My theories on receiving:
I am a wife and Mom so historically, Valentines day has gotten mixed between the two which is fine. I used to get flowers and candy which was great because I enjoyed them and then they went away (no clutter). Now, I can not have the candy because I am much older and my body processes sugar differently…straight to fat, ugh. Flowers are still okay but I think I would rather spend the money on something else.
When the kids were little, I attended their classroom Valentine’s party. No calories, yeah! The decorations and games were fun and I loved hanging out with all the kids. Best of all, I helped cleanup and was done (again, no clutter).
Now what, I have been married for over 20 years, what else do I really want? Services!! No clutter, please no clutter!! A massage is fine. A gift certificate to have my car detailed (cleaned). My nails done. Yes, I am an organizer but I would be glad for someone to do a couple projects in my home. Do all our laundry for a week. Drive swim carpool for a week…and no complaining, not one word! Get the battery replaced in my watch. …..See not all of this is expensive stuff but you have to pay attention 🙂
I used to feel obligated to give my kids something just because it was a holiday and I am their Mom. I used to go to the store to buy stuff then, one day, I realized, Valentine’s Day is not about stuff and most holidays aren’t. I know the stuff is appealing: heart shaped bowls, pictures, little boxes and all the things that look pretty on Pinterest and in the magazines at the grocery line. Yes, they are cute and I wish I could have them but it causes a lot of clutter. My desire to spend my time the way I want to is stronger than my desire to deal with stuff.
You probably know how the cycle works…I give the holiday mementos to the kids. They dump it in their rooms. In time, it all builds up. Then summer comes and I have to go through their rooms, with them, to get rid of the clutter. A bunch of the stuff goes into memory boxes. The memory boxes fill up so they have to move them to the basement. a new box is started. Years later (my daughter is now 15 and son 12), they look in their old memory boxes and realize they don’t want that stuff anymore. So, a long time ago, I stopped the cycle. I STOPPED GIVING CLUTTER. Can you believe it? And, I still love my kids and they love me.
I realized what a waste of time, effort and money it all was. So, instead we have family outings and dinner. Even now, the kids get to decide the agenda…sort of. It isn’t fancy and usually involves macaroni and cheese and everyone is happy, especially me. This year, there will be a lot of girls high school basketball which is great fun (my daughter plays in 6 games over the Valentines weekend). I plan on making it through the weekend without buying any clutter. There might be a little gift involved such as cash or an iTunes card but no clutter! You can do it too. Change your habits, stop giving clutter.