A Valentine's Day Rehearsal to
Celebrate Your Loved Ones
by Sonja Meyer
Day is the one time of year when no one minds
if you get mushy and sentimental. Newlyweds
daydream about the perfect evening. Old-timers
try to think of something new to surprise their
lifelong partner. Children cut construction-paper
hearts. Everyone plans ways to show the special
person in their life just how much they care.
year, how about planning the event together?
Get your special someone, or the whole family,
together in one room and brainstorm ways you'd
like to celebrate your relationship.
take time away from your daily routine to reflect
on each other, on the roles you play in each
other's lives, and on the things you love most
about each other. Think of it as a Valentine's
Day dress rehearsal. Then, pass out some construction-paper
hearts and colorful pens. Have each person in
the room write down three things he or she appreciates
about the others. If there are only two of you,
this won't take long. If you are a large family,
the more the merrier. Take your time.
have each person pull up their chair to the
person they've written about and read it aloud.
Your messages can be serious or hilarious, but
they must be true and heartfelt. After everyone
has had a turn, you've established how special
your relationships are.
it's time to plan how you will celebrate them.
Again, pass out paper and pens and have each
person write one way they'd like to celebrate
Valentine's Day together. Your answers can be
anything, like "Cook a home-made meal together
and get out the fine china." "Dance
to our wedding song." Go together as a
family to a movie theater, instead of just popping
in a video at home." "Pull on some
warm clothes and head outside to take in the
night sky. See who can identify the most stars."
Or "Call Great-Grandma and talk about what
it was like when we were all little kids visiting
everyone to write what would make the day special
for them. Now, put all the ideas in a bag and
shake it up. Designate someone to reach in and
pull a Valentine's Day plan out. If there are
two of you, you might designate the person who
made the first invitation to meet. If you are
with your whole family, you might give the honors
to the youngest child. Then, read the Valentine's
Day plan that was picked. This is the one you
will follow. Put it up where everyone can read
it and brainstorm ways to follow the plan and
make it even better. While you're at it, read
the rest of the plans in the bag; see if you
can incorporate any of them as well.
you are done, enjoy some refreshments. You are
likely to feel a renewed appreciation for your
special relationship(s) and can look forward
to a wonderful Valentine's Day together.
Meyer, Manlius, N.Y., U.S.
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