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Mother and child decorating pink heart cookies for Valentine's Day
OHIOHEALTH

Love is For All: How to Celebrate This Valentines/Galentines Day

Another year, another Valentine’s Day. But this time around is a bit different, isn’t it? Last year, you may have gone out to a restaurant to celebrate. You may have gone dancing, watching others sing along to songs that empower them. Or, you may have sat on your couch watching movies, ignoring this “hallmark holiday” as some label it. Whatever you did last year, you did before the pandemic. And now here we are, a whole year later.

If you’re wondering how you can celebrate within the walls of your home, or if you should even celebrate at all, we are here to tell you that you should try. Things are tough right now, but that’s all the more reason to do something new; something different. To help get your creativity flowing, here is a guide to 2021 Valentine’s Day activities that anyone can participate in. Whether you have a significant other, a solid group of friends, kids yearning to do something fun or just your amazing self, there’s something in this guide for everyone. Happy Valentine’s Day.

“Be in love with your life. Every minute of it.” – Jack Kerouac


Couple cooking together in kitchen

For the Lovers

Time to lighten the mood and do something special with your significant other this Valentine’s Day. Whether you’re quarantined together, separate or a long distance couple, the following activities can be adapted to fit your situation.

1. Craft a photo book

It’s been a tough year, so why not reminisce by looking at old memories? All you really need is some paper, markers, glue or tape and those beautiful photos. Plan to give the book as a gift to your special someone, or let them join the fun and craft it together.

2. Recreate your first date – quarantine style

Time to really get creative! Was that perfect first night in a restaurant? Bring it back by cooking the meals you ordered at home and dressing up your kitchen table. Or maybe you went to an art gallery! Print off some classic art, especially some of your favorite pieces, and hang them around your home.

3. Send something sweet

If you can’t be with your other half this Valentine’s Day, send them something in the mail to show how much you care. Chocolates, flowers and cards are the classics, or you could buy/craft something specific to them and brighten up their day.

4. Will you be my couch potato?

If you and your significant other are busy bees, take a night to wind down with your favorite films. Take turns picking a movie, or pick something random and see how it goes!

5. Five star restaurant home

Challenge yourselves by cooking a fancy dinner at home! Whether you follow along a YouTube or Tasty video, cooking together in the kitchen will definitely result in a fun memory (and maybe some burnt food… good luck!).


Woman chatting on a virtual call on her computer with a glass of red wine

Galentine Club

“What’s Galentine’s Day? Oh, it’s only the best day of the year!”

If you’ve watched Parks and Recreation, then you’re no stranger to Galentine’s Day. But unlike Leslie Knope’s tradition, we believe everyone can be a galentine, not just the ladies. Get in the spirit by trying out one (or more!) of the following activities:

1. Sleeping bags & midnight snacks & pranks, oh my!

Remember the days of staying up late telling secrets? Us too. Let’s reminisce by throwing a special edition sleepover: virtual style. Craft some ecards or simply text your friends to invite them. Plan on movies, video games, food, drinks and of course, time for chit-chat.

2. Secret Galentine

Who doesn’t love Secret Santa? Well have you heard of…Secret Galentine? Use a random generator online to decide who gets who, then it’s time to shop (or craft!). Mail your gifts and open them all over video chat.

3. PowerPoint party

Our Gen Z friends have discovered the newest trend: PowerPoint parties. Go ahead and pick any topic you want: Dungeons & Dragons strategies, Disney movie conspiracies, which vegetable is superior… you name it! It can be as silly as you want – that’s the point: to make a PowerPoint about something that doesn’t usually warrant one. Present your slides to your friends over your preferred video chat software and make sure to leave time for questions.

4. The Great Ohioan Bake Off

Let’s keep this one a secret…we don’t want Paul Hollywood judging our amateur bakes. This Galentine’s Day, invite your friend group to virtually bake or cook together! Decide on what you’re all going to make, then gather the ingredients and turn on your webcams. You can even make a contest out of it too! “Whose lemon muffins look the best?”

5. Virtual experiences

Thanks to websites like Eventbrite and Airbnb, you and your friends can sign up for a multitude of events and experiences all from the comfort of your home. Whether you choose wine tasting, to learn astrology or to solve an escape room challenge, this will sure create a lasting memory among loved ones.


Children doing valentine's day arts and crafts

Kiddo Crafts and Fun

Valentine’s Day is just as fun for kids as it is for lovers and galentines. Unfortunately, a traditional Valentine’s Day celebration at school is out of the question with online learning. However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t celebrate virtually or at home!

1. Did someone say game night?

It’s probably been a long time since your kids have had a playdate. Why not plan a virtual game night for your kids and their friends? While virtual, your kids will have a blast playing their favorite video games with their pals.

2. Valentine Treats

As much fun as eating sweets is, baking and decorating them is also a good time. Help your kids make chocolate strawberries, decorate sugar cookies, and maybe even melt and shape some candy! Finish up by sending your extra treats to their friends.

3. Heart crayons

Time to spruce up the classic DIY crayons idea by shaping them into hearts! All you need is a silicone heart mold and some extra crayons or broken crayon pieces. Not only are these little hearts cute and festive, but your kids can use them to draw to their heart’s content.

4. Virtual experiences

Thanks to websites like Eventbrite and Airbnb, you can sign up your kids to participate in a multitude of virtual events and experiences! Many of the events are even free to attend, so it’s a great budget friendly activity. Whether your kids learn how to bake, attend a story time or join a dance party, they’re going to have a ton of fun.

5. Valentine’s Box

Have your kids craft their own valentine’s box! While they won’t be able to bring them to school, you can surprise them by filling them with candy during the night (think Christmas stockings). This is a fun craft that will surely get them in the valentine’s spirit, and just imagine their excitement when they awake to their box full of treats.


Woman relaxing in bubble bath

Treat Yo’ Self

Valentine’s Day is what you make it out to be. This year, if you need a little self-care and alone time, we feel you. Try out any of the following ideas to really enjoy your day of relaxation and empowerment.

1. Breakfast in Bed

Nothing says ‘I love you’ or ‘I love myself’ quite like a big breakfast in bed. Time to pull out that waffle maker, whip up a fun coffee drink and enjoy a relaxing morning.

2. Get out of those PJs and wear something fun!

Where does all this distrust for pink come from? We know you have something pink in your closet… so today’s the day! Style it up and proudly show it off to all your house plants.

3. Table for one, but drinks for two

It’s easy to binge watch cooking shows, so it’s time for a challenge. Hit the grocery store and pick up all the ingredients you need to cook that one meal you’ve been itching to try. It doesn’t matter if you’re a professional chef or a nervous beginner- put on an apron and get to cooking! Oh, and don’t forget to dine with a lit candle and some music to really set the mood.

4. What time is it? Self-care time

Self-care is a priority. Now repeat that so it really sinks in. It’s time to take care of you, so go get a bath bomb, face mask and a really cozy robe. Don’t forget to turn on your favorite show or album for maximum rejuvenation time.

5. Indulge in online deals

It’s good to save money, but if you’d had your eye on something you really want for a while now… it’s time to treat yo’ self and get it. Be wary though, you don’t want to accidently spend as much money as Donna and Tom do.

With a little finessing, any of these wonderful activities can be altered for anyone. Enjoy yourself this Valentine’s Day.

 

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