Tuesday, January 29, 2013

A No-Man-tic Valentines

On February 14 this year, my husband will be on the other side of the world, in a time zone 11 1/2 hours different from where we live. (Yes, the 1/2 is correct. The nation of India is large, but in order to be in one time zone they compromised and put it half way between two time zones.) I don’t know if I’ll even be able to Skype with him that  day, it all depends on whether he’ll have Internet access or not. So I think I’ll just sit at home with a box of kleenex feeling sorry for myself while I down a box of chocolates--NOT!

 One thing I learned from my parents was, if you don’t have family nearby or another invitation on a holiday, then have your own party and see who else you can include. We always lived at least 1000 miles from my grandparents and several hundred miles from my nearest aunts and uncles, so we “made our own parties often.” And you know what? They were fun!

This year my kids who live in my town and I are going to draw names by the end of January and be each other’s secret Valentines. Since there will be five of us in four different locations, doing things for each other secretly will be a trick. We’ll have lunch together on February 16 or 17 (since I figure the newlyweds will want their own Valentines together and one daughter works the 14th and one is involved in an inner city children’s ministry on the 15th) and we’ll reveal who was whose secret Valentine with cards to each other.

We did something similar when the children were small, but they chose a different name each night and the next day they were supposed to do something for that person. That was easier because the six of us were in one house.

What kind of things am I talking about? Think Random Acts of Kindness. Here are some ideas:
  • Sneak into their bedroom while they are showering and make their bed or put away their clothes.
  • Cut out paper hearts and hide them in unexpected places--like inside the kleenex box or under the next set of underwear--to be found later.
  • Buy them a pack of gum and leave it with a note “From Your Secret Valentine.”
  • Slip a note into their lunch bag.
  • Rush in and do their chore before they get a chance.
  • Hang up their bath towel.
  • Leave a chocolate on their pillow.
  • Make their favorite dinner.
  • Don’t argue when they want their TV program.
  • Vacuum out their car.
  • Polish their shoes.
  • Give them enough money to buy a soft drink with their lunch.
  • Buy some of their favorite fruit or candy and give it to them. 

You get the idea. I think our plan is going to require some mail service and doorstep dropoffs, but it should be fun.

Another way to celebrate is think about people who won’t have a romantic Valentine’s Day--singles, widows, and the divorced. When our kids were in a small Christian school on the mission field we used to have a party for all the single teachers on Valentines. I also send Valentine’s cards to men and women whose spouses are gone. I’ve had more than one grandmother tell me that’s the only Valentine she gets.

So whether you've got a man in your life or not, you can have a Valentines filled with love if you come up with ways to show your love to others!

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Remember to like the Around the Table Facebook page to get a conversation starter for your dinner tonight!

Linking with these great blogs.

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Coming Up in This Blog:
Be sure to be back to read these topics coming up!
February 1 -- A Valentines themed recipe from a teenage friend.
February 5 -- The Pre-Dinner Meltdown: a post to pass along to the man in your life!


  1. Replies
    1. I find it beats feeling sorry for yourself! Plus I just read that spending 10 minutes helping someone else is better than 10 minutes of "me time" to lift depression!

  2. I love it! Have a party anyway! Why not???

    1. We're having fun as the "giving" gets going!

  3. I love the idea of sending Valentine's cards to those who won't otherwise get any! I'd never thought to do that and I have one friend who I know it would really make her day brighter. Thanks for the good idea!

    1. I started this several years ago--maybe 10 or more. I have fun making my cards for these people and the list changes every year as spouses pass away, marriages dissolve, and "my" widows pass on to Glory. But I know they appreciate it and that makes it fun. One woman told me her husband passed away on Valentines and they celebrated their anniversary with breakfast out every month. He'd been gone 15 years when she said this, but she had tears in her eyes still.

  4. Hi Sharon
    Happy SS, dear one. I love your ideas for Valentines day. I hope you and your Hubbie will be able to communicate on that day! My Hubbie is not the Valentines type, but he does all those kind of things for me always! He is such a sweetie!
    Much love

    1. So happy for you! I'm not into the card company kind of Valentines, but any excuse to remember to be loving is wonderful in my mind!

  5. In keeping with the season I've got to say that I LOVE everything about this post! Your "secret valentine" tradition is absolutely wonderful and I think, would pick up some of the post-Christmas slump that plagues me every year! Your list of ideas is very sweet, too.
    And I say "amen" to a couple of other things you said as well! To those "poooor meeee" people who don't get holiday invites: the solution is the phone at the end of your fingertips! Call somebody who is also alone, MAKE a party and get the chance to be the queen of it! And finally! (Am I allowed to write my own blog post here? lol) I learned from you today to be aware of those singles who would love to see a pink envelope sprinkled with hearts arrive for them this Thursday. At this moment I know of at least one who will find a valentine in her mailbox because of your suggestion! Thanks!

    1. You have me smiling!
      If one more lonely person gets a Valentine because I wrote this post then it accomplished it's purpose!
      You are welcome.

  6. What sweet ideas! And so thoughtful - especially for those who are alone at Valentine's Day. Such a delightful visit via Grandparents Say It Saturday! And thank you! I've often wondered about the 1/2 hour off on some foreign time zones. Very interesting! Have a lovely week and a blessed Valentine's Day!

  7. This is such a good idea. Certainly shows a beautiful way to shelter. I'd love for you to link up with Share the Shelter. I know my readers will love the ideas.

  8. Great suggestions and reminder for us.

  9. Great ideas thanks for sharing & linking up. Hope you have a great week. Theresa @

  10. Visiting from Lessons from Ivy, just pinned this and liked ya on fb :)



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