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How to Reinvent Valentine's Day

Published Tuesday, 11 February, 2014 by Amy Murnan

Don’t get me wrong – I have some good memories from Valentine’s Days past. But now that everything red, pink and fluffy is appearing as soon as Christmas is over, Valentine’s Day seems to be getting a bit old. Unlike other holidays there is no guarantee of presents, no reason to get drunk that doesn’t involve self-pity, and no greater meaning to be taken away at the end of it all. Even if you like endless teddy bear cards, there has to be something better to do on the 14th of February than watch some non-funny rom com while waiting for an acceptable moment for a PDA.

So whether you fall into the single camp, the sickeningly-in-love camp or the it’s-all-about-consumerism-anyway camp, here are some ways to reinvent Valentine’s Day that will suit everyone.

Send your friends Valentine’s Day cards

Not real Valentine’s Day cards – homemade and completely ridiculous Valentine’s Day cards. The worse they are the better. You can write terrible poems, use embarrassing photos, cheesy pet names…whatever you can think of. No one gets left out, no one has to buy anything, and you can send them to friends that are far away too.

Give People Flowers

...for charity. This year you can sign up for just one hour selling daffodil pins for Marie Curie, who do fantastic work providing nurses for the terminally ill. These are flowers that really can make a difference to somebody’s life, and really there is no better way of spreading the love than contributing to the comfort and care of someone who desperately needs it. Find out what it’s like here.

Have a Pancake Day ‘Rehearsal’

People love Pancake Day, so why limit yourself to one? You could make it romantic with strawberries and champagne (or, on a budget, Buck’s Fizz) or get your friends together and have everyone bring different toppings. What’s more, having pancakes on the wrong day will really mess ‘the Man’ up.

Join the Random Acts of Kindness Brigade

There are all sorts of challenges involving random acts of kindness, but if you don’t think you could make it 8 whole weeks then Valentine’s Day could not be a better opportunity to take part. Not only will it make someone else feel good, but it will make you feel good too. Look here for some great and really quite simple ideas. It could even become a feel-good habit.

Have a Me-Date

There are some things you simply cannot do on dates. No matter how romantic you think it will be, baths do not work (unless they are huge), comfortable clothes are frowned upon and eating anything messy is out of the question. So, instead of joining the flocks of people cramming into restaurants and cinemas, take the opportunity to do something you want to do. Treat yourself - to food, films, a good book, a duvet day - whatever you feel like. And remember, no one is there to judge you. Big portions, pyjamas and bubble baths are all yours for the taking.

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