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What 4-Year-Olds Think of Valentine’s Day

The other day over boiled crawfish (we felt daring), my colleagues and I discussed Valentine’s Day. Our new editorial assistant Emily is spending Valentine’s Day in a brand-new city after moving to Texas just a month ago. Our social media editor Jennifer is in that relationship sweet spot where she's been dating long enough to anticipate what Valentine’s Day will bring, yet the mystery still exists whether her gift may come in a small square jewelry box. The conversation turned to me, and I explained how Valentine’s Day for this married couple is very understated. Or barely stated. Yesterday I told my editor in chief Susan that I leaving the office early to visit my 4-year-old’s preschool for his Valentine’s Day performance and party. A few others in the room chimed in, “Enjoy it while you can. Soon they’ll be teenagers and slamming doors on you.” Later with that in mind, I sent an email to the team letting them know I’d be leaving at 3 p.m. and wrote: “Hi everyone, I’m leaving today at 3 p.m. for a Valentines’ thing at my son’s school. I know, another school event, right? Well I’m told before I know it, my little boy will not want me as his valentine. Surely, that’ll never happen to my angel but just in case, I will enjoy the squeaky voiced serenade while I can.”His serenade was squeaky and wonderful. His Valentine’s candy even better. Once my husband got home from work, we went to dinner at a local Mexican food restaurant. And by restaurant, I mean dive. And by dive, I mean it was named “Mexi-Go.” The centerpieces were red paper napkin wrapped candles. Clever, right? We usually never go out on Valentine’s night for dinner, but I couldn’t figure out what gourmet meal I could make with SpaghettiOs, frozen vegetables and a can of beans. I remembered our discussion from a few days ago about Valentine’s Day…. Man, those crawfish claws were funny…. “Understated,” I recall. Yeah, a nice quiet Valentine’s Day with the family. The next morning on the way to school, the squeaky one said, “Mama, remember last night when there was a stage and people were setting up to play music? And remember when that napkin got on fire on the table and the lady blew it out? And remember when they had red balloons?” “Yes, I remember sweetheart,” I told him. It was a magical Valentine’s night.

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