Valentine’s Day Ideas

Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching. With it comes excitement or annoyance depending on one’s relationship status. Those in relationships it gives a chance to celebrate love. For those that haven’t found someone special it shoves it in their face that they are alone.

But, they aren’t alone. Yes, typically Valentine’s Day is about romantic relationships but it doesn’t have to be solely that. Since I can remember I have celebrated that day of love with those that I love most: my parents. I would get them each a small gift, usually a box of chocolates, to show them that I love them and they would do the same for me. Why not show love and affection to those that you love most? Take a parent or grandparent out to lunch and get them a small gift, such as candy or flowers, to show them that they hold a special place in your heart. Have a best friend’s night if you both are single. Reminisce about the past and dream about the future together. As children, we would give Valentine’s to every other child in our class with a piece of candy. Show those that are closest to you that you love them.

For those couples that are just starting out try to keep things on the lighter side. No need for a card confessing your undying love for the other person, a $100 gift basket of Godiva chocolates, roses, and jewelry. That’s a bit excessive. However, going out to dinner and getting each other a small gift is appropriate if you have been dating a little while, not just a week. Try to go to a restaurant that is a little nicer than the usual date night. This is a special date night. Make sure to make a reservation or else you might be waiting for hours and that’s no fun when you are hungry. Some restaurant ideas: PF Changs, Bravo, Olive Garden, Red Lobster, and J. Alexander’s. Of course, making a romantic home cooked meal is also enjoyable and more private allowing for better conversation and elimination of crowds. Plus, personalization and creative twists are awesome. I would suggest spending around $25 for a gift. Some gift ideas for a female: card, chocolates, and flowers (red roses). Gift ideas for a male: card, candy or alcohol, and a favorite framed photo of the two of you. It might be a good idea to talk about plans and expectations prior to the big day so everyone is on the same page and no feelings are hurt. However, there is something fun about the unexpected and surprises.

Couples that have been seriously dating for a while should do a little more than the newer couples. It is appropriate to spend a little more if it’s within the budget, but there is no need to live beyond your means. This day isn’t about how much you can spend but how much you speak the other person’s love language, which by the way would be a beneficial book to read or at least skim to get the gist. Some good gift ideas are: cards, flowers, chocolates or candies, alcohol, jewelry, or a mini weekend getaway. More crafty ideas are making a poem, love letter, or coupon book. It’s about the thought put into it. Try to convey your love for the other in their love language and no matter what you two are doing it will be great because of the thought put in.

I’m not married but my recommendation for couples that are married would be to never let the spark die. Take time to go on a special date. Always let that special person know how lucky you are to have them in your life. Don’t get complacent. That leads to breakups when no love and care is put into a relationship to help it grow. Relationships are like plants that always need continual feeding to survive. Whatever feels right to you two, do it! Don’t wait around and say you’ll do it next year, there might not be one. Cherish this time together. Celebrate your love in a similar fashion to couples who have been together seriously for a while.

Valentine’s Day is also a time to reconnect. Five years ago, my boyfriend and I had been dating for six months and Valentine’s Day was upon us. For some reason we were going through a slight rough patch. We both were feeling like there might be a breakup in the near future but we weren’t sure why. We were both just feeling a bit unloved. Well, we didn’t say much about Valentine’s Day, only that we will both get each other a gift and go out to dinner. We both took a leap of faith and really put a lot of time and effort into our gifts for the other to convey our love for them in their love language. He got me a dozen red roses, a card, a bracelet, and delicious candy: chocolate covered marshmallows, a huge chocolate peanut butter cup, and fudge. This was exactly my love language; this gift meant so much to me because it was so thoughtful. I got him Reese’s Pieces, Sour Patch kids, a card, a framed photo of the two of us, and Patrón tequila. He was blown away because he wasn’t expecting much at all either. Now that both of us were happy and felt loved we were in a much better place and the night was still young! We opened the Patrón and started drinking, talking, playing games, and reconnecting. We went to the casino with his parents to celebrate Valentine’s Day and his father’s Birthday. They drove obviously since we had a few drinks. It was amazing what the change in our energy did: we found $76 dollars on the ground, got free tickets into a club, and had a blissful night together in love. That was one of my favorite dates with him. All it takes is communicating with another person in their favorite/most meaningful way: gifts, quality time, words of affirmation, acts of service, and/or physical touch (Five Love Languages). Love is not just for couples. Love is all around us, you just have to open your eyes. So the next time February rolls around, don’t roll your eyes if you are single. Take time to show those that are closest to you how much you love them and you will feel loved as well.

Holidays | Love | Relationships

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