It’s February already – the month of love, pancakes and (this year) an extra day! I like to start a new month with a positive frame of mind, and pulling together a fun to-do list is always a great mood-booster. Here are my suggestions for fun things to see and do in February:
1/ Head to galleries. Let’s face it, it’s still pretty cold, so gallery hopping is definitely my weekend activity of choice. There are some great exhibitions opening: Monet to Matisse at the Royal Academy; Vogue 100: A Century of Style at the National Portrait Gallery, and I’m also keen to see Drawing on Childhood at The Foundling Museum.
2/ Eat pancakes. I recommend making both my American pancakes and savoury crepes recipes, or you can celebrate Pancake Day by ordering a stack at my favourite American diner in Notting Hill (coffee cups are frequently topped up, free of charge, and the buttermilk pancakes are great!). If you’re more of a traditional crepe eater, try the ones handed out from a stall in Hampstead Village.
3/ See the Orchids at Kew. One of my favourite ways to warm up this time of year is to hang out in a tropical greenhouse. If it happens to be filled with a dizzying array of spectacular orchids, so much the better.
4/ Write someone special a letter. It doesn’t have to be a romantic epistle, but to me, Valentine season is the time to reach out to loved ones, whether you’re single or in a relationship. So write a letter to a relative, letting them know how much you appreciate them; get in touch with that friend you’ve been meaning to message for ages and send a Valentine card to your closest gal pal (here are cute ones you can print out).
5/ Join a group. Meetup is a great way to find some fun local groups. I’m thinking of joining a knitting one – after all, knitting is good for you, so I think I should get back to picking up my needles!
6/ Celebrate Chinese New Year. I suggest attending this free event at Foyle’s, where you can enjoy performances celebrating traditional Chinese music, dance and martial arts. Afterwards, head for crispy duck in nearby China Town.
7/ Make one positive change to your routine. Every small change counts, whether it’s walking the escalators, reading a poem every morning, drinking some soothing tea and lighting candles in the evenings, or setting a timer to make sure you stand up and do some stretches every hour.
8/ Gather up your grape-loving friends and spend an evening in one of London’s many fantastic wine bars. This one sounds great and is on my list of places to try asap.
10/ Refresh your feed. I recently went on a hunt to find some new blogs and instagram feeds I felt I’d enjoy. It’s easy to get stuck in a rut, reading the same few favourites each day, and it’s important to remember to switch things up now and again. As Spring approaches, I’m feeling newly refreshed and ready for some changes. It always gives me such a buzz to discover a fantastic new instagram feed or blog; I absolutely recommend adding Jo Rodgers to your ‘following’ list – her photos of books, London and food are mesmerisingly beautiful, and I love the personal little anecdotes that accompany each picture. If you’re a Francophone, like me, then Lost in Cheeseland is a must follow too. As for blogs, my latest favourite discoveries are The Elgin Avenue and A Pair & A Spare.
11/ Check out Jewish Book Week, which has a fantastic line up of events and speakers, including Judith Kerr and Edmund de Waal.
What’s on your list of things to see and do in February? I hope you have a fantastic month!