Thursday, 12 February 2009

Requisite Valentine's Day Slamming Post...

I've noticed there are a few of these out there. Never one to be outdone - or to lose the opportunity to make use of something I've already written - here is 'one I made earlier' for a local magazine...

Ah, Valentine’s Day is upon us. Others might wax lyrical about moonlight, candles, and romantic walks, but this date was always more about the anticipation than the reality for me.

Pre-Children? I used to see it as a day of Opportunity.

I knew that the chance to wake up, stare lovingly into my beloved’s eyes, and exchange a gentle kiss (or whatever - though let's be honest, probably not the 'whatever'), before eating a leisurely breakfast whilst sipping a Nespresso and perusing the morning papers was unlikely if it wasn’t the weekend.

I knew too that if it did fall on a workday, the mid-morning phone call from reception was more likely to be one berating me for forgetting to pick up a delivery, than to be a request to come down and collect an enormous bunch of red roses, which I could then stand proudly on my desk, proclaiming to all my colleagues ‘Oh yessss! I’m SOOOO worth it!’.

And finally, I knew that if I did manage to make it out of the office at a reasonable hour, looking even remotely presentable, that the romantic dinner planned weeks ago was probably going to be replaced with a baked potato and a dvd because my other half was working late on a deal, and ‘let’s face it, darling, the boss is still in the office, so really I’ve got no choice in this market…’

The point is though, Pre-Children, Valentine’s Day could be like that. It might be like that.
Now though, Post-Children, things work out a little differently. Anticipation? Who has the time?

This year, Valentine’s Day in our household will probably work as follows.

I am hoping to give Husband a card. Give, not send. I will have intended to post it, but along with the thankyou letters for the childrens’ Christmas presents, it will still be loitering un-stamped and un-sent in ‘dispatch’ where we keep the keys for the front door.

I may even get to give the card – and who knows, perhaps even a kiss (steady…) - before the Boys thunder in to wake us, demanding milk, the potty, a story, cereal, mediation in the matter of who gets to use the Power Ranger Communicator first, and a trip to the circus instead of a day at school.

If lucky, I will then be presented with a home-made card from both of them, and if even luckier, Husband will present me with a card bought not from WH Smith but from Paperchase or somewhere with a design section that sells glittery prints.

And that, most likely, will be it. Flowers? So last year, darling; and apparently trendsetters like Sam and Dave don’t go to the expense anyway. Dinner? At those prices, and have you seen how much a babysitter costs these days?

And frankly, by not going out I get to have a drink earlier, to eat later (‘Yes madam, of course we have a table on Valentine’s Day. Will the 6.30pm sitting suit you?’) and not pay for a taxi home.

Whoever said Romance was dead?


  1. Last week my husband said "Is it alright if I go and watch (some random) the rugby game on Saturday 14th? Nothing's happening that day is it?"
    Crushed, I tell you, crushed!
    At least my son has told me the only card he's sending this year is to mummy . . .

  2. I'm going to play with elephants.

    No, that isn't a euphamism. I'll tell you all about it after the weekend!

  3. Great article.

    I want to play with elephants too.

  4. Post marriage, the only Valentines cards I ever got were from my beloved sons - but only while they were young enough for this to be a nursery- or school-based art class activity. Tragic really isn't it? Next month is our 35th Anniversary. Ever the optimist, I have hopes of some rather lovely ear-rings. I've only been dropping 'hints' for the past 6 months or so. However I expect I'll have to go and get them myself as I have a DH of the 'if you want it and we have the money, go and get it' variety. Nice, but not romantic at all.... And yes, I have already bought him a present!

  5. My wedding aniversary is on Feb 15th so in theory I have 2 days of being made to feel special and returning the favour... seems to be a thing of the past! As Tara said, there is rugby on on Saturday 14th and it is Super 14 which is a huge comp here, so that takes care of my husband that day! Will see how we go on Sunday!!! :)

  6. After vaguely trying to make an effort for the last few years, we will be doing nothing special on Saturday (except maybe a bottle of sparkling wine with dinner). To be honest, I'd rather celebrate our wedding anniversary than some over-commercialised date.

    Having said that, if George Clooney sent me a bunch of red roses and a suggestive text message, I would probably change my mind about the whole thing!

  7. Post divorce, and absolutely not being in a relationship, there will be no Valentine's cards for me. Hurray! I'm so happy that I'm single, I may buy myself a chocolate cake. Being a twosome isn't all it's cracked up to be, even though you maybe get a bunch of flowers out of it. Happy Valentine's Day to all of you. Treat yourself to something you've always wanted to have and are tired waiting for.

  8. Tara, you and me both (crushed, that is). I've given up dropping hints to Husband. I told him in no uncertain terms that it's Valentines' day tomorrow and that at the very least I EXPECT A CARD. Will he remember? Noooooo.

    In a houseful of teenage girls Tracey, something tells me you know very well that it is...

    Mud, make sure you take photos!

    Iota, thanks (I had help!).

    Sharon, you are not alone, is all I can say to that sad story.

    MdP, it's my birthday Sunday so I'm supposed to have double celebration too. As if.

    NVG, well obviously George won't be texting you as I have hidden his mobile.

    Irene, excellent tip - will put my thinking cap on to see what I deserve most of all, then go out and buy it. (Sadly it will be a maximum value of a fiver due to credit crunch finance, but still, for that I can get a Starbucks hot chocolate AND a cinammon swirl...)

  9. This year Valentine's day got a little more fun because we got a box of presents from the in laws for Charlotte and I bought her a pink rubber ducky and a pink Domo plush

  10. I can't tell you what I bought The Man for Valentine's day.

    He never forgets - and he loves to bring home little surprises all year long. Valentines day is just an easy excuse to justify them.

    Is he a one of a kind?

  11. Never seems quite so special if you have to remind someone,(bit like Christmas....surprised that it happens on the same date every year, who'd have thought ?) but thank you M&S for the 2 for £20 offer....... at least you don't have to plan a meal ! Oh for romance.......

  12. Oh God..... just remembered the shame of getting a Valentine's card from my mother at school - lovingly inscribed "just in case you don't get one from anyone else" Aaaargghhh.
    Another of the joys of life in the goldfish bowl that was boarding school !

  13. oh yes, this is our first valentine's day with kids. I havent even left the house for a week and i only remembered Valentine's day yesterday so he's getting POSSIBLY a chocolate cake I will have to bake tonight after he's gone to that's like midnight. If Im lucky and i dont fall asleep mid milk expressing on teh couch and wake up covered in cold breastmilk with shopping channel on the TV

  14. Yeeesssh, St Valium's day . Hate it. May even have to go and post about it...

  15. I am so not bothered about it. Never have been. Well, maybe at school. At uni I had friends who competed about who would give their girlfriends the best presents - the biggest teddy bear, the most red roses, the flashiest dinner... Ew!

    That said, C did propose on Valentine's Day. Which was lovely and very romantic.

    He has been asking what we are going to do, whether to send R to my mum's and so on. Bah. So not bothered. We have settled on eating a separate dinner, with two whole courses, after R has gone to bed. And getting a DVD out, if we can find one we both want to watch (fairly rare). It's nice to have an excuse to sit down together, at least.

  16. We have been invited A) to a party and B) our lovely babysitter has decided to take our children to her place overnight as a gift to us so now we actually HAVE to make an effort. Funnily enough after a few years of crushing disappointments with Husband insisting that he refuses to bow to the will of Hallmark it's now me that is indifferent to any kind of romantic Valentine gesture. I just about sucked it up enough to sort out stuff for the children at school (O America!) but have sunk back into torpor again.
    Happy Valentine's day all.

  17. SB, I guess that's one of the US / UK differences; I would never think of giving my children a Valentine's Day present - though of course am only too happy to accept them in the other direction. It doesn't seem fair.

    Aims, I think he very well might be.

    TR, what was your mother thinking? Let that be a lesson to us all!

    Screamish, been there, done that, though I have to say I totally did NOT bake the cake. If you have, hats off to you! And if you haven't - well there's always next year. And who needs an excuse to make a chocolate cake, really?

    More Than, looking forward to that one...

    Tasha - when you find that mutually suitable dvd can you let me know what it is?

    Motherhood, I know what you mean. We did manage the cards this morning but then - well, you'll have to read the next post to see what...


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