When you have children, Valentine’s Day is no longer about intimate candle‐lit dinners, romantic picnics or moonlight strolls. It calls for a change of plan.
Let’s face it, unless you hire a babysitter (which can be especially expensive on such a popular date night), you and your partner are more likely to spend it at home with your family. But that doesn’t mean you have to stick to your usual routine. Instead, you can make your home a haven that expresses your love for your children, your partner, your parents, or anyone else who is special in your life.
Aimee Miller, marketing and sales manager of online retailer Teljoy, says there are many ways you can make Valentine’s Day a special, happy time at home with your family. “There are many free or inexpensive activities you can do together, plenty of which cost less than a night out on the town for two. You can also use this special occasion to invest in items that will ensure quality family time for the long‐term,” she says.
Aimee shares her tips on how to celebrate Valentine’s Day, and the month of love, as a family:
Grab some colourful stationery (crayons, ink pads, glitter pens) and go wild. It might get a little messy, but that’s part of the fun. Help your kids make Valentine’s cards for mom, dad, teachers, friends, or each other. You can also make fingerprint trees or hand and foot prints to commemorate the occasion. Or, why not decorate your house with cut‐out paper hearts?
Plan a date day
Have a family date day at home by throwing your usual routine out the window and scheduling some fun quality time instead. You can do this by making breakfast together (pancakes, waffles or French toast), have a picnic or camp out in your garden, play board games or charades, or simply do whatever it is you love doing as a family but don’t always make the time for.
Cook a family feast
Cook a celebratory meal, set a table and then feast together. You could make a family favourite, use a new recipe you’ve been wanting to try or learn a new skill together like making homemade pasta or ice cream from scratch. Just be sure to include everyone in the process. Don’t let little ones loose around the oven, of course, but you can get everyone involved by washing vegetables, making a salad, mashing potatoes, or even washing up. Baking together is also a great way to get everyone involved with stirring, mixing and naturally, licking the batter before you’ve actually made anything.
Watch a movie
Plan a family movie night, complete with popcorn, sweets and drinks and settle in for laughter, tears and quality time. Choose a good family‐friendly romantic comedy like The Princess Bride, Ever After, You’ve Got Mail, While You Were Sleeping or animated classics like Beauty and the Beast, Lady and the Tramp, Aladdin or Gnomeo and Juliet, to name a few.
It’s said that there is no app that can replace your lap. Jolabokaflod is a tradition in Iceland where people exchange books as gifts on Christmas Eve. But there’s no reason it couldn’t become a Valentine’s Day tradition for your family. There are many Valentine’s themed books for children, or simply choose books you know your loved ones will enjoy.
Leave little love notes
All you need for this is paper, a pen and your own creativity. Leave hand‐written messages around your home for your family, tucked away in the places you know they are likely to look. For instance, you could put them in your partner’s sock drawer, in the kitchen cupboard next to the mugs, or in your child’s lunch box.
Whatever you decide to do for this month of romance, make it a time you and your family will never forget!
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