I’m sending these virtual hearts, flowers and chocolates to wish you Happy Valentine’s Day. I love this picture which incorporates everything that Valentine’s Day is meant to be: hearts, flowers, chocolate and a whole lotta love and don’t forget the pensive-looking, chubby cherub a/k/a Cupid. Growing up, I don’t remember my father buying big, foil-covered heart boxes filled with chocolates, nor flowers, for either of his “two girls” … shame on him because Mom’s birthday was on Valentine’s Day. Guess she got gypped bigtime like anyone who shares a birthday with a significant holiday. But I must state a disclaimer … though chocolate and flowers were absent, no one forgot their little girl on this day of love. I usually got a cute little Valentine’s Day card signed by both my parents with an abundance of XXXs and OOOs trailing along after their signatures. Sometimes I got a piece of jewelry. But best of all … ever since I was very young, my mom would bake a big batch of heart-shaped sugar cookies. She’d put red or pink icing on half of them and the rest would have white icing with lots of red sprinkles. Sometimes she’d outdo herself by baking a batch of those cut-out sandwich cookies with raspberry jam in between. Mmmmmm. Mom baked those Valentine’s Day cookies, as well as other holiday icened sugar cookies, until I was well into my forties, and just like a kid, I’d always look forward to my treats. My own baking skills, however, would find me hunching over the slice-and-bake holiday cookies and hoping I didn’t burn half the batch. That is my kind of baking … easy and breezy – a festive touch without the muss and fuss. My mom was not a chocolate lover, except for an occasional Turtle, that ultimate gooey, chocolate-covered pecan delight. Her big indulgence instead was gumdrops, so she always received a large bag of cherry gumdrops for Valentine’s Day from me. Sweets for the sweet! Whatever works and lends a little happiness for both the giver and recipient. So today … it is all about sharing the love; a little smooch and hold on tight to your main squeeze or those who make you smile.