This just says "love."

Aren’t those hot dog hearts kind of disgusting cute?  Teensy Fresh Scratch saw them in “Family Fun” magazine and, being quite the carnivore of the Scratch fam, had to make them for us for dinner.  She was so proud.  They were Hebrew National, so not that bad.

She is so stoked for Valentine’s Day.  Which reminds me of Valentine’s Day when I was in kindergarten.  I remember a few things:

1) I gave Snow White-themed valentines and wrote on the back “form” instead of “from.”

2)My mom contributed Juicy Juice punch to my classroom party, in a big aluminum can you open with a church key.

3)When the object of my affection arrived to walk to school with me, like every morning…. I puked all over the floor.

Yep.  First Valentine party, and I missed it.  I was sick and had to stay home.  Little puppy love crush took the Juicy Juice and my Snow White valentines to school for me.

Flash-forward: 5th grade.  First school dance (from 3-5 pm in the gym, immediately following school).  Lots of Bobby Brown and Debbie Gibson and Tiffany playing.  I got dumped by the kid I was “going out with” because I wouldn’t slow dance.  Totally a “Wonder Years” moment.

Flash-forward: 9th grade.  3 red roses and a balloon that said, “Will you be my Valentine?” from a SOPHOMORE.  Delivered to me AT SCHOOL. Oh, yeah.  Things were turning around!

Moving to 10th grade: After a rough year of stops and starts with said boy, I was single.  But, mysteriously, one perfect red rose was sent to me, again at school, on the big day.  The card attached read, “Love, Cupid.”  I have quite the imagination, folks.  My mind was playing all the possibilities: from the rose-giver of 9th grade? from his cousin? from cute, quiet boy in my class? from cute, godlike, senior boy on the baseball team??  My friends and I were stumped but totally intrigued.  I was elated as I hopped into the car at parent-pick up {kind of embarrassing as a sophomore} with my vase and rose.  My mom said, “Oh!  You got the rose I sent!”  Yes.

My senior year, I was oh-so-very single that I got to work the Valentine evening shift at Hallmark.  See the irony here?  And this man came in and bought a cute card and wrote a clue in it and left it with me for his girlfriend’s scavenger hunt. He was in a tux and headed to the flower shop down the plaza next.  He was holding a heart-shaped balloon; I was deflating.

It keeps going!  And I know you are continuing to read because it’s like a train wreck…

…Freshman year of college: I got dumped a week before Valentine’s Day.  We had had plans to go to dinner with another couple in our dorm.  During his break-up speech, he asked that we still keep our date and go “as friends.” Why did I say yes?  He brought me a tea rose that promptly died, and I was mean and sarcastic the whole night.

Sophomore year of college: It had snowed gobs the week of Valentine’s Day.  My then-boyfriend and I tromped through the snow in our little college town to the restaurant where he cooked (he didn’t have a car).  I remember I had swapped out my combat boots for high-heeled, patent leather penny loafers.  Anyway, he was very antagonistic through dinner.  As in totally different from the prince I thought I’d been dating.  “The bloom was off the rose,” as Billy Joel said. By the time we were watching the previews to the volcano action movie we were seeing after dinner, we were arguing rather loudly and broke up.  One of my few regrets in life was that I sat there by him for the whole dang movie, seething, when I should’ve just walked out and made a dramatic exit!

I had had it with stupid Valentine’s Day.

Fortunately for me, so had my best friend Shara.

Me (curly) & My BFF

 

I don’t know all the particulars that brought her to the breaking point, because she is so awesome that mostly she has always listened to me whine and lament and has rarely done the same to me. But I was glad she was at the breaking point.  This meant we could choose to have a great February 14th together.  We made a pact to christen the day “Friend’s Day” and honor it together, with no significant other, from that day forward.  The next year, we had our first Friends Day.  We got each other cute valentine cards and crossed out any “Valentine’s Day” phrases and scrawled “Friend’s Day!” above them.  We bought the same bottles of nail polish at Rite Aid and swapped them; “For you!”  We went to see “The Wedding Singer.” We didn’t have to worry about how the day would go.  We knew it would be full of laughs, acceptance, and no break-ups or awkward moments.

The best part: it involved baking.  Yep.  Somewhere I got the idea to bake gingerbread people and then frost them to look like people we hated.  We didn’t have extra flour to roll out the dough, so we used….her packets of instant oatmeal.  This still makes me laugh out loud to remember it!  All our people had dried up powdery oats on their backsides and kind of smooshed in here and there!  We made them to look like boys we were currently loathing, the guy from the movie date the year prior, and “Betty Crocker” (remember her from my last post?).  Then….

we bit their heads off.

It was so satisfying.

The next year was awesome, too, because we included Dan (as in Dan who I mentioned in my very first posting), who is one of the best guy friends ever.  He brought the day to a new high by having us over to watch the ultimate Friend’s Day flick, “Fatal Attraction.”  It was sweet.

I wish I could say that we honored our promise to one another and damned Valentine’s Day forever, choosing each other over boyfriends and husbands, but we didn’t.  Love got the best of us.  The next year she was on a date and I was drinking a Guinness at Tir na Nog in Seattle (which is sadly no longer) with another Dan, pretending it was “Friend’s Day,” but really hoping it was Valentine’s Day.

No hard feelings, Shara.

The best part of this story: she’s still around, while all those valentines mentioned are not.

And I thank my lucky stars for both of those facts.

But back to my own little kindergartener…I will be holding my breath on Valentine’s Day morning next week, hoping she doesn’t get sick out of the blue.  We all come on the journey of parenting with our own quirky baggage, and this holiday happens to be one of my parcels.  I just don’t want it to become one of hers.

What was your most memorable Valentine’s Day?

Share this:

14 Comments on Friend’s Day

  1. Kelly,
    That was hilarious! A fun read while eating a leisurely lunch after getting the girls down for a nap. I really can’t believe you can remember all that, particularly in kindergarten! To me, Valentine’s day was a pretty insignificant holiday until Scott wrote me a letter in college on Valentine’s day, changing our relationship forever. Hope your baking business is taking off. Your treats sound so scrumptious!
    Holly

  2. What a memory! And what a fun read…

    My most memorable Valentine’s Day was probably my senior year, when Michael published a little love note to me in the newspaper. Or maybe in college when a long white box full of roses arrived at my dorm unexpectedly, also from Michael. Hmmm, I’ve sort of gone off Valentine’s Day in recent years, but it’s fun to think back to the romantic things we did when we were young…

  3. Hey Kel, my absolute WORST Valentine’s day was in first grade when I had Pneumonia and couldn’t come to school. We ven spent the week prior making some sweet mail boxes, I couldn’t even party with my friends! I was so sad after that…..

3Pingbacks & Trackbacks on Friend’s Day

  1. […] an Ellensburg icon.  It’s where we used to start off our pub crawls and was also the site of one very crappy Valentine’s Day my sophomore year in college, which ended with me getting dumped. One funny thing about eating at a restaurant in a college town […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *