I am becoming a bit of a Scrooge when it comes to over-commercialized holidays, Valentine's Day being chief among those I am really beginning to dislike. I saw an article on MSN.com a couple of days ago saying that you were a proper celebrant of V-Day if you were looking at flowers, candy and cards right after CHRISTMAS! Is that like putting out your Christmas decorations the day after Halloween? Are we looking towards a future with year-round holidays?
My scrooge-y attitude prompted me to say to my Darling Man a few days ago - "Don't get me anything for Valentine's Day."
"Not even a card? Or chocolate?"
"Nope. I don't want anything."
And I prepared to have a normal day on February 14th. I went to work and got some stuff done. I had a doctor's appointment just before lunch (yeah - that was fun). Then I drove around looking at houses and neighborhoods just for the hell of it. I finally headed back home only to find that Darling Man was there tidying up the place. His ex-wife was on her way over.
This was NOT a terrible thing.
Actually, she lives in Oregon and had traveled here to Florida to help celebrate our grand-daughter's 6th birthday, which is tomorrow. She's been staying with stepson Kurt and his family and has been there since Monday. Today was Wednesday and I think she was getting a bit stir-crazy. So DIL Patty brought Betsy over and we showed her the house, the deck, the yard, gave her some green tea and chatted. And made a plan for later tonight. Then they left to collect granddaughter and stepson, leaving me and Darling Man to wait for Z-boy to get out of school.
We celebrated Valentine's Day.
After school, we all put on our jackets and walking shoes and drove out to the Indian Mounds. The skies had cleared, the sun was out, and it was a bit nippy in that after-the-front-goes-through breeze.
We climbed both mounds and looked out over the top. When I was a kid, they didn't have the steps or the decking - we just scrambled up the sides and slid back down. Apparently lots of people doing the same thing was destroying the mounds, so the steps and decks were installed. Probably a good idea, and it doesn't detract from the beauty of the place. On the way back down from the larger of the two mounds, Darling Man declared himself the "King of the World"!
Then we took a walk on the nature trail loop, where we saw beautiful scenery and endangered flora. It truly was beautiful. Z-boy had recently learned how to tie his shoes, and when Kylee's shoes came undone, they sat down on a bench so Z could tie her shoes.
Kurt kept walking and soon was way ahead of us. As Z-boy was tying shoes, a jogger went past, ponytail swishing as she trotted up the hill. We didn't think anything of it until we heard a little scream. Apparently Kurt, thinking it would be funny, had hidden behind a tree and was going to jump out and scare us as we came a long behind. But it wasn't us he scared. That poor jogger got a serious adrenaline boost when Kurt jumped out from behind the tree making a face and shouting "raaaaaaahhhh!" at her. She took off running at full speed. And Kurt's damned lucky she didn't have a can of mace on her!
We had a good laugh over that, and the kids took turns "hiding" and jumping out to scare us.
Betsy recovers from being "scared" while DarlingMan ambles off to catch up with Kylee.
When we'd had our fill of walking, we went to an asian restaurant for dinner. It has EVERYTHING oriental! Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai, Sushi and more. We settled in for a feast.
Kylee and her Grandma Betsy
Kurt re-enacts the jogger-scare and the rest of us are feeling pretty relaxed now.
Actually, this was a very good Valentine's Day. There was love all around and we were all there to share in it together.
And tomorrow, we get to do it all again as we gather to celebrate the 6th anniversary of Kylee's entrance into this world!