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You think Valentine’s Day is stressful now, you don’t remember third grade

I was helping The Bandit get his Valentines ready for school tonight. I have forgotten exactly how stressful this is when you’re eight. Every child is supposed to get one, which seems fine by me. The problem is deciding which ones go to the girls.

Girls are icky, you know. We got all the boys done with the cool Valentines, but what to do with the girls?

“Carla’s next,” I say.  He wrote her name on a Way 2 Cool card. Valentine

“Next is Payton. Is that a boy or a girl?” I ask. Half of the names on this list I’ve got no idea if they’re male or female. Not a clue.

“A girl,” he says.

“Is she the cute blonde one?”

Oh, the look he gives me. “NO!” Alrighty then.  She gets one covered in hearts with a basic Happy Valentine’s Day message.

“Joceyln. Lilliana. Ixta.” I rattle more names off. Ixta? What the hell is an Ixta? We spend five minutes teaching me how to pronounce it correctly.

“Jessica,” I say. The only cards left are suspect. Sweet On U is not acceptable. Neither is Happy Valentine’s Day because that one says XOXO on it and we DO NOT want Jessica to think kisses are in the offering. We went with B Mine.

“I just won’t look at her when I put it in her box.”

“Sounds like a plan,” I tell him.

“OK, how about Jazmine. Is she nice?” I ask because we’re running of cards that aren’t mushy at his point.

sweet-tarts“She put me in a head lock.”

I start laughing. I can’t help it. “Sounds like my kinda girl.” I get another LOOK. “Besides the headlock, is she horrible?”

“No.” We agree to go with the one with the XOXO and hope for the best.


“She’s taller than me,” he informs me.

“Everyone is taller than you.” That’s a fact. “But is she nice?”

“Meh.” He shrugs. B Mine, Valentine it is.

We finally finish and I’m exhausted from the negotiation. I promise him that no one is reading Valentine’s Day cards literally. Not in third grade. I search my mind for what I was like in third grade. I had a terribly crush on Robby McLay, and I’m 100% certain I read, re-read, read again and discussed with my friends what his mandatory Valentine read.

Let’s not tell The Bandit the universal truth about girls regardless of their age, huh? Also, let’s hope Jazmine doesn’t use anymore headlocks.



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