Friday, February 14, 2014

What Does Valentine's Day Look Like to You?

The authors of Reviews, Chews & How-Tos talked a little about Valentine's Day this week.  Have you noticed that on the Internet, there seems to be an expectation these days to make it a huge deal?

If we look at Pinterest, our homes should be nothing but pink and red, we should be creating a perfectly themed meal, receiving amaaaazingly intricate and romantic gifts, and our children should be happily dressing up as Cupid while engaging in complicated learning experiences involving hearts and flowers.

For most of us, our reality doesn't really match up with that ideal - and we're mostly ok with that.

We don't all celebrate the same, and certainly not with anything like that idealized fervor, but we thought we'd share a bit about what Valentine's Day looks like to us.

Jackie Snider

As much as I used to wish otherwise, Valentines Day has never been a huge deal in my marriage. We are always either working or broke. I am a typical girl and do tend to carry false expectations of a ‘Hallmark Holiday’ but I’m generally happy with a small acknowledgment and a dinner I don’t have to cook.

My husband made the mistake very early in our dating relationship of a huge gesture he probably can’t top. Our second year together, I woke up to the first clue of a 5-part scavenger hunt throughout my house. Each stop included a small gift, like a teddy or chocolates, and another clue. It ended in a diamond tennis bracelet.

It wasn’t the gift that made this special; it was the creativity and time that went into the delivery. Then on our fifth Valentines together he proposed to me- for the second time!)

This Valentines day we don’t have much planned. As usual, he has to work. So my day will be spent doing Valentines crafts with my four year old!

Michael Hardy

A nice dinner out is a fine way to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Choose a place you both like (it’s not a time to experiment), one that is reasonably quiet and intimate, and splurge a little … this is a special occasion. 

I believe the purpose of celebrating Valentine’s Day at all is to express love for one another rather than wow with spectacle. The shared meal has a long history of bringing people together, and a quiet restaurant evokes a romantic atmosphere. 

With someone else handling the cooking and cleanup, the dinner allows you and your loved one time to sit, talk and share a pleasant sensory experience, away from the day-to-day routines.

Lauren Murray

Happy Valentines Day everyone! My hubby and I have been together for a little over 13 years now and Valentines Day is not our strong point. Honestly, we’ve probably done something different every year. From flowers and chocolates to dinner and a movie, we’ve done the normal couple date type things.

Unfortunately, neither of us is very inventive or inspired when it comes to V-Day. Hubby has even gone so far as to call it “Hallmark Day” and boycott it all together.

Now that we have a child, all of the holidays are more fun. Valentines day is no exception. My Bugaboo really loves anything pink so seeing all the Valentines decorations at stores just sends her into a reel! She is almost 5 now so she has a greater appreciation for holidays and also big expectations.

This year I am planning on decorating her room while she sleeps so she’ll have something fun to wake up to. I’ve seen lots of great ideas on Pinterest and I’m planning on bundling a bunch of them together. Holidays are made more magical when viewed through your child’s eyes! I hope you have a magical day as well! Cheers!

Daniel Snider


Valentine’s Day has just never really been big for my wife and I. I have a very hectic schedule at work and we have never really had much money. Usually V-day is celebrated by either going out to a nice dinner or making a home cooked meal for my wife.

One thing I can say for sure is that there is always some form of chocolate! One of my absolute favorite ways to treat my wife on Valentine’s Day is with some exotic chocolates from Vosgas Chocolate. They have a very unique assortment of wonderfully tasty treats. Along with the candy bars and truffles they also sell the perfect wines to accompany them.  She and I both love the stuff they have and have been repeat customers for years now.

Lynda Hardy

I used to love Valentine's Day as a kid - I enjoyed the whole process of decorating a shoebox to act as a 'mailbox', and picking out just the right set of Valentine's Day cards for my classmates.   As much as it came with pressures to give the right card to the right person (not too serious, not too flippant, puns only to the punny people.... trying to explain to your mom why you just could not use that one weird card with a pig on it because no one would appreciate getting it .... and then the nailbiting wait to see if anyone gave you the pig...), it was so much more fun for me than adult Valentine's Day, which often has felt like a no-win situation - if you expect much, you'll be doomed to disappointment, but if you expect little, that often translates into people thinking you don't care about romance at all.

It's taken me fifty years to realize and openly be fine with saying it - but I love romantic gestures.  I like getting candy. I love getting flowers.  I like to be taken out to eat and to be pampered.  I like to make special desserts and have it noticed and appreciated.   And what I also realize is that the reason I can openly say I like and appreciate these things is because I am married to someone who won't make me feel as if it's silly of me to enjoy them.  Because it feels a little vulnerable to say "I like getting flowers", doesn't it?  Because there's still that risk that someone might think it'd be hilarious to just give you that weird pig instead.  You have to trust someone a lot to tell them what warms your heart.

I like getting flowers, even if they're silly and ethereal.  I don't particularly care if it happens on Valentine's Day - in fact 'any random Tuesday' would be a great time for romantic gestures!  As long as Valentine's Day is a reminder to make these gestures and not simply a 'designed mandatory romance' day, that's a good thing.

Hailey Snider (age 4)

Saving the best for last, here's the word on Valentine's Day from Hailey Snider.  She's Jackie and Danny's 4 year old daughter (and Lynda and Michael's granddaughter):

Valentines Day is where you draw Valentine pictures and you close them up and give them to your friends. 

You can also give them to grown ups that love you. 

Valentines Day is about telling people that you love them a lot. 

When you are a grown up you can make Valentines cards for your kids. 

Valentines day is also about eating candy. You can put candy in a bag and tie it with a rubber band, and give it to your friends. 

That makes them know that you really like them.

How about you?  Share with us in comments what Valentine's Day means (or doesn't mean) to you?

Have you checked out our review of Tiffin Trove? Go check it out, and enter the giveaway for a months' free 3-meal box of homecooked Indian recipes and beautiful gifts from India.

Shared with:
~ Anything Goes Linky, Be Inspired, BFF Open House, Flaunt It Friday, Freedom Friday, Frugal Friday, The Party Bunch, Weekend Re-Treat.       

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