Dave can tell you the very moment he realized I really loved him and wasn’t just hanging around his place to watch his Tivo and have great sex. It was the day I spread 100 paper hearts throughout his apartment while we were dating, each one with a reason why I loved him written on it. Admittedly, one of those reasons was “You let me record my favorite shows on your Tivo,” – (It seems superficial, but I had no cable at my place. It was a BIG deal.) – and another was “The PHENOMENAL sex!” But there were 98 additional reasons that were hard to deny. He loved those hearts. He still has them! (If I happen to die before him, I will use all my ghost power to retrieve those hearts from the closet and spread them on the bed to send him an ‘I love you’ from beyond the grave. Or to foil his plans to sleep with someone I don’t like.)

As this Valentine’s day crept closer, he mentioned, again, how special that gesture made him feel. The written word is a powerful thing. And so, we decided to do something similar for the girls.

Today, we woke them up and gave them each a large paper heart that read:

Mommy and Daddy love you,
there is no doubt.
If you’ve ever wondered why,
you’re about to find out.
There are twelve pink* hearts
each one’s like a clue
with one of many reasons
we’re crazy about you!

Go find them!

The search begins...

*All the hearts weren’t pink. Lucy’s were. Julia’s were purple and Phoebe’s were yellow.

Why We Love You Hearts

We hid them around the house and sent the girls on a chase to find them, which they LOVED. Then, they brought them to breakfast and we read them together while we ate.

You guys, the smiles on their faces? Incredible. You could see how good it made them feel to hear those words. And then to have a sister chime in with, “That’s true! You really do tell amazing stories. Remember the one about the candy forest?” Priceless.

And it wasn’t just the kids that felt special. Last night, after they were sleeping, when Dave and I sat down together to write on their hearts, we talked about why we love our kids. We didn’t write the same twelve things for each of them – every heart was unique, as our girls are. And we couldn’t help but feel so very proud and grateful to have those girls in our lives. That alone made it an exercise worth doing.

Before heading out the door to school, Lucy stacked her hearts up neatly, held them to her chest and said, “I’m going to keep these and when I feel sad, I’m going to read them.”

And then we sent them out into the world armed with the Valentine cards they’d made to give away. (Well, we sent Julia and Lucy off to school. Phoebe is in my lap eating peanut butter toast.)(Now I’m wishing we’d made a Valentine card from Phoebe, too.)

Julia's Valentine

Lucy's Valentine

I know the lollipop picture idea has been done and done and DONE – by everyone! – but I still loved it and wanted to do it. The girls did, too. Plus, it gave them a crash-course in Photoshop. Real life skills FTW!

How are you celebrating Valetine’s Day?