On holidays I think forward to how they will be when we have our own child. I think of what my parents did with and for us and imagine doing those same things for my own child. It's the small day to day things that shape us into what we are.
In our house, Valentines Day was never about romantic love, even though Mom and Dad obviously loved each other and did things for one another. It was always about love, family love, friendly love, the love that encompasses us daily. It was a day where we got a red heart filled with chocolate, a box of conversation hearts, those heart jawbreakers, and cute card. Nanna always sent us a Valentines Day card - ALWAYS arriving on Valentines Day. Nanna had great timing with her cards - perfect timing. Mom always got the larger Whitmans Sampler Box and all of the kids would take turns picking what we wanted from what mom didn't care for (and sometimes what she was really saving for later because it was her favorite). Daddy got red hots.
Those traditions have shaped what Valentines Day (all holidays actually) mean to me and how I celebrate. I've tried doing the lovey dovey going out to an expensive dinner, flowers and all of that and it just doesn't work for me. It doesn't live up to the hype. A perfect night is sharing a lovingly prepared meal, relaxing with one another and taking a moment to embrace the love that is all around us.
Tonight I'll celebrate and show my love to my husband by attempting to recreate a meal from one of our favorite restaraunts that we left behind when we moved back to the East Coast from CA and that to me is just what St. Valentine called for.