So basically, I’m not a fan of Valentines day. As far as I’m concerned, Cupid can do one.
Why?? I hear you cry. Why would you hate the day of love, you monster?? (OK you’re probably not saying that).
Well, there are a number of reasons. I don’t like all the tacky pink shop displays that pop up everywhere all of a sudden. I don’t like it that across the country, women will be waking up to cards, chocolates, flowers, balloons and teddy bears and I’ll be waking up to…erm… nothing. I especially don’t like the fact that I’ll be seeing all of those previously mentioned cards, chocolates, flowers, balloons and teddy bears plastered all over my Facebook news feed.
Out of my single friends, it’s guaranteed that at least one of us will have some sort of emotional outburst about dying alone (it’s highly likely that it’s going to be me, quite honestly) and it’s also guaranteed that one of my non-single friends will be upset because their partner forgot/didn’t bother/got them a £3 bunch of flowers from the petrol station on the way home and didn’t even take the price tag off/spelt their name wrong in their Valentines card (delete as appropriate).
Exhibit A: Me on Valentines Day
So yea – sorry. I would rather that society focuses on the fact that February is the month of pancakes rather than the month where single people feel like shit. But I know that’s not going to happen.
But One Day, (Last Thursday, Actually) – Everything Changed
That has been my general, doom and gloom outlook on Valentines day up until last Thursday, when my beautiful friend Jess came round for dinner. (You’ll remember her from this post). As soon as she walked in through the door, she announced happily that she had gotten Valentines presents for me and for our other friend Laura. I had to stop stirring the simmering pan of Thai Green Curry in front of me to take in what she had said.
‘You got us Valentine’s presents?’ I asked.
‘Er – yea?’ – She smiled.
Well that was the moment when Jess completely changed my mind about Valentines day. Jess is what I call a Gift-Giver. She shows people how much she loves them by giving them gifts. Some people use words, some people use gestures, Jess gives gifts. She turned up just before Christmas last year with the biggest bag of presents for me, each one individually wrapped and a bottle of wine and chocolates and it was actually amazing.
Once again, my wise friend has put me on the right path and has helped me to realise I don’t need to be bitter and full of single-girl resentment on Valentine’s day, because I’m going to copy her and give my friends gifts. My friends have gotten me through the difficult times and they’ve been happy for me during the good times too. I’ve had more support and care from them than I’ve ever had from any boyfriend, so now giving them all something small but heart-felt for Valentines is something that I’m actually really looking forward to.
So I’ve been doing a bit of browsing online, looking for some ideas, and there are so many amazing DIY ideas out there but these are my 5 favourite ones:
Tea Bags Of Love
This delightful idea is courtesy of Cupcakes and Cashmere. It’s just a small, hand-made tea bag with a cute heart-shaped tab.
Being an insane tea-drinker, I thought this idea was not only adorable, but so easy! We all know the happiness that comes with a lovely cup of tea, so this little token gift is perfect! The Blue Bird Tea Co. in Brighton would be the perfect place to buy the loose tea from – their teas are so pretty! My favourites are Earl Grey Crème and Strawberry Lemonade.
Sweet Treats – Heart Tarts
There is something rather reminiscent about Jam Tarts and these are so easy to make! These would be the perfect treat for your best mate to enjoy whilst having a cup of their Love Tea. This recipe is from Cooking Classy – you can go bonkers with any jam you think your friends would like. I’m a sucker for raspberry. The guys at Tiptree do great jams – check them out. Wrap these up in clear cellophane with a curled ribbon and your friends will be chuffed.
Funny Gift – We Make A Great Pair
This idea from Made To Be A Momma made me giggle, and I know it will make my friends laugh too so it’s going on the list! Nothing like warm and snuggly toes in this cold weather!
Crafty Makes – Vibrant Hearts
If you are of the crafty persuasion and have some spare time on your hands this week, then these DIY fabric hearts from Flamingo Toes are perfect. My girls are strong independent women and they don’t want no pansy hearts, they are getting kitsch hearts with gutsy, vibrant colours!! These versatile decorations can be hung on door handles, coat hooks and even car mirrors. #win
Every Girl Needs Chocolate
This is similar to the Tea Bag idea but I still really love it. You are basically putting together all of the ingredients for the most amazing hot chocolate into one cute package. With this gift, you are saying ‘hey friend, put your feet up and treat yourself because you deserve it’. I mean who actually has all the ingredients for a luxury hot chocolate knocking about in the cupboards? It’s a lovely treat! If you want to take this to the next level, buy them a copy of that book you keep telling them to read and a new pair of slippers for the cosiest night in your friend has ever had.
You will need:
- A lovely new mug (like the personalised one above from Not On The High Street)
- A melty hot chocolate spoon (these are amazing – you stir them into hot milk. Spilt drinking chocolate powder all over your kitchen is a think of the past.)
- A pack of mini marshmellows (look, the melty spoon comes with them already!)
- A couple of topping – sprinkles, chocolate flakes, wafters, cherries, chunks of brownies… anything goes!
Tie everything up in cellophane and a big lovely ribbon, with a hand-written label to your friend.
Friendships are just as important in our lives as romantic relationships are, and I’ve learnt that there is absolutely no need for me to feel left out on Valentines Day because I have so much love in my life, and I’m going to celebrate that along with everyone else.
Be happy, be bright, be you xxx