Awesome Lists

How to have a cringe free Valentine’s

9 February, 2010

It’s hard to escape some of the more cringe-inducing messages in the lead up to Valentine’s Day in the western world. It’s a day that was created to fete early Christian martyrs (yes, plural – Valentine was a popular name for martyrs!) for things that people forgot about long ago, and for reasons of sacrifice rather than actual kissy-kissy romance. Early Pagans held a fertility celebration called Lupercalia in February and it’s thought that the creation of the Valentine holiday was an attempt to Christianise Pagan celebrations (remind you of Christmas?) As time went on the myths and practices surrounding Valentine’s Day became more romantic and were intended to celebrate the romantic love between a man and a woman. People exchanged cards with ribbon and lace, and eventually some entrepreneurial sort came up with the idea of mass manufacturing these trinkets. And you know the rest.

There’s a lot to disagree with when it comes to Valentine’s Day. It’s a Christian tradition celebrating hetero-normative love bastardised from Pagan celebration, basically. For years I was a single girl wondering about love and Valentine’s was always a day that mocked my inability to find a partner. To find a little joy I would make cards for my friends, drawing and gluing to show my appreciation and love for the people around me. Some years I would take time out to spoil myself, with home-made facials and manicures. When I started going out with Nick it didn’t really seem important that he shower me with gifts, so we never really made a big deal out of the day and preferred to spend it with friends. I really appreciate this new tradition we’ve created and feel like it’s a lot more enriching than selfishly squirreling our love away (though if you’re a parent it’s probably a good time to score some time to yourselves!)

SOME LOVELY THINGS TO DO
For yourself and others


❥ Paint your nails a crazy colour. Or red. Or any colour, really. (Photo by lauren the zebra)
❥ Give yourself a face mask and put used tea bags on your eyes (I have no idea if it reduces puffy eyes effectively, but it feels nice!)
❥ Make cupcakes for your friends.
❥ Have a picnic in the park and nap in the sun (good if you’re Australian, maybe not so good if it’s still frosty in your part of the world!)

❥ Nibble your jam sandwich into the shape of a heart (I used to do this all the time) or you could buy a proper cutter (they don’t sell the above one anymore though!)
❥ Book a date with a new friend.
❥ Doodle sweet things on cards and give them to your family and friends.
❥ Take a grandparent out to the movies.
In the mirror
❥ Stand in front of the mirror and practice cute poses. Do not leave until you have smiled at yourself.
❥ Write yourself a Valentine and put it in a book (so you or someone else can find it years later).
❥ THROW OUT YOUR SCALES.
❥ If you live with someone and their scales are in the bathroom, blu-tac a positive message over the display.
❥ Do absolutely nothing all day.

If you’ve got any body-positive all-inclusive plans for Valentine’s Day let me know in the comments!

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  • You could do what my parents did. They killed Valentines Day by getting married that day.

    Decades later, whenever we go to a restaurant to celebrate their wedding anniversary, there are all these intimate tables for two and one really rowdy table for about 30, including grandchildren and great grandchildren. This serves as a horrible warning to all those other tables about the consequences of too much Valentines Day intimacy. :)

    Ever tried ordering flowers as a wedding anniversary gift on Feb 14?

  • Tash

    My boyfriend just doesn't get the concept of like…being nice to people for their birthdays, Christmas, etc. It just doesn't make any sense to him. Last weekend he said to me “Hey Tash, when is our anniversary?” and I'm like WAHHHHH cause I thought we had sort of had this unspoken decision together to not celebrate that crap and now he wants to and he got all upset cause it turns out I'm not going to be in the country for our anniversary and I DON'T UNDERSTAND…but it's really freakin sweet. AND he's getting me chocolates for Valentines! Whut?! I don't know what happened but he's being really nice *shifty eyes*

  • We are sort of doing a bastardised white day next month (japanese valentines day sequel holiday) because a) we courted (HAAAAAA) each other in Japan and b) we're spending valentines day apart because Canberra is a poop.

  • Shell

    I saw that exact sandwich cutter in a shop today!
    I wanted the dinosaur one though..

  • wino1970

    Hubby and I don't get much alone time these days. not just the kids but now I have to care for my 82yr old mother. She never leaves the house and is quite demanding. We don't usually “celebrate” Valentine's but we leave sweet notes about or crack a bottle of bubby (just cos we like bubbly :-) ) This year we are having a great Wedding anniversary, a concert and overnight in a posh hotel in Sydney. Haven't done that since pre-kids.

  • Pingback: VDAY body loving blogosphere 02.14.10()

  • You have the same bathroom bamboo tiles as me!! I have to admit – I love them! I'm located in daisy hill, brisbane