Tuesday, February 5, 2013


When I pulled out my Valentine card supply box from last year, I found a few stragglers we forgot to deliver. Checking the names on the left over cards did explain why some relationships were not as warm as I expected them to be this past year.

It was an omen.

I need to be better at reading signs. My older daughter is in Middle School and I could easily go this year without putting up up anything with a heart on it or noticing the seasonal decorations for February. Now my home is starting to show signs of a stationary store or a toddler classroom as I decorate to relieve the gray sky of winter out our windows.

My tradition of giving out little gifts and reminding people as often as possible how much I loved them began in my early teens with the death of a friend. When I learned suicide number rise at Valentines, I decided in my young mind that I could help the people I saw that day. So I carried a bag of candy. That was twenty years ago. Now I send some, and have a few choice clothing items to pull out. Mostly, I love chocolate and making people feel loved.

In my family 2012 was the year of new cousins so I set out to send everyone a Valentine. The new bad dog had other ideas. My oldest and I spent a productive weekend morning wrapping little gifts for her cousins and labeling bags to put into boxes ready for the mail. Our towers of addressed shipping boxes was impressive as we headed of to a party and waited for Monday.

He ate through the heavy packing material, a printed layer of valentine plastic, some tissue, and cardboard all to eat those silly conversation hearts. Our bad dog ate the Valentines. After my initial flurry of shopping, organizing, wrapping and packing I don't know if I have another round in me. Sadly, the kids I was sending gifts to are too little to use phones so I can't text or send an e-card.

When the baby knocks over her block tower, we build it again. In professional life I would try and problem solve around a puzzle until it was complete. In cold days of limited energy, my glitter and hearts have been defeated by a bad dog. This small defeat may be the difference between high functioning and not coping well with chronic pain. I'll leave a post script in the comments about the ultimate results.

On the dog behavior there is good new. We received a dog tax bill in the mail for a "Poppit" so we started calling our our new dog by his old name. We have been calling him half a dozen other things, my favorite being"Snarky" or Evil Eyes. Now he comes when you call. If you call an old dog by several new names he just gets confused and belligerent.

Still, he ate the Valentines.

Maybe next year.

I need more tea.

ALJ 💝❤🎁

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