To help get you ready, here are some interesting facts about Valentine’s Day from

Valentine’s Day is here.

Many of us will celebrate this weekend because we’ll have more time to do so. Others will do it more traditionally and wait for the actual day, which is Tuesday.

But whenever you choose to celebrate it, enjoy yourself to the fullest with your significant other.

To help get you ready, here are some interesting facts about Valentine’s Day from

- Nearly 189 million stems of roses are sold in the U.S. on Valentine’s Day.

- The most popular flower on Valentine’s Day is a single red rose surrounded with baby’s breath. The red rose was the flower of Venus, the Roman goddess of love.

- We buy all types of flowers on Valentine’s Day. Different colored roses have different meanings. Red means love, yellow means friendship, and pink means young friendship or sweetheart. Red carnations mean admiration, white carnations mean pure love, red chrysanthemums mean love, forget-me-nots mean true love, primrose means love and larkspur means an open heart.

- Approximately 25 percent of adults now buy flowers or plants as a Valentine’s gift. Of these, 60 percent were men and 40 percent were women. Men mainly bought flowers for romantic reasons, while women bought flowers for their mothers and friends as well as their sweethearts.

- Valentine’s Day may have been named after Valentine of Terni, a priest who married Roman soldiers against orders from Claudius II. He was arrested and killed on Feb. 14, 269. It is said that an almond tree near his grave burst with pink flowers and all the birds choose mates, hence the term "love birds."

- Or Valentine’s Day may have been named after the priest Valentine of Rome, who refused to follow Claudius II’s ban on Christianity. While he was imprisoned, children would pass him notes through the jail window. Before he was killed on Feb. 14, he wrote one last note to the jailer’s daughter with whom he had fallen in love and signed it "From Your Valentine."

- According to Welsh tradition, a child born on Valentine’s Day would have many lovers. A calf born on Valentine’s Day, however, would be of no use for breeding purposes. If hens were to hatch eggs on Valentine’s Day, they would all turn out rotten.

- Famous people born on Valentine’s Day include John Barrymore (1882), Jimmy Hoffa (1913), Jack Benny (1894), Carl Bernstein (1944), Renée Fleming (1959) and Florence Henderson (1934).

- Also on Valentine’s Day, Oregon (1859) and Arizona (1912) were admitted to the Union, James Polk became the first president photographed while in office (1848), UPS (United Parcel Service) was formed (1919), the League of Women Voters was established (1920), Aretha Franklin recorded "Respect" (1967), Richard Nixon installed a secret taping system in the White House (1971), the U.S. performed a nuclear test at the Nevada Test Site (1976) and Voyager I took a picture of the entire solar system (1990).

- Teachers receive the most Valentine’s cards, followed by children, mothers and wives. Children between the ages of 6-10 exchange more than 650 million Valentine cards a year.

- The saying "wearing your heart on your sleeve" is from the Middle Ages. Boys at this time would draw names of girls to see who would be their "Valentine" and then wear the name pinned on their sleeve for a week.

- Richard Cadbury produced the first box of chocolates for Valentine’s Day in the late 1800s.

- Shakespeare mentions Valentine’s Day in "A Midsummder Night’s Dream" and "Hamlet."

- Madame Royale, daughter of Henry the IV of France, loved Valentine’s Day so much that she named her palace "The Valentine."

- A kiss on Valentine’s Day is considered to bring good luck all year.

- During the 1700s in England, a girl would pin four bay leaves to her pillow and eat a hard-boiled egg, including the shell, on the eve of St. Valentine’s Day. Supposedly, if she dreamed of a boy that night, she would soon marry him. Girls would also write boys’ names on small pieces of paper, cover them with clay, and drop them into the water. When the clay broke, the papers floated to the top. The first name the girls could read would predict whom they would marry.

- British children in the 18th and 19th centuries would celebrate Valentine’s Day by going door-to-door singing songs and sometimes begging for cake or money.

- Traditionally, young girls in the U.S. and the U.K. believed they could tell what type of man they would marry depending on the type of bird they saw first on Valentine’s Day. If they saw a blackbird, they would marry a clergyman, a robin redbreast indicated a sailor, and a goldfinch indicated a rich man. A sparrow meant they would marry a farmer, a bluebird indicated a happy man, and a crossbill meant an argumentative man. If they saw a dove, they would marry a good man, but seeing a woodpecker meant they would not marry at all.

- The first recorded Valentine was sent in February 1415 by the English duke of Orleans. He sent of love letter to his wife from his jail cell in the Tower of London after the Battle of Agincourt. It is currently on display in the British Museum.

- Commercially, Valentine cards didn’t appear in England until almost the 1800s, although handmade cards had been popular for some time.

- The first American Valentine was produced in 1834 by New York engraver Robert Elton.

- In 1969, St. Valentine’s Day was removed from the Roman Calendar of Saints by Pope Paul VI, although its religious observance is still allowed.

- The first European post boxes appeared in Paris in the late eighteenth century, which revolutionized the way Valentine cards were produced and delivered.

- Each year 300,000 letters go through Loveland, Colo., to get a special heart stamp cancellation for Valentine’s Day.

- There is a town in Texas called Valentine, but for not for a romantic reason. The first train to arrive there happened to do so on Feb. 14.

- To abolish the pagan custom of the "Valentine" lottery in which boys would draw the names of girls and then pay special attention to them during the holiday, Christian leaders urged boys to substitute saint’s names on the tickets. This may have led to the later 19th-century habit of calling them Valentines after one of the prominent martyred saints. The move was not very popular and did not last long.

- In Germany, girls would plant onions in a pot on Valentine’s Day, and next to the onions, they placed the name of a boy. They believed they would marry the boy whose name was nearest the first onion to grow.

- Esther Howland (1828-1904) was the first person to create Valentines to sell in the United States. She first patented a lacy Valentine in 1844, by 1860, her factory was selling thousands of Valentines, earning over $100,000.

- Saint Valentine is the patron saint of lovers and engaged couples. He is also the patron saint of epilepsy (which he is said to have suffered), plague, greetings, travelers, young people and beekeepers.

- The Valentine candy "conversation hearts" have a shelf life of five years.

- A common symbol of Valentine’s Day is Cupid ("desire"), the Roman god of love. The son of Venus and Mars, he was originally depicted as a young man who would sharpen his arrows on a grindstone whetted with blood from an infant, though now he is commonly presented as a pudgy baby. This transformation occurred during the Victorian era when business owners wanted to promote Valentine’s Day as more suitable for women and children.

- Over 100 years ago, the Chicago post office refused to deliver about 25,000 Valentine postcards because their messages were not nice. The caustic cards were called "vinegar Valentines."

- Red hearts are a ubiquitous Valentine symbol. Red is traditionally associated with the color of blood. At one time, people thought that the heart, which pumps blood, was the part of the body that felt love. In fact, when the Egyptians mummified their dead for burial, they removed every organ but the heart because they believed the heart was the only part of the body necessary for the trip through eternity.