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A diner date over the phone
What will you be doing this virtual valentine's day. Image: Dasser Kamran/Fulcrum

Some suggestions as the holiday of love comes back around

Valentine’s Day is a day to celebrate the love we cherish with our partner. It is also a day to show affection to the important people in our lives.

The holiday started with many different legends associated with Saint-Valentine, who was a priest that lived in 3rd Century Rome. In one of those legends, Saint-Valentine secretly continued officiating marriages despite Emperor Claudius II outlawing them.

Since then, Valentine’s Day has become a much bigger holiday, evolving into an annual day full of flowers, chocolate and tons of romance.  

However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it may seem as it will be a bit harder to do much for a significant other this year. Still, it isn’t hopeless. Below are some ideas on how to spend an amazing virtual Valentine’s Day with your special someone.   

Some activities can be done virtually to substitute traditional in-person dates. 

Streaming a movie on a watch party website is a great way to share a romantic movie on Valentine’s Day with your significant other or friends while still staying socially distant. Maybe order in some snacks, too. 

“Usually for Valentine’s Day, as much as it’s supposed to be an extravagant day, we usually stay in and watch a movie or eat our favorite snacks,” said Alain David, a second-year U of O master’s student in biochemistry. 

As for David’s Valentine’s plan, he is hoping to go on a nice outing with his partner, walk a trail and then compensate those burnt calories with Korean fried chicken.

Sweet gestures and digital gifts are also ideas that could be shared between couples for this upcoming Valentine’s Day. 

Other virtual ideas that are similar are exploring online games together, sending each other love letters or creating a music playlist together.

James Wadsworth, fourth-year biomedical sciences student who is currently in a long-distance relationship with his girlfriend, shares a special bond with her through art.

“We definitely enjoy commissions, especially from some of her favorite artists that do a couple drawings of us and our favorite characters together. I would then post on social media to show my appreciation for her,” said Wadsworth.

If you want to up the romanticism, sending love letters to each other through mail is a great idea, too. It could also be done virtually, just through a Google Doc. It can even be a lot more cheesier with poetry, love quotes or reasons why you appreciate your partner.

Maybe add in a playlist with endless theme ideas. Favourite songs that are shared between the two could be on there, love songs or songs with funny lyrics. 

A few love songs that you can’t go wrong with are “Bubbly” by Colbie Caillat, “Over and Over Again” by Nathan Sykes ft. Arianna Grande, “Can I Call You Tonight?” by Dayglow and “Love Again” by Dua Lipa. 

You can even make the night more sensual and schedule a virtual bath date. Grab some bath salts, bath bombs, rose petals or plain old bubbles. A virtual chat and bath to relax is a great way to spend a night together. It can even be spiced with some lit candles while music fills the room.

But while Valentine’s Day marketing schemes consume the world, it’s not the worst thing to decide to skip the celebrations — especially given it’s a pandemic year.

“[My partner and I] live in separate households, and so we can’t actually see each other this year,” said Sarah Taylor, a second-year nursing student.

“Honestly neither of us has brought it up, and I think we’re just going to continue ignoring Valentines day until it passes, and we can actually see each other.” 

Still, Taylor reminds everyone to stay focused on the one thing that makes Valentine’s Day happen: your relationship.

“COVID has taken a lot away from many people this year, and I understand how difficult it is to be away from your loved one, especially during a holiday like Valentines. But I hope that this year people reconsider putting their relationship first, so that those who follow the rules can finally see their loved ones too. Valentine’s day is special, but it’s not worth risking lives over.”