A Very Valentine Day For All

February 14, Valentine's DayFirst of all, Happy Valentine’s Day! Second, I know that this will not be a popular sentiment with many…but I don’t care! I love the pink, the red, the hearts, and the flowers. And chocolate….most of all the chocolate! Not just any old drugstore milk stuff, but the dark flavored truffles rolled by tiny fairy hands in a sweet little shop somewhere in Paris. Clearly I live in a dream land built for two because I have a boy that actually makes this happen.

Over the last few years, the day of love has seen many haters jump on the “anti-Valentine’s Day” bandwagon. Don’t get me wrong, I realize that a commercialized version of the day was thrust on us by a company hellbent on selling a pile of cards. Most restaurants and flower shops hike up their prices for services that on regular days cost at least 25% less. Our significant others start to feel societal pressures to live up to romanticized versions of themselves, while singles are supposed to throw themselves off rooftops or hide under blankets on couches. What nonsense. All of it!

And yet…I think it’s a day worth celebrating. Lets look at Valentine’s Day and what it means one step at a time. Valentine’s has a long history that seems to start with some guy called Saint Valentine, move through pagan fertility rites of Lupercalia, the beginning of bird mating season in the Middle Ages (this one made me laugh), hand written exchange of love letters during the turn of the last century, until finally somebody was smart enough to cash in on all this mushy love stuff (but why begrudge someone a brilliant idea).

The loudest objections to the day appear to be financial and the fact that love should be celebrated every day, not just once a year. And I can’t really disagree with this either. Except, we don’t seem to have any qualms about throwing coins around on other days. We spend like crazy on ourselves and others for birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas,  girls’ weekends, or what we just call “shopping sprees” or “self care”.  Many of these “other” days also only come around once a year.

And yes, love shouldn’t be reserved for one day. We should be spreading the love and feeling it all year long. But let’s face it, this doesn’t happen. Life happens. So why is it so bad to get a nudge from the calendar, a little reminder, that love is all around us, in many forms. So reach out to your boy, your girl, friend, family, pets, neighbours, even strangers (I did!). Surprise them. And surprise yourself with how good it feels to spread some love.

Happy Valentine’s Day to you all!


Weekend Edition

Valentine's Day cards in London OntarioI realize that Valentine’s Day has been derided in today’s society for it’s over-commercialization. Everyone grumbles about the expensive dinners, over-priced flowers, and red everything! And I don’t deny that big business has put it’s grubby hands all over this long-standing holiday. But being European, I thrive on tradition and romance. 

I’m thrilled to celebrate a day devoted to love. Whether you spend it with your significant other, your family or even your pets, love should be enjoyed in all its glorious forms. And although I realize that we should express our love for each other every day of the year, there is nothing wrong with having a day where you go that extra step for someone special. In that vein, here are a few special ways to share your feeling on Valentine’s Day and maybe stretch the lovefest all weekend long!

  • Chocolate, chocolate, and more chocolate should be the anthem of this day. So when I found this decadent creation from Louise at Cygnet Kitchen, I knew the boy and I would be doing some indulging this weekend!
  • The art of letter writing has become almost extinct in this day and age. That’s why the written word can still elicit more tears of joy than a sprakly anything. When I came across this list of 9 Most Memorable Love Letters, I realized that letters don’t have to take hours or become long missives…a few special words can go a long way.
  • Everyone says that the most romantic city in the world is Paris. And yes, it’s true. But I’ve found this list of 15 Most Romantic Getaways Around the World that give Paris a run for it’s money. I just may be adding these to my bucket list!

Wishing all of you a fantastic weekend of love and indulgence!