For Valentine’s Day, Instead of Flowers Give Me Light

Ah, Valentine’s Day. That over-hyped holiday that sends more people to grocery stores on February 13 than just about any other day of the year. I know because I was just there picking up a fruit tray for my daughter’s class party. And I have to go back in the morning because I forgot the napkins for my son’s class party. I wonder how many last-minute flower and chocolate seekers I will find at 8 a.m. tomorrow.

I don’t hate Valentine’s Day but it’s definitely on my meh holiday list. I love flowers and I am a sucker for dark chocolate (especially Green and Black), but a national day of show-your love-by-spending-a-lot-of-money doesn’t really appeal to me. It might have when I was younger, but now that my days are a mad dash of kids, work, kids, husband, food, occasional exercise (please!), there are other ways I’d rather give and receive love with that cherished, amazing person in my life. Here are just a few of those things.

  1. Instead of flowers, next year, just leave the light on in my home office when I’m working. Even if I walk down the hall for another cup of coffee. Does anyone else live with an energy conserver? I’m a child of the seventies. I get it. I remember President Carter’s save energy campaign. And I’m not an energy whore. So when I’m typing away on my laptop that’s perched on the counter in my makeshift office/laundry room (which has no windows), resist the urge to slip your hand slyly into the room as you walk past and flip the light switch off. Just for one day. Please. It would be cheaper, probably conserve more energy, and mean more to me that roses. Just saying.
  2. Offer to help me with the kid’s Valentine’s Day cards and gifts for teachers. When it’s 10 pm on February 13 and I’m doing a really bad job of tearing cards printed on cheap paper and securing the tattoo (that I bought because the candy gluttony has to stop with someone and this year I decided it would be us but the dye in the tattoo is probably worse for kids than the sugar), instead of flowers, tell me to go to bed and do the kid stuff for me. Please.
  3. And in return for those small but big gestures, I promise to give you an entire day in which I don’t question anything you do and tell you repeatedly how wonderful you are and how much I love you. Deal?