Top 10 Sweet (and Easy) Dates for this Valentine’s Day

Tah'niyah Jackson, Staff Writer

One of the sweetest holidays is upon us, with its chocolate-filled hearts and bouquets of roses. Valentine’s Day is here, but this year, let’s step away from the typical and get creative. The traditional way to celebrate Valentine’s Day has aged like fine wine, but when you begin to get predictable, that wine starts to taste a little bitter, so here are some ideas to spruce up your Valentine’s Day. 

1. Surprise with a dinner date

Dinner dates may seem like a normal thing to do on Valentine’s Day but suggest a little twist; For this date night, you aren’t going to a restaurant because they are expensive and usually require reservations. So what you could do is plan a 3-course meal, with an entre, main dish, and a dessert. You should each go to different restaurants and pick out a meal for your partner to eat. It should be a mystery all the way until you lift your utensils to eat. 

2. Run a karaoke night

You may not be able to sing like Cher, Micheal Buble, or Beyonce, but you can still pretend that you can by having a karaoke night. Set out some snacks and invite family and friends to host the best concert the world may never see. This is a great way to bond. Valentine’s Day isn’t always about your romantic relationship; sometimes it’s just about the people who you love and who love you. Remember the people who have always been there for you and do something nice for them. 

3. Make a scrapbook

A simple and relatively cheap way to celebrate Valentine’s Day is to make a scrapbook. This is both a fun and artistic way to bond with each other, and you’ll be able to make this gift more sentimental than chocolates. (I mean never skip out on chocolate, but that’s obvious.) You should use different special moments and make a scrapbook. This project is full of creative liberties and the more creativity the more precious and sentimental the gift will be.

4. Build a decorative box

Decorative boxes are a cute idea if you want to make something for that special someone. Now, for this gift, you need to buy a heart-shaped box and have some printed pictures of you and your significant other. You will have to measure the pictures to fit on the outside lid. You don’t want to cut the picture to the point of no return, so be careful. When everything is properly measured, you are going to glue the pictures to the top. When it’s dry, decorate the sides of the heart with whatever the person likes: sports stickers, music notes, or even song lyrics. Then when the box itself is complete, you can put whatever you like inside of the heart. The gift is going to be tailored differently for everyone, and it will mean something different to everyone.

5. Put on a photoshoot

A photoshoot is a way to capture moments and hold them for generations. A picture is a window into the past. I’m not referring to the typical selfie, I’m talking about polaroid photos. You both can get dressed up (or dressed down depending on the vibe you are going for) and just spend time having fun and taking pictures. Not every pose has to be perfect, and not every lip has to be puckered. The most fondly looked upon pictures are the ones that you take for yourself, and where you are being yourself. You don’t have to post these on social media; these are your special memories with the person you are with, and if you don’t have a boyfriend or girlfriend you can do this with a close friend. 

6. Make a playlist

People associate music with specific events in their lives for better or worse, but in this case, it should be for the better. Making a playlist is a great way to show your partner that you know their music tastes and you can also throw in some songs that remind you of them or some songs you think they may enjoy. Add all of the songs that have specific memories attached to them. I have a memory of my me and my boyfriend dancing to Frank Sinatra at a fancy restaurant in our fluffy pajamas and hoodies looking less than elegant, but it was so much fun. Those are the types of songs you want to add–songs with meaning and purpose.

7. Give yourselves a spa day

This is for the people who are really tired after a long week of work, school, or if you have just been really stressed lately. A spa day is the cure for all of that stress and a way to unwind with your partner. Whether you actually go to a spa or make one at home, it’s a really good way to relax and bond. People usually think you have to do some huge thing for Valentine’s Day, but the way a gift makes your partner or you feel is more important than a price tag. Get some Epsom salt and some essential oils and have a foot bath, or give each other massages. Whatever is on the agenda for a spa day should be good, and afterward, watch some movies and eat the snacks I’m sure you got as a gift.

8. Design a Valentine’s Day treasure hunt

If you are the type of person who liked Easter egg hunts, or you liked finding the dollar under your pillow from the tooth fairy then maybe a Valentine’s scavenger hunt is up your alley. You and your honey will buy or create a set amount of gifts and hide them in two different rooms. Each of you should go into the rooms trying to find your gift, the person who finds all of their gifts first wins. If you want the winner to have a prize be my guest, but I always think that in cases like this, bragging rights are always a good prize, and those are completely free.

9. Cook dinner together

For all of my aspiring chefs out there, make a meal or dessert together. This will be as expensive as your tastes. For example, I love pasta but refuse to use jarred pasta sauce, so I make my own, and that costs a pretty penny. You should buy the items you really like and make a meal that is unique. The meal at the end is less important than the fun and memories you can make together making the food. You can also gauge who will be doing all of the cooking, and who will be doing the dishes.

10.  Play games together

I personally have a lot of energy and like to move around, and my boyfriend is competitive, so we play games together. You can play any game that you have on hand or make one up with a decent amount of set rules. Remember how it felt to make up games with your friends when you were younger. They were a little chaotic but fun. Valentine’s Day is about expressing love and appreciation for each other. What that looks like in your individual relationships is 100% up to you. Make memories, and when you think back to this Valentine’s Day, you can’t say you had a bad time or weren’t happy. You will have the memories of a fun and corrupted game that you and your partner made up. If you are feeling more festive, invite some friends to play your game of chaos and half-written rules that can be bent in some circumstances.