Valentine’s Day is a holiday whose origins are a bit murky. Despite uncertainty and arguments among scholars over Romans, multiple saints, and questionable treatment of women, the holiday has evolved to mostly consist of material gifts like chocolates, jewelry and printed cards to be given to one’s sweetheart.
It sounds nice in theory, but the holiday can place unnecessary pressure on people in relationships and cause single people to feel lonely and unfulfilled.
A Case for Charity
Sometimes Valentine’s Day and the corresponding merchandise, advertisements and entertainment can cause us to question or even feel down about our situations. Our real-world relationships may suddenly seem dull when compared to the unrealistic love affairs of movie characters. For those of us who are unattached, the holiday can give one’s relationship status more meaning than it deserves.
To avoid feeling broken-hearted when surrounded by heart-shaped candies and chocolates, it can help to be reminded that there are many kinds of love, not just the romantic, heart and chocolate-exchanging kind.
There are those less fortunate than us whose lives are lacking the basic forms of love that we sometimes take for granted. Valentine’s Day can be a great opportunity to remind us all that love given to someone in need with no expectation of getting anything in return is a great gift to both the one giving and the one receiving.
When you put love into the world, it makes the whole world a more beautiful place. Love begets love, after all, so our party ideas are all about getting together and giving.
Potlucky in Love Volunteer Party
For this party idea, some planning is necessary. The main objective is to focus on including people in your Valentine’s Day who may not be part of typical celebrations.
Whether you want to help the homeless or give some love to elderly people in assisted care facilities, there are plenty of people who would benefit from feeling loved and included this holiday. Check with the facility you are interested in visiting before planning your party. Find out if they allow group visits and how many people you expect to have as guests. For assisted living facilities, be sure to ask about dietary restrictions regarding salt and sugar, so you can adjust recipes accordingly.
Once you know the place and the number of people attending, send out some cute invitations for your Valentine’s Day party to friends and/or family and explain the purpose of your potluck. Ask your guests to bring a dish, purchase something premade, help with making some cute cupcakes prior to the party or supply Valentine’s Day décor and party favors.
To give your partygoers something to make them feel special, create little cards attached to small, inexpensive gifts as Valentine’s Day party favors for each guest with his or her name and a unique message.
For those volunteers who decide to supply Valentine’s Day décor, fresh Valentine’s flowers would make the holiday come alive. Since flowers are also known to have a positive impact on health, mood and general well-being, those attending your Valentine’s Day party would benefit from some beautiful blooms.
Another option for party décor is a fruit basket. Beautiful and healthy, the sweet, antioxidant-rich fruit will be enjoyed by the partygoers of any volunteer Valentine’s Day party.
Sit down and eat with your new friends. Listen to their stories. We are not so different. The best part about this party is no one is excluded. It doesn’t matter if you are single or part of a couple, young or old, everyone can be a part of this party. At the end of this Valentine’s Day, you will most likely have even more friends than when you started.
Birds and Bees Party
The old saying, “the birds and bees” is synonymous with love, but it is also surmised that Valentine’s Day took a turn for the sweeter and veered away from its darker beginnings due to birds. According to the Smithsonian Magazine, Geoffrey Chaucer, author of “The Canterbury Tales,” created the love connection we now associate with the holiday when he equated the February feast of St. Valentinus to the mating of birds.
In Chaucer’s day, English birds paired off to produce eggs in February. Nature-minded Europeans were influenced by the birds and began sending love notes during bird-mating season. To bring the idea of love, i.e. birds and bees, and Valentine’s Day full circle, we invented a Birds and Bees Valentine’s Day party.
Along with a cute theme, this Valentine’s Day party has activities and accessories. Fun for everyone, this party can be for children, adults or both.
For this party’s Valentine’s Day décor, obviously anything with birds or bees is perfect. Bird and bee paper cut-outs can easily be made utilizing patterns and placed all around the party. For the rest of your party decorations, thrift stores, local big box stores and online shops often have bird or bee figurines, plates, cloth or paper napkins, etc.
Birds and bees are drawn to gardens, but February weather will likely keep your party indoors. Incorporating fresh flowers can bring a garden feel to your gathering, and you can even decorate the flowers with birds and bees.
Because this Valentine’s Day party coincides with activities, food can be easy appetizers, and to keep things simple, consider a signature drink in a pink or red color. A fruit display is also a pretty and functional way to offer guests something healthy and sweet to eat.
Before you send off your cute bird and bee print party invitations, you will need some supplies. The party is not only bird and bee themed. This is a party with a purpose, and the purpose is to give some love to our flying friends.
Activities of this Valentine’s Day party will benefit the birds and bees. For the birds, your guests can make heart-shaped Valentine’s Day bird feeders. They can take them home to suspend from a tree in their yard.
The materials needed are simple and affordable. You will need bowls and spoons, flour, birdseed, unflavored gelatin, corn syrup, a chopstick, cooking spray and heart-shaped cookie-cutters.
Spray your spoon with the cooking spray and mix all the other ingredients in a bowl. The cookie-cutter will need to be sprayed with cooking spray before you fill it with the seed mixture. Then, use your chopstick to make a hole, so your guests can dangle the heart-shaped birdseed treats from trees when they get home. Remove the seed mixture from the cookie-cutter carefully. The seed treats will need to harden overnight before you or your guests hang them up.
For the bees, consider creating bee gardens. Many different flowers can attract bees, so feel free to research online which flowers work best for your area.
If you don’t want the hassle of flowers or if the winter you experience is a bit too harsh for planting, supply some literature to inspire your guests, simply offer some seed packets with cards and consider making bee baths instead. Bee baths are simply a small, flat dish of shallow water with rocks that bees can safely land on without getting their wings wet.
In milder climates, bees remain active throughout the year, but in colder locations, bees may hibernate or go dormant, so gardens can wait, and bee baths can be kept indoors until the weather gets warmer and more inviting for the bees.
This party is a great way to celebrate love that isn’t limited to people. One can also have love for insects, animals and the environment on Valentine’s Day and every other day.
Valentine’s Day Penguin Pebble Party
Penguins are generally regarded as adorable creatures with their cute little waddle. Most species lean toward monogamy, and some species give stones to their mates as gifts used to create nests. Many penguins are ready for a formal event with their black and white markings that are unique to each penguin.
With the likable characteristics of penguins, it is only natural to include these charming creatures in a Valentine’s Day party theme. Of course, the party colors are black and white, and there are endless penguin print party supplies and décor options in stores and online.
If you want to stay with the theme, a great choice of food would be sushi, as penguins enjoy seafood. If sushi isn’t plausible or if you want a bigger menu, add small sandwiches and other simple treats. Penguin cupcakes, with chocolate and vanilla for the black and white colors, would make cute desserts.
For décor, black and white makes the party glamorous, but adding splashes of color will create more visual interest. Consider adding Valentine’s Day flowers to tables where guests will be spending time. Deep red roses offer the perfect vibrant, burst of color to coincide with Valentine’s Day.
Other than food and décor, the penguin party theme expands on the behavior of penguins that give pebbles or rocks to their love interest. At the party, provide guests with some smooth painting rocks, also known as craft rocks. These rocks are inexpensive and available at craft stores and online. Be sure to provide paints and brushes.
Guests can paint their pebbles to give to their valentine. This is another party with a corresponding activity that can be enjoyed by children, adults or a mix of both. Another way to expand on the giving theme of Valentine’s Day is to combine this with a volunteering party for an organization.
For any party to feel like a celebration of Valentine’s Day, fresh flowers are a great addition to your décor. If you are interested in incorporating fresh flowers in your Valentine’s Day gathering, our florists at Oakbrook Florist in Palo Alto, CA, put together beautiful bouquets or fruit displays to celebrate love and giving.
These Valentine’s Day party ideas are just a few ways to expand beyond your usual valentine exchanges. The more love we create and put out in the world, the better the world will be.