A lot gets made about the importance of celebrating Valentines Day. The cynics and the critics call the day a made up holiday created by the greeting card and boxed chocolate industry, while the hopeless romantics and the idealists believe the day represents an opportunity to celebrate with the one you love.
Planning the perfect Valentines Day can be a stressful experience. Reservations at the hottest restaurants need to be booked weeks, possibly months in advance. Trying to pick out a gift that says, “I love you” without resorting to buying a chalky heart shaped candy places a lot of pressure on both the giver, to make sure they find the right gift, and the receiver, who must show just the right amount of gratitude and appreciation. Add in the crowds, the overpriced fixed Valentines Day menu most restaurants will force you to order from, and the fact that gold and rose peddles cost roughly the same price per ounce in February, and it’s easy to see why so many people have become anti-Cupid.
What can get lost in the all of the heart embroidered stuffed bears and spa treatment gift certificates is that all a successful Valentines Day needs is for you and your special someone to spend time together.
Make Reservations For Two at Home
For some, Valentines Day means an opportunity to eat a good meal that someone else has prepared for them. While its always nice to have an expertly prepared meal you don’t have to cook yourself, eating at home on Valentines Day can be an exceptionally romantic activity when done together. Food is sensual, and the preparation of a meal together with your special someone has the opportunity to be a flirtatious and exciting encounter.
Whether you are trying a new recipe, copying one from a favorite restaurant, or dusting off an old favorite, what you eat on Valentines Day isn’t nearly as important as the time you spend making the meal together. Working together with your mate to create a fantastic dinner you’ll both enjoy feels less like work and more like an adventure.
Set the Mood
Eating at home can seem like more of the same, especially if living with your mate. To make the night feel more celebratory, decorate for the occasion. If most of your meals are spent sitting on the couch in front of the T.V., set a place for each other at the dining room table. If you don’t have a dining room table, set up a small card table. A white table cloth and a few candles can go a long way to transforming the ordinary into the extraordinary, and even a single rose as a centerpiece can brighten up a room.
Make the Occasion Special
Do you have an old or special bottle of wine at home you’ve been waiting for just the right occasion to open? Maybe a favorite dress or shirt you just never seem to find the right opportunity to wear? What foods to you love to eat but get too few of because they’re too expensive, fatty, or hard to find? Make your Valentines Day one where nothing is out of reach. You’ll be amazed at the quality and quantity of a meal at home compared to the price of one out on the town.
Take it To Go
After dinner is over, brew a pot of coffee or tea, maybe makes some hot chocolate, and put it in a thermos to go. With warm beverage in hand, take a stroll around the neighborhood or a walk through downtown. Seeing other couples together celebrating their own Valentines Day can serve as a wonderful reminder of how lucky the two of you are to have found one another. A particularly cold night out acts as the perfect reason to huddle closely together with the one you love, and can help set the tone for getting even closer once you return home.
Timothy Lemke is a freelance writer living in Portland, Oregon. To make sure your smile looks its best on Valentines Day, visit Dr. Donald Lanahan, a Grants Pass dentist.