| By JeanAnn Taylor |
“Friendship is a wildly underrated medication.” ~ Anna Deavere Smith
The custom of sending homemade Valentine’s Day cards dates back to the 1400s. In the early 1800s, black and white cards were printed in factories and then hand-painted by workers. Later, embellishments such as ribbon and lace were added to the cards. During the mid 1900s, paper Valentine cards had cute illustrations with clever quotes such as a bumble bee saying, “Just Buzzing in to Say, Bee My Valentine,” and chubby-cheeked mermaids that said, “Nothing Fishy about It, You are My Valentine.” Today, cards are mass-produced and often promote super-heroes or cartoon characters. Check out Pinterest for ideas on how you can make personal Valentines with scraps of paper, fabric and stickers you already have on hand.
We are often so busy and preoccupied with the demands of our daily lives that we can easily let our most cherished relationships suffer. This month is a perfect time to rekindle a fading flame. To begin, take time to reflect on why you were attracted to your partner in the beginning of your relationship. Remember the way your eyes lit up when he or she walked into the room. Make a list of all the little things you appreciate about your partner. Does he wash your car on Saturday afternoon? Does she cook your favorite meal on your birthday? (Or Vice Versa!) Be grateful for the relationship and most importantly: love yourself. You simply must love yourself to truly love anyone else.
Beat the Winter Doldrums and Get Organized!
When you are looking for something to do on snowy afternoons or blustery days, consider making good use of your time by organizing a closet or bookshelf. If you are feeling exceptionally ambitious, first give your space a fresh coat of paint. To make a statement, choose a contrasting or bright color. This is the perfect time to edit out, so only put back what you love or use. When organizing your closet, hang like items and colors together. Books will look neater when placed so that the tallest are on the left and gradually get shorter going toward the right. Break up the line with a pretty vase or framed photo.
A Stitch in Time
Once upon a time, before leaving for war, a gallant knight gave a rose to the beautiful lady he loved. As the rose began to fade and the it’s petals began to fall, she carefully stitched them back onto the stem. Eventually, she had stitched all of the petals back onto the stem. When her rose finally dried and turned to powder, the lady was left with a piece of lace. So goes the romantic legend of how lace making began.
Easy Peasy Chocolate Treat
3 cups of dark chocolate chips
1 (14-oz) can of sweetened condensed milk
1 T. vanilla extract
Using a double boiler, melt the chocolate chips. Gradually stir in the sweetened condensed milk. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla. Remove the top boiler, cover and refrigerate until firm (approximately two hours). Form into little balls and then roll in powdered sugar. Press into center of ball with your thumb or spoon and place a pecan in indentation. For an intense chocolate experience, enjoy with these treats with a cup of hot chocolate! YUM!!
Thanks to JeanAnn Taylor for these informative and fun “Snippets” each month! She is a style expert, home organizer and Mary Kay Beauty Consultant. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.