Growing up, I never believed in Santa Clause or the Easter Bunny and was very skeptical of the Tooth Fairy. But you know what I did believe in? The Valentine Man. That’s right. The Valentine Man.
It wasn’t until a few years ago that I found out that not everyone got a visit from the Valentine Man. So I’ll explain.
On Valentine’s Day, sometime in the evening, the doorbell would ring and there would be goodies left on our doorstep for each kid with a note wishing us a happy love day. And it was signed, “The Valentine Man.” And as a kid, I was certain that all the goodies were really just for me and that I shouldn’t have to share with brothers.
A man flying with reindeer and a rabbit being smart enough to hide baskets was hard to believe. Too illogical and impractical. But a man who wanted to bring me a love note with chocolate? That I could buy into. Clearly, I was a bit of an egoist as a child.
I think the tradition originated with my grandfather (my mom’s father) since all my cousins and now their kids have the Valentine Man visit them. I only have one memory of my grandfather (he passed away when I was 4) but I love that this tradition to carries on his memory!
It also makes me so happy to hear from blog readers who have since implemented this tradition with their families after I first blogged about it in 2011!
Our Valentine Man Tradition
If you’ve read my blog for a while, you probably know how much I love Valentine’s Day – even in my single years. And it doesn’t hurt that some of my favorite memories with Tommy are also on Valentine’s Day. He accidentally told me he loved me on our first Valentine’s Day together…only 3 months into dating.
You can read the whole story here, but in short, we didn’t do anything fancy that day. No nice dinner reservation or nice gifts, but Tommy did what he thought’d I love: Thai takeout from Harris Teeter (the best in Winston Salem, BTW), a bottle of wine, and a card. He nailed it. As he was about to pick up dinner, he said “I’ll be right back, I love you!” so casually that I didn’t know what to say. So, I said, “Uh okay! See you soon!”.
Obviously, the rest is history. And it’s one of my favorite stories ever, on my favorite holiday!
Even now as an adult and even though I live across the country from my mom (I’m in North Carolina and she’s in Utah), she still sends me a Valentine’s Day package. I mean, somehow the Valentine Man still finds me every year… his handwriting just looks eerily similar to my mom’s. Now that I’m an adult, I get fancy chocolate (she’s a bit of a chocolate connoisseur), cute kitchen towels and last year she included some little toys for Thomas!
In 2017, she sent a My Little Pony that looked JUST like the one I loved as a little girl.
I also found this photo from 2010 (yes, REALLY!). Like I said, this tradition is long-standing.
Now that I’m a mom myself, I’m really excited to start the Valentine Man tradition in our house with Thomas. I hope he’ll grow to love it the same way I did as a kid. I’m working on making his Valentine’s Man basket right now, and I’m sharing some of my gift ideas for littles in this post.
If you have a similar tradition in your family, let me know in the comments!
Happy Valentine’s Day!
My Favorite V-Day Finds