NEW YORK - Monday, February 14, 2022, will mark the third year that Americans and many others all over the globe will celebrate the popular annual holiday, Valentine's Day, amid a pandemic.
COVID-19 has prevented many people from being in close physical proximity to their loved ones, sadly. But millions of determined others have found ways to get together or show their love and affection, no matter what.
"Connection drives all relationships," Ruth Altamura-Roll, a licensed professional counselor based in New Jersey, told Fox News Digital.
"To heal during a time of isolation, we must let go of fear, connect with those with love, and practice the kind of love that is patient and kind."
Valentine’s Day every year is a good time to remind spouses, partners, children, friends, neighbors, and even pets how much love there is to go around (and this isn't all about retail purchases, of course).
For the annual holiday, many people enjoy special celebrations at home featuring homemade gifts or special desserts.
Others head out to a favorite restaurant, while still others try to get away for a weekend if that's in their budget.
Here are some by-the-numbers fun facts about Valentine’s Day as the popular holiday approaches quickly in 2022.
1 – The holiday ranking of Valentine’s Day for consumer spending on fresh flowers and plants, according to the Society of American Florists (SAF). (Christmas and Hanukkah are a close second, the organization reports.)
14 – The number of days left this year to make plans or purchases for this Valentine's Day, Feb. 14, 2022.
1916 — The year that Hallmark's Valentine’s Day greeting cards first appeared on store shelves. (The company’s founder, J.C. Hall, began selling Valentine’s Day postcards earlier, in 1910.)
145 million — The approximate number of Valentine's Day cards exchanged industry-wide every February 14, according to Hallmark. (This doesn't include children's packaged cards.)
$21.8 billion (yes, billion) — The total amount last year that Americans spent on Valentine’s Day gifts for partners, friends, kids, pets, and more, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF).
$23.9 billion (yes, billion!) — The total amount we're expected to spend on Valentine's Day this year, which would make it the second highest year on record, according to the annual survey released on Jan. 31, 2022 by the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics.
$32 per person — The amount that Valentine's Day spending was down per individual last year (2021) compared to the prior year (2020).
The NRF said last year that those participating in Valentine's Day consumerism would spend an average of $164.76 per person, though the pandemic disrupted the plans of plenty of romantics.
64 percent of people — The number of those participating in a survey two years ago who said they planned on buying gifts for all the people (and pets!) they love — while 57 percent said they planned to cook a special dinner for loved ones.
52 percent of adults — The number of U.S. adults who last year planned to celebrate Valentine's Day, though the holiday was quite different due to COVID, according to the NRF.
Meantime, the holiday is just around the corner, so get those plans in order — however humble and from-the-heart or elaborate they may be — for loved ones near and dear.