Tomorrow marks the 8th Valentine's Day that Kathy and I will spend together, and we plan to do what we pretty much always do in honor of the holiday -- nothing. I heard a remark about Valentine's Day on the radio this morning, and it elicited a shout at the radio, and after I explained why to Kathy, she asked when Valentine's Day is. So at this point in our relationship, I think it's fair to say that Kathy doesn't feel like she's missing anything.
I suppose that for anyone who knows me, it shouldn't come as a surprise I don't do anything special for February 14. I mean, Valentine's Day observance is as commercialized as it gets (at least Christmas has religious significance for some). You're supposed to take someone out to dinner at an overcrowded fancy restaurant, and buy her a card, flowers, chocolate, jewelry, or some combination thereof -- you'll note the gender bias deliberately placed there, as for some reason the spending for this day has become decidedly unidirectional.
Equally important, I don't see that doing what everyone else does conveys that Kathy's special. To the extent there's a day that's special for us, it's our anniversary, not an externally declared "holiday." I try to show Kathy that she's special throughout the year. I can send her flowers and/or poems at any time of the year, and I do.
I have to admit that once on Valentine's Day, I snook out of work a bit early and while she was at a meeting, placed a small box of chocolate-covered cherries (her favorite) on her desk. Because of our non-observance of Valentine's Day, however, even that was out of the ordinary.
There's something wonderful about doing something because you want to, not because it's expected of you.