Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Three Little Lovers

Valentine's Day is about love. Everyone has a reason to celebrate Valentine's Day! I remember when I was in college and single as could be, I wore a poofy skirt with a red sweater, white chucks and high white socks with red and pink hearts all over them (should have gotten a picture!!). I spent the night before making cupcakes to hand out to everyone I felt should receive one. I, of course, was late for my 7:45 am Microbiology class. So I strutted into class, about 15 minutes late, in my very loud outfit holding a plate full of cupcakes. I gave one to my teacher. He was adorable. :) Later in the day, I gave one to a boy that I had gone on a couple dates with recently (&nothing came of it) that I happened to run into in the library. He tensed up and got really awkward and said something about how he was sorry he didn't have anything for me right now. I just smiled and laughed. He thought it was a romantic gesture but it was really just a gesture of love for the spirit of Valentine's Day (and life and being a little 19 year-old lady who could do whatever she pleased).

This year was a little bit different. :) It was spent with not just one handsome guy of my dreams, but two! I attempted this, which is beyond my understanding how anything could look so perfect, especially eggs! Mine were at least made with lots of love. We hurried off to Greenville with the intent of Jude sleeping in the car. We made a tent out of blankets so it was dark, filled his belly full of some delicious milk, and set the plan into action. It failed. He cried, and screamed for about thirty minutes until I was so depleted, discouraged, &depressed I couldn't take it anymore. So we arrived with a tired little baby and full afternoon/evening ahead and hoping for the best. We walked around downtown trying to find a restaurant that had the "ambience &atmosphere" we was looking for. As we were walking, I looked over to see a spirited black lady stick half her body out the window, waving her arms in the air &screaming "LOVE THE SHOES!!! LOVE THE SHOES!!!! LOVE THE SHOES!!!!!!" as if she was yelling "The British are coming!" or something of equal importance. I was thoroughly amused, to say the least. She was a cute little ray of sunshine that sprinkled some love on my Valentine's Day.



We saw the sites and decided on Smoke on the River. We plopped Jude into those little seats and enjoyed our early dinner. (Thank you Mom &Dad James for treating us to dinner for Valentine's Day/Congratulations to Dan on his test... you are the best!!) Jude hasn't been to a restaurant since he was no more than three months old (&neither have we, tight budget) so he was loving it. He would throw his arms up in the air and dance to the music, wave at the people, and dance with people across the restaurant. He especially liked the 60-something year old man across the way who would dance back!





We then went to the park and enjoyed the picturesque and perfectly cliche scenes of lovers in the park. (We even saw a boy asking a girl to prom!) We saw the quacking ducks to Jude's hearts content. I wore my grandmother Norma James' fur coat, which was given to my mother and then given to me. It is my most special piece of clothing &I only wear it about once a year! Now with Jude, I might have to decrease the frequency due to his frequency of always managing to get different bodily fluids on me. We then off we went for my surprise from Dan. I was sure it was another park... but no, we went to Rita's! I was pretty thrilled. Last time we went was with beautiful Sarah in Philly! And since they were milk &egg free slushies, Jude could even have a little! He wasn't quite sure what to do with himself.
























We then had to go to Whole Foods to get Jude some specialty products in our attempts to fatten him up (stupid SOY milk is worthless). $67 and a few goat milk yogurts, milk, specialty flours, xantham gum, dairy free butter & mayonnaise, and "vegan mexican shreds" (supposed to be cheese... do NOT recommend) our mission was accomplished. Let's not focus on how we might have gotten lost on the way and tempers might have soared as we were a little tense with a screaming baby who might have thrown up all over in all his confined-in-the-carseat misery. No need to remember all that. Or the "churros" I made Dan that were uncooked balls of dough with a burnt cinnamon shell. Let's remember the little heart Dan hid in the D&R in the kitchen with my last &final note, which I savor along with the others.



Valentine's Day is about romantic love and chocolates and teddy bears and awkward situations more than I wish it was, yes. When I was young I always pictured a ridiculously movie-like day with breakfast in bed, rose petals to the bubble bath, romantic dinners in stiletto heels, etc. I laugh at that now. I've realized that if we are not careful it will turn into another chore of having to do a Valentine craft and make a heart-shaped baked good. I want it to be another excuse to celebrate the love I have for my family and those around me and make them feel special and make sure-beyond-sure-can-be that they know they are so ridiculously and uncontrollably loved my this woman.