It’s a Valentine Blog Party!

Valentine's Day Blog Party

Can you feel the LOVE? Be my Valentine and come to my blog party. I hope you’ll dance along with my video too!

My husband, Danny, went heli-skiing this week, so I decided to host all of you while he’s away! I love bringing bloggers together to meet each other. I just need to clean up the mess before he comes back…

Drop ONE link to your blog in a comment. Two links will send you to spam prison. Tell us a little about what you write or share. The shorter, the better. Something that will hook readers into stopping by your blog.

Click on a few links and say, “Howdy do!” Tell them, “Susie sent me,” and they should click back to your place.

Subscribe to a few! Maybe some will subscribe to your blog. Mingle with the guests and don’t forget to dance!

Click here for my Dance Bomb video!

Don’t have a blog? No worries. Click on the links below for all kinds of fabulous stories. My followers are the BEST!

Spread the word. Tell your Facebook and Twitter friends or better yet, reblog it to your followers!

Follow me on Twitter, Instagram and my Facebook Page. It’s always a Wild Ride!

Want to see how it’s done? This blog party was a rager.

“Share the Love!” A New Idea for Valentine’s Day

Cupids and heart Valentine

February 14th is Valentine’s Day, the most divisive holiday of all. Some love it while others hate it. No news there.

But I had a thought.

What if we transform the couple’s celebration of exclusive, romantic love, to a day of inclusivity? Okay. I’m not talking about threesomes, but what if we twist the term, refocus the lens, and define it differently?

How?

We could celebrate a day of sharing the love by sending out positive vibes to everyone we meet. There are a bazillion ways we could do that.

  • Pay it forward. On Valentine’s Day, put yourself out there to help someone who’s struggling.
  • Pay it backward. Buy coffee for the person behind you in line.
  • Go out of your way to use manners. Hold the door. Offer your seat. Say “Please,” and “Thank you.”
  • Make a few sincere compliments and someone might feel good about themselves.
  • Smile. I promise it won’t kill you and you’ll be surprised at the reaction, no matter where you live.
  • When driving, slow down. Use your blinkers. Let others into your lane. Why not go all out and actually stop at a stop sign.
  • Share the love with friends and family. Think outside the box. Plan an activity or have a get-together.
  • Share the love with yourself. Indulge in a treat or take some personal time doing something you love. Something that says, “I am so good at what I do and I appreciate myself.”

Instead of the FOMO (fear of missing out), on Valentine’s Day, you will feel like you did your part to share the love. Maybe you’ll will even have a story to tell when everything goes back to normal on the 15th. Who knows?

If everyone would share the love on February 14th, Valentine’s Day could become the best holiday of all!

Do you have any other ideas for “Sharing the Love?”

Follow me on Twitter at @susielindau and share your ideas at #ShareTheLove.

Check out my new Wild Ride Facebook page. Don’t have a WordPress account? Follow me on Bloglovin’! 

Imprisoned, the First Valentine’s Day Card was Sent!

Those without a loved one to share Valentine’s Day have more in common with the tradition of sending cards than those with a significant other. Imprisoned and alone, a nobleman sent the first card.

victorian-valentine-cupid

I thought the Victorians began the tradition with their sentimental, flowery, lacy, and cupid adorned cards. I imagined a scene like this one:

The couple meets at a soiree where the fine lady’s heart beats like a caged canary. The gentleman wears gloves and even with them worries he’ll leave a thumbprint on the greeting card. He escorts her to a small chamber not far from the ballroom. Her cheeks flush with the touch of his warm hand on her back. It sends a thrill of which she is not accustomed. He pulls the declaration of love from his breast pocket and presents it with a bow. She smiles, rips it open and gasps when she sees two naked cupids complete with jiggly bits dancing in the sky. Underneath are the words “Be My Lover.” She drops the card and trounces from the room.

And that is when the gentleman became acquainted with the florist’s establishment around the corner which he frequented in years to come.

Cupids and heart Valentine

Sending cards began more than 400 years earlier with a French romantic poet, of course! It did not begin with the uptight Victorians, but the English had their part in history.

The French nobleman, Charles I de Valois, Duke of Orleans fought against the English and became trapped in his own armor. (How does that happen? “Help me! I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!) In 1415, he took up residence as a prisoner in the Tower of London.

The Tower of London

That is where he wrote the very first Valentine poem to his wife, Bonne of Berry, whom he missed dearly. They were married the year Charles was imprisoned when she was the ripe age of eleven.

Go Forth My Heart

Go forth, my hert, with my lady;
Loke that we spare no business
To serve her with such lowliness,
That ye get her grace and mercy.

Pray her of times prively
That she keep trewly her promise
Go forth &c.

I must as a hertless body
Abide alone in hevyness,
And ye shal do wel with your maistress
In plesans glad and mery.                    (pleasure)
Go forth &c.

© Charles I de Valois, Duke of Orleans. 

 

I’m not sure the Duchess had much time for pleasure or merriment since she died five years later at age sixteen. She left the Duke childless.

Oldest-Valentine

The first Valentine is included in this letter to the Duke’s wife in 1415. The over-adorned cards came later.  Photo credit BBC.

Not to be outdone by his romantic prisoner, King Henry V had a poet, John Lydgate, write a Valentine poem for his wife, Queen Catherine de Valois. Henry only lived a few more years and then Catherine married a Tudor. They kept poor Charles locked up. Such was life in the Middle Ages.

After twenty-five years as a prisoner of war, Charles was freed.

That same year, he married Maria of Cleves who was thirty-five years his junior.

Is this where the most overused verb in romance novels, “cleave” originated?

I can imagine there was a lot of cleaving going on in the Duke’s bedroom after being imprisoned for such a long time.

The freed Duke and fourteen-year-old Maria waited seventeen years to become proud parents. They had two daughters and their son became King Louis the XII of France. The Duke died in 1465 and Maria secretly married a much younger man fifteen years later. Good for her!

Here’s another fun fact: The Duke of Orleans’ mother was named Valentina and was also a poet.

Many claim, she died of a broken heart at age 40 after her husband was killed by a cousin. Her son was the first to send a Valentine card.

Was that ironic, poetic justice, or poetic irony?

I’m sure she had no idea her son would become such a trendsetter. According to History. com, around 150 million Valentine’s Day cards will be sent this year. That may have cheered her up.

220px-Fleury-François_Richard_-_Valentine_of_Milan_Mourning_her_Husband,_the_Duke_of_Orléans

Valentina mourning the death of her husband – By Francois Fleury Richard – Wikimedia

So if you are alone this Valentine’s day, buy yourself a box of chocolates and a romance novel. Every time you see the word “cleave” eat a delicious bon-bon and think about the man who sent the first Valentine card who was without a lover for 25 years! Maybe you should buy two boxes…

800px-Aladdin_chokladask_pralinerPhoto credit – Wikimedia

Happy Valentine’s Day!

How will you celebrate the day?

Click for more adventure on the Wild Ride! 

Related articles:

Leaping for Love, Lust and Lulu on Valentine’s Day

History.com – Valentine’s Day

The Daily Post

Use Me and Abuse Me Day – Meteor/Asteriod Crashing Valentine’s Day Edition

meteor 4

Happy Valentine’s Day! The party is in the house. The tunes are cranked and the doorbell is ringing. It’s time for another Use Me and Abuse Me Day! 

It is time to spread the LOVE! Who knows what tomorrow will bring with super winter storms and asteroid/meteors raining down from the sky. Here’s your chance to mingle and make some new friends! Continue reading

Leaping for Love, Lust and Lulu on Valentine’s Day

Along with bushy eyebrows, Lulu had been burdened with helicopter parents. She never had a moment alone with little Harold. They had dated for two years without a single kiss.

Towering over him had been a turnoff. Sitting down put him at ease.

Harold came a-calling on Valentine’s Day. Electricity shot between them the moment he entered the room. She had to have him.

the date 1 Continue reading

The Stormy Recess of Broken Hearts

I remember my worst Valentine’s Day ever in Madison, Wisconsin as cold, damp and wintery. The night before, I decorated my shoe box with construction paper hearts, rick rack, and sequins much like the other girls in my 5th grade class. My mother had bought paper valentines which I signed, picking the best ones for my closest friends and a boy that I liked.

Earlier that year, a few of us had been switched from one classroom to another. After taking my seat, I noticed a dreamy-eyed, brown haired boy named Bob sitting at the desk in front of me. He must have noticed me too because later in the week, he turned around and asked, “Hey. Do you want this?” He referred to a new invention at the time, the mechanical pencil. Continue reading