a peek inside the fishbowl

12 Feb, 2009

Getting ready for Valentine’s Day

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Misc. life

Bowl o' pops

I helped Emma assemble her 30 Valentines last night. She brought them to school this morning. Sarah’s class is is exchanging theirs on Tuesday.

I’m giving blood tonight (you can too!) which I have decided is my new Valentine’s day tradition. I am a little nervous about this whole blood thing. It’s been a long time since I’ve given blood and I don’t really like needles. (Ha. Does anyone?) My mother LOVES to tell the story about how when I was a kid I had to have some blood taken. She told me that each little vial of blood of mine was going to feed a baby vampire. And I believed her. Thanks mom!

valentines 09

Valentine’s dinner is all planned out too. Mark and I have long eschewed dining out on Valentine’s so we’re dining in. There are a few places around Ottawa which offer catered dinners for two. We picked Thyme & Again simply because we know them best and have had some great food for Valentine’s in the past. We started ordering dinner from Thyme because of babysitter issues. (It’s too late to order, but check out their Valentine’s menu while it’s up.)

Doing special dinners this way is much cheaper than to night out on the town … especially after you factor in a bottle of wine, parking, and of course, the sitter.

This year, partly because of the shopping embargo, we’re not giving each other store-bought Valentine’s cards. In fact, we’re just going to exchange notes … no fancy card stock involved. I think I’m going to like this tradition more than the old one.

What about you? What’s Valentine’s Day like where you are?

12 Responses to "Getting ready for Valentine’s Day"

1 | Lynn

February 12th, 2009 at 1:59 pm


We’re not big Valentine’s Day celebrators, but we do do the dinner-in thing on special occasions. I think it’s nice and romantic and saves the cost of a sitter…and as you say, you can get some great food. I love Thyme and Again…a lot of your favourite restaurants will also make up a take-out package for you.

Have a great Valentine’s day!

2 | Redheadedmama

February 12th, 2009 at 2:18 pm


We are being fancy this year and going to the Urban Element with a bunch of friends – it is a neat professional chef-guided evening where you participate in the meal-preparation but can’t screw it up :) The best part was that I didn’t have to organize it – my husband actually did all of the coordinating. It would have been a surprise, except that I saw it charged on the credit card bill. Ooops. I’m very excited as I’ve been wanting to go for awhile. Valentine’s Day proper will be spent doing fun things with our daughter (plan was for Winterlude, but now with the weather I’m not sure . .. . ).

3 | Redheadedmama

February 12th, 2009 at 2:20 pm


p.s. My shopping embargo is going really well! The whole reason I looked at the credit card bill was to examine our spending. Our most recent bill was 1/3 of our bill in December. Yay!

4 | Loukia

February 12th, 2009 at 3:25 pm


I had the kids make homemade V-Day cards for hubby/their daddy! It was fun and cute. Other then that, we are invited to a friend’s house for a nice V-Day dinner with a few other couples. Contemplating bringing the kids, as they were invited, but no other kids are going… so I think they’d be bored, and we’d have to leave early! I can’t wait until the kids start school (next year for my 3 year old) so he can make little Valentine’s for all his classmates.
Good for you for giving blood!

5 | Cath

February 12th, 2009 at 3:27 pm


We’ve ordered in as well – from the Red Apron. Several people gave us their weekly delivery service (which involves dinner delivered to your door on Tues, Wed and Thurs) when J was born prematurely in October. They’ve been totally awesome – delicious and great politics at the same time (organic, local, etc). We’re looking forward to dinner!

6 | EmmyB

February 12th, 2009 at 5:07 pm


We’ll just be exchanging cards as usual, nothing more that I’m aware of, and I did homemade cards for all the daycare kids. I wish I’d been organized enough to order in from the Red Apron – their Valentine’s menu looks fantastic. We got their dinner delivery service after I went back to work a few weeks ago, and I can’t say enough good things about the food. It’s well worth the money for my sanity – and knowing that dinner would be delivered today, complete with chocolate brownies, is the only thing that got me through a day with a constantly-vomiting baby and a stir-crazy 3 year old!

7 | twinmomplusone

February 12th, 2009 at 5:16 pm


We always have had chocolate fondue. that way we all eat lots of fruit;) And this year, we decided to do it for breakfast :) We don’t exchange cards either amongst ourselves, the kids did some homemade ones for tehir classmates (simple paper doilies with heart stickers)

8 | Cath

February 13th, 2009 at 11:04 am


Amen on the chocolate brownies from Red Apron – to die for!

9 | vanessa

February 13th, 2009 at 11:55 am


i’ll remember thyme & again if i happen to be in ottawa i’ll give it a try .
have a nice valentines day ,
i made valentine heart shaped cookies for my film course last year with red icing , this year i’ve sent loads of cards & i’ll be visiting a Baselitz exhibition and drinking lots of wine .


10 | Mom On The Go

February 13th, 2009 at 12:34 pm


I helped Reid make Valentines using paper doilies, heart-shaped notebooks from a dollar store and stickers. Ken and I exchange cards, mine will be homemade this year since I’m still working on the no spending challenge. I like the fondue idea, maybe with a fruit dip option. Hmmm. Thanks for starting this discussion.

11 | Scatteredmom

February 14th, 2009 at 1:08 pm


Hub’s birthday is on the 12th, so we did a nice dinner and some yummy cake for that.

For Valentine’s day we have our usual quiet Saturday at home with coffee and jammies until late morning, run some errands, and then tonight have some fun.

It will probably involve left over chocolate birthday cake, a good movie, and just hanging out together. :)

12 | Kim

February 14th, 2009 at 8:24 pm


Well, I put together the valentine’s for my son’s school from the template you made. He addressed and signed all sixteen of them and when I stuck the lollipop in, he saw the pile and said, “oh they are so beautiful!” They were a big hit at school too. I like the idea of a tradition of giving blood. I’ll have to plan that for next year. I’ll be all the people waiting to give blood thought you had some kinky little habit that prevented the Red Cross from accepting yours! ha!

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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