I was trying to think when this tradition started, and I couldn’t remember. Then I thought about the other traditions that my family shares, and I really can’t think of the exact origins of any of them. I guess that’s the great thing about traditions – they have just always been there.
This one usually takes place on the weekend before Valentine’s Day. Evan sequesters himself in the office for awhile, working on elaborate clues that leads the girls (myself included!) on a treasure hunt. They are all in plain white envelopes and each clue guides you to the next envelope which eventually leads you to the treasure.
After he types up the clues he slinks out the door to the store (usually Walgreens) to shop for goodies. Upon his return (walking in the door with an unusually distended belly and crinkling of plastic bags) he tells us to go to a room and stay there until he slips the first white envelope
under the door.
Solvay still gets the giggles – she is a big giggler when excited. We wait, glancing at the bottom of the door to see if it is time yet. Then it appears! We open the first envelope and follow the clue out to the aviary, where another envelope is poking from the bird wire. The next one leads us to the back of the boat, then
the barbeque grill, the inside of the car and my favorite one this year – taped with pink duct tape to the back of the sulcata tortoise, Sheldon (previously known as Shellenore – then we found out it was a boy).
The last clue led us all to our beds where our treasures were waiting. They are never extravagant, but always thoughtfully picked out. I remember when my own father would show up to my office with flowers and a heart-shaped box of chocolates when I didn’t have a boyfriend or husband to bestow gifts upon me. He would assure me that I would always have a Valentine no matter what, because I had him. I think my girls know that they will always have a Valentine too!