Give Me a Kiss, it’s Valentine’s Day!

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So, raise your hand if you know where all of this Valentine’s Day stuff started. As far as I’m concerned, it started when I was a little kid and Mimi gave me candy and filled out cards for me to give to my classmates. However, I am now led to believe that the origins date back somewhat earlier. In fact the actual origin is said to be somewhat of a mystery. February is prime mating season for many species of birds, but I don’t think they celebrate the holiday. Actually, the early origins have more to do with warding off evil spirits and increasing fertility than romantic love. The early Roman feast of Lupercalia was celebrated between February 13th and 15th. It included such charming rituals as sacrificing goats and dogs and then having men hit naked women to make them fertile.

Around 496 AD Pope Galasius, not wanting to be outdone, proclaimed February 14th to be a Christian feast day. The slight twist was that the day was now set to honor a third century martyr, St Valentine. Apparently when Claudius became emperor he decided his soldiers shouldn’t be married. It would distract from their commitment to duty. A young priest and romantic, Valentine, held secret marriage ceremonies against the edict.  When caught and refusing to renounce his religion, he was executed.

Then Hallmark and Russell Stover got wind of it, and the rest is history. Personally, I think people just wanted to break up the gap between Christmas and Easter with another celebration. When you think about it, there is a holiday practically every month or so from Labor Day through the fourth of July. Of course, the summer doesn’t need a holiday. It is practically one in itself.

Also, what’s better than an excuse to snuggle with a loved one in the middle of winter? As a romantic and a scientist, I believe in winter snuggling. It is fun and helps conserve heat. This also makes me wonder about how this day affects the November birth rate. Elizabeth now works in OB. I’ll have to ask her next November. Hey, come to think of it, dad’s birthday is November 15th. I believe his parents must have had a very happy Valentine’s Day nearly a century ago.

Valentine’s Day is also a great excuse for dating, parties, and gifts. As for Crystal and me, we probably won’t do anything special this year. We’ve been invited to several nice church events, but have plans with my dad. I am sure we will exchange cards, but not much more. Please don’t feel sorry for us. In fact, you might even envy us. Crystal and I are always each other’s Valentines. I generally keep her well stocked with chocolates and flowers throughout the year. We also go out regularly on days when the restaurants don’t have waiting lines. I have also gotten into the habit of buying her the traditional heart shaped box the day after at half price. She enjoys them just as well, and always shares them with me. As for snuggling and heat conservation, again we need no special excuse. I think that’s the way a marriage should work.

So enjoy your day. Just don’t sacrifice any dogs or slap any naked ladies (they don’t like it). Even if you don’t have anyone special, have fun with friends, or at least take advantage of half priced chocolates. Yum!

Crystal’s Corner

Obviously, you can see from my Valentine’s point of view, it is not a big holiday.  I like Valentine’s Day.  For one thing, there is a lot of red- on cards, on candy boxes, etc.  I like the color red.  It was one of my mom’s favorite colors.  Also, it is a time when people appreciate each other whether it is your sweetheart, your mom, your grandmother, your friends or even the nice neighbor next door.  It is nice to get a pretty card and even a treat like chocolate or some flowers.  I try to send out Valentine’s Day cards every year and also I make some kind of baked goods or candy.  I have made Ron a heart shaped cake, a loaf of bread, chocolate shaped into hearts and flowers and even some collage cards.  We also go out to dinner or a movie or something, as Ron said, usually not on Valentine’s Day.  It is too crowded.

I remember one year, when we were living in Michigan, Elizabeth and Michelle were little and they were watching me get ready to go out with Ron on Valentine’s Day.  I was dressing up and wearing my special red high heels.  They knew that I rarely wore those shoes.  For one thing, they were uncomfortable, but also they were just for special occasions.  So they went to talk to Ron about our important date.  He said.  “I don’t know what you are talking about.  We are going out to dinner with friends.”

Elizabeth says, “No, Dad, you are going on a special date because Mom is your valentine.”

To which he responded, “Why do you think this is so special?’

She says, “Because Mom is wearing her red shoes from the back of the closet that she only wears on special dates.”

Then he looked puzzled and, of course, tickles them. It didn’t turn out to be that special, believe me.  The meal wasn’t that good and during the meal, Ron and his friend had to go in to the office because of some problem.  So I ended up with his friend’s wife back at our house, staring at my red shoes, waiting for them to come back.  The girls ended up staying at the babysitter’s house overnight.  I think that is one of the reasons why we stopped going out on Valentine’s Day and, instead, celebrating either before or after.

Anyway, have a nice Valentine’s Day. Life is short.  We have to celebrate any time we can. Enjoy the red. I know I will.

Valentine's 009

Wife of 37 years, flowers brand new, plastic decorations from my mom’s (Mimi) hidden stash in dresser, now residing in our garage.

Category: Holidays

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