How Polygamists Celebrate Valentines Day

It’s complicated. To be honest, I have no idea how other polygamists celebrate this lovers’ holiday. I think there are some who pass it off as just another day on the calendar. Others might keep it low-key with a card and flowers.

In years past, I remember Joe saying he didn’t need a special holiday to express his love for us…it was something he did every single day. And I didn’t entirely disagree with him. He is always finding ways to show how much he cares. Whether it’s a tender embrace in the kitchen while I’m cooking dinner or sending an unexpected text  in the middle of his workday, he manages to make me feel special.

If there was one thing to complain about it’s this; he feels that giving flowers is a waste of money. I know! Right? I don’t entirely agree with him on this one but I kind of don’t blame him either. There is a story in our book where he goes to the florist to send flowers to Vicki and Alina for Valentines. This was before I ever came along. It ended badly. You can read about it for yourself on page 195.

One year he came up with a brilliant idea. He suggested we have a party by polygamists, for polygamists. We would invite people who believe in or live the Principle of Plural Marriage.  It’s been a tradition ever since and  has really been successful in taking the pressure off the man to come up with something for each wife. We have a different theme every year for food and decor. First it was Italian, then Asian, Hawaiian, Mexican and this year it will be French. We will be preparing Julia Child’s famed Boeuf Bourguignon (Beef Burgundy). As well as some moist and delicious sugar cookies for which I will share the recipe below.

Each year we ask our guests to add to the fun. The year we had Asian food they were all to write their own fortune “fit for a polygamist” like you might find in a fortune cookie. The next year they were to make a homemade Valentine card that could be used by a polygamist. There were such creative ideas, we were falling off our chairs, doubled up with laughter. This year they were asked to come up with a ‘candy-gram’ that is polygamy themed.

Now for the heart-shaped sugar cookies with pink frosting. They are always so festive and the tray is empty long before the party is over.

Sour Cream Sugar Cookies

3 cups flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground nutmeg (personally, I omit this)
1/8 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sour cream (the secret ingredient that keeps them moist)
1 large egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

In a medium bowl combine first five ingredients (or first four if you omit the nutmeg, like me). Set aside.
In a large bowl cream sugar and butter, beating until fluffy. Add sour cream, egg and vanilla extract and beat well. Stir in flour mixture. Cover and chill in refrigerator for one hour.
After one hour preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a lightly floured surface roll out dough to 1/4 inch thickness (I usually do 1/3″ or even 1/2″, I like them thick!). Cut into shapes with cookie cutters. Using a spatula, transfer cookie shapes to ungreased cookie sheet 2″ apart.
Bake 8-10 minutes. Store in airtight container.

Cream Cheese Frosting

1/2 cup butter (room temperature)
8 oz cream cheese (room temperature)
4 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Red or Pink food coloring

Whip butter and cream cheese together until smooth and creamy. Add powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Beat until fluffy. Stir in food coloring. Spread on THICK (that’s how I like it!).

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10 Responses to How Polygamists Celebrate Valentines Day

  1. Tracy Roth-Myers says:

    Sounds yummy!

  2. Lisa says:

    Dear Vicki, Valerie, Joe & Alina. Have a wonderful Valentine’s Day. I admire your courage, faith and decision to go public to show how human beings have a greater capacity to love than most think. Congratulations on living your truth!

    • Joe says:


      Thank you for your kind words. We love hearing from so many supportive people such as yourself who allow for a world where we all have liberty to follow our faith, courage and convictions.

    • Ren says:

      Your sitaution definitely identifies more with Libertarian ideology than the average Conservative person’s values, I think. I consider myself to be an idealistic Libertarian and I still get a queasy feeling when I think about polygamy. I would sign a petition, write my representatives, etc. on behalf of decriminalization because you’re consenting adults and it doesn’t appear as though anyone is being harmed by your actions. I’m passionate about equal rights and personal choice on an intellectual level, but on a personal level I just can’t get on board. This actually really surprises me because beyond the fact that I believe it’s morally wrong, I don’t have a problem with homosexual relationships at all. In fact, I’d be totally ok with my younger siblings (don’t have kids yet!) going over by a friend’s house who has two dads than going to a friend’s house who has a dad and three or four moms. Unlike the general population in the US, I’m far from ignorant when it comes to the diverse culture and history of polygamous families. It has been something I’ve thoroughly looked into in the past out of curiosity and an interest in the unknown. Due to this and my political beliefs, I’m very bothered and perplexed as to why this still feels taboo and disturbing, especially since I consider myself to be very open minded.I think you did a good job on the O’Riley Factor and the other interviews I’ve seen. You sound really defensive when they bring up the inevitable sex questions though, and it seems sort of obtuse to wonder why people don’t ask the same things of people in traditional relationships. I thought the brief comment Joe (I think) made in one interview about being in three monogamous relationships was the perfect explanation, but it was drowned out by the defensiveness and annoyance that you were asked about it in the first place. I know that to all of you it?s just the norm since you grew up in it, but to people in other parts of the country who have never seen it in person, it?s an extremely foreign concept. I?m very thankful that your family has come out of the closet. The Browns annoy me to no end, so it?s nice to have another family out and about since I appreciate diversity even when it?s uncomfortable. I also think that providing more information to the general public can do nothing but good things.Good luck with your future interviews. Fox drives me crazy. I can?t wait to read your book!

      • Katherine Austin says:

        I believe in the God of Abraham, and in His Word, the Bible. In the Bible, homosexuality is an abomination. It is more than just morally wrong. Polygamy, in contrast, is supported in the Bible. It was practiced by many in the Old Testament. Even King David, one of God’s most loved men, was a polygamist. Polygamy is also mentioned in the New Testament in Revelations, where it speaks of a man taking 7 wives and men taking multiple wives to save them from sin. It is so very interesting to me, that “freedom of religion” in our country is turning into a freedom for anyone except Christians, and that homosexuality is accepted over polygamy. How can two men or two women engaging in a sexual relationship be seen as more acceptable than a man with more than one wife? Men and women were designed for procreation. Homosexuals, by themselves, cannot procreate. Your logic in accepting homosexuals and feeling ill over polygamy is perverse.

        I am not in a polygamist marriage, but I support polygamy 100%, between consenting adults. I am so impressed with the Darger family and am inspired by them to make improvements in my own.

        • Natja says:

          I think Ren is coming from a socio-Political standpoint Katherine, not a religious one, I am not sure how your argument is relevant to his one?

          • Katherine Austin says:

            Natja, I appreciate your two cents. I am sorry if I offended you in any way with my religious view. Speaking at a secular level, I fail to see how scientifically, socially or politically it is more acceptable for members of the same gender to have sexual relationships than it is for a man to have more than one wife. Perhaps I should have worded my opinion with more worldly verbage, for the very large secular population. It is difficult for me to put my faith in a bottle when expressing my opinions. I found Ren’s comment to be very well written and very informative in expressing his point of view. I only responded to it because it is an injustice to me, Bible or no Bible, that homosexuality is more socially acceptable than consensual polygamy. I saw no harm in expressing my opinion. Your response is very interesting to me. It appears to support my view that anything is okay unless you mention God’s Word or view associated with Christianity. Ren gave his opinion and I offered mine, from my view, which is “religious”. My above statement is not an “argument” but my own two cents. This may be why you fail to see a “relevance” in my argument, it wasn’t an argument.

          • Natja says:

            >> This may be why you fail to see a “relevance” in my argument, it wasn’t an argument.

            I wasn’t offended Katherine. I just did not get how your comment follows Ren’s. I suppose relevance, as I would characterise it, would need to counter like, with like. Considering Ren’s unease with Polygamy is not based upon any religious conviction but a socio-political one, therefore to make a relevant ‘comment’ (as opposed to ‘argument’ which can be read aggressively) it needs to counter Ren’s objection based upon his arguments.
            As I understand it, Ren’s unease is due to society placing monogamy as the higher virtue which is the epitome of real intimacy and commitment regardless of the gender of people involved. This is an argument I have seen many times and I suppose I am waiting for someone to discuss the the true nature of this unease, which I feel would be more useful than talking about the morality or not of a separate subject.

  3. John Nomads says:

    We used to think of Valentine’s Day as one of those get your money days, but as we got older, i wanted to somerthing special for each wife, over and above what i normally do. Who gets the actual day, depends on who’s day it is, but the other gets the day before or after.

  4. Vicki says:

    My family came over from England on a mormon ship the Badger, and they were remarried in Salt Lake City. I do genealogy and found out that after the husband died in 1858 my great great greatgrandmother was married to a man with more wives. This has never bothered me, I am just sad it was hidden and the person who wrote the family history said they just went through Utah and he died.Census records say my great greatgrandfather was born in Utah and his brother later married a woman whose father was a polygamist. He actually went back to Utah for a while. So how can I do anything but support you in the memory of my family. I guess when the came to California they changed. But who knows what was in their heart.

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