My husband and I have never been too big on Valentine's Day. When we were dating, Randy was manager of a popular bar/restaurant in San Francisco. This meant that on a lot of the "celebration" holidays - 4th of July, New Year's Eve, and yes, Valentine's Day - he was working.
I never really minded it, though. Every year on 4th of July weekend in the Pacific Heights neighborhood of San Francisco, there is a great street fair and jazz festival on Fillmore Street. Back in the day, there was always live music, a fun crowd, and a huge line to get into the bar my husband ran, which was located smack-dab in the heart of the Fair. But since I was dating (and later married to) the bar manager, I got a free pass to the front of the line. And free drinks. Ditto for New Year's. Not such a bad deal.
Valentine's was a popular date night at the restaurant, so Randy almost always worked that holiday, too. And you know what? It never bothered me. Instead of battling the crowds to get a reservation for an overpriced, under-whelming, prix-fixe dinner, we always had dinner out a few days earlier: intimate, quiet, invariably delicious. And not a red heart or pink balloon in sight.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not one of those Valentine's haters. I just don't think it's anything to get worked up over. Now that we have kids, this day is more about doing fun things for them, like baking cookies or helping them make homemade valentines for their classmates.
Or, as was the case earlier this week, doing something nice for our friends and neighbors. With an abundance of lemons on our tree, we decided to share the wealth. We gussied up some brown paper bags using rubber stamps I had purchased ages ago at Michaels, filled the bags with our citrusy treasures, and dropped them off on our neighbors' porches. We were rewarded with smiles and surprised expressions of gratitude.
Of course, it helps if your delivery girls are a pair of sweet twins whose big-girl teeth have not quite grown in yet.
Cards, flowers, chocolates... those things are all very nice. But for me, today is about cherishing those we love, and remembering to show them how much we love them. Just like every other Thursday.
Happy Thursday, everyone!
You might also like:
Not for nothing, but if you want to show someone how much you love them, homemade food is the way to go. For example...
Some homemade lovin' (mushu wraps) from Jen at Use Real Butter; or
Homemade Egg Drop Soup from one of my all-time fave food bloggers, Jaden at Steamy Kitchen; or
If you absolutely cannot resist the chocolate urge today, I highly recommend Salted Caramel Brownie Bites from my sweet friend Stephanie.