Life · Surprises

Valentines Day: Love, Surprises, and Gossip Girl

I absolutely LOVE valentines day, and I was raised to love it.

I was taught by this special lady (My grandmother, aka: Momo) why February 14th is not a day to throw a pity party, but to celebrate all the different types of Love. In fact, one of my favorite gifts ever was from her.

My wonderful Momo who loved Valentines Day!
My wonderful Momo who loved Valentines Day!

She lived thousands of miles away from me at one point in time, and she sent me a special Valentines Day card. When I opened the card (which was already super special since it was like getting my own mail at 7 years old), there was tons and tons of gold and pink glitter in it that cascaded out onto the pristine white carpet in my parents’ bedroom. Little sparkly hearts were everywhere and my poor mother spent probably a good 3 months trying to vacuum up the glitzy aftermath. But I was absolutely thrilled with the perfect shimmery mess (especially since my first grade crush had not given me a lick of attention on that celebrated day of love).This card was wonderfully unexpected and everything I loved in life: sparkles and surprises.

So yes, I am saying that my first real Valentine was my grandmother. She celebrated loving me, and I was so very thankful for it. Valentines Day can be as simple as this: being thankful for the loved ones in your life. Once she came to live with us, she always celebrated my sister and I on Valentines Day. She always reminded us on how much love we had in our lives without “special friends” (which is the title she even gave to my current husband until we got married.. )

Recently, my Momo passed away. I have been so upset about the approaching Valentine’s Day because I miss her and it makes me sad that she is not here to celebrate. But my husband and I have been reminiscing on the happy memories we have with our grandmothers to put a positive spin on things. So I wanted to write my Valentine’s Day activities that I am SO excited about and share the simple wisdom of celebrating Valentine’s day that Momo passed on to me. I really am so happy to share this outlook with people, and please, do not discredit what I say because I am married. I have definitely found the love of my life, but I have so much more love in my life given to me by family and friends and so much love to share! Here are some ways that I am celebrating ALL the love in my life and I hope it helps you to celebrate too.

One thing that I have latched onto when concerning Valentine’s Day is  the wonderful celebration developed by the one and only Leslie Knope. For all you Parks and Recreation fans, you already know where I am going with this: Galentines Day.

I mean, how genius is this! Celebrating the girls in your life that you care about. I love this because it focuses on the love found in friendship. It is a love that SHOULD be celebrated often, and especially on Valentines Day!

Below is my Galentine’s Day gift for my friends!It’s currently a blizzard in the valley, so I made a simple dessert (Rice Krispy Treats!) this year and I love the color! I have such a gimpy camera though. So imagine they look 12 times more awesome and delectable.

Photo on 2014-02-12 at 19.56 #2(I licked the spatula, and know for a fact that this picture does not give justice to the pink sugary goodness that is awaiting my best girl friends!)

Secondly, I love my family. For my new family (the in-laws), Jared and I are sending a surprise care package!

Photo on 2014-02-12 at 19.56

It has been so cold here and snowing  like crazy, so we bought a few warm items for our niece and nephew and hot chocolate for his sister and brother in law. How cute are those Hello Kitty slippers!

We just want to spread the love (and the warmth) and let them know that we are thinking about them! I love surprises, so this care package is super fun for me! In addition to that, my family is going out of town for Valentines Day (my mom and dad) and for them I am going to watch their house and leave a few goodies for them too!


My dog is also there, and he is going to get a Valentines Day bath and be rewarded with his favorite food: cheese. I seriously can’t wait.

And of course, I mustn’t forget my husband (but seriously, how could I forget!). He is working ALL weekend and it is SUPER gross outside.  Therefore, I am going to make some great grub, give some great massages, and be the best wife I can be. We have plans to go out and see the Lego movie too, even if we have to wait til he is off from work. We have been looking forward to it, and don’t mind that it is not the way that couple’s usually picture their first Valentine’s Day together. We celebrate love everyday because love is special, and if we cannot fit in a fancy dinner and afford schmancy gifts for one another on Valentine’s day, there will be no harm done to our love. Okay, I will clean up the sap now, just kidding I LOVE HIM SO MUCH!

Anyway, I absolutely love celebrating love. It brings me JOY. It is a beautiful thing, and is more than a day for roses and chocolates. It is a day for friends and family and even pets. I wish everyone a happy day full of love and surprises!

XOXO, Mrs. Silver Linings (<—- this was gossip girl moment is perfect for this post, and I could not pass up the chance to do it at least once.)

P.S. Blair’s and Chuck’s wedding is a great Valentine’s Day episode to watch with your girl-friends. What a moment.


Pixie Dust

Let me begin with this: Reading is Magical.

Lately I have been closed off from books that have not been assigned to me in class. As a near graduate, I have read so many scholarly books and articles in the past six months that I not only feel smart… I can brag about how smart I am. Just kidding. While these are exciting and usually interesting things to read (because I am a huge nerd who loves school and her major), it is a different type of reading.

I decided post-wedding that I wanted to take up reading for fun… again. It had been far too long since I curled up with a book, a cup of tea, and a soft blanket. I wanted to choose a book that would be more than good for this experience. I wanted to choose something that I had been wanting to read and something that had been recommended to me.(Side note: I LOVE when I can discuss books with friends!). I ended up choosing The Book Thief by Markus Zusak because I have always loved learning and reading about the Holocaust (who can forget Number the Stars or Night), and a good friend had recommended it to me and assured me that I would not be disappointed. She also told me it was going to be a movie, which I don’t care about (and will probably never see because there is no way it can be as good as this book). (Second Note: There will be no spoilers about the Book from this point forward… for those of you who were worried that I was a book ruiner).

THIS WAS THE BEST CHOICE OF BOOK EVER.I fell in love with every detail. It struck every heart string and pulled every emotional tear from my rather large tear ducts. The book is narrated by Death (an absolutely BRILLIANT move by the author, who pulls the voice of Death in a direction that is wonderfully dreary). I was encompassed by the walls of words that made me feel so connected and involved in the story. It is a story that I would recommend to anyone.

“But wait,” you say, “Why did you love it so much if you are trying to be joyful and positive?” Good question. Here is my answer: This book was a GOOD book. It is literature and it is art. It is life. This book, and several more, are what make reading so enjoyable, even if it is about one of the most depressing events to ever happen in human history.

Reading it was magical. And I can’t want to continue this hobby.



How to be Adorably Awkward: the social recovery

Lately I have noticed that interaction with people IN PERSON is actually necessary. I know, this is not much of a discovery to some, possibly most, people. But over the past year, I have been minimizing the “real” time that I spend interacting with people. My mind has been constantly thinking of the next activity on my to… Continue reading How to be Adorably Awkward: the social recovery