How to Make Valentine's Day Special (No Matter How You're Celebrating)

Have no fear. I’ve got you covered. First up, we have a romantic gift idea. I actually saw this posted on The College Crush a few months ago (check out my weekly column there, hint hint) and thought this was a great idea. It would also be perfect for Valentine’s Day.

You take a deck of cards, paste a picture of your sweetie and you on the outside, and then write a reason why you love that person (52 in total) on each of the individual playing cards. It’s easy to make even if you’re not crafty, but it’s really romantic and meaningful. I did this for Chris for our 3-year anniversary and he loved it.

Here’s a picture of the finished product:

 I love sweet, homemade gifts like this. Don’t get me wrong, buying something shiny and fancy and flashy is great and fun. Absolutely. But something that came from the heart always means a lot. So if you’re in a gift-buying rut (or are short on cash), give this idea a try.

Then I was browsing Tone it Up and saw they had some great Valentine’s Day recipes. I think Chris and I are going to try to the healthy cupcakes and the chocolate-covered strawberries on Valentine’s Day. We’ll probably make the cupcakes tomorrow and then make the strawberries on actual Valentine’s Day. These would be fun to make no matter how you’re celebrating though. If you’re flying solo, grab some friends and make this stuff. Yummy, healthy food is always welcome. Here are the recipes if you’re interested in checking those out.

It’s weird, I can almost always pass up ice cream but cupcakes, cookies, brownies? Nope. Gotta have em. It’s nice to have a healthier alternative for these things.

How will you be celebrating Valentine’s Day (or National Singles’ Awareness Day as I used to call it)? If you have a second, check my column for The College Crush about a new kind of Valentine’s Day. Here’s the first part of the piece:

Valentine’s Day is a sweet concept. You’re reminding that special someone why he or she is so terrific. You’re making that person feel great. But I think we need to create a new holiday. It will act as a supplement to Valentine’s Day. Valentine’s Day Part 2, if you will. The holiday is going to be devoted to love, just like Valentine’s Day. But it’s a different kind of love. It’s loving yourself and being content with who you are. It’s nice to have someone tell you why you’re great. That always feels good. But no amount of Build-a-Bears or conversation hearts or compliments from other people can give you self-confidence. You have to find that on your own. Sometimes we get so caught up in everything else in our lives that we forget to feel good about ourselves and what we’ve accomplished. I want a day where we are forced to take a step back and give ourselves some credit. A little boost of self-confidence in a world that moves a million miles per hour.

Women are a tough crowd. Many times we get catty and critical and compete with each other when we could be helping. But as tough as we are on each other, I think many of us are even tougher on ourselves. We stretch ourselves thin. We race from class to class to work to volunteer to an activity to see a friend to the gym. We compare ourselves to other people. We critique our bodies. We doubt ourselves. We’re afraid to recognize the things we do well. Or when we do feel pride, we move on to the next thing so quickly that we don’t fully savor it. Click here to read the rest.

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