Please note:

I have always been fond of St. Valentine’s day.  Not in a squealing girl kind of way, but because it was a time to make memories.  Dad always marked it with gifts for us, which was in itself, special.  I like red and pink so my aesthetics were pleased.  It meant making valentines with my mom and grandma and aunts, usually with antique doilies, laces and ribbons.  It fell around the weekend of winter retreat and that brought snow and snacks and the shag carpet of the Mitchell’s cabin.  Red velvet cake for Larry and Lori Lee, roses, roses and roses, blossoms on trees, sunshine . . . Ah, good times.

Then Philip came along on the 14th, God’s secret, smiling valentine to me.  At first I was totally smitten by the idea of a Valentine baby.  Then freaked out.  How do you celebrate a birthday (birthdays=HUGE deal in my book) on a “holiday”? 

For us, it means doing it up BIG.  In the prettiest, tastiest, way of course.

So bear with the next few posts . . . they will be heavily influenced by V-day.  Turn away if it makes you sick.

That said, I am CRAZY about these:


Wild about them.  Could be an item on my “25 random things” on facebook. (By the way, I feel a good deal of pressure to make such a list and make it good.  So please quit tagging me as you’re adding to my unnecessary guilt!) 

You see, Dad always had a box of them for each of us.  Okay, so maybe it was Mom most of the time, I can’t remember, but I do know that Dad loves Neccos and created Necco fans of his kids. 

Because they came from him, they taste like love to me.

I eagerly await their appearance on the shelves each year and then buy them in bulk.  To me, it’s just not Valentine’s Day without them.  I hoard them, rationing them out over the year for special times a craving may hit.  It’s a sickness, really.

I bought a bunch and packaged them up today to send to some very special valentines.  The sight of the boxes and the sound of the tiny hearts rattling around drove me nuts.  I didn’t want to dip into my stash for this year just yet . . . it didn’t seem right. (See what I mean?  I need a therapist . . . ) So I felt around in the the pantry and found a single solitary box.

From last year.

I was sure they were hard as rocks and liable to break a tooth, but I generously offered to share them with Philip as Jac and the other 2 had gone shopping for his b-day.  The two of us, lounging happily on my bed, shook out 4 hearts at a time (he’s turning 4 you know.  It’s all about the 4.) and read every one. 

“What does this one say?”

“‘Love Him'”

“Love me?!”

“Yes!  And I do.”

Philip popped a heart in his mouth, closed his eyes and sank back against the pillows.  I knew what he was tasting.  It was the flavor of love.