Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, which means that many of us are searching for that perfect gift or fun idea to surprise the one we love. Like many holidays, Valentine’s Day gets a bit of a bad rap in terms of healthiness and eco-friendliness. But with a few small tweaks, you can celebrate a Valentine’s Day that both you and your partner feel good about.
Make a Healthy Themed Recipe Together
Many couples get into the routine of just one person cooking in the kitchen at a time for the sake of efficiency and not bumping in to one another. But as a Valentine’s Day activity, make kitchen time a shared quality time and create something healthy together in the kitchen. One easy idea is to assemble Greek yogurt parfaits with strawberries, dark chocolate chips, and whipped cream. You can also use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to create festive shapes with melons and then dip them into low-fat yogurt drizzled with honey.
Give the Gift of Dark Chocolate
For some couples, a Valentine’s Day gift without chocolate would be no real Valentine’s Day at all. If this is the case, opt for dark chocolate with a high cacao percentage rather than milk chocolate or white chocolate. Dark chocolate offers more health benefits because it is richer than the other varieties in iron, zinc, and magnesium. Bonus points for organic, fair trade, and locally made chocolates!
- Health Benefits of Chocolate and What to Buy for the Holidays
- Justifying Your Chocolate Desert, the All-Natural Way
Make Your Own Valentines and Decorations
Whether you’re celebrating as a couple or with kids, you’re never too old for a fun craft activity to use the creative side of your brain. Instead of picking up pre-made Valentine’s Day cards and decorations at the store and then tossing them out on February 15th, consider making your own with a few art supplies. Reuse old newspapers and magazines to make a collage with images that make you think of love and your partner. Another idea is to create a custom “card” with sidewalk chalk outside your home to profess your love for all the world to see.
Shop for Flowers at the Farmers’ Market
There’s always something special about giving and receiving flowers on Valentine’s Day. But choose your flowers wisely so that you support local businesses and minimize your exposure to pesticides. Stop by a farmer’s market in your area to look for organically grown flowers and choose flowers that are in-season locally rather than something that had to be shipped in from far away.
Better yet, plant a “love tree” together in your yard as an alternative to buying flowers. It’ll last much longer and you can watch how the tree grows as your love grows too in the years ahead.
Other Valentine’s Day Ideas
If you’re still feeling stuck on how to celebrate this year with your partner, here are some more ideas to help you stick to your commitments to sustainability and a natural lifestyle.
- Have a picnic together outside
- Plan a board game night
- Support a local artist with a gift from a gallery in your town
- Arrange a massage night at home
- Shop for a vintage jewelry gift from a thrift store
- Donate to a nonprofit cause that you both love in lieu of gifts