Happy Valentine's Day to all!
This is not my favorite holiday (that would be Thanksgiving) because it always seem a little muddled...the actual history of St. Valentine mixed with red heart boxes of chocolates, frantic floral orders and, increasingly it seems, rather offensive commercials meant to guilt men into spending money on women out of ignoble motives...
Tonight I received some special 'valentines.' First, we went out for dinner with some dear friends to a 'fancy' restaurant at which all the women guests were given a single long-stemmed red rose. That was nice. No cooking, no dishes, no cajoling smaller people to finish everything on their plates.
Then, a loquacious little sprite clad in pink flannel pajamas danced over to me here at the computer, saying "Good night, Mommy, but now I need a REAL kiss!"
And finally, I was privileged to get a brief report from my older daughter on her weekend thus far. She and two of her best friends returned this afternoon from an overnight purity retreat held at church. Apparently 70 to 80 girls were in attendance, and it sounds like the event was well done.
"Well, there were some girls who shared their stories, and some of them were good and some were sad, but really they were all good in the end. The first one talked to us about guarding our purity"...what that means, how to do so, why it's important, and potential consequences...
Another couple of girls shared their own stories of rejection, looking for love and acceptance, learning hard lessons, 'secondary virginity,' and experiencing the love and forgiveness of Christ.
Later, a man came to share a male perspective on the effect of girls' dress ...modesty vs. immodesty, etc.
"A lot of that stuff I already knew from you, Mom,...which...thanks for telling me that stuff, by the way...but they were good reminders. And then this morning was more my favorite part, because they talked about the meaning and symbolism of stuff...like wearing a white gown, throwing rice, something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue...sixpence in your shoe...well, I'm still not sure about that part."
Then, she reported, a couple of English ladies came and served them "real English tea in pretty teacups, and with little cakes and finger sandwiches...which I couldn't eat most of them [Alina has celiac disease] but that was OK, and they had these cool veddy British accents."
All this for $25.00! What a great investment in heart training.
"Oh, and Mom..."
"I just wanted to tell you, thank you for marrying Dad. I like him!"
Blessing upon blessing.