valentine's day in the u.s.a.

i love valentine's day because i love love.

it is true what edmund says in the most recent film rendition of jane austen's "mansfield park": "there are as many forms of love as there are moments in time." i love each person that i love with a unique love, and i so love every one of those brands of love! i love celebrating all that love on valentine's day.

i realized this february the 14th that this was my first v-day spent in america in 5 years!

valentine's day 2007: jerusalem, israel
putting on quite a celebration with the in-center activities committee - finding valentines on our doorsteps in the morning - surprising the boys and singing a special rendition of the mango song to them during class - an epic dance party with friends that had become like a family - one of the top 5 sunsets of my life from the jerusalem center balcony

valentine's day 2008: basingstoke, england
heart-shaped pancakes for breakfast with my trainer (my first week in the mission field) - discovering the "pride and prejudice" themed street names in basingstoke - handing out pez from a valentine's pez dispenser to people we stopped on the street - feeling the love of the gospel, and seeing a few miracles along the way - a "late night" candlelit party with treats and schloer

valentine's day 2009: reading, england
decorating around my companion's bed so she would wake up to a "heart attack" (it was also her birthday!) - wearing all pink and red and enjoying a sunny day being missionaries in reading - knocking on doors and telling people god loves them - grabbing a shake during lunch - round 2 of breaking out the candles/treats/shloer after planning

valentine's day 2010: thottanaval , india
getting wrapped in saris and enduring the extremely bumpy 2-hour bus ride to church in chennai - singing love songs to the kids with the uke - putting hearts up on the walls in the children's hostel - eating dinner on the roof at sunset - falling even more in love with the kids at rising star

valentine's day 2011: san francisco, california, u.s.a.
calling and texting loved ones - attending the annual san francisco city-wide pillow fight (yes! hundreds of people, flying feathers, whacks to the head from strangers ... it was so exhilarating!! and a great way to release some angst about being single!) - dinner with josephine - meeting up with ellen and swaying to folksy music at a red, cozy venue in the castro - loving san fran

“whenever i get gloomy with the state of the world, i think about the arrivals gate at the airport. general opinion's starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but i don't see that. it seems to me that love is everywhere. often it's not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it's always there - fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends. if you look for it, i've got a sneaky feeling you'll find that love actually is all around.”


  1. Happy Valentines Day!

    I love the movie Mansfield Park ... the first time I watched it was in Holly & Saydie's apartment at Columbia in NYC :)

  2. Wow a city wide pillow fight! that sounds like so much fun! your v-day in Reading looked awesome...I miss Shakeaway's so bad! x

  3. Wow! This is amazing! I hadn't realized that you haven't been around for Valentine's Day for a very long time. How fun to see these pictures...and the fathers.

    Love you forever!

  4. Charity, I think you have the most exciting life of anyone I know! It was fun to see the pics of all of us in Jerush! Love ya!!!

  5. ah that makes me miss the JC and you pretty lady all the more! love love! love you!

  6. chare! i'm so glad you got to experience THE pillow fight! did you know that we tried to go to it like 2 years ago? but then it snowed and we were afraid we'd die on donner's no pillow fight.
    also, love 'love actually.'
    i love sneaky feeling

  7. you are a world traveler, girl!! Way to go. Love ya. happy day of love :)

  8. This year I was thinking about Valentine's Day at the JC and how much fun we had planning it. Sure miss Jerusalem!

  9. where was my valentines text? And I love that you got to be in different countries the last valentines years. And you need to call me!!


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