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This year we spent our first Valentine’s Day as a married couple. I’m a little conflicted about Valentine’s because it seems designed to celebrate couples and leave out everyone who doesn’t happen to be romantically involved at the moment (plus, if you’re recently involved it puts a lot of pressure on that baby relationship). I like Leslie Knope’s way of turning Valentine’s into an ode to lady friendship with Galentine’s Day:

In addition to the singledom persecution there is all of the overstimulated consumerism that drives over everyone like a shiny, red Hummer. It’s enough to make the biggest romantic a little cynical. But at the same time, if you happen to be involved it’s nice to have a specific day to get a little more mushy that usual. At least that’s how I look at it. Ian does a good job of being sweet all the time but it’s nice to have one day where lots of people are being mushy and sweet. Except when they’re not. I’m not the type of girl who expects a teddy bear that says ‘I Wuv You’ and a dozen red roses. That feels trite and forced to me. What I would like is some nice little gesture I suppose. A pretty bouquet of daisies would work, or lilies. A nice lotion or box of good chocolates even. I’d settle for a pretty card with nice sentiments or a long and heartfelt email.

What did I do for Valentine’s Day?

 Made delicious sugar cookies and chocolate chip cookies for people at work. Why, yes, that is home made icing and homemade sprinkles. And yes, that giant cookie has raspberry preserves in the center. Eat it, Martha!

Crafted my very own Valentine’s inspired mad libs for Ian. My favorite created phrase? ” I can’t wait to see where our BACON takes us. You are my best BBQ.” Truth!

And what’s that? Oh, just something I whipped up in between showering, vacuuming and spot cleaning the house, getting into my pretty purple dress that makes me feel like Liz Taylor and running to the store for the filet mignon. The creamiest garlic mashed potatoes ever (thank you, immersion blender!), sauteed spinach and kale and very rare filet mignon.

So, after all of this I must have gotten the best mumble-mumble of my life right? Some flowers? A card at least? SOMETHING?

I got a someecard that never made it to my inbox, and slow dancing that devolved into teenage necking. As soon as we made it to the bed, ripping our clothes off and about to actually get somewhere I noticed blood on the sheets. It wasn’t mine, of that I was sure. It was either Penny taking out her boredom over heartworm-enforced confinement on her foreleg or Ian’s head wound reopening while he slept. (He got it by walking into a branch while taking Penny out at night. It’s just a big scratch). Our concern over Penny killed whatever mood we had and we were left in a Riesling and IPA haze. I went to sleep.

Okay, I’m not mad about my lack of flowers or cards. I realize if I wanted them I should let Ian know that Valentine’s is more important to me than I’d previously known. But I didn’t know, so how could I have warned him? And the necking was fun, as was the part where he sang Jeff Buckley’s Grace and I crooned along to Joni Mitchell’s Court and Spark but these things could also have happened any night of the week. They didn’t have any special romantic element to them, and I guess I’m feeling a little letdown because I exerted so much effort to make it a special day. It wasn’t really a bad Valentine’s. Surprise flowers would have made it nicer though.

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