This Valentine’s Day, we’re celebrating all kinds of real love, no matter the connection – from sisterly love, to a furry friendship, and actual love at first sight. Sometimes we forget that Valentine’s isn’t just about chocolates, roses and disposable gifts – it’s about celebrating love in all forms. So, we’ve turned to you – our community – to tell us your stories and share the love.

Audrey and Ginny

Ginny is my dog. We met in April 2021 and it was love at first sight (at least for me).

She was the cutest thing I had ever seen, and I knew from the second I held her I already loved her to bits. When I say this to people, the reaction I get 90% of the time is “you’re saying this about a dog, can’t wait to see what it’ll be like when you have a kid!”, the other 10% just stare at me and seem somewhat concerned.

Don’t want to brag but she’s the smartest, prettiest, friendliest dog you’ll ever meet. She was very quick to learn the tricks and the words “good giiiiiirl” quickly became part of our daily vocabulary.”

Bob and Joan

“Bob and Joan met 67 years ago when he came over to have tea with Joan’s brother George and they’ve been together ever since. 

““I remember we were walking back from playing hockey at the school and he was walking home from his job at the Foundry. Everyone would shout ‘there’s Joan’s lad!’ and his face would go beetroot.

Their favourite memory together is the moment they found out they were pregnant with their daughter Debbie. Over 6 decades, 3 grandchildren, and 2 great grandchildren later, their (often hilarious) stories of a lifetime together bring endless joy to everyone who hears them. 

When asked by their granddaughter what the secret to their happiness has been, Joan said “We try to agree on everything (or I’ll persuade him if not…) – we always try to laugh things off. We both had loving parents, so had a good start in life, and we’ve always been good friends too. That’s a big thing. Plus, we have the perfect family – as you know!” Bob added “happy wife… happy life”.”

Tarra and her husband

“We got married in the height of the pandemic on the 20th August 2020 and had to downsize our wedding guest list from over 100 guests to 30. It was a very special day and we wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.

When I first moved back to London (from working a year abroad in Italy), I felt a bit lonely, as most of my friends had left London. As I was so busy working, I thought the easiest way to meet new people would be online.

There was only one guy’s account who really caught my attention. He worked in the same industry and looked really friendly. We agreed to meet up for a drink.We met at a bar in Shoreditch with a pianist. As soon as we sat down, we started chatting and got on so well, he really managed to cheer me up.

Fast forward: we became a couple, and have now been an item for nearly 5 years, and happily married for a year and a half.”

Clare and Sarah

“My sister Sarah who I always refer to on my social media as Little Ellis. 

It’s a total cliché but she’s my best friend.  We’re so close and I am so lucky to have her in my life.  Lockdown probably cemented our relationship even more (if that was possible). We both live on our own, so in lockdown 1 we didn’t see anyone for 2 months. As soon as it was announced that we could see our support bubble, we went for a socially distanced picnic and I cried! 

Sarah organised a family socially-distanced celebration last year for my 40th so I didn’t miss out on celebrating a big milestone. I know she needs me and vice versa and I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

Sarah and David

“We met online during the first lockdown in July 2020. After a couple of weeks of messaging, David drove from Hampshire to London for our first, socially-distanced, date to Wandsworth Common.  Lockdown and social distancing rules made for somewhat unusual ‘courtship’ and probably brought us closer together much more quickly than might otherwise have happened.  So much so that in December, David proposed to me, and we got married in July 2021, less than 12 months after we first met.

Our relationship feels special in so many ways but I think what is at its core is our shared values and faith, as well as our capacity for love and laughter.David and I are both passionate about travel.  We have each been to over 50 countries and love the excitement and adventure of exploring new cultures. It therefore felt somewhat ironic that we spent our honeymoon in the Lake District, followed soon after by a (not so romantic) week on the Isle of Wight with my family, David and our two (new to me) sons!”

 

The real reason for Valentine’s Day? To recognise, celebrate, and appreciate our loved ones. And – not to make it all about the gifts – but a personalised gift is a great way to show it.  Go on, they deserve something special. 

Join in the conversation with the hashtag #LetsGoMakeStories on social media and check out our Valentine’s Day gift range.