With the popularity of my last holiday post, I figured I owed it to the Spirit of Valentine’s Day to spread some tips and treasures.  If it’s the holiday of love, we should own it!  If it’s just a cheesy holiday made up to sell cards and chocolate, well, I like chocolate. Recently I did something I can’t remember being aware of in past years.  I bought all my Valentine’s Day cards at once.  To make it better, the cashier decided to express her assumption that I was shopping for an

Scan of a Valentine greeting card dated 1909.

yone other than myself.  My simple reply was, “No, they’re all from me.”  She stood there for a moment, frozen in her shattered assumption mixed with my disregard for her conventional ideals, and would not make eye contact for the rest of our exchange.  While I felt a little bad about the event, the sadist in me had a field day.  I also felt a little proud that I had no shame or awkwardness about it.  This is my life, and this, my friends, is my Valentine to you all!  I’ve put together a list of helpful (sometimes), humorous (if you have a sense), and otherwise interesting things to do or consider this year.

Shopping:  Shopping for one person can be hard enough.  Shopping for four?  Herculean.  For the practical family you can always buy a very pretty flowering houseplant and hope no one notices it’s the same one you gave last night’s date.  This would cut down on the field of flowers and months of allergies you’d have to deal with otherwise, especially with the holiday mark-up on roses.  You could also find those cute teddy bear couples, bonus if there’s a magnet inside that makes them hug or kiss,  and ask if they would sell you an extra boy because you need two.  If you’re a quad or some other configuration, sit in the store and try to see how you can link them all together.  The ladies at Hallmark love this.  Then buy your sculpture with one of those huge cards and put it on the couch for everyone to enjoy!

Valentine’s Week vs. Group Event:  If you really like the idea of intimate one-on-one dates for Valentine’s Day, you will most likely end up with plans all week.  To help this along, I suggest you get a preferred guest card at your hotel of choice and book a room all week.  Who cares if the second key card is used by four different people?  It’ll give the ladies at the desk something to talk about.  The upside to the Valentine’s Week is not having to worry about a babysitter.  If we all take turns, everyone is taken care of!  The downside is that a poly family on valentine’s Day could cost you the month’s budget if you’re not careful, and even the most accepting partner is not going to see the romanticism in the Denny’s $4.99 menu.  If you’re not a millionaire, may I suggest a group activity?  Family style restaurants are amazingly empty on Valentine’s Day, or make it an adventure!  Go bowling, mini-golfing all dressed up (in warmer climates that is), or to family karaoke.  Go to dinner theatre and ask for the big table, or catch a movie and shift seats once in a while so everyone can cuddle.  If nothing else grab a case of wine and have game night, slumber party, and  potluck. It even gives the ladies a chance to wear those fancy little things they bought for the occasion.

Make it look like a million! The important thing to remember is that Valentine’s Day is a chance to show everyone how much you love them.  You can do that without breaking the household bank account or scandalizing some poor checkout girl at her first job.  Hubby surprised me once with a dozen crystal roses he found at the dollar store.  He arranged them on the kitchen table for me to see when I got home from work.  Another year he had  I ❤ U stuck to our bedroom ceiling in glow in the dark hearts.  We’ve written poems, created crossword puzzles , and made new fancy recipes together.

The secret to all of this is that it doesn’t have to be Valentine’s Day to do any of it.  We can make each other feel special any day of the year, but this gives us a reminder and an impetus to do something nice for one another whether it’s a handful of individual romantic moments or a group event to celebrate love.  I, for one, get as cheesy and crafty as possible.  I love a good romantic evening, but sparkly foam hearts get me every time.  Just don’t tell the girlfriend.

Go now.  make something sparkly!