What if we stopped making Valentine’s Day all about US?



I’ve been reading a lot of blogs this past week about how much pressure we put on our husbands to perform on Valentine’s Day and how our expectations set them up for failure (see link below).

So I want to share a different idea with you. This won’t work for every family but it might just work for yours.

First of all, let me tell you that this Valentine’s Day idea is NOT something I came up with because I’m the best wife or mother ever.  In fact, in between the start of this tradition and now, my marriage almost totally self-destructed because I wasn’t the best wife ever.  And if it had destructed, that wouldn’t have helped my best-mother-ever status any either.  This is something I wish I’d have come up with because I was already the best wife ever!  Nope.

The almost-self-destruction that I mentioned was for a million different reasons that aren’t part of this post.  I just wanted to mention it because while I wish this was part of an original plan to give my husband tons of honor and show my ability to selflessly serve him on a consistent basis (like we should be doing), that’s NOT how this all got started.

But I propose to you, in hindsight, and taking no credit, that this idea is brilliant for many different reasons!

This Valentine idea to take this “chick holiday” and use it to serve our guys (instead of sitting around waiting for them to do what we do best!) got started by my daughter. When she was about 7 years old, she was really in to all of the Valentine’s Day stuff (like any little or big girl would be!).  She was just getting in to decorating and baking and whatnot.  So she asked if we could decorate for Valentine’s day.  One thing led to another and we came up with this idea to decorate FOR the guys and serve THEM on this Holiday!

That first year (and every year since), we asked the guys to go out for a little while so Haley and I could prepare the dinner and the decorations.  The first year it was a surprise but now they know the drill.  While the girls are preparing, Dad takes Steven out to bond with him over last-minute-holiday shopping for the girls so that he’s getting some good training in there too!

Here are some pictures from our first year:

Welcome home heart streamers

Welcome home heart streamers

The table

The table

And we made a big deal of decorating the table with all kinds of little details.

And we made a big deal of decorating the table with all kinds of little details.

The Peaceful Wife blogged about how Valentine’s Day puts a LOT of pressure on guys (see The Peaceful Wife’s post here about that).  This might be your husband’s love language (to shower you with homemade dinner, gifts and decorations) but I’m guessing it’s not!  If it is, please don’t even think about taking this pleasure away from him!  But if your husband is like most men, this idea of my daughter’s would take a TON of pressure off of him and also THRILL your sons or other children.  My son love, love, loves Valentine’s Day because of us!  He squealed the first year he came home to this as a 6-year-old!  His future girlfriends will probably hate us for it – I’m still trying to figure out how to deal with that one!

And guess what?  Serving takes your mind off of those pesky expectations you might have about what you’ll be RECEIVING.

Here are some more pictures from other annual dinners that we hosted for “our guys”:





This year we even made our own edible fruit bouquet!

This year we even made our own edible fruit bouquet!

In 2012 we got matching aprons!

In 2012 we got matching aprons!

We made our own gourmet strawberries!

We made our own gourmet strawberries

My husband provide the roses!

My husband provided the roses!  Each person gets a gift bag from the hosts (us girls).

Haley even decorated Steven last year!

Haley even decorated Steven last year!

So far, this year, we have purchased some heart-shaped cake pans and a LOVE cake pan from Target.  We are going shopping for groceries and decorations on Monday.

Your family make-up might be different.  You might have all boys or a mixture or just one child – or none!  But you can adapt this however you see fit.  The key is to get in to service mode and not be sitting around waiting for your husband to do it the way you’ve envisioned in your head.

A commenter on The Peaceful Wife blog said that “expectation is premeditated resentment”.

So stop thinking about what your husband is going to do for you and start thinking about what you can do for him!

7 thoughts on “What if we stopped making Valentine’s Day all about US?

  1. Kayla Gulick says:

    This is priceless. Thank you for sharing!!

  2. Kim dejulio says:

    Merry berth
    Great blog
    Good luck wit it
    Your always inspiring and a great writer !
    Happy valentines day
    Miss you and your family
    Vegas is great !

  3. Peg Fisher says:

    Love it

  4. Peg Fisher says:

    Wonderful thought

  5. Dede says:

    Amen sweet sister!! Have always loved Valentines as a FAMILY day and totally agree with your post. May God be glorified as we honor our amazing husbands.
    PS I think you rock!!!

  6. Lindsey says:

    I love hearing you at MOMS and I’m excited to see you start your blog :). This is a great reminder! One that I need to hear over and over again!

  7. 5happyhouse says:

    Hi Merrie Beth, I’ve nominated your blog for the Liebster Award. You can read more about it here:

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