Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine's Day is for White People?

Today is Valentine's Day! Happy Valentine's Day!

So, quick question: Am I supposed to do something special for my kids today? Like a Christmas stocking or Easter basket sort of thing?

I always thought of this occasion as a school thing, not a home thing. Aren't you supposed to decorate shoeboxes with doilies, construction paper and glitter at school? And then pass out store-bought Valentine's Day cards - perhaps Star Wars themed - at school?

This all started when I called a friend who said she needed to run "Valentine's Day errands" this afternoon. Say what?

"But it's already Valentine's Day," I said.

"Yeah, but I wasn't ready. So now I have to go get some chocolates and supplies to make the boys their Valentines for when they come home," she said.

Huh? Parents making Valentines for their kids? I'm befuddled. I understand romantic couples celebrating Valentine's Day with dinners at fancy restaurants, champagne, chocolate-covered strawberries, diamonds, new cars and all that stuff you see on TV. And I know kids hand out Valentines at school. But are parents supposed to make special Valentines for their kids? I'm so confused I'm not even sure if I should be capitalizing Valentines and/or using an apostrophe. This whole thing is so weird to me.

I'm the daughter of Asian immigrants, so maybe I'm feeling that whole "I love yous are for white people" thing. Plus, our family just celebrated Lunar New Year and the boys got their red envelopes, so can't they just take that money and buy themselves some candy?

What does your family do for Valentine's Day?


Barbara French said...

It used to just be between sweethearts. Then kids starting making cards at school for their moms. Then there were the cheap Valentine cards for school distribution. And then, some time in the recent past, kids started to tape candy to said cards. I'd rather they taped quarters or something. ("Recent" being a relative term.) Back to the sweethearts: Roger gave me a lovely necklace this morning.

Barbara French said...

Easter baskets have been co-opted by commercialism, too. I'm bitter about this one.... They used to be such a fun pseudo-surprise on Easter morning, but now the kids will have gotten several baskets from miscellaneous venues or well-meaning people prior to the day. Nobody needs that much candy!

Barbara French said...

Now you've got me started: my eldest sister's Easter basket had been my great-grandmother's. It was special. No more.

Lisa Chiu said...

Barbara, you nailed it.

I despise the latest trend of taping candy to cheap store-bought Valentine's cards. But I noticed that all of those cards (Angry Birds, Lego Star Wars, Cars, etc.) include some kind of add-on: an eraser, a lollipop, a temporary tattoo, etc.

Is Valentine's Day the new Halloween or the new Easter? How many sugar-filled children's holidays do we need?

Also, that is so sweet that you got a necklace from your husband!

Chris said...

I am very happy to be married to a woman who hates Valentines Day as much as I do.

Lisa Chiu said...

Chris, I'm with you guys. Also, Valentine's Day is not for Cheap People like us. :D