Okay I am way ahead of schedule! Should be putting this out on the 13th or 14th if I was acting “normal”! When it comes to gender and St Valentines the guys are frequently accused of minimum effort or not planning for what some gals consider a very important holiday! While I will not try to defend my guy friends for their actions or lack of action I will say that I did learn over time (i.e. trainable) and have some suggestions for what can be a wonderful celebration of our romance.
First, the deployed spouses are at the top of our list and thank you. For the spouse/guypal/galpal at home you too serve so thank you! For those who have deployed Valentines, please send us ways that you deal with this holiday. I think being out with friends and family would be the best way to celebrate and sharing plans for a future celebration with that loved one would be a super way to help heal the wound of absence.
I have shared many wonderful Valentines with my spouse (about 38 of them actually) and here are some ways we celebrated (and yes gals you can pass these on in a kind way if that special someone needs a push). Our first Valentine was a date which my soon-to-be fiancée took me out! Yep, college guy, no money and she took me out to a nice restaurant and the standard was set high! 🙂
We grew from that one. Not every one was at a restaurant or out at all! Some of our best celebrations have been at home with a dinner prepared for each other. The guy might already help in the kitchen or he can plan a menu or just a course or item. Ask him to help. It is an invitation to be together. Pull him into the kitchen with a “special offer” or that new perfume! Flirting is allowed and very effective for generating interest! If he is not kitchen literate (i.e. mac and cheese is a staple) then provide encouragement and help when you see the need!
Do you have a date night or gift in mind for you? Are you thinking Valentine’s Day should be honored at home or out? Dinner or a movie or both! Do you like flowers? What kind? They get pretty expensive at this holiday. Chocolate freak? What kind? Are there any special gifts? What kind of token and if clothing what size? The internet makes it easier for guys to shop for “delicate items” but you might tell him where and what you want. Or just suggest a direction.
I have two strong memories of great Valentines! Both involved a bit of planning on my part. The first was in Panama. We went out to a restaurant in Panama City called Patio Andalusia. It was quiet, had wonderful food and had a strolling violinist playing around the tables: wow did I get points!
The second was at home. My spouse was just finishing chemo and starting radiation for breast cancer. I realized that I wanted to do something despite her not feeling well so I pulled out the cookbooks, (picked a meat to grill: a guy specialty in most cases) and searched for a meal that I could sensibly do. Voila! A plan came forth! I bought chocolates, made a menu on the computer and printed it on red paper, got some flowers and cleaned the house in preparation. I think it was the caring that made it the best and we had such a great time despite her not feeling well.
Please let us know how you celebrate and share this holiday! If someone is deployed or facing deployment how did you find ways to celebrate? Send us/share ways to enjoy this special time together with menus, gift ideas, favorite restaurants, getaways, etc! We would love to hear them and share!