What do you REALLY want for Valentine’s Day? Maybe it really is dinner out at a fancy restaurant (if that is even possible where you live right now) and a big box of chocolates…but maybe that just feels like too much work (not to mention $$) and to be honest, you’d rather watch Netflix in your jammies with a big bowl of popcorn. Or you’d love to take a winter hike or have a girl’s night with your best friend.
The point is to celebrate love and togetherness and there are all kinds of ways to do that. So, if the traditional Valentine’s Day activities are not doing it for you, put the breaks on and do something else.
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If you are Single
My son calls Valentine’s Day SAD, which stands for Singles Awareness Day – funny/not funny.
If you are not partnered, and you want to be, then remind yourself that this is just one season in your life. Spend the money and time you would have spent doing something for a partner on yourself.
If you are recently out of a relationship, do something that your ex did not like doing (eat that super spice Indian food, watch that tear-jerker rom-com, buy something you love, but know he/she would have hated). It’s all about love, so show some to yourself!
If you are Partnered
I hope you really will do something that makes you both happy. When I was younger, it was all about romantic dinners and gifts…now, not so much, and of course this year has its own special challenges. Here is a short list of ideas:
- Valentine’s Day is on a Sunday this year, so why not have a lazy Sunday morning. Sleep in. Read, watch a movie, lock the door, and do other things that are fun to do in bed. If your (older) kids want to make breakfast in bed for you, let them.
- Do a blind wine tasting…this is fun in a group, but you can do it with just the two of you. Buy 4-6 bottles of either red or white wines that you are not familiar with. Vary the price points. Put each one in a paper bag with a rubber band at the top, so you can’t see the label. Mix them all up and then label each bag with a letter. Taste each one. Take your time. Discuss the flavors and subtilties of each one (bonus points for using important-sounding wine words like: bouquet, texture, balance, full-bodied, earthy, and finish). Cleanse your palate with a cracker between wines. When you are done, use the letters to rank your choices. Finally, unbag the bottles for the Big Reveal. Be sure to gasp and make astonished comments (whether genuine or pretended).
- Look at photos together. You could even organize them into books or frames…but at the very least look. Photos bring up memories and memories bring up (hopefully), happy feelings and connecting conversations. This can be an activity just for you, or put them on the TV for the whole family to enjoy.
- Grab one of the many couples’ journal type books and have fun filling it out. Some are meant to be filled out by one spouse as a gift for the other, while others are designed to be completed together.
- As featured on The Big Bang Theory (and the New York Times), try asking each other The 36 Questions that Lead to Love.
- If you are feeling energetic, consider a dance party for two (or more if you want to include the kids). Make a playlist, clear some space, maybe add a disco ball or colorful lights if you have them, and dance! Be sure to include a few slow songs.
- Make something unusual for dinner…crab legs? fondue? a meal made only from appetizers? or…
- Get takeout, but from a nicer place than you normally would.
- And of course, you can always use that old favorite: Movie Night! Pop in LaLa Land, When Harry Met Sally, Crazy Rich Asians, or your favorite RomCom. Here is Rolling Stone’s All Time Top 50 if you need some ideas.
For Your Students
I don’t usually promote products here on Teach YourSelf Care, but I just have to tell you about our Whodunnit Readers Theater: Who Left Us Cupcakes? Students love it because it’s humorous, they all get to play a part, and there is a real mystery to solve. Teachers love it because it is loaded with great vocabulary, and students will need to take good notes and use their inference skills to solve the mystery. It is an awesome gift you can give to your students.
You might also want to grab these free I Heart Coloring Hearts that your students can print out and color or color online.
Whatever you decide to do for Valentine’s Day (even if it is exactly nothing), remember to keep your own self-care in mind and do something that feels genuinely good to you!
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