It’s finally that time of year again! Flowers adorn my counters, boxes of chocolate are piling up in glorious quantities, my husband has left a love poem next to a fresh steaming latte, and a note that he’s arranged for the kids to be elsewhere so we can enjoy a romantic evening (one he’s had meticulously planned for weeks). Any minute the door bell will ring with someone holding a huge teddy bear while serenading me into pure bliss.
Oh the life I DON’T live! Last year ladies, I mentioned something about being serenaded and my husband turned to our Google home and said, “Google serenade my wife.” That’s true love…
Surely, though that “dream” is supposed to be the reality though, right? We certainly receive that memo every day in all the stores we shop in the minute we hit February 1st. While we are inundated with various ways to show our love at every turn, I sometimes wonder “At what cost?!” While, I’m certainly not saying you and your partner shouldn’t show your love this Valentine’s Day, perhaps challenge yourself to show it unconventionally and rise above the monopoly the commercial industry has on this wonderful day. Here are some tips to making Valentine’s Day more than commercialized holiday, including: sharing your love wihth others, making the day a memory, and commiting to loving tomorrow.
Share the love!
This year don’t make it just about you and your partner. Include the rest of the family, or friends. If there is anything this world needs more of right now, it’s some good luvin’. Show your kids especially what it means to show your love and where it can make a difference. Marshalltown has a great opportunity at the House of Compassion to share your love with your community. Check them out if they have any needs this Valentine’s Day or week. Or, go visit the local nursing homes to spend some quality time visiting with those that may not have anyone special left. They probably have a lot of love left they want to share too. I just bought this second-hand shirt for little almost 2yr old that says “make me smile”. I LOVE it, and wish I could gift it to everyone so we would be reminded constantly and challenged to make others smile and share some kindness.
Make the day a memory!
I loved Valentine’s Day growing up. It was almost my favorite “holiday” because my parents make it incredibly special to us kids. My mom would stay up late after bedtime and decorate our kitchen table with an explosion of pink’s and red’s. We would wake up and run down the stairs to this sight of amazing love. My dad would be making us a special breakfast reserved only for this morning and we would be sent off to school with a full belly and a full heart. I now do this for my kids and it’s become our family tradition. I hit up post Valentine’s day sales to stock up on fun cheap decorations and the dollar stores for everything else. It’s the out of the ordinary and inexpensive gestures that usually make the most impact.
Commit to loving tomorrow!
Sometimes what I find the most depressing is the day after Christmas. Coming down from the Christmas high of gift giving and spending with family and friends and we are already thinking about packing up decorations, moving on, and daydreaming about warmer weather. While Valentine’s Day is a wonderful opportunity to remind us to share our love with others, just imagine if we committed to loving them just as much or more tomorrow, and the day after that! Save the money this Valentine’s Day on your flowers, dinner outs, gifts, chocolate, big teddy bears, or babysitters and you’ll have probably 10 dates worth to show your love in unconventional ways throughout the year. I’ve been blessed to have been loving my now-husband since we were only sixteen. And to date, the best flowers I’ve ever received were not gifted on Valentine’s but just one single daisy he wandered off a path to pick from the woods. So this year, save your money and make an impact. However that looks to you, I urge you to share and comment later. Generate a “pay-it-forward” list of ways we can share the love in our lives and our community!