I Keep Galentines-ing
Valentine’s Day is a very important holiday.
I’m sorry, did I say Valentine’s Day? I meant Galentine’s Day. (So tricky, because it rhymes.)
Let me start over: Galentine’s Day is an extremely important holiday. It’s when girls and women (like myself, haaay!) celebrate the awesomeness of female friendship.
Thanks in large part to my creative and crafty mom, I’ve celebrated Galentine’s Day since kindergarten by throwing a tea party for all my best gal friends. And, as with so many things, it’s impossible for me to think about Galentine’s without thinking about Jewels.
For those childhood tea parties, my mom made decorations and tea sandwiches, and for some reason there was always a “please bring your best doll” requirement. It was pretty great.
Jewels remained a huge part of my Galentine’s celebrations even after I moved 3000 miles away. We’d text throughout my party prep: What do you think of this scone recipe? She thought it looked delish. Do you think I need more flowers? She did. Should the banner read, “Hey Gurl Hey,” or “Hay Girl Hay?” I followed her suggestions to the letter:
The next best thing to having Jewels fly from CA to NY for the tea party was for us to stay as connected as possible. The Galentine's connectivity was just a part of the whole, just one example of the ways we stayed present in each other’s everyday lives from opposite ends of the country. But on that day in particular, every year, I’d make sure to message her right before the guests arrived that I wished she were there.
I’ll be doing the same this year, even though I know there will be no reply.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the last six months, it’s that holding our dearest friends close and telling them how much we appreciate, admire and love them is one of our biggest responsibilities as human beings. Sticking by our girls — especially our BFF!Fs — is one of our greatest responsibilities as women! And that is why I love celebrating Galentine’s Day. I love celebrating the female friendships that have shaped me, and that continue to bring joy into my life, and if I’m lucky enough to have a daughter someday, I can’t wait to teach her that girls rule.
So this year, I encourage you:
Ditch the dudes. (They’ll be fine.)
Forget Valentine’s Day. (Seriously: them dudes will be fine.)
All hail Galentine’s Day.
Tea parties, I think, are perfect for either kid parties or grown up parties. You get tea! You get scones! You get to be fancy! If you’re a grown up, you get pink wine! My tea parties always feature a playlist of classic girl power jams: Mariah, Whitney, TLC, Salt n Pepa, Janet... Last year the tea drinking and gab-festing eventually gave way to watching every Britney Spears music video circa 1999-2003. I loved every minute of it.
Honestly, though, there are so many ways to celebrate. Slumber party movie marathon! Picnic in a park! (Any park!) Hike up a mountain and take pictures of each other jumping! (But be careful!) Paint Nite! What about a Galentine’s touch football game? Or a Galentine’s beach cleanup? Or some Galentine’s political campaign canvassing— I don’t know, if that’s how you want to spend your Saturday, go for it! So long as you’re celebrating each other’s awesomeness and supporting one another as earnestly and enthusiastically as possible while having the best day ever, the options are endless.
Below is my current Galentine’s Day Tea Party menu, complete with recipes concocted by far more brilliant minds than mine. (If you are attending my Galentine’s Day Tea Party this year, STOP READING! SPOILERS AHEAD! P.S. XOXOXO)
<3 GALENTINE'S DAY TEA PARTY MENU <3
Watercress + Butter on Soft White Bread (cut into hearts, preferably)
Smoked Salmon + Creme Fraiche on Pumpernickel
101 Cookbooks’s Egg Salad on Whole Grain
Turkey + Jam on Wheat
Red Quinoa Salad with Pomegranate Seeds + Strawberry Balsamic Dressing
101 Cookbooks’s Raspberry Mega Scone (you bake the jam INTO the scone!)
Nigella Lawson’s Lemon Polenta Cake
TBD Red Velvet Something-Or-Other (I gotta improvise something…)
Giada De Laurentiis’s Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Fudge
Color coordinated attire is highly encouraged.
And group photos are necessary, at every age.