Painted red hearts on white construction paper

Happy Valentine's Day, Delightfully Engaged! I hope each and every one of you has a day filled with love and happy thoughts and lots and lots of chocolate. Flowers are good too (just as the roses sitting on my dresser as an early Valentine's surprise)!

A few weeks ago I blogged about how excited I was getting about our very first Valentine's Day -  excitement that has not, by any means, lessened. I think we talked about what we wanted to do for Valentine's Day at least seven different times last week (which, admittedly, would be a little bit late for any truly elaborate plans) and we finally came up with something that sounded absolutely perfect in the midst of our currently very busy lives (I'm sure each of you, planning away at your weddings, can relate!).

This year we're having a homemade Valentine's Day. Homemade, simple-as-pie decorations from paper hearts and string. Homemade cards and gifts - as long as you don't count the gigantic Reese's candy heart I picked up at the store for Shayne, who likes a little peanut butter with his chocolate. A homemade dinner of some fancy steaks we decided to use to spoil ourselves.

And, to top it all off, a fire in our little wood-burning stove, maybe a couple of candles in the dozens of 2 oz. mason jars we have hanging around post-wedding, and maybe a movie. On days like these I tend to push for old, black and white love stories (Casablanca will forever have a special place in my heart, although The Philadelphia Story is steadily climbing the charts), but I could be persuaded to turn on something closer to Gladiator if Shayne would prefer. It is, after all, Valentine's Day!

We've discovered, in the past months of being married, that these stay-at-home dates are one of our favorite things to plan. The food, the "agenda," the getting to sit and relax and enjoy every moment with each other -talking, laughing, sipping our wine and simply being together.

However you choose to celebrate, we hope that your day is an opportunity to be with the ones you love – and that, at some point, chocolate is involved!