Posts Tagged ‘valentines day’

This is what Valentine’s Day looks like when you have a baby

Tuesday, February 14th, 2017 | Family & Parenting

Some people’s day will start with breakfast in bed. In the Worfolk household, this is true also. Venla will be having her breakfast in bed. Our bed, not her own.

As a special Valentine’s Day treat, we may both shower.

Upon returning home, gifts will be exchanged. One gift. Elina will hand me a baby and go for a nap.

Finally, at the end of the day, we will collapse into bed exhausted. But not embracing, because that would wake up the baby.

Happy Valentine’s Day.

A Valentine’s Day Poem

Sunday, February 14th, 2016 | Family & Parenting


Roses are red
Like the blood spilled by Xena
Last year we wed
Because I love Elina

The importance of Valentine’s Day

Saturday, February 14th, 2015 | Thoughts

I think Valentine’s Day is important.

At this point, you may well be thinking “I don’t need some stupid excuse to show my partner I love them; I show them all the time. I don’t need posts like this to make me feel bad because I ignored a Hallmark-created fake holiday”. If so, it’s important to remember that I haven’t said that I haven’t said that – that’s just your guilty conscience making excuses for itself.

It it not a holiday invented by Hallmark. Hallmark is 105 years old, and Valentine’s Day is 2,000. There is a whole history of it on Wikipedia. Even the Lutheran’s feast on Valentine’s Day. The Lutherans! These are the only people who hate fun more than the Presbyterians.

But even if it was made up by Hallmark, that’s not important. Obviously somebody made it up anyway.

In Religion For Atheists, Alain de Botton talks about the importance of ritual and ceremony. He talks about religious feasts. It is important to have one night of debauchery every now and then, to keep people in line the rest of the time. It keeps things on a regular, dependable cycle that stops things getting forgotten.

Take presents for example. I could buy Elina a present any time of year. Sometimes I do. However, mostly I buy her big presents on her birthday, and at Christmas. I could buy her presents randomly at all times. But that would probably be annoying for both of us. The nature of random is that she might get three presents in one week, and then none for years, depending on frequency. That would be rubbish. I would then have to have a system of deciding how to handle the random frequency – humans are not very good random. Do I write a computer programme to do it? How do I balance a finite budget with the frequency and value of items?

Even if you do just randomly buy your partner presents, do you go to the same detail you would during the holiday season, or at a birthday? Do you wrap it? And how about everyone else, do you randomly buy presents for all your family to? I don’t. I buy as specifically ritualised times – birthdays, Christmas, when I am on holiday, etc. Having a ritualised system means that I regularly buy presents for my family without having to spend my entire life designing a complex system to track prepared spontaneity (which as we all know is the best kind of spontaneity).

Returning to Valentine’s Day. I am sure that you, like me, regularly choose to show your love to your partner in a variety of surprising and novel ways. Super, and I hope that continues for a long time.

However we know that a) it becomes more difficult the longer a relationship goes on. If you are a friend of mine, that means that if you are married (you probably aren’t) you have probably been married less than 5 years. That means you are in the easiest part of your marriage, because that is when the romance is strongest. About the five year mark is when divorces peak.


I don’t know why this is, but there are a couple of reasons that seem to spring to mind. Firstly, in Rip It Up! Richard Wiseman talks about passion in relationships which is strongest at the start of a relationship and then goes into terminal decline for the rest of the time. If you haven’t built a strong and lasting relationship by the time it wears off, you’re fucked.

Secondly, it could be that after five years there is a good chance you have had children, which is a very stressful experience, and can often break couples apart.

My point is that if you are in the early days of a relationship (and by early days I mean the first five years) that passion that drives you to show your partner you love them might not be there at a later date. There is no point denying this to ourselves, despite how bleak it may seem, that is what the studies show. Or it may well be that you are so busy raising children that you simply don’t have time to think about that stuff, because you are too busy trying to work out how exactly Chris Junior could even physically get his head through a gate like that, let alone how you are going to get him out. And how do his hands get that sticky? He hasn’t had any jam!

Hopefully of course you manage to keep the passion alive. However, Valentine’s Day provides a safety net. It provides a ritual that makes sure that you don’t forget to have a least one day of affection each year.

I, like you no doubt, hope to have many more a year. I hope to show my affection every day. However, not everyone does. And in a historical context, which is of course where Valentine’s Day evolved, romantic love taking the lead is a somewhat modern concept.

I don’t go out on Valentine’s Day because all the restaurants are full. Much better to take Elina out to restaurants on week days when it is easy to get a table. Tonight, we’ll be staying at home, I’ll be cooking, and we’ll be spending time together. Because it’s Valentine’s Day. Surely that can only be a positive thing?

Valentine’s card

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012 | Life

I love my Moomins Valentine’s card :D.

Happy Valentine’s Day

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012 | Family & Parenting

Rakastan sinua, Elina.

Valentine’s Day

Saturday, February 11th, 2012 | Thoughts

One of my friends recently retweeted a message saying “Valentine’s Day is for people who lack the imagination to be romantic during the rest of the year.” That put me onto an interesting thought process about the origins of the holiday.

Because, if you think about it, Valentine’s Day is almost certainly a holiday created by men, for men.

I mean, imagine if we had to be romantic all year round! There is simply no time for that, we have far too much watching sport and eating pizza to do. Designating one romantic day per year, effectively manages the expectations of the fairer sex so that we don’t have to worry about it for the other 364 days. Genius.