I've recently fallen back into binge watching Parks and Recreation, one of my all-time favourite US comedy shows. One of the most well-known episodes is probably "Galentine's Day," where Leslie holds a brunch to celebrate all the women in her life ahead of Valentine's Day. As someone who is currently happily single, I love the idea of a celebration of everyone who is close to me at this traditionally loved up time of year. So when eShores got in touch to send me a hamper of goodies to promote their "Ultimate Romantic Holiday," I wanted to treat one of my best friends to an evening in and share how you can show the love for those closest to you:
[AD] eShores provided me with a box full of goodies in exchange for this post
Treat Them To A Home Cooked Meal
Inspired by the Italian itinerary of their holiday package, eShores sent me a box packed full of goodies from this fantastic country for a “Romeantic night in.” Pasta is my default meal when I don’t know what to cook, so this was perfect for me. I whipped up a simple Bolognese, packed full of mince, peppers, onions, tomatoes and my new favourite addition, bacon. There’s something really special about “hosting” a friend and treating them to a home cooked meal, however simple, and I’m quickly discovering quite how much I enjoy cooking for other people – as long as they don’t expect anything complicated!
Go On A Galentine’s Getaway
Well, who said romantic trips have to be reserved for couples? I’m never going to let being single stop me from travelling the world, and what better travel companion than a best friend. Personally, I think there’s much more pressure when visiting a traditionally romantic destination like Venice with a partner than with a friend, so I love the idea of exploring the City of Love with your bestie instead.
Tell Them Why You Love Them
It's easy to forget to be grateful for your friends. I’ve recently started to ask myself a simple question when I socialise – do I feel better or worse afterwards? There’s a surprising number of people who don’t pass this simple “happiness” test but it’s also made me feel much more grateful for those wonderful people in my life who never fail to lift me up. I’m determined to try and express more quite how much my friends mean to me and ensure I always include my friends in my daily gratefulness diary.
Get Dressed Up and Celebrate
There's nothing like getting dressed up and heading out for a night of cocktails with your friends. I love the whole process of getting ready for a night out with my friends - the choosing of outfits, doing your makeup and drinking G&Ts alongside a healthy dose of gossip. Am I the only one who puts more effort into a night with the girls than for a date? There's no reason not to "treat yo'self" and take advantage of the various Valentine's offers with your friends, whether that's a slap up meal or a bottle of fizz.
Skype a Long Distance Loved One
It can be difficult to stay in touch with friends, especially when you might not live close or even be in the same country. Make some time for a friend in your life who you might not have seen for a while by organising a "Skype date" just for Valentine's. Once you've worked out the basics ("is that your 9pm or my 9pm?"), you'll have so much to talk about. I just love those friendships where you can pick up where you left off, like no time has passed. Or better yet, try and head out to visit them - I, for one, have Tokyo on my bucket list and as one of my best friends lives there, I've got the perfect excuse to plan a trip!
How do you celebrate your friendships? I’d love to hear about any plans for February 14th – Valentine’s, Galentine’s or otherwise!