Valentines day - a day to show the person you love how much they mean to you.
Sometimes people find it hard to draw inspiration on how to do this, and find themselves doing similar things each year, or not putting much effort in because they feel it will take too much time/be too expensive.

If you're looking for inspiration, then look no further. Here are some unique ways which you can make valentines day extra special, for the special person in your life.

Take them out for dinner
Although this probably seems quite obvious, taking your partner out for a meal can be romantic, heart-felt and special, if done properly. If you went out for dinner on your first date, how about taking them back here to relive the important moment. Women like nothing better then to get dressed up and be taken out for a nice meal. An alternative to this, if you are strapped for cash, is to cook for them yourselves. Make their favorite meal, set out candles and flowers, and play some soft music in the background. Guaranteed to make the love in your life feel as special as you feel they are.

Thinking outside the box

You don't have to go out, or spend lots of money to make the person you love feel special on valentines day.
Instead of taking them out for expensive meals or buying them gifts, why not do something more symbolic and heartfelt, such as writing them a poem, or making them a song. This is personal, so the details are down to you, but just think of different ways that you can express your feelings for them. This will go a long way, and be greatly appreciated by your partner, as they will be able to see that you have tried hard, and put in a lot of effort to make it more meaningful.


If you are both into sports and physical activity, why not do something like that, which you know you will both enjoy. Other alternatives for non-traditional valentines dates could include going ice skating, going to see a concert, going to an art gallery. It is all about what the both of you enjoy doing, and trying to tailor this to schedule, budget and availability. 


Go for a walk
Why not go for a hike in some romantic scenery, and pack a picnic to take with you. Obviously weather permitting, but this would be a nice idea, as it would show that you have taken a lot of time trying to think of what you can do.
Other idea's
Why not treat you both to a full body massage, or some spa treatments?
Or even go and catch a show on concert? It's all about what you enjoy doing, and making the time that you spend together on this day exceptional. Be creative, caring and thoughtful, and you are sure to give the special person in your life, a wonderful valentines day to remember.
 
 
In today’s busy and hectic world not many of us have the time or the confidence to get dressed up for the night and go in search of a date.

Thanks to the World Wide Web we now have an excellent solution. Online dating communities like the eHarmony dating site offer an affordable, easy to use and friendly place to meet likeminded singles. But before you get started, here are 5 tips for guaranteeing a successful and safe dating experience on the Internet.

Relax

When you register, create a profile and begin chatting to people for the first time, chances are you’ll feel a little anxious. But don’t let the nerves get the best of you as everyone else is in exactly the same boat. Try to enjoy yourself, go with an open mind and just see what happens. It's worth having a look at social media pages for dating websites, like the eHarmony AU Facebook page. Here you can connect with other singles in a relaxed way.

Don’t give up

There are millions of single people looking for love. You may find that daunting, but at the same time it ensures that there is somebody out there for everyone. If your first date or even your first few don’t go as well as expected, don’t give up. Stick at it because Mr or Mrs Right might be just around the corner.
Be honest

Many people feel the need to lie or embellish the truth when writing their profiles, but there is really no need. To make the experience worthwhile you need to establish trust. If you want a meaningful and genuine relationship then you want your partner to love you for who you really are – not who you say you are on your profile.

Get a friend to help out

In life it’s always best to have a second opinion – and that’s no different with online dating. It can be a fun experience to get together with your friends, pick the perfect photograph or start writing your profile.

Take your time

Dating websites have come a long way in the past five years. Many sites now take a more detailed approach to creating perfect matches, such as eHarmony, which is one of the better free dating sites online today.

So when you find someone who catches your eye, make sure you take the time to get to know them properly. That way, when you do finally organise that all-important first date, you’ll go there knowing that the person is interesting and easy to talk to.
Resource box

The Guardian Relationships

An authority on everything from dating tips to relationship advice

The Telegraph restaurant reviews

Make sure that first meal out is memorable by checking this highly reputable reviews site.

Online Dating Magazine

This online resource has everything from online dating tips to informative features and reviews.

 
 
Not all relationships thrive as we would wish to. There are many questions behind that; maybe the relationship is at a standstill, or there’s a third person involved, or the love simply ends.
In many cases, it’s very difficult to overcome this situation and it takes a lot of time to forget your ex-partner. The reason is because you have shared great and unforgettable moments and you have invested your time, future and love to make it work. Sometimes forgetting represents a chasm and emptiness that we do not want to face.
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Love hurts
There are relationships that can’t work at all and sometimes as we get very comfortable; we do not remedy it or we are content with a little comfort without questioning the perception of reality.
The path by overcoming the split up is: negation, being afraid, pain and sadness as a first step; acceptance and recognition as a second step and the final step is the reconstruction of your life.
The loss of a loved one involves grieving; a similar situation when someone close to you dies.  The best solution is to have a close friend, family or professional to tell them how you feel in each moment.
Can your ex-partner become your friend? Of course, but it takes time. When you split up, the first thing you have to do is to break with the other person; you can’t behave as if nothing happened. To break up is get used to being alone and to enjoy your individuality again. 
 
 
The worst enemy of love is boredom and routine. When the novelty of a relationship is gone, this is where you have to work on it, because even if you love each other deeply, habits will come between you two. Especially if you live together or work together. Of course, making some efforts to spend some time together shouldn't be a chore or hard work, but sometimes it demands a bit of imagination.

Do something unexpected

Grand gestures are not always needed, and often it is the small details that are more important. Whether it is something spontaneous or carefully planned, the best gestures are the unexpected ones, those that will show your partner that you care for them. You don't have to look too far to do something nice and significant: if you are not really helping when it comes to housework, cleaning the house or put a washing on could be a great surprise for the other, especially after a hard day or week at work.
There are many things you can do to surprise the person you love and find again that spark of the beginning of your relationship. Surprise them with a dinner in their favourite restaurant, or one you both always wanted to go, take them away for an impromptu weekend, or simply cook them a dinner!
 
 
Do you struggle to let your loving side out? Being romantic isn’t easy for everyone; some people can feel shy and nervous when it comes to expressing their feeling towards somebody. That doesn’t mean that the romance isn’t there, it just means you struggle for a way to show it. Here are some ways you can release your inner romance.

Get them a Gift

Money can’t buy you love, but a small surprise every now and then will always put a smile on someone’s face. Think of things such as flowers (for the ladies) or small luxuries such as their favourite chocolates. Make it cut and wrap it up! This shows a little thought & effort has gone into it.

Take them on a Date

This can be an audacious task for many, as you may be stuck as to what kind of date you think work well. There are so many different things you can do for a successful romantic date and we’re entering a season that is perfect for it; have a look at these romantic date ideas for autumn if you need a little inspiration. If you want to do something quirky that you know your date will find hard to forget, you could try some of these more unconventional romantic date ideas – some are hilarious yet very cute!

Write a Love Letter

Some people find it much easier to express how they feel when writing it down on paper. If you feel at your most comfortable expressing yourself this way, then make the most of it. Write a draft so you’re confident in what you want to express and how you want to do so, and then make it look real pretty when writing it again. You can do this by decorating it; tie it in a ribbon or seal in an envelope with hot wax- the more authentic & vintage, the better. One thing you mustn’t do is type a letter; a hand written letter is far more romantic than an email..
Many people don’t think they’re romantic. The thing is, if you’ve ever enjoyed putting a smile on your partners face after you’ve done something, you’re a romantic. If you’ve ever sung a love song to yourself when it came on the radio, you’re a romantic. The difficulty for so many is when it comes to expressing that romance.

There’s so much love to give, it’s just about having the confidence to give it in the right way. Have fun, be cheeky and make them smile for all the right reasons.
The word 'romance,' according to the dictionary, means excitement, adventure, and something extremely real. Romance should last a lifetime.
 
 
Once more, the summer has been and gone, and the days are getting shorter in a slow march to the winter. If the summer is often the season when love stories start or when lovers spent some time out in parks, autumn is certainly one of the most romantic season. The temperatures are still warm enough to spend some time outside and the nature's changing colours make for a great décor. The earlier evenings are also a perfect setting for cosy candlelight dinners.

Nature Walks

After the long months of lazy afternoons in the park, the autumn is the time to go for walks in the forest or in the countryside. It is the opportunity to spend some quality time together away from the agitation of the city, surrounded by a changing nature (get ideas of walks here). A walk can be followed by a hot cup of tea or cocoa when the weather starts getting colder.

Nights by the Fire

The autumn evenings can feel quite cold compared to the hot summer ones, especially if you have been spending time abroad. You can turn this into a romantic time by going away for the week-end somewhere with a fireplace and have dinner and drinks by the fire. Nothing says romance more than a cosy autumnal evening, so beat the September blues with some special time with the one you love.
 
 
Are you in for a little romance this weekend but not quite sure what to watch? Fear not, here are a few of the best romantic movies of 2012. Just cuddle up on the couch with a tub of ice cream or even better, spread out a picnic blanket in your garden and cuddle up with a box of popcorn. Only when the weather permits it, of course.

The Lucky One

The American Marine, Logan, portrayed by Zac Efron finds a photograph of a young woman during his mission in Iraq.  He keeps the photograph with him during his employment in the war stricken country and considers the photograph his lucky charm. When he returns to America, after the war, he descends on a journey to find the lady in the picture.  The movie is based on a novel by Nicolas Sparks, the same author who wrote The Notebook and Dear John and is therefore one to watch even if you’re not an Efron fan.

Around June

June (Samaire Armstrong) leads a quiet life in the suburbs of San Francisco. When she meets the exciting Juan Diego she re-discovers her life and finds the courage to changes it. She has lived alongside her father who physically abuses her.  Through the unconditional love of Juan she finally learns how to stand up for herself and she breaks free from a life that has been constraining her. Around June is a delicious romantic comedy that will warm your heart.

The Five Year Engagement

The perfect combination of Emily Blunt and Jason Segel as an engaged couple make this movie. You will laugh, cry and fall in love with the characters. The five year engagement is an enjoyable movie filled with recognisable and mostly hilarious events.

What to Expect When You're Expecting

This terrific movie is a romantic comedy about five different couples who are expecting a baby. Throughout the story you follow the trials and tribulations of the cast who are funny and endearing. Cameron Diaz and Jennifer Lopez will surly make you laugh until you cry.

De Rouille et d'os

The movie is set in the beautiful Cote d’Azur and is full of action, drama and romance. The two lives of people who couldn’t be any more different from each other come together in an absurd yet very believable way. The film is the master piece of Jacques Audrillard and has been rightfully nominated for several award ceremonies.
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Cote d'Azur, France

The Vow

Paige (Rachel McAdams) suffers from memory loss after a serious accident. She hardly remembers her past and the love of her life Leo (Channing Tatum). Leo is trying everything to trigger Paige’s memory. But when Paige’s ex-boyfriend turns up his struggle gets even harder.
 
 
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Taking control of your life can seem intimidating. However, take comfort in the fact that everybody feels frumpy, grumpy and not terribly together at some point in their lives. There is no magic bullet solution for everything at once, but if you make changes on a sustained basis, you will see results.

Revamp your diet

It's simple really. Cut down on carbs, fat, sugar and salt to feel great, lose weight and be healthier. If only it were that easy, though. Stay away from temptation zones like bakeries, chippies and McDonald’s.

Instead opt for healthy and yet tasty sandwiches, salads packed full of colour and flavour. To ward off sugar cravings, eat sweet fruits such as pineapple, melon, peaches and grapes. Your skin, body and mind-set will thank you for it.


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Spice up your love life
Forget about boring classified ads in the local rag, that's so yesterday's news! Online dating is booming with something to suit everyone. It's a great way to test the waters before diving in completely. Remember to be generous with the details on your profile and thoughtful in your responses to other people.

At Jazzed Australia, there's no room for a bad response with intriguing questions such as 'what are your secret talents?', 'do you think a sixth sense exists?' and 'what does it mean to be powerful?.' To find lovely singletons near you, check out jazzedfreedating.com.au.

Of course you should be cautious when meeting new. There are some really useful  safety tips here to bear in mind. On the first few dates it’s a good idea to meet in a public place. Trust your instincts, they won't let you down. Be kind, honest and your truest self, and the right person will come along.

Start a fitness kick
Baby steps. Don't expect to go swimming between continents just yet. Start small with your workout and build up cardio resistance, strength and fitness in a slow yet manageable way. Get into a routine and don't break it. This will mean that you won't slip back into despondency.

Also, try exercising for fun instead of out of necessity. If you like walking, join a walking group that takes scenic routes around the city. If you enjoy dancing, join a samba or swing dance class. 



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Get a new look 
Altering your look is one of the easiest ways to achieve a feeling of growth and change. There have been countless articles about this for women, so let's focus upon men. Go to an excellent barber and discuss the best way to grow and shape facial hair. If facial fluff isn't your thing, then go for a different haircut.

After this, take the trendiest friend you have, on a shopping trip and buy some new duds, including trousers, button-down shirts and casual t-shirts. 


Do what you love   
Embrace your passion, no matter what is it. There is no time like the present, and with our lives all zipping by at the speed of sound, you don't want to one day leave this planet with regrets. So take up scuba diving, learning Italian, pole dancing, yodelling or whatever floats your boat. 


Resource box

BBC Good Food
Healthy, tasty, hearty foods that are easy to prepare

Ask Men – Image Overhaul
A fashion guide for men who want a change of image when they start dating again

Live Your Passion
How to live your life with passion, from Oprah’s online magazine

 
 
In recent years British seaside towns have seen a resurgence of interest from visitors, as they reinvent themselves and re-discover their mojo. With high-quality local dining, five star accommodation, and dramatic settings they are bursting with history and romance.     

Whitstable

Few places can symbolise the re-emergence of the UK seaside town better than Whitstable in northeast Kent. The town is part of the city of Canterbury, with long historical and literary connections. For lovers of lesbian romance it was the home town of narrator Nancy in Sarah Waters’ Tipping the Velvet.  

For red-blooded romantics looking for aphrodisiac inspiration, Whitstable is home to the Whitstable Oyster Festival, a modern annual event that re-creating ancient traditions honouring the town’s unique oyster harvest. The festival includes a symbolic landing and blessing of the oyster catch and fishing fleet, followed by a lively procession through the town, dancing, eating, and merrymaking.

Brighton

Apart from the fact that it is the millennium city of Brighton & Hove, Brighton is arguably unique among UK seaside towns in that it has never really lost its position as a naughty but nice destination of choice for those in the know.

Its reputation stems from the time of the British regency in the 1700s when the young Prince Regent, keen to escape much of the pomp of a stifling royal court, established a holiday home in the town decorated in the romantic tradition of the East.

The Brighton Pavilion still stands today, welcoming visitors and giving them a romantic taste of decadent high life. Click here for Brighton hotel deals.

Southport

If you prefer your romance tinged with a little melancholy then Southport on Merseyside is the classic 1980s ‘seaside town that they forgot to close down’ about which Morrissey sang Every Day is Like Sunday.

This seaside town, which by some quirk of tides and drifting sands is now about a mile away from the water, boasts a bleak, wind-swept pier stretching into the sand flats of the Irish Sea and the largest independent flower show in Europe, from where you can get your gladioli. 

Alexandria

If you thought Alexandria was a seaside city on the northern coast of Egypt then you would be wrong. Alexandria is a small resort town on the Western coast of Scotland. Admittedly, it is just a few miles inland along the estuary of the river Barton, but in arguably the most romantic stretch of the country, where the coastline is laced with bonny lochs, who is arguing?    

Aberystwyth

Take your pick of romantic destinations on the lush Welsh coast, but Aberystwyth wins its place here for it combination of remote countryside and cliff-top walks and its proud position at the heart of Welsh culture. The city is home to the National Library of Wales, or Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru, to put it properly.


Resources

Whitstable Oyster Festival -  The town’s romantic tradition revived.

The Smiths - Old romantics from the 1980s.

The National Library of Wales - Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru.


 
 

Paris

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It is the capital of love par excellence. Maybe it is because the first cinematographic projection was shown in this city. From then on, it has been the setting for many films from different nationalities but with a common denominator: romance.

You will have the opportunity to walk around the Champs Elysees, take a picture from the top of the Eiffel Tower or see the moon reflected on the Seine River.



Verona

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Placed in the North of Italy, this city was the perfect stage in which Shakespeare imagined one of the most ever popular stories about love, Romeo and Juliet.

Verona contents in itself great artistic, cultural and historic depth. It still retains its original medieval appearance and certain elements of Roman architecture.


Venice

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It is probably, together with Verona, the most romantic Italian city. When you think Venice you think of an embracing couple inside a boat powered by a gondolier.

Art, romanticism and beauty is breathed in every corner of the city.