Thursday, 14 February 2008

Just another day

We don’t do Valentine’s day in our house. There will be no big pink envelopes lurking on the mat or bunches of curiously unscented overpriced roses sitting stiffly to attention in a vase. No chocolates (thank goodness) and no cuddly stuffed animals bearing squashy red satin hearts. The children will not be discreetly packed off so we can jostle elbow-to-elbow with strangers in a restaurant. And we will not feel the need to give our children Valentines cards or gifts (thank goodness that custom does not yet appear to have arrived from the USA – one more thing for me to forget to do!)

I will go home tonight as usual, make packed lunches and do all the stuff the boys need doing as usual. I will make dinner as usual. And Husband and I will probably watch something he has recorded for us because he takes the time to go through the schedules, picking out the programmes he thinks we’d like and recording them so I don’t have to and so that I don’t miss them. (He records anything with Peter Ustinov in it, for example.)

He will probably make me a cup of tea after dinner without even asking if I want one because he knows I nearly always do. He let me watch Torchwood last night without shaking his head in disbelief at the rubbish I watch or making any sotto voce comments regarding the gaping plot holes, even though I knew what he was thinking. He may, if he is home in time, come up to say goodnight to the boys after I have done so and, instead of turning out the light and leaving the room, he may lie down on the floor in their bedroom, with the light out and chat to the boys in the darkness about……well, I don’t know what about. Boy stuff. Father/son stuff. Gibberish, possibly. And if I jokingly demand to know what the Great Secret Boy Discussion was about, he will make a face at me and respond with the weird sound we all in this house refer to as “the squashed frog noise”, and which is considered an acceptable response to pretty much any question you may be asked.

Pretty much a perfect Valentine’s day, really.


  1. Sounds perfect to me! :)

  2. Ours was quiet and low key and for once it didn't snow!
    Happy Valentine's Day to you!

  3. hmmm....this is one of those gender-based issues I think. Well it is for me anyway. One where I really don't have a clue about what how my partner really feels. As a result, in recent years I've started "celebrating" Valentines Day on the basis that it's better to err on the side of doing too much than doing too little.

  4. I adore Valentines Day. I don't know why. Incurable, ever-hopeful romantic at heart, I guess. And we DO overdo it - totally. Cards, gifts, more candy than Halloween or Easter (I was actually wondering this year why they don't simply make Valentines Day Baskets to hold all the candy like they do at Easter, lots of chocolate (how can you go wrong with a holiday that promotes chocolate?!) are totally and completely right, in that love is shown in the cups of tea, bonding with the kids, thoughtful gestures of everyday, not just by a card signed on one day of the year. Lucky us who have that kind of love in our families every single day - not just on display one day a year. But next year, just because you need one, I'm totally sending you the biggest, bestest, homemade Valentine and a huge box of chocolates, anyway!


  5. Oh, you young unromantic, you. We exchange cards and I sometimes make him a heart-shaped cake, though didn't quite get round to it this year. But I don't get the sending-your-children-Valentines thing.

    Still, each to his/her own.

  6. I wish to contradict! When I was an insecure teenager, I am 100% sure that Isabelle was the one sending me one anonymous valentine per year so that I wouldn't be completely valentineless.

    My boy and I generally do cards, but that's it. How do you train people not to comment on the rubbish you watch? I am perfectly well aware, for example, that my dear one thinks Heroes is a load of piffle. Which it is, but that's not the point.

    I have not had time to commit to Torchwood this year, which I am going to regret sooner or later.

  7. I was out of town on Valentine's Day, but the boys sent me a hilarious Jib Jab movie e-card, and I left gifts for them which John thankfully remembered to hand out. Had I been home, things wouldn't have been much different.