How to Have the Best Valentines Day Ever


Who says that Valentine’s Day is all about getting? If you really want to feel loved on February 14, try giving it away.


A few years ago I was Little Miss Lonely Hearts, living in a city where men drove pick-up trucks with gun racks. The trees were bare, wind howled, snow fell and the dreaded V Day was approaching. I knew I had to do something drastic to get myself through it.


I slipped and slid on mountain roads to the nearest Ingles (California’s Safeway), bought 10 boxes of cake mix, frosting and some of my favorite candy hearts. Do you remember them…the ones with the messages that you carefully selected to give to those cute little boys and girls in your class that you “loved”?


I baked all day and half the night and had 240 cupcakes with those messages of love on top. On Valentine’s Day, I took to the streets where I knew the homeless hung out during the day when the shelters were closed. I found them huddled near buildings, under blankets…women with small children and men whose lifetime of struggle could only be made better by a swig of cheap wine in a crumpled brown paper bag.


The look on their faces was all I needed that Valentine’s Day to help my pathetic self remember what love is all about. Faces of children who didn’t even know what day it was suddenly remembered. Old men who were once in elementary school laughed when they read the messages on those candy Valentines. And they all were the embodiment of grace.


This year if you are without a date or a partner on Valentine’s Day, try giving your love away to those who need it most. Take some cupcakes or those sweet little Valentine candies down to the Salvation Army or a local shelter. If you feel the love for animals, take some toys or doggy treats to your local SPCA. Share the love!


Would you like to bake cupcakes with that special someone next year?

Let’s talk about how you can find Love in 90 Days!


Donna Bailey, MS

Dating and Relationships Coach for Grown-ups

Donna’s Big RED Chair


Big Red Chair



When is theTime to Get Back on the Horse?





How long should we wait after we lose someone we loved?


This is a tricky one and the extremes are tempting. If we just lost the love of our life, it leaves a big old hole in us the size of a giant Sequoia when, after a century, it falls. It can feel like a tooth is missing and our tongue keeps going to where it used to be, searching for that familiar feeling. All we seem to be able to do is go over and over the “why?”of it. Will this ever stop?


The temptation to find someone, anyone to help us stop the pain always looms. We used to call it being “on the rebound”, but whatever it is, filling a hole is not a great way to begin a loving relationship.


Do I wait until I am “healed”, until I don’t feel sad any more, until I “get over him/her”?  Well, if you are 25, that might work. Over 55, you could be dead!


Here is how I look at it…when you feel open to love again, it is time to begin. That might mean wading in. Flirt with someone at a coffee shop, buy a new dress or a soft, stylish shirt that makes you feel sexy, join the gym to lose a few pounds, firm up the abs and begin to get ready for love. Check out a free online dating website...just look, nobody will know.


When you meet someone and decide to go out on a date…ooops!…we call it a “coffee” so it doesn’t feel too serious, treat it like a job interview. If necessary, take a Xanax. Do whatever it takes to care for yourself, realizing that you are one brave creature. You are willing to take the plunge, to feel once again the joy of having someone across the table in the cafe who is a graduate of the School of Heart Hard Knocks.




Thinking you are ready to find someone to share those sunsets and nights by the fire? I’d love to be your guide to loving again.
Call me or email me for a Complimentary Session to learn more about how my plan, Love in 90 Days can get you there with clarity and confidence. 
Donna Bailey, MS
I’m a Coach specializing in Dating and Relationships for Grown-ups
Donna’s Big Red Chair





For Me, October is Like Restless Leg Syndrome


It’s not even here yet, and I’m already thinking about it. What is it about October that sends me into a spin? Ups and downs are higher and lower. Hibernation sets in as I find myself staring into space, unable to do much else. That tricky sun finds her way up to a different location and has to run at the end of a painfully too-short day. Every year I feel as if I’ve been abandoned when darkness shows up before the evening news is over. It’s just a mess, October.


That wacky month seems to be infamous for huge changes in my life, both good and truly tragic. Both my wonderful sons were conceived in October, so maybe that early darkness was a gift! After a lifetime in the south, blaming the Stork for having dropped me there instead of where I belonged, it was October when I drove out the driveway headed for California…truly my home. It was also the month my Daddy was born, and that he decided one day it was time to leave. way too early in his life… and in mine. As each October arrives, I find myself going deep inside myself and asking the big questions. Each time that Harvest moon rises, those questions roll around in my head, my feet get itchy and, some men in my life would say I become “high maintenance”.


What do you do when your month of great change appears? Are there themes that keep recurring and begging for your attention? Are there some hard decisions that always come with great resistance that maybe this year you can just do anyway? Dreams you keep dismissing or perhaps don’t feel are possible?


The soul stirs in us in the fall. It’s uncomfortable most of the time when we feel restless and uncertain and want to take the short cuts. But, this is also the season when those changes can offer up a new, beautiful and more honest life. The soul always wants honesty.


Pick one thing you’ve been pushing down or trying to ignore because it just “feels too hard”. You will know what it is. Write it down and then do one thing this week toward making that happen. Just one thing. And your soul will take a deep sigh and  it will become your partner,  your coach, your friend on that journey to realizing your dream. I promise I’ll do it too and next October, let’s compare notes!

Donna Bailey, MS

Donna’s Big Red Chair

Coach, Speaker, Writer

Dating and Relationships for “Grown-ups 

Are your feet feeling itchy too? Time for change in your life and you don’t know where to start?

I’ll help you find that starting place, and you’ll be surprised how much fun change can be.

Give me a call to set up a Complimentary Assessment at 510-817-4242





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