Saturday, February 13, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day

It seems appropriate that I begin my blog close to Valentine’s Day. It’s a day for cards and letters, a day of love and friendship. Some of my favorite memories involve Valentine’s Day at school, when the hand-decorated shoe boxes became depositories for sweet wishes from the multipacks that we had sorted through to find just the card for the special boy we liked or for our best friend. Of course, part of the fun was counting the valentines we received (understanding, of course, that everybody received the same number – thanks to the elementary school rule that nobody should be left out). There was always the scrutinizing of the signature of that special boy to see if any extra message was implied – could the big letters mean that he likes me as a girlfriend; could the smudge before his name be where he wrote “love” and then erased it??

Then came the years of Valentines Days with “real” boyfriends – boxes of chocolates, cards selected individually from the local drugstore – those romantic (and nervous) days when a valentine could mean something, or it could mean nothing.

Among the sweetest valentines are those from children and grandchildren; they remain treasured possessions as testimony of innocence and the love that crayon hearts and glued-on paper doilies can bring.

The bouquet pictured above was not sent to me for Valentine’s Day. My husband celebrated my retirement with me and these glorious flowers were sent to me on my last day at work. His words were “You only retire once and I wanted the arrangement to be very special.” And it was – looking beautiful and smelling heavenly from January into February. Once, years ago, our local newspaper invited readers to submit valentine stories about our spouses. Mine was short and simple: My heart had been bruised by the ending of my first marriage and I had some doubts about my good judgment is choosing a husband. What won me over was an observation about Tom – he was loving and kind to children, to animals, and to old people. Today, twenty-three years later, I know that my observation was true and my choice was right. He is truly my Valentine!

I hope that you have a wonderful day and celebrate all of the love in your life!

Annie Joy

p.s.  I love to use books to decorate.  The beautiful Valentine page above is from Winter Notebook by Carolyne Roehm.


Granny Sue said...

Thanks for the invitation and I look forward to visiting your blog on a regular basis. By the way, where did the name Annie Joy come from? Love you, Sue

Annie Joy said...

Thanks and love you, too! Annie comes from the many Ann's and Anne's in our family (including myself!). Joy is just a good word, I thought.

Teri Lynne Underwood said...

Beautiful. I look forward to learning our family's history. Love you.

Annie Joy said...

Thanks, Teri. You can teach me some things about blogging! Love you too!


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