Happy Valentine’s Day – instead of exchanging tree pulp try planting a tree!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Nothing says “I love you” like a tree. For years now we’ve ground our trees into pulp and pressed them into paper for greeting cards.

Here's one from, I'd guess, the 1940's or 50's.

Here’s one from, I’d guess, the 1940’s or 50’s.

I don't know how this one would sell today.

I don’t know how this one would sell today.

Here's one left over from a box I bought as a child to exchange in the classroom.

Here’s one left over from a box I bought as a child to exchange in the classroom.

I don’t know what kids do for Valentine’s Day today, but I see the huge displays in the grocery store – literally, candy mountains – beginning by mid-January. Having tried to eat out at a restaurant on Valentine’s Day, I know it is still hugely celebrated, in a variety of ways.   

I sent my college kid candy from Shubert’s, because I want him to remember the way home. It is fun to get a package. The older kids got a gift certificate from Bacio catering – Bacio has a very nice storefront over on Park Ave. They are among a handful of businesses who’ve circled their wagons to hold  that end of town up economically, and they just happen to have really good food.

My husband and  I went Dutch on a gift for ourselves of a prepared dinner for two from Bacio. You choose from a menu and they have it packaged and waiting for you to pick it up during the afternoon. It included a nice appetizer of locally made cheese, pesto and dried tomato, with a little parcel of artisan crackers. For his entree, my husband had a steak. I chose a chicken breast. Both came with mashed potatoes, a very nice green salad, and a loaf of good bread.  Mim’s (SHREIK!) provided dessert – a chocolate-brownie-truffle  cake delight with a tiny strawberry truffle garnish.

Packaged very conveniently in sturdy plastic containers, the entrees were laid on paper so you could transfer them to baking dish for warm up. The salad was in a recyclable plastic container with a nice lid, very fresh greens, with candied beets, carmelized almonds and tiny bits of cheese sprinkled through. There were condiments – a good oil and fruit salad dressing and marinades for both entrees. The dessert was such a nice portion that we cut split half of it between us last night and ate the other half for an afternoon coffee break today.

It was about $75, and worth it. We don’t eat out often, but when we do, we want to eat something worth going out for. And yeah, real nice to be able to enjoy it in the peace and quiet of our dining room.

And today we tried saying Happy Valentine’s Day with trees – instead of pulping them up and pressing cards out of them, we decided to plant some in our yard.

Whipple gave us these tiny redbud saplings.

Whipple gave us these tiny redbud saplings.

 

That has always been an intensely hot and sunny part of our yard, where we had trouble growing even crabgrass. When we gave up watering, the stickers took over quickly. Last year I started laying plastic to kill the weeds, and then Whipple brought us a bunch of tiny trees. 

We’ll have to shelter them against the sun, mulch them, and make sure to keep them fairly well watered.  This Summer will be “make or break.” I’ll keep you posted.

 

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