I’m not a lover of red roses, so it’s a good thing I never receive them. Guess the word is out. Never give her red roses.
I don’t equate scarlet blooms and chunky diamonds with being well loved, despite my mother’s attempts to train me. Court me with orchids and chunky beads and I will purr like cat curled up by a heater vent. But since some of you are traditionalists when it comes to symbols on Valentine’s Day, I shall lead you down the less thorny path of organic and fair trade. Be Mine doesn’t mean be sprayed and be dyed! Let’s have a heart-to-heart about greener ways to share your affection on February 14.
Roses are ready, but don’t be blue. You aren’t stuck with tainted American beauties. Opt for ones from companies like Fifty Flowers. Whichever assortment you choose, you are supporting organic growers (as we encouraged last Mother’s Day) and giving the thumbs down to chemically-grown, color-altered flowers.
Free Trade and Organic Chocolates
I give my husband chocolates on Valentines Day because it’s important to spread the endorphins….happy, happy hormones released when we eat this gift of the gods. Plus, he’s tired of those goofy, print boxers. We have sung the many praises of chocolate and when buying an assortment, invest in organic and free trade. The lovely box with a single stem is a free trade, limited edition gem made by women artisans in Thailand, and filled with an assortment of amazing organic truffles from Sjaaks, $29.95. Many other online companies offer organic delights, including the Grand Heart from Lake Champlain Chocolates, $39.95. For vegans, order from Sweet Earth Chocolates. This box from the organic, fair trade line, is filled with alternative fillings like caramel and peanut butter are covered in deep, dark chocolate, $22. When shopping online, remember to order early. That’s the best way to shop with a conscience and get what you want on time.
A Card That says I Love You to Women of the World
Why be limited in giving your undying affection? Purchase a Salay handmade paper heart card with dried press flowers, $4.50, made by women in villages of the Philippines at Ten Thousand Villages, a fair trade company that helps the poor in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and elsewhere.
Scents and Sensibilities
Don’t bother with sexy lingerie. We strip it off too quickly to enjoy it! Why not cozy up to these chocolate boxers and tee from Sleepy Heads? Soft and organic with hearts in all of the right places, the Life is Good set is $52. The soft drink is questionable but the recycled Mountain Dew can and green foam heart earrings make quite a fun, quirky statement, $9.00 from Repurposed 4 You. Check out a recycled poetry book at Biblio where prices are low and sentiments high. For him, Nautica Oceans green products (cologne, after shave, deodorant sticks) offers that manly, surfer smell without the alcohol. This one is water-based and both the ingredients and packaging is biodegradable.
All of these things are sweet – but there’s always room for the non commercial gesture: a poem you write for someone, a tree you plant in their honor, a dinner you whip up and clean up. You never can go wrong if it comes from the heart.