V-day this year will be bittersweet. Bitter, because I will be leaving my valentine in less than 12 hours to fly home. Sweet because i haven't been home in over a year and will be continuing on to new zealand for a 10 day vacation!

oh well such an abitrary day anyway....what is the history of Valentine's day???
I know there's a Saint Valentine.....and um.....

According to History channel website:
"One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men — his crop of potential soldiers. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine's actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death."

"According to one legend, Valentine actually sent the first 'valentine
' greeting himself. While in prison, it is believed that Valentine fell in love with a young girl — who may have been his jailor's daughter — who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter, which he signed 'From your Valentine,' an expression that is still in use today. Although the truth behind the Valentine legends is murky, the stories certainly emphasize his appeal as a sympathetic, heroic, and, most importantly, romantic figure. It's no surprise that by the Middle Ages, Valentine was one of the most popular saints in England and France."

And why Feb.14? Though some believe the celebration is held in mid Feb to commemorate the anniversary of his death, others believe that the push came from the Christian church "in an effort to 'christianize' celebrations of the pagan Lupercalia (fertility) festival" which usually takes place at the beginning of spring or the ides of february.

Read more here, there's some good stuff about slicing up goat hide and dipping it in sacrificial blood, then slapping women and crops with it....

"Far from being fearful, Roman women welcomed being touched with the hides because it was believed the strips would make them more fertile in the coming year. Later in the day, according to legend, all the young women in the city would place their names in a big urn. The city's bachelors would then each choose a name out of the urn and become paired for the year with his chosen woman. These matches often ended in marriage."

yup, sounds pretty romantic to me.

If after reading all this you still feel inclined to send someone you love a valentine. A homemade one is preferable but if you're feeling lazy, the Kate Spade Be Mine web site has really cool e-cards made by cool people like joe and paige. Be sure to watch their stop motion love cake bit. Below are some of my favorites.

i'm going to finish packing, have dinner with my valentine and get on a plane in 11 hours.
hopefully it will feel like spring by the time i get back...
∆ my bloody valentine - sometimes

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