Yes. Like clockwork, another Valentine's Day is upon us. While on one hand, it's been so long since I've been in a relationship that I don't even get triggered by being single during this time of year anymore, interestingly enough, it is my favorite commercial holiday (long story short, there is a St. Valentine who married people when it was against the law and was martyred for it. I am a marriage life coach, so there you have it). Besides, how can you actually get mad about a day devoted to expressing love? Good grief.
Anyway, most of us heard, at some point along the way, that love comes in many forms. Agape love is a Greco-Christian term that basically breaks down to unconditional love which is the kind of love that a lot of us have for our friends. So, whether you've got a boo this year or not, why not take a moment to celebrate the homies in your life who, whether they've got a boo or not, would probably love nothing more than a token of your affection and appreciation this coming V-Day. If you need a little inspiration on what you can do for them, I've got 10 ideas.
1. Make Them a Pampering Basket
If there's one thing that I personally think that women—especially Black women—absolutely can never do enough of, it's pampering. Thing is, treating oneself is not exactly a one-size-fits-all kind of thing. Think about what your friend's favorite leisure or self-care activity is and then create a little gift basket that reflects that. If she likes to read books, get her a gift card, a box of some herbal teas and some cute footies. If she enjoys essential oils, make some body wash, lotion and a hair spritz out of scents that will help her to feel calm and relaxed like lavender or patchouli (YouTube has all kinds of how-to videos on easy ways to make this kind of stuff). If it's doing her nails and toes, look for some new polish colors and be sure to throw in some cuticle oil and eyeliner brushes (they're great for correcting painting mistakes).
No one said that the basket had to be over the top. Just a lil' something that lets them know that they're in your thoughts and you are on the top of the list of people who think that they deserve to be loved on; including on Valentine's Day.
2. Exchange DIY Cards
Remember back when we were in elementary school and one of the heights of being in the fourth grade and under (sometimes even a little older than that) was exchanging Valentine's Day cards? Just because you're grown, that doesn't mean that you and your peeps still can't do the same thing. At the very least, it will bring back some nostalgia; however, something tells me that it will be a little more heartwarming than that. If you'd like a few ideas for how to go about making some, there are 25 right here.
3. DIY a Dessert or Have Their Favorite One Delivered
Whenever I think about Valentine's Day, sweets are one of the first things that comes to my mind. If you know what your friend's favorite dessert is, why not make it for them? If they're local, you can bake some chocolate chip cookies or a cheesecake, package it up and leave it on their porch (with a heads up after you dropped it off, of course). If they're out of town, make them some brownies and ship 'em.
If you're looking at me crazy because cooking and/or baking isn't your strong suit, you can always have a dessert delivered to them. Simply find a bakery in their area and ask them to send something that will appease your homie's sweet tooth this year.
4. Write Them a Love Letter
It's pretty easy to take just about anyone for granted. This is why I'm so big on encouraging folks to be intentional about telling others what they appreciate and/or love about them. If money is super tight or you're the kind of person who takes procrastination to a whole 'nother level on a regular basis, another idea is to write your friend a love letter. And yes, I mean that literally.
Take out a couple of hours one afternoon or evening and reflect on all of the things that you like and respect about them. Then add to that, why you are honored to call them "friend". Getting a really nice blank card, writing your message, and sending it in the mail (whether they live in the same city or not) is a really nice touch. Yet even if you are down to the wire and you email a message instead, I promise you that it will move them, on so many levels.
5. Customize Some Pajamas
Lawd, this pandemic. Whenever I hear about people going on (clothing) shopping sprees, I usually wonder, "What for? Where the heck do y'all plan to go?!" Since many of us are spending a significant amount of time in sweats and PJs, another cute idea could be to get some pajamas customized for your friend. It can have their name, a nickname or some inside joke phrase that only the two of you know about on it. I'm a huge Etsy supporter, so if you wanna know where to start your search to get some, I would recommend clicking here first.
6. Send Them a Get-over-Your-Ex Gift Pack
There's a pretty good chance that you've got at least one friend who is getting over a break-up this Valentine's Day. Something that I bet they wouldn't see coming is a break-up gift pack. Have it include some bubble bath to help them relax. A piece of lingerie or sexy sleepwear to represent starting a fresh collection. Download a customized playlist with songs like Kelis's "Caught Out There" on it (just sayin'). Include some notecards with self-esteem quotes on them. Give them a gift card with lunch or dinner on you. I recently saw a boyfriend pillow that I thought was comedy (check it out here). If they're down, get them an online dating membership. Anything that will help them to not sit and sulk in the day but instead, see Valentine's Day as a new beginning.
7. Watch Your Favorite Rom-Com on Zoom
If you and your friend are doing Valentine's Day on the solo tip this year, one way to get your mind off of others who may be boo'ed up is to watch a favorite rom-com together. Decide beforehand what you're gonna eat and drink, download the film and then watch it on an app like Zoom together. I do this with one of my godchildren sometimes and it's actually a lot of fun. If you'd like to test out an app other than Zoom to see how it works, you can click here for a few other ideas.
8. Host a Virtual Sleepover
Speaking of my god babies, something that one of my goddaughters does with her friends is have virtual sleepovers. Everyone brings their sleeping bags downstairs in their home, has snacks, and plays games together until they all fall asleep. It really is adorable. You and your folks can do some variation of that.
Get cozy in your bed, determine if you're gonna play a round of something like Truth or Dare or I've Never, telling some dating spooky stories, and decide that you're each gonna have a surprise dinner delivered to each other. You might look up and realize that being single on Valentine's Day can be a whole lot more fun than you ever imagined.
9. Do (Electronic) Vision Boards Together
Write the vision, make it plain, right? Setting goals for your life is always a wise decision—including love life goals. Something else that could be enjoyable this Valentine's Day is for you and your friend to create vision boards together as they directly relate to the love that you desire to bring into your life. What does he look like? What kind of qualities do you desire? What things would you like to do together? Stuff like that. If you don't want to make a traditional vision board, there are apps these days that make it easy to upload ideas and even exchange them electronically (click here for a few).
10. Plan a Future Trip Together
Some folks are out here on these planes, chile. If that's not you but you do want to travel again someday (le sigh), something else that you and your friend can do is plan a trip together. Due to the pandemic, there are actually all kinds of virtual tours that you can take (check out a couple of 'em here and here) in order to get an idea of where you want to go. After landing on a place, come to a mutual decision of how much you're going to save a month in order to make the vacation happen. Speaking of traveling, check your passport. Mine expires in March, so I sent in my renewal app in December. Some folks have told me that they waited as much as six months to get theirs back (goodness), so there's no time like the present to get your things in order. Planning for later in the year or even a trip next February 14 could be just the thing to get you through this upcoming one. Happy Valentine's Day—to you and your homies—sis.
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