• http://www.momsarefrommars.com Janene

    I used to hate St. Valentine’s Day until I viewed it less as a day to celebrate that one true romantic love and more about celebrating how much love I have in my life. I’ve got great parents, siblings, kids as well as a husband and it feels great dedicating a day to the happiness we bring each other.

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      I must say that many years ago I thought it was so pointless. Then, like you, I realized it was all of the commercial nonsense I didn’t care for. Now it’s just ONE MORE excuse for me to be all lovey dovey with the people I care about most.

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  • http://www.tiredofpreviews.com Katy Kern

    Jen -- you old softy. Love it and I love that you love this holiday. You know how much I care about you and think this is one of the sweetest things you have ever written. Well done, my dear! :-) Happy Valentine’s Day!!

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      You didn’t even know I had a soft side!! ;)

      I’m so glad you liked it. I am so thankful for all of the wonderful people in my life, and you are definitely one of them. Thanks for always being a source of light and love.

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  • http://www.garrycrystal.blogspot.com/ Garry Crystal

    Wow I am pretty much a cynic most of the time but this moved me. I cannot believe the guy in the Almost Lover said that to you, holy sheeeiit. Great article, got be one of your best pieces of writing yet.

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      Cynics unite!! One thing I’ve learned about my cynicism is that 25% of it is based on truth, and 75% of it is based on fear.

      Oh yeah, Almost Lover guy is an assclown. Oddly, he tried to friend me on Facebook several months back, and sent this message with the request: “Time has been kind to you. Let’s catch up!” I replied, “Hey! Good to hear from you. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to approve your request. You see, I typically associate myself with guys much hotter than you, and I don’t think you’d fit in with my other friends. We can message back and forth, but we’ll have to keep it a secret. Is that okay?” I haven’t heard back.

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      • http://www.garrycrystal.blogspot.com/ Garry Crystal

        Ultimate burnski…

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  • http://thetrumpetsummons.blogspot.com/ Larry Conley

    Jen,

    “Build that little bridge and get over yourself already.” Wiser and truer words have rarely been written!

    I too like Valentine’s Day. It is a pretext and a prompt to give that little emphasis to what we should do on a daily basis.

    If we could simply build more bridges and fewer barriers, our lives and the world would both be better for it.

    Great piece!

    Larry

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      I agree that it is a prompt to do what we should already be doing. Perhaps that’s why it isn’t so stressful for those who are already expressing it regularly. We’re doing it all the time, and this is merely an extension of that.

      Agreed on the more bridges and fewer barriers comment!

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  • Cher Duncombe

    Jen, I agree with Garry that this is one of your “best pieces of writing yet!” There is a romantic side, a gentle side to you that shines in this and shows vulnerability. I am with you on celebrating this day. What other day could I possibly eat chocolates without guilt? And if we were to celebrate all those we love every day, as you suggested, what a better world this would be. You are simply fabulous! :)

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      Thank you so much! It makes me so happy that you liked it :) A very wonderful (and wise) friend told me to let my vulnerable side out once in awhile. I’m glad I took that risk.

      Also, I absolutely agree with your sentiment about guilt-free candy consumption! I’m ALL for that!

      YOU are fabulous.

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      • Cher Duncombe

        That is our Jen, multifaceted and dynamic!

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  • http://tjlubrano.blogspot.com/ TJ Lubrano

    Aww goodness Jen :) It’s all about you how you view things huh? What I don’t like about V-day is how suddenly everyone starts throwing around with hearts. Suddenly you hear from people that you normally never hear a thing about. Everyone is waiting for this day to come and I get that it’s just a day where you sprinkle a bit of extra love, but you surround yourself with people you care about every single day, so I’d say surprise them with something whenever you want.

    I seriously want to kick that Almost Lover between the legs for saying that to you. I actually just want to kick everyone who hurt you like that.

    Just know that I adooooore you and I send big cupcake hugs to You <3

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      That is actually a great point. So many people come out of the abyss and suddenly want to be super involved. I just politely ignore them ;)

      Almost Lover got what was coming to him (read my response to Garry’s comment above.) From his Facebook profile I see that he’s divorced, has a beer gut, balding, and may be living with his parents again. Karma did a number on him.

      I adore you as well <3

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  • http://petearmetta.wordpress.com/ Pete Armetta

    I love the idea of Valentine’s Day, always have. Even though I don’t currently have a Valentine. I don’t complain about it at all. Anyone who’s in love and partnered certainly ought to celebrate. And hopefully celebrate EVERY DAY too. :)

    I totally relate to specific songs the way you describe here Jen, for certain periods in my life, certain people etc.

    I’m glad you still like Valentine’s Day!

    Pete

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      I like that you’re not coupled and still believe in Valentine’s Day. The power of love is amazing, and it really is everywhere. We SHOULD celebrate each and every single day.

      I’m sorry you can relate to these songs (heartbreak is a pain, no?) but I’m sure you’re a better man for it.

      Thanks so much for your comment!

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  • http://itsalwaysfriday.blogspot.com/ Bill Friday

    I can’t even begin to tell you how much LOVE SUCKS… when it’s done wrong. And how overwhelmingly joyous it is when it’s done right. To summarize, love GIVES, because it knows it never needs to TAKE… because some other love, somewhere, is giving to it in return. People (really stupid people) say that LOVE is a 50/50 proposition. That’s a lie. LOVE, real love, is a 100/100 proposition. Give less than 100 percent… get less than 100 percent. I have a feeling that the haters of Valentine’s Day are, on there best day, only 50/50.

    You, and this post, are a 100.

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    • http://www.pacificmelody.wordpress.com/ Melody J Haislip

      Bill, you’re absolutely Right!!!

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      You are absolutely correct. Real love is a 100/100 proposition, and if you’re not all in you better fold your hand and step away from the table.

      “…love GIVES, because it knows it never needs to TAKE…because some other love, somewhere, is giving to it in return.” I love this. It’s so true.

      YOU are a 100….and then some.

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  • Annesa

    Ahh… Jen :) Happy Valentines Day!

    After all these years, our paths crossed again because of this amazing power of love and friendship. Thank you for this soul-baring recount of your free-falling journey through the bottomless pits of crappy relationships. You taught us that with free- falling comes with the realization of self-love and self-worth. There will always be a light at the end of everything.

    I still listen to Ben Harper’s Walk Away every day. Eventually, it will be less frequent, until one day, it’ll catch me by surprise on the radio.

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      You know, when I originally started writing this post I thought, “What a downer I am!” Then I reminded myself that these are all stories with happy endings. Each person who comes into our lives (bad or good) are there to teach us something. Each of these people did, and I wouldn’t be the same person today without them. I was free-falling for what seemed like an eternity, but I landed on my feet. So will you.

      I am so happy we reconnected. Love and friendship are powerful on their own, but especially when I’m lucky enough to meet someone like you.

      And yes, one day the song will catch you by surprise. You will smile just like I did.

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  • http://www.pacificmelody.wordpress.com/ Melody J Haislip

    “Love will come to you, but it won’t do all the work.” Jen, so young to be so wise, and you’re right, of course. Instead of saying “bah, humbug”, I’ll think about how lucky I am to have so many people who love me, warts and all, and I’ll start by looking at the darling card I got from my great-niece, Harper Jane. Not only that, I had a terrific love-in with my cats first thing this morning and a hug from my son later. It’s a great day! Thanks, Jen, for the attitude adjustment!

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      Pets are the perfect example of the kind of love we should give and receive. It’s so simple and uncomplicated!

      You received a card in the mail from your niece? How lovely :) See? Love is everywhere!

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  • http://www.examiner.com/whale-wars-in-national/gillean-smith Gillean

    When I first peaked around the corner and listened to all of you gabbing at the water cooler about life, feelings, each other’s writing styles and so on, I kept hearing about Jen & Tonic. I heard that this writer was missed a lot. Where was this writer? Why wouldn’t this writer come back?

    Well, when you did come back, I snuck over after everyone cool had read your latest work to read your work for myself. And it happened. I realized stark reality in writing could make me laugh, make me ponder and just make me feel. You need to be bold, committed, and present in life to write like you do, Jen.

    Thanks for reminding me just how much I love the written word when strung together like fireflies in the moonlight and like that guy that I shared my first kiss with at age 13, only wearing a pair of yellow shorts. Today, this guy is a state trooper. Back then, I watched the clock in the kitchen to time our kiss. (giggle) 15 minutes.

    Jen, thanks for allowing me to consider Valentine’s Day in a much brighter light. It’s a great day to appreciate the extraordinary ability to experience emotional peaks and valleys. Here’s to many more peaks than valleys for us all! :) <3 <3

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      Thank you so much for your gracious comment! I took a break from writing because, at that point in my life, I couldn’t be bold, committed, and present in life. I’m back, and I’m ready to be more present than I’ve ever been.

      I find beauty in the highs AND lows in life. It’s only when we get really low that we can truly appreciate how amazing it is to be on top of the world. I’m at that point right now-- I’m on top looking down and thinking, “I MADE IT!!”

      Hope you had a wonderful Valentine’s Day!

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  • http://www.firkroy.blogspot.com/ Dan LaFollette

    Jen, the Bonnie Raitt “I Can’t Make You Love Me” brings back memories of an old wound, and makes me appreciate the love I share with my family today.
    An excellent article from the heart, for this Valentines day.

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    • http://sipsofjenandtonic.com Jen and Tonic

      I would say I’m sorry that you had someone trample on your heart, but it played a part in the great family you have now. I’m so happy you have that now, and appreciate the love you have with them.

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  • Anya Pham

    This was lovely. I support your position fully. And I find I trace a lot of relationship issues back to my parents, whom I nevertheless love dearly. And I agree, we should spend more time celebrating the beautiful and less time lamenting socially imposed failed expectations.

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