Today had great potential to put me into one big emotional temper tantrum and I am too tired for that, so I made a rule for myself. No moping, no dwelling on happier Valentine's Days past and no wishing for what is no possible right now. I got a fantastic day off yesterday and I decided that today needed to be all about the kids. Since I have boys, I get that a lot of the stuff I do for holidays is going to be lost on them, but it's more for me anyway. I get a kick out of it. Since J isn't around to share this stuff with anymore, I'm sharing it with all of you!
Before church, we were all excited to see flowers show up at the door from my cute brother Jeff (I didn't post a picture, because they haven't opened yet. they are going to be gorgeous in a day or so). They joined the pink roses from my mom and dad/boys. Junior was interested in the flowers and wanted to talk about what a flower's enemies are (I told him the main ones are little boys. He liked that.) He was also pleased to tell me that 'Dad told him that what flowers love, absolutely love, more than anything else in the whole world is poop.' I'm guessing it was some discussion about fertilizer, but Junior probably stopped listening at the word poop. Lovely!
After church, we had a Valentine's Day themed meal with (what else) red food. The trusty Bradshaw family was supposed to join us, but they had babies that weren't quite out from being under the weather, so we dined alone (but they were missed. Especially since I have way too many jello jigglers left over :-)
The menu included spaghetti, strawberries, strawberry jello jigglers, strawberry Sunny-D and bread with raspberry honey butter ( I know it looks like cookies but it's not. What kind of mom do you think I am? We might have cookies for breakfast when they are around, but not dinner!)
For all my effort, Bubba ended up eating plain noodles and cheese and a strawberry and Junior only ate his meatballs and then finished off Bubba's. Whatever!
Valentines day has never come and gone (since Junior could wield a knife with frosting) without sugar cookies. No point in starting now. Besides, we need something for breakfast in the morning.
Each of the boys made me a cookie (and then made me eat it while they watched. I think I am good on sugar for awhile.)
I have to point out the beautiful cake plate my dad gave me. I decided to start collecting them and he is an enthusiastic supporter. The only two I own so far are from him although I did get a cool vintage one off of ebay for my sister's birthday last year that I am still kind of coveting. 'Tis better to give, right? Right. The jeweled picture frames were engineered by J and created by the boys last week.
The holiday this year has been...different, but I am okay. I reflected tonight as I cleaned up cookie decorating detritus, turned off the Veggietales video that has been watched over and over this evening, put away a dinner that no one really ate and smelled my beautiful flowers that today I am more ok than I expected to be. Not because all the crummy stuff isn't still there, but because for today I chose not to acknowledge it. I just tossed a tired, clean, lotiony smelling baby into her bed and every two minutes or so, one of my boys hollers down "I love you mom" (more as a sleep stalling tactic than overwhelming affection, I'm afraid.) I have good things in my life. I haven't lost everything.
I did not spend this Valentines Day the way I thought I would last year, but in getting back to my original joy in the holiday, the absence of a significant other in my life doesn't take away the fact that I still love and feel loved by others on it.
I may not have everything I want and some days that is harder to bear than others. But for now anyway, I have everything I need. And sometimes that's enough.