Saturday, February 10, 2007

Valentines From the Heart ....Great Memories

We don't really celebrate Valentine's Day around here. My truly Darling Husband has, since DD1 and DD2 became adults, decided he did not care to have flower, candy, and greeting card idustrial complexes, decide when to tell him how to say, I Love You. He does however, surprise and delight at other times of the year or even just for no reason at all. He is the romantic of the family. We quit giving to the girls when we realized that it could be construed as a pity valentine or if they had someone else to be their valentine.

However, when I was a child Valentine's Day was always fun. We brought our boxes to school and decorated them with paper doilies, red paper hearts and glitter and lots of Library paste that tasted sort of good. This was in the lower grades when everyone had to give a card to everyone in the class. Even back in the nostalgic 50's, it stopped at the pre- junior high grades when kids could start being very cruel. (Then see what a downer that day can bring)

Anyway..... My lasting memories of Valentine's day come during those pre-junior high days in the 1950's. When my cousin's grandfather came to live with her, he was not my actual grandad, but he was My Grandpa Stoner to me too. He was very old, born in the 1880's or 90's and had or did suffer from tuberculosis. Though I didn't know much about the disease then, he had a hunch and had been a tall man, at least 6 feet and he had snow white hair. He seemed to me the kindest man in the world and since he was bent over, to my child's eye he seemed to be talking or listening just to me. Once a year, he took us to downtown Los Angeles, on the bus, to the most beautiful theaters to see, usually a Disney film, and eat lunch at the fantastic, to us, Clifton's Cafeteria. What a great adventure!

On Valentine's Day, he always gave us the most beautiful boxed Valentine our child's eyes had ever seen. They were big like a book and had beautiful lace and sparkles and a satin sachet heart on the front that said To My Valentine, in glitter. Inside was the appropriate verse just to me, and the most beautiful signature I had ever seen, graceful and large, Love, Grandfather Stoner. I still have one packed away, all yellowed and the scent long gone, however everytime I run across it I remember that long ago time and the sweet man who was...My Grandpa too.


  1. In reading your words it seems that i may not be the only old softie left, there may be one at your house. Thanks for stopping by my place.

    Miss Bee said to heck with it and retired even though she was young. You know about us southern men, we like our child brides.

    Stop and smell the roses, stop being envious of his retirement. Retirement is fun.

  2. Hi there Bankerchick!
    I'm a new visitor to your blog, finding my way over here from the Valentine carnival. What a great post about Grandpa Stoner! Sweet memories...

    Tammie Jean

  3. what a beautiful and sweet remembrance of your "grandfather"!