It’s that time again . . . stores are filled with pretty heart boxes of chocolate, pink and red roses are everywhere you look, and men of all ages start the scramble to find the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for their one and only. A lot of men, secretly resenting the holiday and the expectation that comes along with it, can’t wait for February 14 to come and go. One male blogger stated “Valentine’s Day is the love holiday we all love to hate!”

Women on the other hand, although they may say otherwise, secretly wish that this Valentine’s Day they will be swimming in a sea of rose petals amidst a never-ending pile of heart-shaped chocolate. Women begin their own quest in February . . . to wow their sweetie with the most ravishing outfit, the most scrumptious dinner or even the perfect heart shaped cookie. Trips to the Med Spa increase and many a hard-earned dollar is spent at the salon, preparing her locks for her one and only. Even the children join in, crafting Valentine’s for friends and making special cards for parents and grandparents.

This month reminds us to love - to revel in it and to share it with others. Although some may resent it - I admit to being guilty of the latter at times – Valentine’s Day is a part of our culture, and a holiday that isn’t going anywhere, much like love itself.

I remember once when my aging uncle, twice divorced, found himself involved in a romantic relationship for the first time in many years. His eyes glowed and he seemed filled with new life. Of course his adult children didn’t know what to do with him, feeling slightly uncomfortable at the silly smiling faces and baby talk passing between Uncle Rob and his new girl. The truth is none of us really wanted to know the details but at the same time, we were all in complete agreement that our uncle was in love, and there was something inspiring about it.

So I ask you, how many things do you truly love in life? How many of those things are actually people? If you’re like me, the “love” list is small, very precious and made up entirely of people.

The longer I live, the more I realize that life is more about your relationships than your accomplishments. If you think back to every goal you’ve accomplished, you will realize that sharing that experience with someone you love was a major part of reaching that milestone.

So rather than getting all grumbly over Valentine’s Day this year, constantly touting how Valentine’s Day is a pseudo-holiday created by Hallmark, I’m going to step-up and spread my share of chocolate around and do my part to make it a happy Valentine’s Day.

Here’s a few quotes to get us both in the mood. It’s only once a year after all – Valentine’s Day that is ☺.

Love is like playing the piano. First you must learn to play by the rules, then you must forget the rules and play from your heart.
Author unknown

Women are meant to be loved, not to be understood.
Oscar Wilde

Grow old along with me, the best is yet to be.
Robert Browning

Love is an irresistible desire to be irresistibly desired.
Robert Frost