For any of you who don’t know, I am a huge fan of the TV Show Parks and Rec. Leslie Knope’s character (played by Amy Pohler) comes up with this totally made up holiday, which celebrates the ladies in her life on February 13th each year.
As someone who was either single or in a long distance relationship for the majority of my 20s, this is a theme that resonated with me when the show originally aired, and is a theme that I think girlfriends should really try to adopt, whether they're single or in a relationship.
Valentine’s Day is a weird, sometimes dreaded, holiday for many people. When you’re in grade school it’s all about getting candy and cards from every kid in your class, but I can remember even as far back as first grade, that some boys brought "special Valentines” for the girls in class (I got Valentino, the TY beanie baby from a boy named Evan and if you grew up in the 90s, you will realize that this was probably the coolest valentine a little girl could ever receive).
When you’re in middle school and high school, Valentine’s Day gifts are reserved for whoever you’re “talking to” at the time. (I was NOT cool enough to receive these gifts, but thankfully I did have a mom who anticipated everything and always started my Hallmark holiday with a gift of her own during “the awkward years").
College is a weird mix of candy care packages, love movie marathons in the residence halls, and maybe the occasional off0campus date if you’re dating life has surpassed hookup stage.
Which brings us to adulthood. Half of your friends are married, while the other half have profiles on 4 different dating sites. Some vow to stay home eating their feelings, while others start wearing red and handing out conversation hearts on February 1st.
I have always fallen somewhere in the middle. While I don’t hate the holiday by any stretch, I’m not a fan of only celebrating the people you love on one day of the year. Hence— Galentine’s Day.
In my opinion, this completely made up holiday can take on whatever traditions you and your friends decide on because well, it’s completely made up! Here are some suggestions of things that I thing would be a fun way to ring in the holiday with your favorite ladies:
Host a wine and chocolate party.
If there’s two things that all of my friends can agree on, it’s wine and chocolate. You can do this a couple of different ways: as the hostess, you can provide each of the pairings, or you can have each of your guests bring their favorite bottle of wine and chocolate dessert to share.
Whether you’re making a trip out to Raleigh to sample the delicious selections at The Melting Pot or prefer to try your culinary skills at home, nothing says “treat yourself” quite like melted chocolate and cheese, unless of course, you decided to do a….
Facials, massages, and manicures— it doesn’t get much better than that am I right? Sometimes spas will even offer group discounts if you plan in advance, so it’s a win for everybody.
Sometimes the weekends can be so busy that it’s hard to find a time when all of the ladies in your life are free to hang out, so brunch is a great alternative! Whether you’re eating at home or going out to a cute restaurant, it’s hard to turn down a good mimosa with your best girls.
Chick Flick Movie Marathon.
For the ladies that would rather spend the night in, take the opportunity to have a good old fashioned sleepover-style movie night. Junk food, PJ’s, and a lineup of movies with your favorite celebrity crushes. Even if you’re in a relationship, that’s a hard night to turn down!
Anti Valentine’s Everything.
For those of you who are just over it— this one’s for you. Host an anti-valentine’s party where everyone wears black and you do things that have nothing to do with romance, like pulling out the adult coloring books, playing some board games, or watching horror movies all night.
Regardless of your Valentine’s Day traditions or relationship status, I think it’s also important to carve out some time to spend with the ladies in your life.
After all, they are the ones by your side even when you didn’t have a significant other— and that definitely deserves some recognition!
While it may just be a silly TV show, I think that Leslie Knope’s character had the right idea— whether she was single or in a relationship, she always made time for her best girl friends at least once a year.
Be sure to tag @magnoliagroveweddings in all of your Galentine’s traditions this year and follow along on Instagram to see how we end up celebrating!