Valentine's Day rant

I'm kind of a Valentine's day crank, in that I think it's a complete Hallmark holiday, and doesn't have much emotional resonance for people unless it makes them feel bad because they're single. (Kind of like Mothers' Day, in that women who are mothers don't need one special day, and women who aren't mothers either don't care or are hurt by it.)

But I'm willing to do the whole kid valentine thing, and dutifully asked my older son if he wanted to make valentines for his classmates. No. Did he want me to buy valentines to give? No, he didn't want to give any. OK, I thought, and took him to school in the mandated red shirt-blue pants combo because we're team players, even if neither of us likes raisins or clowns.

Last night when I opened up his backpack, what seemed like dozens of valentines spilled out, most with candy attached.

I'm not super-excited about all that candy (the little one stole some of it, scarfed it down, and then had a super-colossal poop this morning) in general. But it's also the guilt factor. Am I The Bad Mom because I didn't force him to do this valentine thing? When did giving candy to every kid in your class become de rigeuer? Will he be shunned at the playground for being merely the recipient of cavities and not the giver of cavities? Isn't the freaking 100th day enough for one week?

Do you think this has anything to do with Martha Stewart, and this whole notion that we should be churning our own butter* and throwing the most fabulous parties all the time?

Gah. I just want to go home, watch my stories (DVR'd Lost and You Are What You Eat), eat some of his candy, and go to bed.

* Actually quite fun: One pint of whipping cream, a touch of salt, a big jar or tupperware with a tight seal. Pour cream in container, seal tightly, and shake until your arms fall off. You'll have lumps of butter and whey. Spread the butter on something yummy and eat. Drink or discard the whey.