be mine

  • Feb 10, 2011
We begin with a rule: if you write an insulting Valentine, you have to do that person’s dishes job for an entire week. And if it’s really rude– you get to clean a bathroom every single day for the rest of February.

Creating paper confections is our most beloved tradition, but with a sarcastic family of pranksters, it’s an inherently risky activity.

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My brother Dan sweetened everyone up with his perfectly timed delivery of a St. Louis butter cake– a pastry so delicious that we devoured it with two spoons before forks or plates made it to the table.

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Erik seems to pour a year’s worth of repressed creativity into his love notes. I’m convinced that this entire activity works because Erik is enthusiastic about it– if it were just me, they’d laugh me and my glitter glue out the door.

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Yes, that’s Erik’s version of Valentine sunshine.

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No one can resist sparkly pink paper.

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Incredibly serious about his notes, Gabe only uses other people’s scraps.

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But Ben keeps him laughing.

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It’s a crazy evening that scatters tiny hearts across the kitchen and glitter on our noses.
Gabe and Mary give each other horsey rides across the carpet and Hans hung Valentines from the ceiling and chandelier.
Paper hearts spill out of the mailbox and skitter into the corners.

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The rat-heart theme was popular this year. This one can be worn around your neck.

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Everyone loved my punch-around-the-page hearts but they gave up on making it work correctly. I’m a pro– I get it right one out of every ten tries.

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All of Hansie’s creations hung or spun or did something.

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Sweet Xander.

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Mary’s are fun just for the spelling: youshallee=usually. Love it.

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Like many a nine-year-old, Gabe hates to bathe or change his shirt (which is nice for laundry but sad for hygiene)– Xander offered him the best gift he could think of but Ben refuted it (and offered a few other bits of advice):

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And just when I was about to whine that Ben made a card for everyone but me I found one last Valentine tucked in the back of the box.

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Sending our love your way.

xoxo, m

February 5, 2011

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12 Comments

  1. Reply

    Cath

    February 10, 2011

    What fun. I’m in love with your tradition. Those notes are priceless and full of personality. Love your family and you.

  2. Reply

    Ginnie

    February 10, 2011

    Will you please raise my children and then give them back to me when they’re older? How in the world do raise children that love each other???? 😉

  3. Reply

    dalene

    February 10, 2011

    So sweet.

  4. Reply

    Kristin

    February 10, 2011

    I’m with Ginnie!

    Thanks for sharing. So uplifting.

  5. Reply

    Lisa

    February 10, 2011

    You are amazing…getting those boys to play along with the Valentines game, especially the hubby! What a wonderful tradition!

  6. Reply

    Linn

    February 10, 2011

    I seriously cannot stand the sweetness of this post. But Gabe, oh my word, he made me laugh hard.

    “So stay alive as long as you can.”

    “But you need to work on remembering my birthday.”

    That is awesomeness like I can hardly stand.

    Love you–and your darling family that makes me happy!

  7. Reply

    house of 7

    February 10, 2011

    this is absolutely wonderful! your family is so much fun!

    (and you are most welcome about shutterfly. just thought you should know.)

    happy vday to you!!!

  8. Reply

    Tasha

    February 10, 2011

    Ben’s note at the end brought tears to my eyes. What a sweet boy.

    Gabe’s valentines were definitely my favorite “stay alive as long as you can” and “you’ve been gone the last couple years”? Priceless. Now Brandon and I want to start this with our little family!

  9. Reply

    Rachelle

    February 10, 2011

    Your Valentine’s Day ritual warms my heart. Thank you.

  10. Reply

    The Planet Pink

    February 10, 2011

    I can’t even tell you how much I love the fact that your teenage boys and husband participate in this activity.

  11. Reply

    Tracy

    February 11, 2011

    “I love you in a brotherly way..” lolol

    Love this tradition.
    Love you,
    xoxo

  12. Reply

    michelle

    February 11, 2011

    Tears on that last one. So awesome.

    I still can’t get over the fact that you said something about no one being able to resist pink sparkly paper. But really, how many boys do you know who would come within 10 yards of the stuff?

    You and Erik are wonderful parents. I love visiting your home here.

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