Have you noticed the proliferation of ads and merchandise for the upcoming holiday? I went on an internet search for Valentine’s Day imagery, and was bowled over by the cliches and soft porn. Somehow teddy bears, unnatural looking red roses, and sexy underwear have taken over a day I always thought of as for remembering friends and loved ones. It’s not just for romance and passion, although that’s good too. Recent census data reveals that half the population of the US is unmarried, and one-third of households are occupied by a single resident. There are many explanations for this, which you can read about here.
Some single people feel that Valentine’s Day is designed to make them feel like losers because they don’t have that special someone. Bogus, I say! Bring on the chocolate, flowers and hearts! And some more chocolate, if you don’t mind…Last year, on a whim, I printed out some little cards that said “Happy Valentine’s Day” and left them around the office where I work. The cards brought smiles, and I notice a few of them still pinned up. It reminded me of grade school when we all got packets of valentines to sign and address for each of our classmates. Usually we made some sort of pouch or mailbox to collect them, then had a little party on the actual day. Innocent, fun, a bit of color at a time of year when the weather can be dreary. Why not?
This year, I have designed some more valentines and printed them as small cards. I will be giving them out, and you can join. Make your own, or buy some of mine which have just gone on sale at the Fieldwork store. I’m also selling a couple of the original watercolors. The cards are suitable for any time you want to slip a note of love to someone.
All of us maintain a wide array of relationships, even if we are not involved with an intimate partner. Let’s expand the scope of Valentine’s Day to include all of those to whom we wish to bring a smile. Make a red construction paper heart and glue some decorations on it, then give it away. Share some chocolate, then go outside to look for signs of life. Maybe the violets are coming along.
St. Valentine is the patron saint of beekeepers–I just read that somewhere. That seems right, because I notice my bees adventuring out of the hive for short flights. I’m so happy to see them, and am thinking it’s time to give them some sugar water and pollen patty, as well as paint the honey super. They inspired the Bee My Honey painting.
And the chickadees say spring is coming…