Spread the Love

Significant others not required.

Did you know that Valentine’s Day is the fifth biggest consumer spending event of the year? I didn’t until I read it in our local paper today. Wow. That’s a lot of love! Chocolates, roses, greeting cards, jewelry, candlelit dinners, a proposal or two – it all adds up.

Not everyone loves Valentine’s Day. It draws attention to one’s relationship status which may or may not bring joy to the heart. 

I say, why do we have to have a sweetheart to enjoy Valentine’s Day? And if we do have a sweetheart, why so much pressure? We can follow the KISS principle without worrying about deflecting Cupid’s arrow. 

February 14th used to be simple. Surely, we all remember the excitement of celebrating this holiday in grade school (am I dating myself?). Decorating our own special boxes for all the messages our friends would be depositing. Hand crafting Valentines with doilies, paper, crayons, and stickers. Carefully selecting which candy heart to glue on each card so the right message got to the right friends. Dressing up for the special party with a smorgasbord of mom-made cookies, boxes of red hots, and candy jewelry.

I’m not sure what I liked more – the making, the giving, or the getting – but as I think about it, the whole day brought joy into my heart. Remember the rule – if we gave out one Valentine, everyone got a Valentine. It was a good day. 

I’m not sure why we’ve gotten away from this tradition as adults. What would happen if we sent all our friends Valentines? Think of it – a whole day of sharing the love with our universe. Maybe even with some who have been out of our lives for awhile but would have their day brightened by a sweet message from an old friend. 

What kind of Valentines should we send? Emojis and Bitmojis will do in a pinch but I’m thinking about something more personal. Drop an actual Valentine – homemade or not – in the mail. Pick up the phone and have a conversation – that’s a novelty these days. Take a friend to coffee, lunch, or dinner even if they aren’t your romantic partner. Traditional social media works as well but what if we took the time to message friends and family individually, so they know they are being thought of in a special way.

For those who are in a relationship, thoughtfulness doesn’t have to be expensive. Flowers are great but consider a live plant at a fraction of the inflated cost of February roses. Plants last longer and can be planted in the spring for some everlasting love. A homecooked meal is just as romantic as dinner out with the right lighting, music, and menu (especially if the guy does the cooking). Love going to the movies? My rule is February is for chick flicks and they are abundant regardless of your streaming source. Our seats are comfy, our popcorn is cheap, and we serve adult beverages in our theatre.

Frugal can be fun. One of the most romantic gifts I ever received from my husband when we were dating was a song. Not the kind he wrote but rather he picked a song – Forever and Ever, Amen by Randy Travis – typed it out (this pre-dated downloads), spruced it up, and gave it to me with his card. As the song promised, time has taken a toll on our bodies, and our hair has turned gray, but he loves me anyway, forever, and ever.

One thing is clear, we get as much as we give in life so this Valentine’s Day, spread some extra love and fill your heart up with a little reflected joy.

The opportunities for your next Montana adventure are unlimited and Cherry Creek Guest House is ready to serve as your home away.

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