This Valentine's Day, gimme some sugar… Actually, don't

sugar-free Valentine

It’s Valentine’s Day, which means roses and chocolates and hastily bought greeting cards professing our love for one another. Or not. Some people aren’t all that into Valentine’s Day, and that’s perfectly okay, as long as you let people like me enjoy it and don’t bang on about how commercialised it is. I know, I know, it’s not a “real” holiday. But in my experience, any holiday that gives me a legit excuse to consume chocolate or lollies or cake or basically anything sweet as a gift is a holiday I’m there for. Except for this Valentine’s Day, because *gasp* I’ve given up sugar.

“You’ve done WHAT?” gasped my husband in horror when I informed him that this year he’s going to need to come up with an alternative to the usual Valentine’s sugarfest. “Are you kidding me? Why on earth would you give up sugar? You LOVE sugar. Now what am I going to get you? Is there such a thing as a sugar-free Valentine?”

You see, this year, the first day of Lent falls on Valentine’s Day. And a couple of weeks ago I decided that this year I was going to give up sugar for Lent. Of course, at the time, I didn’t realise that the two occasions would overlap. I was all self-righteous in my decision about giving up sugar, which I’m pretty sure is contrary to the spirit of Lent, but I would have all of Lent to work on that, right? That’s what I told myself, at least.

So here are some ideas for a sugar-free Valentine, which I may or may not have emailed and texted and delivered via handwritten note to my husband:

  • Flowers
  • Hastily bought greeting card with romantic sentiments scribbled therein
  • A pile of women’s mags which I never normally buy myself
  • New underwear, but not the kind you’re thinking of – the comfortable kind (no butt floss allowed)
  • Diamonds
  • More diamonds
  • New pyjamas – again, not the kind you’re thinking of (the kind I can schlep around in the house in and not scare couriers when I open the door wearing them at noon on a Tuesday)
  • A new book, preferably chick-lit fiction
  • A commitment to binge-watch all three seasons of Outlander with me and speculate on Season 4 and whether they’ll bring Murtagh back
  • Clean the entire house without complaining
  • Let me sleep in this weekend

In fact, skip the whole list and go straight to the last item. I’ve finally found a sugar-free Valentine that I would actually prefer to actual sugar: Sleep. Huh. I guess there is something I love more than chocolate.

Katherine Granich

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