Spending Valentine’s Day Without My Valentine…

…has given us new ways to celebrate the day.  I wanted to make sure the girls did something good for someone else today, so I decided to celebrate Valentine’s day with a pay-it-forward kind of celebration.  Brighid’s school was having a bake sale today to raise money for the Student Library Association, to which she belongs.  She was going to work the sale without contributing to it, so I made her bring cupcakes.  Eilis’ school is collecting change for the Heifer Project – where they raise money to supply a cow or other farm animal to a family in a third world country; so today was the day we chose for her to bring in her own change to contribute.  Granuaile’s school is having a lost penny drive, where they are supposed to bring in pennies they find to raise money to buy toys and books for the school.  So each kid had something from their heart to give to someone else today, which I think is a much better meaning of Valentine’s Day than the smoochy, buy me flowers, take me to dinner kind of day (not that I wouldn’t love flowers and dinner, but with hubby out of town, this was a nice way to make the day special). 

So for myself, I decided if there was only one person behind me in the car at the Starbucks drive through, and their bill wasn’t for more than a cup of coffee or a latte, I would pay for the coffee.  I got up to the window, and the total for the car behind me was just about what my total was, so I dedided to pick up the tab.  As it turned out, it was Connor’s mom and dad in the car behind me!  Connor is a friend of Eilis’ from school.  I felt really good then about my pay-it-forward plan for the day, because I know Connor’s parents will follow through and do something nice for someone else today.

So do something sweet today, even if you can’t be with your sweetie.  Even if you just give a smile to your mailman, the guy you ordinarily don’t notice, it’s a way to show the love to someone who might really need to see it.