I am convinced that there is nothing like spending Valentine’s Day in an elementary school, with all the valentine cards, candy, the homemade brownies, love-themed books read aloud and the creation of purple & pink construction heart projects. The very air is permeated with the sweet, sticky scent of sugar. Just stand in the middle of a kindergarten classroom when they’re opening all of their valentines and you’ll see what I mean.
Some kids brought valentine cards with suckers taped on them. Others brought m&m cookies in individual packages with handwritten names on them. Another, with an enterprising mom, had photo cards to hand out with a pre-printed note on the front that said, “I’m wild about you.” The sheer amount of the treats getting passed to every kid, teacher (and lucky visitor to the room) was mind boggling and somewhat reminiscent of Christmas, with the frantic unwrapping of envelopes and joyous, “Ooohhh, thank you so much!” Fruit roll-ups, cookies, freshly popped popcorn and candy heart suckers covered every surface. Then the kindergarteners created carrying containers (say that 5 times fast) out of empty milk jugs by cutting their tops off. The wide openings were perfect for stuffing in skittles and lollipops, and the handle ensured that no one would have trouble holding onto their treasure.
All day, I had to resist the urge to hideout in the kindergarten rooms while they watched a Charlie Brown Valentine movie and got high on sugar and sweet messages. But even while staying in the reading room, I had plenty of welcome visitors who came to deliver a special treat just for me. I can’t imagine that Valentine’s Day could be better celebrated anywhere else.