My husband detests what he calls the "Hallmark Holidays" - the ones on the calendar who's soul primary purpose is to sell holiday-themed merch. I would argue that EVERY holiday is driven and propelled by consumerism first with sentimentality trailing in a far second. Rather than be a fuddy-duddy about it, you might as well just embrace it, in your own way and join in on the fun. Valentine's Day means something different depending on your stage of life.
As a kid, Valentine's Day meant waking up to a fun plush toy and some treats awaiting my brother and I at the breakfast table. It also meant, distributing those cheesy little perforated cards to all classmates. Even that one kid, Jean-Pierre*, who purportedly ate a dead bird's eye at recess got to relish in the joy of feeling accepted by peers.
As a teen, Valentine's Day turned from sweet to sour. The Student Council distributed via public presentation, "carnation-o-grams" that had been purchased by admirers. One by one, the long-stemmed blooms were handed out to those who were genetically blessed, ultra-sporty, popular or floozies. We all crowded around the makeshift stage, hoping, wishing, praying for public acknowledgement of our existence. After all of the flowers were handed out you could easily glance around the cafeteria tallying up the smiles and the frowns - a visual segregation of the cool kids and the rejects. It was torture. I fell somewhere in between. I did receive one carnation-o-gram in grade 11...from a kid who kept a toe-nail clipping collection in his locker - I've loathed carnations ever since.
Now as a parent, I'm kind of somewhere in the middle of loving and hating Valentine's Day. There's no chance I will be receiving a gift from Mr. Fuddy-duddy, and that's cool - saves me a trip to the mall too! But, my three boys do still have to contribute to the whole V-day machine at school, so it's a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation. I'm always keen to focus on the love stuff - write the boys a little love note , make a special breakfast (because you know from my other blog posts, they're normally making their own!), get the conversation going on loving one another and the importance of kindness... I lean more towards the "acts of kindness" camp than the "here's a pricey token of my love and appreciation" But regardless of which way you lean, there are oodles of options for every person, every kind of love and every budget - from zero dollars to money-is-no-object (side-note, I'd be very interested in meeting a money-is-no-object type!...for research purposes!!!)
I will feature a whole gamut of goodies on CTV's Canada AM on Wednesday, February 10th! Tune in!
* Names have been changed to protect me from harm!
Custom Chartuterie Board (from $140)
Made in Canada
Custom Family Legacy Pillow (from $40)
Made in Canada