February should, by all intents and purposes, be a rubbish month. A month where we find ourselves not only still recovering from the Christmas/New Year hangover but also still well and truly caught in the cold, firm grip of winter. Wintery, wet, dark and…well pretty much totally miserable. It may well be the last official month of winter, but spring still seems a long way away.

Yet despite all of the rubbish stuff that happens in February, it’s not all that bad. The 14th of February is of course Valentine’s Day, and just as Christmas dominates the entire month of December, Valentine’s Day does the same for February. A month that otherwise would just be associated with the depressing characteristics mentioned, becomes the month, above all others, associated with love.

The true origins of the day of romance have long been disputed. Saint Valentine was an early priest of the Christian church who was incarcerated in around 290 A.D. by the Roman Emperor Claudius. According to one legend, Valentine himself actually sent the first ’valentines’ greeting, himself. While in prison he fell in love with the jailor’s daughter (as you do) and before his execution he wrote her a letter, which he signed ‘from your Valentine’, an expression still used today.

The 14th February was also believed to be the day that birds (of the feathered variety) would choose their mate, adding to the idea of it being a day of romance.

So, men, prepare to brush yourself up, put on a suit and some swanky Oakley glasses, do your best Clark Kent impersonation and impress the one you love. She (or he of course, deserves it. However, we understand that love isn’t just between partners, but between Parents, Grandparents, Brothers, Sisters and Friends as well. This February, welcome everyone and the people they love, and make sure you capture those special moments with the ones you love. February, the month that should be rubbish, but thanks to St. Valentine, isn’t.