Here at Eating Over The Sink, we don’t give much thought to Valentine’s Day. I mean, we give thought to it, but only because we have to, and please believe that we do it with all the enthusiasm of a three mile walk through a hailstorm to get to an oral surgery appointment at which we have our appendix removed by accident. Be that as it may, with five school age children between us, we are ultimately responsible for the successful execution of up to 978 giga-ma-trillion handcrafted class valentine cards. With stickers. And double-side taped chocolate kisses. And creativity.
Every year from Feb 7th to the late evening of the 13th is Valentine card ‘bootcamp’ around Casa Bee/Harkin. The week in which no one will smile, laugh, or enjoy life in any way until those G.D. CARDS ARE DONE AND WE HAVE SPREAD LOVE TO THE FOUR CORNERS OF THE EARTH.
One might accurately refer to our homes as Valentine ‘sweatshops’…perhaps even…‘gulags.’
Nobody wants to be the cruel Valentine taskmaster, but the world says we must, and so, here we are, fingers crippled by paper cuts, skin tacky with glitter glue, a fudgy ring around our pursed and tired lips.
How to make Valentine’s Day pleasant again? A cause for celebration? Perhaps even, an opportunity for some ‘scheduled romance?’
1. Eat something stupid for breakfast, like strawberries, but ones that are dipped in chocolate. The children will think that you have lost your mind and that they have finally pulled the wool over your eyes and that they are now The Boss of You. (Obviously, do this at the very last possible minute and then drop the children off at school before the sugar crash comes. I mean, obviously.)
2. Take the children out for dinner instead of trying to make it all romantic. Bring them flowers. Make them dress up. Let them drink their milk out of fancy glasses. These are the kinds of things that make my children go banana-balls with joy. Sometimes when we do this stuff with our kids they smile so hard it’s like their faces are going to crack. Fantastic.
3. Watch Grease as a family. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again–Grease is irresistible to all children, and a fun ‘together’ activity on the theme of ‘love’ and ‘greasers’ and ‘what life was probably like in the 50′s for absolutely no one, but still it’s fun to imagine.’ Also, trying to explain away the lyric ‘pussy-wagon’ is a good way to get the blood flowing in your brain. It will make you feel alive!
4. Do we really need to say this again? Schedule some actual romance. Do this. Put it in your date book. It’s on a Thursday this year. Is Thursday a good day for you? Who cares, just do it. Do whatever you have to do to make this happen. Then set a reminder timer for the following activities: light grooming, switching of dirty stretched out yoga pants with something half decent, forcible removal of electronic gadgets from partner’s confused hands. Now quickly inform partner that romance is about to happen, followed by making romance happen. Romance=sex. So easy. Dive in. Takes the edge off.
5. Perhaps you’re tired of involving other people in your romantic plans. Maybe all you need this Valentines day is YOU. Tell yourself you don’t believe in commercial holidays and then suddenly surprise yourself with a single rose. Up the stakes in your personal romantic story by not purchasing a chocolate rose or, worse, a polyester one with a glue like rain drop on it. Buy yourself the REAL kind. The one that can die and remind you that just because romance with yourself is fleeting doesn’t mean that it’s not important.
6. Get a tattoo of your entire family on your upper arm. Do NOT pick a photo where anyone is smiling. It’s time the world awknowledges that tattoo artists, no matter how good they are, cannot draw teeth. It’s impossible and will only look like the entire family has serious tooth decay.
7. End this day of scheduled romance with a bath. Seriously, you’ve been covered in red paint since Tuesday night. People are worried about you. The day is done. Time to freshen up and get back into those comfortable pants. You’ve paid your dues and most likely don’t need to schedule sex for at least 48 hours.
Happy Valentines Day,
Love Sam and Allana
p.s. Put some serious thought into point #6. It’s going to be painful and ugly…as sometimes love is…
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