In just a few days, January 2016 will be a memory. We will breeze into February with optimism after experiencing winter's longest month and coming out the other side.
Where January, after the excitement of celebrating a new year, left us with nothing much to look forward to but awakening each morning to snow, February gives us a few reasons to have some fun.
First there's Groundhog Day, a bit of superstitious nonsense that feeds our need for spring. Later in the month most of us in Canada enjoy a long weekend designated specifically to be with those you love. Family Day gives us that opportunity in the middle of a long, cold winter, to take a break from routine and find warmth in our special connections.
Smack in the middle of these two days, however, is one that is also about loving relationships and, like the Feb. 2 holiday, is perhaps a bit of nonsense as well. Valentine's Day is the time to express our undying love, devotion and/or infatuation with another. On Feb. 14 we show we are under Cupid's spell, buying gifts for our sweeties, sending cards, planning special evenings together, all in the name of romance.
Realists argue that Valentine's Day is just a way for many businesses to make money. Certainly it's a boost in sales for card companies, florists and restaurants. But, it doesn't have to be. Romance can be as simple as a handmade card and washing the dishes. It can be a cheesy poem, a quiet dinner or a hot tub date.
Others will argue that romance is something that should be brought to our relationships regularly. I agree. But doesn't that mean that a date dedicated to the subject should be given even greater consideration. Relationships these days aren't easy. I see no reason not to do everything to ensure a partner knows he or she matters.
Over the course of the next couple of weeks I will be highlighting some Valentine images, perfect for personal or business projects. Today, let's celebrate husbands and wives, boyfriends and girlfriends, partners and couples with these collections: