|Don't go breaking my heart|
Call me soppy but every year since my eldest was born I have given my boys Valentine's cards. I am not sure they will thank me for this maternal gesture when they hit their teens, but so far the still seem to appreciate their old mum's love tokens.
This year I had to think up something that a nine-year-old would think was cool so I decided to create my own cards for each son tailored to his own interests. The oldest got what he instantly christened the Cupig - an Angry Birds piggy complete with wings and a bow just like the mischievous god of love. It made him smile and anyone with a nine-year-old son exhibiting all the hormonal signs of the early onset of stroppy teenage knows just how hard that can be.
The seven-year-old got a Dr Who card featuring a most un-romantic looking alien known as an ood, which looks disturbingly as if it has been halted halfway through swallowing a particularly unappetising squid. The card declared that I love him oodles. This elicited a fit of giggles, despite the fact that he is laid up with a sore throat, so that was success number two.
The twins are easy so I simply appealed to their current obsessions - one got giraffes and the other polar bears. Things are so easy when you're four.
However, whether this gesture is terminally sad or really quite sweet the concept of Valentine's Day certainly lodged in their psyches.
Son number two had already made us a Valentine's card during his break time earlier in the week. It featured a really rather terrifying self portrait of him sporting enormous teeth and no hair. He had also fashioned a rose out of purple tissue paper which takes pride of place next to the bunch given to me by my old romantic of a husband.
But that wasn't the end of his romantic gestures. As he is off school with the aforementioned sore throat the moment I came home from dropping off his brothers he beetled off to his room to get busy with the Lego, fashioning a wonderful red heart from a intricate pattern of bricks. It's just a shame his little brother came home from nursery and immediately broke it.
That is not to say that the twins don't share their brother's romantic soul. Each came out of nursery clutching many scribbled upon and stuck together efforts. Both had created Valentine's cards for their big brothers, while they had also painted and stuck cards for their favourite toys. Aww sweet, unless you have to carry them, without breaking or dropping them, whilst also holding hands with two small boys and negotiating opening car doors. Ooops.
I will naturally be expecting a big thank you from any future daughters-in-law for making sure that the men I am breeding understand that even if Valentine's Day is a commercialised farce most women still won't say no to a rose or two and some posh chocs on February 14th.