and recyclable materials printed with eco-friendly inks. For ages 3 and up. MSRP $19.99.

Green Toys™ Disney Baby® Mickey Mouse Stacker

The Green Toys™ Disney Baby® Mickey Mouse Stacker takes a classic toy and makes it safer and more playful, with no sharp edges, small parts, or interlocking pieces that can pinch fingers and an adorable Mickey Mouse-themed topper and base. The seven brightly colored red, blue, and yellow nesting pieces stack easily from large to small, while also allowing children to use their imagination and stack in any order. This eliminates frustration when they’re little, and leaves room for learning and improvement as they grow. The set is designed with no center post, making it a perfect first stacking toy for babies. With this toy, babies and toddlers can gain practice in important developmental areas, including but not limited to motor skills, coordination, categorization and sorting, problem solving, spatial reasoning, and color identification. Like all Green Toys™ Disney Baby® products, the Mickey Mouse Stacker meets FDA standards for food contact and is dishwasher safe, making it safe for teething babies to put in their mouths. It’s made in the USA from 100% recycled plastic and free from external coatings, eliminating the fear of toxins and lead paint. No BPA, phthalates, or PVC. Packaged using only recycled and recyclable materials printed with environmentally responsible inks. Recommended for ages 6 months and up.

ACTIVE PLAY

Mobo Explorer Balance Bike

With the Mobo Explorer Balance Bike kids can experience the thrill of riding California freestyle with the security of having two feet on the ground. As your child masters the use of the explorer you will see them go from small steps to riding with ease. With its multiple safety pads and extended frame your child will be extra safe while learning. The cushioned premium seat accommodates children 2-6 years old. The included two seat posts accommodate most kid sizes! As your child builds strength, balance and confidence they’ll have a blast using the integrated footrest to roll in style. With never-flat tires your child will have many years of maintenance free fun. The sturdy frame and optimized geometry makes it stable and easy to handle. A child’s first bike encourages their sense of freedom, curiosity and wonder. Let them experience that feeling in style and safety with the Mobo Explorer Balance Bike. MSRP $89.00.

BOOKS

Guion the Lion

Guion The Lion is a new children’s book that celebrates the differences in all children through a colorful and exciting journey. The book, which follows the adventures of an imaginative little lion who sees things a little differently from his friends, was penned by mother, entrepreneur and author Rebecca Wilson Macsovits and inspired by her three children including Guion, her oldest son who also has Down syndrome. Full of whimsical delights, discoveries and beautiful watercolor illustrations, this book teaches children that appreciating individual differences and embracing others’ ideas can lead to unimaginable adventures and endless fun. Guion The Lion is available now via Amazon and online at www.Guionthelion.com. MSRP $17.99.

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DOLLS

I’M A GIRLY

I’M A GIRLY fashion dolls encourage children to play creatively and help them find their very own style. All dolls are co-designed by the brand’s own kid design team, KIDS4KIDS. The design panel, made up of 8 to 14-year-old boys and girls, tells the brand exactly how the products should look. Kids can customize a doll just for them with more than 150 accessories, interchangeable wigs in many colors, and dolls with different skin tones. I’M A GIRLY fashion dolls are made of 100% high-quality vinyl. The hair can be styled and combed in various ways, thanks to the procurement of first-class Kanekalon. Kanekalon is a material used for the production of adult wigs. For the first time, one can even cut the doll’s hair and simply exchange the wig afterwards. The packaging is made of recyclable materials and can be used as well to store the fashion doll or for crafting.

RELATIONSHIP GAMES

Fog of Love – from Hush Hush Projects

Learn How To Play Here

Playing Fog of Love is like starring in a romantic comedy, it’s a rollercoaster ride of awkward situations, laugh out loud moments and difficult compromises you have to make. Two players will create and play two vivid characters who meet, fall in love and face the challenge of making an unusual relationship work. Just like in a real relationship, you each might want different things. Do you stay true to yourself, or do what your partner wants for the good of the relationship? You can even decide to break their heart. There’s no guarantee it will end happily ever after, but you will always get a story full of surprises that will make you smile. Available at Amazon.com, Walmart.com, and Barnes & Noble. Learn how to play Here. Suitable for players ages 18 and up, MSRP: $50.

INTERGENERATIONAL GAMES/RELATIONSHIP GAMES

What’s Wrong with Grown-Ups? – from Authentic Agility Games

Learn How To Play Here

How often have you wished that your teen would stop playing video games, sending friends videos you can only hope are appropriate, and going out, and instead, share what they’re thinking… with you? What’s Wrong with Grown-Ups?, a new intergenerational card game from Authentic Agility Games, can help. A fun way to engage kids of all ages, the 500-question card game creates an open two-way dialog that allows you to make new connections and deepen your bond. They may think you’re cool — for a few minutes. Authentic Agility Games donates a portion of proceeds from your purchase to organizations advancing education and entrepreneurship. Available now on Amazon. MSRP: $24.99, all ages.

STRATEGY GAMES

Sagrada – from Floodgate Games

Click Here

Learn How To Play Here

As a skilled artisan, you will use tools-of-the-trade and careful planning to construct a stained glass window masterpiece in the Sagrada Familia. Players will take turns drafting glass pieces, represented by dice; carefully choosing where to place each one in their window. Windows have unique color and shade requirements, and similar dice may never be adjacent so placing each die is more challenging than the last. Fortunately, you’ll have just the right tools to help you through. Gain prestige by adapting to the preferences of your fickle admirers, and of course, by adding your own artistic flair while completing your glass masterpiece in Sagrada. Available now at Amazon, Target, Barnes & Noble, Hobby Game Stores. Suitable for players ages 6 and up, MSRP $39.95

Holi: Festival of Colors – from Floodgate Games

Every spring, celebrants gather to spread color and cheer during one of India’s most vibrant festivals. Move around the festival grounds throwing colored “gulaal” powder onto your friends and the crowd. Aim higher and let your color fall from above on as many people as you can. For Holi is a time for playful mischief and a little friendly rivalry is just what the festival calls for… Playing Holi In Holi [hoh-lee], players gain joy by throwing color on the boards (higher levels are worth more points), getting color on others, and from collecting sweets. Play your color cards cleverly, climb up at the right time, and spread the most joy! Available, November 10, 2020 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Hobby Game Stores. Suitable for players ages 13 and up. MSRP $39.95

Click Here

Prisma Arena – from Hub Games

Begin your training as a Guardian of Hope in this fun, tactical, all-ages game of over-the-top arena combat. Spar alongside Mo’kon – friendly creatures that embody emotions. As you train, customize your hero with unique powers and costumes that reflect YOUR unique personality and play-style. Suitable for players ages 10 and up. MSRP: $40.00

MEMORY GAMES

Flip Over Frog – from Hub Games

Help your brightly colored frogs take control of your tiny corner of the rainforest. Pay attention and cleverly place your frog tiles, causing those around you to flip face down OR face up. When all squares are occupied, the game ends and the player with the most face-up frogs is the winner. Suitable for all ages, Flip Over Frog packs a surprisingly tactical area control game into a small portable box. Suitable for players ages 6 and up. MSRP: $15.00 alentin

No ReGifting Required for Carven Dans Ma Bulle

Happy Valentine’s Day to myself! I am a Carven girl and I am in love with Dans Ma Bulle perfume.  Sophisticated and edgy, this sensual perfume passed my “waft test” with flying colors.  What is the “waft test?” It’s when you walk by someone and they do a u-turn to share how great you smell!  This happened to me not one, but two times the first day I wore Dans Ma Bulle. My coworker even followed me back to my desk so that I could show her where to find it! I mean you can’t go wrong with this perfume that lures you in with top notes of litchi rose, mandarin orange and peony … and then whack ‘em … captures you with its base notes of vanilla, sandalwood and Patchouli!

Carven Dans Ma Bulle can definitely be a staple in your perfume collection. It’s a great scent for busy mothers, college girls, and professional women.

Carven Dans Ma Bulle ($120.00 – Bloomingdales – Fall 2018)

 

Kate Spade’s In Full Bloom Perfume is a Winner

I just love Kate Spade’s perfume bottle designs.  Even if you do not care for the scent the bottle may serve as a beautiful work of art.  However, Kate Spade In Full Bloom is more than just a pretty bottle … it is in your face bold to the tenth power! If I spray a little perfume on my wrist and the scent gets not one … not two … but FIVE back to back sniffs and an emmmmm, I consider this perfume is a winner. In Full Bloom is a Winner!

In Full Bloom is the perfect name and description of this confident, fresh and scent.  The perfume reminds me of the time I visited St. Louis’s Missouri Botanical Garden while its impressive rose garden was in full bloom. The perfume draws you in to explore its notes of lemon, green tea, peach and lotus flower. This Kate Spade perfume commands and receives attention.  The perfume does lack all day staying power, so you may need to reapply.

Kate Spade New York In Full Bloom ($98 – Ulta.com – Spring 2018)

 

CHAMILIA INTRODUCES ‘LOVES ME, LOVES ME NOT’ COLLECTION

This season, Chamilia (www.chamilia.com), a Swarovski company, is introducing “Loves Me, Loves Me Not,” a collection of five new charms, two earrings, and one bracelet that celebrates winter’s transition into spring. The entire Chamilia line is made from sterling silver, 14 karat gold, or Chamilia Blush and features genuine Swarovski Crystals and Swarovski Zirconia. The brand follows strict Swarovski guidelines for quality and aesthetic standards.
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“Our hearts are ready for a thaw at this time in the northern hemisphere, and so sunny flowers are in order,” said Kristin Coaker, Head of Merchandising and Brand Communications for Chamilia. “As the weather makes up its mind, we also wanted to celebrate the charmingly undecided in all of us with this collection.”

Items in Chamilia’s new “Loves Me, Loves Me Not” collection include:

  • Daisy Heart Charm—This heart-shaped sterling silver bead charm features transparent pink enamel daisy detailing (MSRP $35 U.S.).
  • Starry Hearts Charm—This round sterling silver bead charm with 14 karat yellow gold electroplating is set with multicolored Swarovski Pure Brilliance Zirconia accents in a daisy pattern (MSRP $50 U.S.).
  • Stained Glass Crystal Accent Charm—This bold accent charm features marquis-shaped fuchsia Swarovski crystals and round metallic sunshine Swarovski crystals (MSRP $55 U.S.).
  • Daisy Silhouette Charm—This daisy-shaped sterling silver charm features 14 karat yellow gold accents and amethyst Swarovski crystals at its center (MSRP $45 U.S.).
  • Heart Lock and Key Charm Set—This vintage-inspired charm set features a sterling silver hanging key charm and heart charm that can be worn together or separately; both are electroplated in 14 karat yellow gold and feature daisy-shaped cutouts with amethyst Swarovski crystals at their centers (MSRP $60 U.S.).
  • Chamilia Oval Snap Bracelet with Yellow Gold Clasp—This bracelet features a sterling silver snake chain with a 14 karat yellow gold oval snap closure (MSRP $80 U.S.).
  • Daisy Post Earrings—These crystal stud earrings with removable sterling silver “daisy” jacket are available in either amethyst Swarovski crystal with 14 karat yellow gold detailing along the bezel (MSRP $45 U.S.) or golden shadow Swarovski crystal (MSRP $40 U.S.).
The Chamilia “Loves Me, Loves Me Not” collection will be available starting January 14, 2019, and will be sold at the brand’s more than 1,000 retail partners worldwide and on the Chamilia website. For more information about the Chamilia brand, please go to www.chamilia.com.

Spring Rings from Chamilia – Perfect for Your Valentine

Looking for something for your Valentine? Perfect for the “big day”, or for anytime really- these new rings from Chamila are both beautiful and something that can be worn differently as she so chooses. Stacked, singly, or in combinations, these are beautiful and easy to wear with just about any outfit.

valentines day

Chamilia (www.chamilia.com), a Swarovski company, has introduced three new stackable rings. The entire Chamilia line is made from sterling silver or 14 karat gold and features genuine Swarovski Crystals and Swarovski Zirconia. The brand follows strict Swarovski guidelines for quality and aesthetic standards.

“Stackable rings have been a popular offering from Chamilia since their introduction,” said Chamilia Vice President, Global Merchandising and Marketing Catherine Ottaviano. “Each year we introduce new styles that integrate into existing Chamilia collections so that our customer can continue to feed her need to stack and coordinate with what she is already wearing.” 

Chamilia now has these three new stackable ring styles, including:

  • Latitude Points Ring—This bright sterling ring features an open band with Swarovski Pure Brilliance Zirconia set on each endpoint (U.S. MSRP $40).
  • Ornamental Drift Ring—This sterling silver band with bright finish features a pattern of meandering curls with Swarovski Pure Brilliance Zirconia detailing (U.S. MSRP $55).
  • Pavé Circle Ring—This sterling silver ring, features an open circle set with pavé Swarovski Pure Brilliance Zirconia at the top of the band (U.S. MSRP $45).

Items from Chamilia’s Spring 2018 collection are available now and will be sold at the brand’s more than 1,000 retail partners worldwide and on the Chamilia website. For more information, please go to www.chamilia.com.

How to handle Valentine’s Day in a BRAND NEW relationship

It’s Valentine’s Day; that special time of year dedicated to all things heart shaped, loved up and ohh la la!

Deciphering how you should spend the 14th of February is usually pretty easy; if you’re in a relationship you go on a date, share gifts and so forth, and if you’re single you rock out your singledom with friends and have fun… or you try not to text your ex and watch any romantic 90s Hugh Grant classics and cry in the bath.

But what about if you’re celebrating Valentine’s Day with a NEW boyfriend? You’ve both been dating for 2 months, a month, a couple of weeks… what are the rules here? How far do you go? Do you celebrate it all at?

Don’t panic, we’re here to help point you in the right direction!

1. Feel whether the time is right

It can be ‘too soon’ to celebrate Valentine’s Day with each other. If you’ve only gone a few dates with one another, then we’d suggest that it’d be best to ignore Valentine’s Day this year. Follow your gut, if you think it’s too soon… it probably is. At the beginning of a relationship it’s always best to keep it cool and casual than to appear to needy.

 

2. Are YOU ready?

Question how you feel about this relationship. Celebrating Valentine’s Day with one another is a big step and shows that you’re into each other and potentially looking for something more long term. Maybe you’re not looking for a relationship right now, if that’s the case question whether or not celebrating Valentine’s Day may send your new boyfriend the wrong message. You don’t want him to get hurt if you don’t see this as a long term relationship!

 

2. Be open and talk about it with one another

If you feel that both of you are ready, just be frank about it and simply ask him, ‘It’s Valentine’s Day, do you want to do anything?’ If it feels weird, just laugh about it and keep it light! If he’s not ready however, don’t push it and don’t let it bruise your ego, sometimes people need more time to dedicate themselves to a relationship.

 

3. Keep it low-key

Whilst talking to your new boyfriend, tell him that you don’t mind keeping Valentine’s Day low-key. You could make rules like no gift giving or only doing something during the day. Create a plan together that works for both of you.

 

4. Go out for drinks

If you’re a new couple, perhaps just going out for a drink or two is the perfect way to celebrate Valentine’s Day.

Impress your new date with your favorite little black dress number, don’t go too overboard with something like a ball gown though… or a wedding dress. We’re pulling your leg of course, but wearing something flirty and simple is ALWAYS the best option for a Valentine’s Day date. If you feel like having fun, maybe go somewhere with a theme (like a 20s speak-easy style establishment!) or somewhere fancy!


5. Have a home cooked meal

If you don’t feel ready to go to a fancy restaurant together just yet, why not celebrate with a home cooked meal for two at your home? It’s still intimate, and fun, but it’s also causal. If you don’t know each other too well yet it’s also a great way to feel relaxed around one another and talk. Going to a posh restaurant can feel stifling and put pressure on you both. Give your new boyfriend the opportunity kick off his cool men’s chukka boots and relax in your company.


7. Do you get each other gifts?

Decide together whether you’re going to get gifts for one another. You don’t want to give him a bunch of flowers and a bottle of wine and discover that he’s got you zilch, or the other way around. Make a plan before Valentine’s Day.


8. Don’t get him anything too big for Valentine’s Day

You may want to get him SOMETHING to show that your relationship is going well and that you care about the guy, but you don’t want to get him something TOO romantic or serious as it may spook him. And the same goes vice versa! Just picture it: you’ve been going out for a month and a half and he gets you a huge plasma screen TV for you to watch Netflix together at your place. You’d want to run for the hills wouldn’t you?

Aim for a gift that’s not too expensive and something fun and casual. If he’s mentioned a book that he wants to read, get him the book! If he likes a band, buy him their latest CD or get him an itunes voucher so that he can download them himself! It would be too far to buy him tickets worth hundreds of pounds to their reunion tour… in Belgium. The thought is nice, but it’s too much too soon. For unique and quirky gift ideas check out some online shops like Mr Shoes.

Fun Valentine’s Day Gifts for the Family

If you are looking for the perfect gift for your kids and spouse this Valentines Day, we’ve put together a little list to make your shopping that much easier.  Check out some of our picks, and see what strikes your fancy.

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For your littlest Valentine, head to Hallmark.  You can do quite a bit of shopping there, but what we loved was the Love-a-Saurus Techno Plush, new for this year.  This cutie roars and dances when you push his button.  Perfect for boys or girls (and even “big kids”), this bright red dino will break it down to “U Can’t Touch This” by MC Hammer, which kids will groove to, and moms and dads will wax nostalgic. It is $33, or $18 when you buy 3 cards. You can also find an assortment of adorable itty bittys- sweet toys that fit in the palm of your hand- including new Thing 1 and Thing 2. Your favorite troublemakers from Dr. Seuss’ Cat in the Hat, with Valentine hearts for their antennae to be festive for the holiday.  They are available for $7 each. Of course, you can always get an assortment of cards perfect for Valentines Day (or any occasion) at Hallmark.  This year they also have new cards from the Signature collection, itty bitty Valentines (to go with your itty bitty stuffed toys) as well as from  Hallmark designers Justin & Tuesday Spray, which are just beautiful.  You can pick up these items at Hallmark.com and at Hallmark Gold Crown stores.

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For tweens, teens, and spouses, we loved the lovely gifts from Oragami Owl. Not only is the jewelry beautiful, but it’s unique because you customize it for the one you love (and it’s much more affordable then some other lines). Choose the color, size, shape, and more, as well as the charms that go inside and/or outside, the length and type of chain used, and all the other details. You can even add Swarovski crystals for a bit more color and sparkle. Origami Owl lets you pick out items that highlight special memories about your Valentine, and will be a truly cherished gift for that reason- it’s about the bond you two share. You can choose from necklaces, bracelets, wrap bracelets (a hot trend right now), lockets, and more at www.OrigamiOwl.com. Prices vary, check out the site and choose the item(s) that you like best for the ladies in your life.

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Another option for the girls and women in your life is the environmentally-friendly and non-toxic Duri nail polish collection. Also safe from DBP, Tolune, and Formaldehyde, you can buy these separately or in a cute Valentine’s Day set of four, in a sweetheart box ready for gift giving.

While there are more then 250 shades of Duri (sounds like a book, yes?), the Valentine’s Day collection includes “every day is a Valentine” red, “cupid rules” pink, the pastel “iced roses”, “unexpected kiss” in a light purple-pink, and “sweetheart”, a bright shade of orangy-red. This is a great gift for the female of nearly any age in your life- most women, from the littlest girl on up, love their mani-pedi’s. Grab singles for 6$ each, or the gift set for $24 at www.duri.com

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For the coffee lover in your life, take a look at the Trudeau espresso maker. This bedside pot makes getting your morning java that much easier with a convenient stainless-steel stove top espresso maker. Just fill it up, brew your beans in true Italian style, and serve. It uses pressure for the water, and has a safety release valve for the steam to be released from. The handle stays cool to the touch, so you don’t need to worry about burns. It’s also portable, so you can take it with you anywhere you go- you can use it for regular coffee if you would like as well, making it a good camping tool. It cleans easily in the dishwasher, and has a 5 year warranty as well, so it is well worth the price of $70 at http://www.shoptrudeau.com/ .

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For the nerdy love in your life, head to ThinkGeek.com and check out all the fun and funky wares they have in stock, perfect for those with a taste for the “dark side”, “Trekkies”, “brown coats” and more. Don’t know what I’m talking about, but know someone who will? Think Geek is for your shopping needs. If they love tech, comic books, or sci-fi shows, you will find a bounty of fun and unique items they soon won’t be able to live without.

For a fun twist on classic Valentine’s Day gifts, we love the ThinkGeek: iPhone Heart Charging Cable. Who needs another box of heart shaped candies? This cable goes with iPhone 5/6, but it also works with our iPad. It has 8 LED tiny, plastic, red hearts that also light up when it is plugged in and charging. One end goes into the i-device, the other into a USB port. It’s 46” long, and is available at http://www.thinkgeek.com/product/iotl/ for $14.99. Show how strong and bright your love is, and that it’s endlessly renewable.

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Tired of the same old, same old floral arrangements? How much would they love to receive a Star Wars Bouquet. There are 3 options available, and they arrive wrapped and ready to be given. Each bouquet of nine “long stemmed” officially licensed Star Wars characters- in the Assortment (Boba Fett, Darth Vader, C-3PO, R2-D2 , two Ewoks , and three Stormtroopers), the Darth Vader bouquet (Darth Vader and eight Stormtroopers), or the Droid (three each of R2-D2, R2-Q5, and R2-D9) bouquet. They are available for $60 at http://www.thinkgeek.com/product/iprq/ for the assortment bouquet, each bouquet has a different link, but they and many other gifts can all be found at http://www.thinkgeek.com/gifts/ . These fun gifts are sure to be a conversation piece, and something to make all the other geeks jealous. Who has the best spouse? Yeah, you know it.

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Beautiful Gifts Handmade in Peru With Novica

It can be hard to choose a gift for your loved one.  You want to give something special, something they will love.  If it’s pretty, that much the better. Novica is the perfect place to find that perfect item.  Not only are items hand crafted, which means they will each be unique and totally one of a kind, but they also support local artisans (who you get to know in a little “story card” that comes with your purchase).  You see a portrait and a biography of the artist on the page of the item when you buy it, and when your gift is opened, they will read the card and make the discovery as well.

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My son, who happens to be my favorite little Valentine, helped me choose a special gift for his Godmother, a very special person in his life.  He wanted to choose something she would really love, and he thought she would love the Andean Folk Art Cotton Applique Change Purse, ‘Butterfly Afternoon’. Quite a mouthful for a small purse, but it’s very pretty and not at all common.  My son is very picky and deliberate in choosing gifts- he really wants to make sure to choose the right gift for the right person.  We both think she will love the purse, with it’s bright colors and sunny, hand stitched scenery.

It arrived carefully wrapped in beautiful paper, with a red ribbon and a tiny doll in the center.  It was very festive (and honestly, very cool looking).  It looked expensive,  like someone had really put time into it very carefully.  He can’t wait to give his  Valentine’s Day gift!

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This beautiful, functional work of art was created by Balvina Huaytalla who lives and works in the Peru.  Her work is inspired by the Peruvian Andes, and she wishes to share it’s beauty with everyone. She is a single mother who is struggling to take care of her young son, and this and every purchase helps her make a living.

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There were a few things that caught my eye as well while we were looking around- it’s hard not to be distracted by all the beautiful products.  These Gold Accent Heart Shaped Earrings would be perfect for Valentine’s Day, or really any day out.  They are so pretty, I had to send a little “hint” over to my husband.  The only thing better then a beautiful gift is one that gives back.  Lovely, traditional art (some you can even wear) that embraces local artisans, doesn’t use bad labor practices, and helps others live sustainably- so much awesome with one purchase.