Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to show affection and appreciation for people we love. As parents in Mt. Pleasant, it’s important to remember that we teach values to kids through our own behavior. If Valentine’s Day is celebrated with expensive gifts and high expectations, what meaning will children take from that?
Think of Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to teach children healthy ways to express love and friendship. It’s not just about romantic love, but a chance to teach them about gifts of kindness, time, and thoughtfulness that go beyond expensive jewelry and flowers.
Consider skipping the obligatory expensive night out and consider spending the night in with the family, bonding over some of my favorite family-friendly Valentine’s Day activities.
Focus on the Family this Valentine’s Day
I love homemade decorations; they have so much more meaning to me than anything I could buy in a store. Why not make your own Valentine’s Day decorations with the family? I like this idea because not only does it add a splash of color to your home, but if done in advance, it helps build anticipation for the day itself. Create streamers, wall hangings, and heart-shaped placemats. For some more ideas, check out some of Martha Stewart’s favorite Valentine’s Day Crafts for Kids.
Snuggle up with a classic feel-good favorite like The Princess Bride. Other family friendly favorites about love are Beauty and the Beast, A Charlie Brown Valentine, Gnomeo & Juliet, and Lady and the Tramp.
Every other holiday seems to get a special meal, so why should Valentine’s Day be any different? Desserts should be easy, but might I suggest we also eat something other than sweets?
Since this is a family affair, let’s consider a few ideas from Parents.com that your kids will enjoy helping out with.
1.Heart shaped calzones, an Italian tradition!
2.Have breakfast for dinner with heart shaped French toast.
Try comfort food with heart shaped grilled cheese and soup.
Cards for Mom & Dad
Cards are a lot more fun when they are original and homemade. Some store bought cards might be good enough to send to school for their classmates, but parents should encourage crafting some homemade Valentine’s Day cards for those that are close. This is even more fun if you try to be sneaky and help the children make their cards when the intended recipient isn’t looking.
If you’re looking for some inspiration, Better Homes & Garden has some great ideas to get you started.
With the whole family together and having fun, this is the perfect opportunity to snag some photos that can be treasured forever. Rather than dealing with the stress of dressing uniformly and posing for family portraits, stay in and make your own photography studio. Here is a great blog from a Mom/photographer with some great ideas to keep this simple and fun.
This Valentine’s Day, show your children the holiday spirit by making it about showing affection and gratitude toward those we love. Our Mt. Pleasant community is strong because of the loving families that tie us together.
~ Dr. Randy