a burgundy zine

Date Ideas When You’re Broke AF

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

By: burgundy bug

Rose doodle

Source: Rose Doodles | Penelope Peru Photography P³

Chin up, buttercups. Feb 14 may be right around the corner, but that doesn’t mean you have to start busting open old piggy banks in order to celebrate Valentine’s Day.

A Bit of Context…

Like many holidays, Valentine’s Day has it’s roots buried in Ancient Rome. From Feb 13 to the 15, Ancient Romans celebrated the feast of Lupercalia, a pagan festival to ward off evil spirits and infertility, according to HISTORY.

Legend has it that Roman Emperor Claudius II executed a man by the name of Valentine for marrying Christian couples in secret around the third century A.D.

Two centuries later, Pope Gelasius I eradicated the celebration of Lupercalia in lieu of Saint Valentine’s Day, Feb 14.

Since it’s ritualistic origins, the pagan festival of sacrificing animals, running around in your birthday suit, and whipping women has evolved into the sophisticated and consumer-driven holiday we now regard as Valentine’s Day.

Date Ideas When You’re Broke AF

Whether you’re college love birds, new parents, or an independent individual who doesn’t need a relationship to feel validated, there are a number of ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day without putting too much out of pocket.

Dinner and a Movie… At Home

Although Valentine’s Day is the second most popular holiday to dine out, according to an infograph released by Aaron Allen & Associates, nothing quite says “I love you” like a home cooked meal.

You don’t have to be a culinary artist in order to whip up a nice dinner. Hell, you don’t even really need to know how to cook. In the era of smart phones and Ubers, there are services that will deliver meal kits straight to your door. The ingredients come prepackaged and measured out, all you have to do is follow the instructions.

Watching a movie at home is also far cheaper. Between tickets, popcorn, and beverages, you’re looking at spending at least 40 bucks at the theatre.

Whether you’ve got cable, a streaming service, or a DVD collection, nothing beats cuddling up from the comfort of your humble abode with a cheesie rom-com and your favorite snacks.

Show Mother Nature Some Love, Too


Source: Foliage 38 | Penelope Peru Photography P³

Weather permitting, going to the park or taking a stroll down a local trail is beautiful and enriching. Delving into the woods hand-in-hand is a very intimate experience. It encourages you to get up and out of the house, move your legs, take in some much-needed fresh air, and actually communicate without external distractions.

Going out into nature makes for some wonderful photographs, as well.

Head on over to Penelope Peru Photography P³ for nature photography and more!

Get Crafty

Decorative envelopes

Source: Card Making Sesh | Penelope Peru Photography P³

There’s nothing quite like a doodle date. Whether you’ve got a knack for the whole art thing or you can barely manage to draw a stick figure, art is for everybody.

Getting crafty on Valentine’s Day is a relaxing change of pace that, again, can be a very intimate experience. Art is incredibly expressional. It is a medium capable of conveying a wide range of emotions.

Drawing isn’t your only option, either. You could spend the evening trying to figure out how the hell to make an origami crane, start a scrapbook, make cards for one another. The possibilities are endless.

Read: DIY Cutest Handmade Greeting Cards

Source: The Burgundy Zine

While an arsenal of art supplies can enhance the experience, all you really need is something to write with and something to write on. Scissors, glue, and glitter are optional. Stickers may be optional, too, but they are certainly a whole lot harder to resist.


Source: Card Making Sesh 02 | Penelope Peru Photography P³

Spa Day… At Home

Rather than spending a few hundred dollars to get rubbed up by a stranger, make Valentine’s Day a spa day from the comfort of your own home. You can indulge in your favorite lotions and spend extra time on those especially tense areas.

If you’re feeling especially fancy, you could also spring for DIY manicures or pedicures. Heaven knows there are an endless number of nail tutorials available across the internet. Channels such as Simply Nailogical have dominated the YouTube platform by cultivating an audience of millions.

Bug’s Two Cents

Burgundy Bug skateboarding

Source: Valentine’s Adventurin’ Time | Penelope Peru Photography P³

Listen, as long as I’m with my honey, I’m happy.

Some of my favorite memories over the last year have been our skate dates or walks through the woods.

Car rides also hold a particular place in my heart. Although I often doze off in the passenger seat, we’ve also had some of most meaningful, honest, and flat out hilarious conversations while coasting down the road.

XtaSeay and Burgundy Bug freestyling


I’m not sure what it is about driving that encourages such insightful, philosophical dialogue. When we’re in the car, it feels like we’re transported into our own little universe. It is our bubble, private from the rest of the world. Words don’t linger like stale air, conversations just seem to snowball – especially if we’re freestyling.

Dogma Slumber – XtaSeay (feat. Burgundy Bug)

Source: Dogma Slumber | Spotify

However, there is one date in particular that will always stick out as one of my favorites.

It was the cusp of summer last year. The sun was high, the air was thick, our wallets thin. We decided to treat ourselves to a quart of water ice.

On the way, we poured a considerable amount of thought into what flavor we’d buy. Naturally, it was a three way tie between Sweedish Fish. S’mores, and Birch Beer.

When we finally arrived at the pearly white gates of the water ice stand’s sliding glass windows, we were delighted to find they were running a special: Buy one quart, get the other one at half the price.

Without sparing a second to think twice about our purchase, we dug our college-freshman hands into the depths of our pockets and placed our bets on one quart of S’mores and a quart of Birch Beer.

XtaSeay and Burgundy Bug in the car

Source: Snowy Saturdaze | Penelope Peru Photography P³

With nowhere to go and no one else we’d rather be with, we took to the roads with our quarts and just drove. We didn’t use a GPS, we didn’t even have a destination in mind. We left that much in the hands of fate and how far a half-tank of gas could get us.

I don’t quite remember what we talked about or what we listened to, but I do remember us finishing both of those quarts before we even got home.

XtaSeay holding a skateboard

Source: Valentine’s Adventurin’ Time | Penelope Peru Photography P³

Interested in having content featured in an upcoming blog post or issue of The Burgundy Zine? Head on over to the submissions page!

For all other inquiries, please fulfill a contact form.

burgundy bug


A cynical optimist and mad scientist undercover, burgundy bug is the editor, graphic designer, webmaster, social media manager, and primary photographer for The Burgundy Zine. Entangled in a web of curiosity, burgundy bug’s work embodies a wide variety of topics including: neuroscience, psychology, ecology, biology, cannabis, reviews, fashion, entertainment, and politics. You can learn more about working with burgundy bug by visiting her portfolio website: burgundybug.com

View more posts from this author