My Valentines decorations are few. But special. Every year I re-discover this wonderful handmade Valentine angel which I bought at a boutique twenty years ago. I don’t know who made her but whomever did was very talented. She has a wonderful face and wooden wings. A small heart is pinned to her dress and over it hangs a small key. Like most of my holiday decor, I can’t always remember where things came from or how long they have lived in my home.
When our children were young, The Valentine Man came. No one ever saw him but sometime during the evening the doorbell rang. Once the children were trained they would all run to the door, not only to see what was on the porch but to try to catch “him” in the act. Sitting on the porch was one, small, brown, paper bag. A name was written on the bag in ballpoint pen. Seems like it was the name of the youngest child. The children yelled “it’s yours, it’s yours” . . . closed the door and waited for the next ring of the doorbell which always came. In fact, it rang five times. Each time there was a small bag with a surprise inside. Not much, but enough to create a tradition that some of our children carry on today.
Somehow, Daddy appeared in time to see what everyone received from The Valentine Man. It took years for any of them to have the courage to spoil the fun by revealing who “they thought” was the “man”.
Children don’t take Valentines around anymore. They make boxes for school and share valentines there. We used to ring doorbells and hide. Sometimes we tied strings to the valentines and pulled on them when our friends tried to pick up the valentine. If we were lucky, some friends put candy “conversation hearts” inside of the valentine envelope. Usually we made heart-shaped sugar cookies for Valentines Day. Usually with pink frosting and sprinkles.
The television would have us believe that if we love someone we have to buy expensive things for them. “Show her you love her”. That is the slogan for the diamonds. Somehow, our children knew that they were loved because The Valentine Man never forgot. He brought pencils, erasers, crayons and small treats. Oh, and a note inside of every bag saying I LOVE YOU !
“Oh, if it be to choose and call thee mine, love, thou art every day my Valentine“.