It is hard not to notice the red, pink and hearts displayed in all of the stores during early February ready for Valentine’s Day, which was originally a celebration of Lupercalia. For most February 14th is a day to show your affection to your lover or someone you desire, however, in some countries this affection is also extended to family, friends and even colleagues.
Luckily soon after arriving in Japan my students educated me on the customs there, so I wasn’t surprised when my partner at the time didn’t give me a card or flowers on Valentine’s Day, because in Japan the females give gifts to the males and the favour is returned on March 14th. The pessimists out there will argue Valentine’s Day is a perfect example of a Hallmark holiday and in 1978 White Day was the brainchild of the Japanese confectionery association. I have to say the first year it was a little odd when my boyfriend came home with giri-choco (obligation chocolates) from his female colleagues, however, I learnt to accept it and happily helped him eat the goodies each year!
In my opinion “Love is…” something to be celebrated everyday as life is too short not to tell my OH and Little Miss on a daily basis that I love them.
This year, my morning Valentine’s date was with my four-legged boy and it was a glorious day to be outside and loving life. The sight of the sun beams shining through the mist was quite poetic and picture worthy in my view…
I like to thing that when you think positive thoughts it is hard not to see the best of things around you, surrounded by such natural beauty yesterday morning it seemed even mother nature was sending out its love, can you spot the heart?
It has been said that you “eat with your eyes” and after my time in Japan I became more aware of the importance of food presentation with the beautiful bentos (lunch boxes) on sale in stores and of course the works of art that some children take to school for their lunch. I love my food and Little Miss is generally a good eater, so I do my best to make her food and meal times the pleasure that it should be and yesterday I put my heart shaped cookie cutter to good use to make a Valentine’s dinner for my little princess.
This year I noticed there was more emphasis by retailers on promoting Valentine’s Day not just as a “date night” but also marketing the concept of “galentines” and “a cosy night in”, which I think is great. Love comes in many forms and like Gandhi said “Where there is love there is life.”
Little Miss made my day when she told me the mask she made me “has a heart on because I love you so much”, so I am all for Valentine’s Day not just being a celebration of romantic love.
So, I leave you with another great quote on love to inspire you to do great things,
“Love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is done well.” – Vincent Van Gogh