Valentine’s Day has, and always will be, one of my very favorite holidays (Christmas gets the #1 spot though, because, well, it’s Christmas). This holiday is all about love. And I don’t mean romantic The Notebook kind of love, I mean all encompassing love and compassion for yourself, your family, friends, peers, pets, and even strangers. There is so much emphasis put on the need to have a valentine. A SINGLE VALENTINE?! That is just so limiting! This day can be a reminder of our love for so many other wonderful people in our lives. And giving can feel just as great, or even better, than receiving.
A tradition my parents started with us when we were kids was that they made us Valentine’s Day baskets every year. We would awaken to a selection of goodies at the foot of our beds that was picked out just for us. It was a small token of our parents love and affection for us and it had nothing to do with relationship status. So I’m sharing some of the ways that I’ve enjoyed Valentine’s day the most over the years:
1. Throw a Valen-friends-day Party
Think Friendsgiving (a Thanksgiving for friends before or after the actual holiday because two full feasts is what’s up, am I right?) but for Valentine’s Day! Decor, wine, heart shaped pizzas, and games… and you’ve got yourself a wonderful night with the friends nearest and dearest to your heart.
2. Sweet Treats to Share
I love baking. I repeat, I LOVE BAKING. So what better way to share the love than giving away some home baked goods? The easiest grab and go gifts are cookies and you can personalize them with frosting. I use icing to put individual names on each cookie for an added touch. This extra step shows each recipient that you were thinking of them ahead of time. Even small gestures like this can make a difference in someone’s day! Now how do you transport such a large number of baked goods? Pizza boxes! Stop by your nearest pizza place and ask for a few extra boxes, load them up, and you’re on your way!
3. Girls (or Boys!) Night Out
With our without a significant other to pass the time with, some of the best nights spent are with your girlfriends. Dinner, drinks, and movie can be just what you need to enjoy the holiday with someone you love.
4. Treat Yo’self
I actually may cross the line between treating myself and being just plain self-indulgent. But what can I say? I’m my own biggest fan and I like to reward myself 😉 Truly though, self love is a movement that is HAPPENING. And it’s happening for a reason. There is only one person that you spend every second of every day with from the moment you’re born. All of that time spent deserves a gift or two…or three thousand. Think of your ideal Valentine’s day gift – a massage, flowers, jewelry – and get it for yourself. Take yourself to dinner and take time to sit and appreciate some deliberate and intentional self love. And then go get that massage because self care is totally just as important as self love – and also massages are just amazing. Period.
Even though it may seem like just another Wednesday, let this holiday inspire you to do something you love, take a few extra moments to enjoy time with your friends, or let your family know how much you appreciate them. Happy Valentine’s Day to you and yours from us and ours (Jethro, Harlo, and Willo).
xoxo Ariel & Rob