Valentine’s Day has a habit of going awry in the Java household. I won’t go into the gory details, but there have been incidents with smoke alarms in our home, restaurants burning down, reservations getting double-booked by the restaurant and then cancelled at the last minute, waiters breaking out in fights over our table, snowstorms, and my personal favorite, a meat-switching/money-skimming scandal that ended up in the local paper.
I’ve been reading Gretchen Rubin’s Happier at Home, and though I wasn’t quite “feeling it,” Wednesday night, I decided to embrace her tenant about making an occasion of special days. JavaDad very kindly made a late-night run to the store to get a Valentine-themed table cloth and some pink paper plates and voila — we had a “Valentine’s breakfast” with the kids Thursday morning and they opened their cards from us.
Amazingly, that put me in more of the spirit, and I ran out to the store that morning, before I was due at JavaGirl’s school for her class party, and picked up some last minute Valentine’s decorations for the dining room. JavaDad and I had never made plans for dinner, and we had loosely discussed getting take-out. I decided to spruce up the dining room a little more and make it feel like more of an event. JavaGirl loves to decorate, so I decided I’d pick up the supplies and rope her into the act so we could surprise “the boys” since JavaDad was picking up JavaBoy (and dinner) up on his way home from work.
Usually, I have the kids collect sticks and branches from the woods and we decorate it with hearts for a Valentine’s tree. This year we didn’t quite get enough sticks and Ididn’t get around to making the tree, then I found this lovely lit cherry blossom tree at Kirkland’s and decided it would make a wonderful Valentine’s tree and possibly even double as our Easter tree.
I had meant to move the lovely roses JavaDad gave me to the table, but the guys came home earlier than I expected and surprised me — still I have to show them off because JavaDad is not a “flowers” guy. Not bad, eh?
Not the most elegant table I’ve set, but with paper plates, take-out food, our heart-themed tablecloth, and our various Valentine’s Day loot, we had a festive and low-stress event. And what the kids loved is I told them to put on pajamas. I even put on my heart-themed pajamas, you know, the ones I usually reserve for going out to see the space shuttle.
Perhaps next year JavaDad and I will try again to go the more traditional date night route, but our pajama and fuzzy hearts night was just perfect for this year. I hope however you chose to celebrate (or not celebrate) it was equally perfect for you!
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