Getting Real With Shadra Bruce

Let’s face it: With all the hype around Valentine’s Day, being newly single around this time is no walk in the park. Everywhere you look, from TV commercials to Target, everything is plastered with cheesy red and pink hearts as a reminder of the big day ahead (along with a reminder for singles that they’re a party of one).

valentines dayIf you’re lucky enough to be in a loving relationship this year but you have a friend who just went through a tough breakup, you know that she may be dreading this impending holiday of love.

Be a good, supportive friend and lend her a hand. After all, she probably has done the same for you. Come up with a sensitive solution that includes your newly single friend (and maybe others!), all while embracing that special time with your sweetheart. Here are a couple of ideas.

Valentine Surprises

The joy of unlimited candy and watching as your shoe box filling to the top were among the things that made Valentine’s Day so much fun as a kid. Relive that excitement by sending Valentines and a surprise to your dearest friends. If your closest friends live nearby, create a small gift basket with the following goodies that you can make or buy in bulk:

  • homemade cookies
  • chocolate truffles
  • gourmet coffee
  • cute coffee mug

Leave the baskets on their doorsteps, either bright and early for a Valentine’s morning surprise, or in the afternoon to find as they come home from work. If you simply don’t have the time to assemble the baskets yourself, look online and check out the Valentine’s Day gifts on FTD.com.

For those who live out of town, bake your favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe and mail a fresh batch their way to sweeten their day from afar. Wrap them up nicely, and tie on your Valentine with a big red ribbon and bow.

Host a Party

Restaurants will be jam-packed with couples on Valentine’s Day so why not host a party at your place for couples and singles alike? Start by creating your guest list and purchase some printable invitations on Etsy, which you can personalize and print at home or take to a nearby Kinko’s. Start early so that your eager friends don’t make their dinner reservations before they hear word of your big celebration. Note on the invitation that all attendees should bring their favorite sweet treat to the party, so that there will be plenty of delectable goodies to go around. As a host, provide a selection of appetizers and finger foods, and shift your focus to the music and decorations. Select some cheesy 80s love songs to play in the background, and have a movie playing in the background such as “Lady and the Tramp.” Set out a few board game stations, and a cocktail table, and enjoy the company as everyone celebrates love and friendship together.