I have no plans this Valentine’s Day. Zip. Still in recovery, single, and unwilling to pick out a bargain basement date from the pools of online dating, I did a little online research about what to do as a single girl on Valentine’s Day. Most of the ideas summed up as ‘get drunk with your other female friends, decrying the evils of the Hallmark companies and throw yourself an anti-Valentine’s Day party’. Singles’ Awareness Day, as it was dubbed, seemed to be growing bitterly stronger than even the designer dark chocolate rack.
But here’s the thing – I don’t want to hate you, Valentine’s Day. For me, Valentine’s Day is glitter and pink and school-age mass-produced Disney cards, doilies and cupcakes with heart-shaped sprinkles. It is cheesy stuffed animals and conversation hearts and the appreciating the friends and family you already have who love you. By trial and error, what I’ve learned is that if you want to enjoy your Valentine’s Day, don’t expect anyone else to magically read your mind. Design your own day, or plan something you can do for others. You do not need any girlfriends’ parties, sort-of balding dudes at sticky bars, or questionable blind dates. Here are ten ways to spend Valentine’s Day alone, just you. ♥
1. Eat heart-shaped food. Food is always better heart-shaped. Even if you’re cooking for one, celebrate the day with heart-shaped avocado, carrots, eggs and more. Search Pinterest for tons more ideas on foods that you can shape like hearts. Cute food is a great pick-me-up any time of year! This guy has made a beautiful Valentine from something more unusual – meatloaf and creamy mashed potatoes.
2. Playlist a series of Valentine’s-themed episodes of your favorite TV series. Last night I went with Orange is the New Black’s ‘And You Also Have a Pizza‘. Because in love, at the end of the day, you should at least have pizza. (And yes I ate leftover pizza topped with avocado while I watched it. There’s nothing like dedication to a theme.)
3. Host your own pajama party. Valentine’s Day is on a Saturday this year, so buy yourself some fancy and fluffy pajamas the day before and spend the day in them snuggled up in soft covers. This pairs well with idea #2 and for us New Englanders at least, the impending snowstorm. Check Forever21 for some adorable pajama selections right now!
4. Make Valentine’s cards. Whether they’re for your gals or just people you’d like to appreciate right now, everybody likes getting mail. I used some pink twine and washi tape to string mine across the mantle piece. If you prefer, you can also spend V-Day posting dozens of artfully curated digital Valentine’s on your friends’ Facebook walls, too. Galentine’s Today (today!) is another great choice for showering your friends in social media love notes about how they are more beautiful than Cinderella, they smell like pine needles and their face is like sunshine.
5. Buy a box of classic little-kids’ branded Valentines like Disney or Barbie. Write encouraging notes or positive sentiments on them and hide them around your work, campus or daily life for other people to find. Consider them the hot-pink fortune cookies of Valentine’s Day. What stranger wouldn’t want a sweet note tucked into the seat of a bus or in the napkin holder at a restaurant?
6. Treat yo self. This is pretty obvious – buy yourself something off your Amazon wishlist or some other small token. Roses are lovely choice, or a small potted plant. I also like to pick up anything fluffy, like socks or a throw blanket, when I’m in need of a cuddle.
7. If you’re going to eat chocolate, eat CHOCOLATE. No Hershey’s or Nestle for you this year. Indulge in some real designer, high cocoa content goodness. I like Vosge’s chocolates particularly, or a local favorite, Fascia’s Chocolates, but there’s plenty others to shop. Spending a little more on a smaller selection of chocolates (that you don’t have to share, perk!) with bits of pink sea salt and unicorn tears ups the occasion from ‘sad girl eating chocolate’ to ‘sassy girl celebrates holiday’. On the same note, pairing with an exceptionally nice wine or cheese sounds like a scrumptious idea as well.
8. Take yourself to dinner. This one can be a bit of a challenge if you’re not used to it, an idea I got from reading the SARK Succulent Wild Woman books. Get all dressed up and take yourself on a “me-date”. The two things you can be sure of in this scenario is you won’t get stood up and someone else will most likely prepare you a brownie sundae. What could go wrong?
9. Bring goodies into your work or school. Wherever you go every day with people, bring in some surprise brownies or cupcakes. Whether you choose to make them your famous chocolate-chip-amaze cookies or just swing by the corner Dunkin’ for a box of gooey pink and red donuts, you’ll perk up the day and give others a little joy.
10. Get a Valentine’s Day manicure or fresh hair cut. There’s nothing like a little spa day to perk up your routine. A fresh manicure or pedicure, hair cut or color, or even just picking up a new Lush bath bomb or body wash is perfect.
You don’t need to break out the mourning veil and spread stormy rain clouds even if you’re not part of a couple this Valentine’s Day! Even if you’re alone on Valentine’s Day, there are small joys you can find to celebrate this all-about-love holiday. What are your Valentine’s Day plans?