Valentine’s Day is celebrated in many places throughout the world. A time for sharingyour love with others. According to Wikipedia Valentine’s Day “…was first associated with romantic love in the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished. In 18th-century England, it evolved into an occasion in which lovers expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards (known as “valentines“). In Europe, Saint Valentine’s Keys are given to lovers “as a romantic symbol and an invitation to unlock the giver’s heart”, as well as to children, in order to ward off epilepsy (called Saint Valentine’s Malady). Valentine’s Day symbols that are used today include the heart-shaped outline, doves, and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the 19th century, handwritten valentines have given way to mass-produced greeting cards.“
We thought to find out about the Sisters of Suspense…What was their memories of Valentine’s Day…Was it wine and roses? Or was it tears and frustration? What would make a memorable gift?
I’m going to make a confession. Valentine’s Day is probably one of my least favorite holidays. I know that’s a weird comment from someone who writes about romance, but I have a very good reason. Every boy I ever dated dumped me on Valentine’s Day. Seriously. It could give a girl a complex. I spent years watching other women get bouquets of roses until, one year, I started buying my own flowers. I was my own Valentine. Then I met my husband and, as our first V-Day together approached, I thought “Finally! Romance!” He got me a manicure kit. I cried. However, he followed up with flowers and he’s never missed a year since then – because he knows I love them. He still gets me the practical gifts, and does more than his share of the housework so I can write on the weekends, and keeps my e-reader stocked with gift cards. He also had my first book cover framed as a Christmas gift. Because for him, love is practical. And those things last far longer than flowers. (By the way: I still use the manicure kit.) From Mia Kay–Sister of Plot Twists
I can recall so many lovely Valentine’s Day meals. While memories of the entrées have faded, I can easily call to mind the many decadent desserts I have enjoyed over the years. My favorite – Tiramisù. For anyone who has never tasted this dessert, imagine the following… A light-mocha-flavored-whipped-cream concoction on lady finger pastry soaked in strong espresso with a tantalizing hint of amaretto liqueur. The perfect ending to a Valentine’s Day meal! From Joanne Guidoccio–Sister of Reinvention
As a single gal, I dated plenty. Some gave me flowers for no specific occasion except for the best one, they thought of me. So V-Day was a little unusual when I wasn’t with someone steady, but was okay with it because my dad still gave me a heart-shaped box of chocolates. One rainy V-Day, I came home from work and as I moved closer to my front door, I saw something white stuck in the jam. I tugged the paper out and opened it, scanning quickly and found a Dear John letter. I was like WHAT???!!! I reread the note, and all of the sudden, I was livid. I felt like a cartoon character with steam emanating from my ears, my face a purplish red. And why? Because if this chump would do it to me, he’d do it to other women, and on behalf of them, he would be getting a piece of my mind. I phoned and phoned. And phoned and phoned. He didn’t answer. All the while my ire increased. So a friend popped by just to chat, and I thrust the note in her hand. I explained what I felt and done. She burst out laughing and when sober, said, “I have an idea.” She stuck out her hand. “Give me a match.” I got it. And retrieved the match. She walked over to the fireplace, laid the note on the hearth, struck the match and lit one corner. Then she sang, “Feelings.” I –literally—shook with laughter. I couldn’t let her sing along. “Nothing more than…feelings.” And you may not believe this, but I wrote a story about the whole enchilada (names were changed. LOL) and it was published by the Trues. From Vicki Batman–Sister of Sassy Writing
We all have Valentine’s Day memories built up over the years. Today I’ll share my Valentine’s Day memory from my first year after my 20+ year marriage had ended. It might have been my choice but that’s beside the point. Valentine’s Day was like a huge open wound to me. Write HEAs? I think not. I picked that year to start my Death By Chocolate mystery series. And I spent Valentine’s Day choosing the perfect knife to kill someone and then writing the murder scene. Fortunately a girlfriend decided I needed a break and dragged me out to a Sushi bar. So we ate Sushi and drank – I can’t remember what. I seem to remember a discussion of Japanese Sushi knives but the memory is somewhat foggy. From Pat Amsden–Sister of Romance and Mystery
Memorable Valentine’s Day??? Not for me so much. My sweet husband sends flowers, which I really enjoy. But my emotions around this day are tainted by the many times I was the new kid in school before the days when teachers and principals insisted if you send cards, you must send one for everyone. Too many times my bag was empty or only held a couple of cards. If you don’t know someone as well as the ones you’d been in school with for several years, you’re just not as inclined to give a card. That small, lonely kid still hides inside. For the most part she only makes an appearance on this holiday. Sorry to be a Debbie Downer, not a role I usually play. From Marsha West–Sister of Second Chances
Valentine’s Day 1985. I was 8 months pregnant with our twins, and HUGE. My husband sent me a balloon that was a giant pair of red lips – at work. If you think I didn’t get ribbed a bit about that! From Claire Gem–Sister of New Gothic Romance
My favorite thing about Valentine’s Day is simply the card I receive from hubby. He treats me like a goddess every day, so I’ve been adamant that we celebrate this and our anniversary simply- dinner and a card. He’s one of those old-fashioned gentlemen, a man’s man, who isn’t great at expressing feelings or waxing poetically about his love for me. But boy, can he write about it! So on Valentine’s Day I’ll stumble across several cards in odd spots throughout the day (propped against the coffee pot, in the drawer where I keep my make up,) and the words of love and commitment he’s written inside bring tears to my eyes. Yeah-I’m the luckiest woman alive. From Sarah Andre–Sister of Riveting Suspense
Years ago my husband and I were invited to a holiday party at a friend’s house in another state. It was a winter party—a cross between Christmas, New Year’s, and Valentine’s day. It was a catered, semi-formal party in our friends’ new house in the country (re: gorgeous estate). After a five hour drive to the party, and settling into the guest room, I realized I’d forgotten my dress!!! I literally arrived in yoga pants and the only other thing I had to wear was a Rutgers sweatshirt and a pair of jeans for the drive home. Since it was snowing, our friends’ house (re: gorgeous estate) was in the middle of nowhere, and it was about an hour before the party started, I had to resign myself to wearing jeans and a sweatshirt. (and the hostess was a size 0. Yes, apparently, that is a size which means I couldn’t borrow anything) Even though I have pretty good self-esteem, we were seeing a lot of people at this party that we hadn’t seen since we’d left the state a few years earlier. So it’s fair to say I was very upset. So, while my husband was in the shower, I put on jeans and my sweatshirt and went downstairs to help greet the guests. A few minutes later, I looked up and saw my husband coming down the stairs—in jeans and an old olive green Army T-shirt. Although he’d been out of the army for a few years, he still wore the old cotton T-shirts when he worked around the house. So he came down the party as if he owned the house (re: gorgeous estate), got me a glass of champagne, and stood by my side. After I whispered Thank you, he whispered back, “Happy Valentine’s Day”. After almost 30 years of marriage, it’s still one of the best Valentine’s Day gifts he’s ever given me. And I’ve never forgotten it. From Sharon Wray–Sister of Military Romantic Suspense
My favorite Valentine’s Day memory is from college. My boyfriend (now husband) surprised me with a romantic dinner on the roof of my dorm. He even had a gas burner to heat dinner. It was so amazing to eat on a cold night under the stars with the coolest guy around! From Veronica Forand–Sister of Heart-Stopping Suspense
My funniest Valentines memory came when we were vacationing on the Oregon coast and completely forgot about the significance of the date. Valentines fell on a weekend that year, and we nearly had to spend the night in our car because all the hotels, motels, and B & B’s in Gold Beach were fully booked for the big event. It was a scramble, but we got a room on a cancellation, and in the end, even managed to get a dinner reservation! From Kathryn Jane–Sister of Psychological Suspense
Valentine’s Day is just another day around my house. We don’t do anything special because we strive to celebrate our love each day. But one year my husband had flowers sent to my work for me. I didn’t know that they were coming and I’m teaching when our secretary comes in with this huge bouquet of flowers. The children were all excited and in awe and I was in tears. From Melissa Keir–Sister of Small Town Suspense
It’s party time. The Sisters of Suspense are having a FB party with a grand prize of a hundred dollar gift certificate to a restaurant. Check it out here.