English on the Internet - English Magazine


February 7, 2000

Valentine's Day is not a paid holiday in the US but it is considered a holiday for love. Stores are full of Valentine cards, candy, stuffed animals, even clothes with hearts and flowers. This is a time of the year when you send the person or persons you love a card or gift to let them know how much you care.

Large heart shaped cardboard boxes covered with satin, ribbons, and lace are filled with an assortment of candy. Large bouquets of roses and other flowers are sent to your sweetheart and wife. Stuffed animals are given to everyone no matter what their age. Cards are sold for everyone age and express every sentiment.

The school children (from ages 5-13) give small valentine cards to other class members. School Valentines are sold by the boxes some with a teacher's Valentine for the child to give to their favorite teacher.

The tradition started hundreds of years ago and at that time gifts were candy, hand embroidered handkerchiefs, or crocheted lace hearts. Later paper doilies were used to make heart cards and as the years progressed the gifts became more elaborate. Where once one rose was considered a great gift now a dozen roses is the usual gift. Once homemade candy was given in a small box, now there are large heart shaped boxes filled with bought candy. The embroidered handkerchief has been replaced by a stuffed animal usually with a heart attached to it. The homemade paper doily card has been replaced by mass produced Valentine cards or even electronic cards sent over the Internet.

The gifts have changed but the expression is still the same. No matter if the gift is expensive or handmade it is the love which it expresses that really means the most the person receiving the Valentine gift. What a wonderful holiday for everyone. A day when LOVE rules and other emotions are repressed. Maybe that is why everyone enjoys the holiday so much because it is a day of love in the USA.

I need information on whether or not I can send a young single mother in your country a baby bottle gift and money. I bought a small baby bottle and want to send her $10 in American cash but don't know if my sending her this gift and money will cause problems. Do you know what the rate of exchange is for American money is in your country? I want to send this young pen pal something for her baby which is due this month so if you can let me know if it would be okay or not I would appreciate it.

by Jane Custer - USA, has a BS in Communications and loves writing

© February 2000 English on the Internet www.aj.cz