Beach Bits,  Bug,  Family Matters,  heavy on photos,  Super Dad,  Tis the Season

Our Valentine’s Day

prolific valentine production

valentine girls

We had such a nice Valentine’s Day. We’re not really into chocolate and roses in this family. We don’t even go for jewelry or electronics but we do have one tradition that I love love love. And that is that the girls get to pick out their own flowers from the flower stand that I used to work at so long ago. I love that little flower stand.

picking out her valentine flowers flowers for Grandma Pat

Bug knew exactly what she wanted. She bee-lined it for the sunflowers and completely ignored any of my suggestions. She didn’t want pink roses or any fancy lilies that smell good. She wanted a yellow sunflower, a pink gerber daisy and some green button mums. Nothing else would do. (The picture on the right is of her holding a bouquet for her Grandma Pat who we visited the next day.)

Maybe she had been planning out that bouquet for months as we stroller by this particular flower stand quite frequently. I’m always telling her that we can’t buy flowers today but we will on Valentine’s Day so she has been looking forward to this for a very long time.

loving her flowers valentine's day ritual

my bouquet

Valentine’s Day did not disappoint. It is so fun to pick out your own flowers! I’d trade a thousand boring grocery store pre-made bouquets for my own simple handpicked bundle of hydrangeas, peach roses, ranunculus and lavender sprigs. But I think what really made our day was the silly red sequined plastic heart that Toby bought Bug for a $1.75. That silly heart made her so happy.

funny valentine hearts

I thought that was the end of our Valentine festivities but Toby suggested a little family outing after we finished up with the flowers. Flowers and an adventure? Bring it on! We quickly put our flowers in a watering can on our patio and then piled into the van for a little trip to the beach. Not just any beach though. We were off to the beach of BIG WAVES!

walkin' with Dad I heart the beach

Maybe you’ve heard of The Wedge. It’s a pretty famous surf spot where the waves come in and then bounce off the jetty over top the waves that are still coming in. That probably doesn’t make sense but just imagine two waves crossing each other and the mayhem of water and power that that can create. It can get pretty exciting, especially after a storm. People die there all the time surfing in the dangerous conditions.

building a castle of love

climbing on the rocks

hangin' loose

It turned out that the waves weren’t very big on Valentine’s Day but it was still a fun place to spend some family time. Bug could have cared less about the waves. She just wanted to climb all over the jetty rocks and play in the sand. We could have dropped her off in a sandbox in Anaheim and she probably would have been just as happy. But that’s okay. Family time together is always good no matter where it is and hey, I got to watch the body boarders and skim-boarders. That was fun for me.

endless summer skimboarder

sandy Bug and her Dad

Anytime with Toby is special time.

goofing off

the Ponnays


We even squeezed in a sunset. Not a bad Valentine’s Day at all.


  • Kuky and Isabelle

    Isabelle: “Is that Bug (except she used her real name). Who’s that next to her? (talking about you)”

    Me: “that’s her mommy, Brenda.”

    Isabelle: “Oh, she lives with Brenda mommy. And that’s her daddy? Is Bug at home?”

    Me: “Yes”

    Isabelle: “Can Bug come over here and play with me now?”

  • flyingbird

    What a beautiful day! I just watched “Endless Summer” for the first time and learned about The Wedge…what a crazy spot to surf, but fascinating to watch the waves.

  • Julie Dyer

    Wow — what a beautiful post — your writing, your flower buying tradition, the photos (especially the last one) — so heartwarming and inspiring! I am a new fan of your blog in Ottawa, ON and SO, SO jealous of your beach!

  • gingermog

    I’d forgotten that you used to arrange flowers and had a licsence to go to the whole sale flower market. Thats muts have been such a splendid visual 4 course meal of colour and smells. I can imagine it on a summers day. I’m glad you have such a delightful tradition. Your beach photros make me feela trifle envious as I Know it will be some months yet until my tootsies get to feel sand. :)

  • BeachMama

    Oh what a wonderful Valentine’s! And fun that you got to go to a different beach to give you a change from your every day. We went to Winterlude, but not on the Canal for a skate, we went to the place where there are snow sculptures and giant ice slides, Hubby was going to buy me some flowers, but I told him I would rather go to Winterlude. And having Hubby in crowds on a Sunday morning is a HUGE gift to me :). We only stayed an hour because J and I were sick, but we had fun, apple cider and cotton candy, what a mix.