February is here! Love is in the air, stores are packed with heart shaped goodies, the color red is boldly splashed across everything, and scrumptious chocolate treats have made their way into our pantry. Whether you are a Valentine’s Day fanatic or refer to the day as a “Hallmark Holiday,” we have come up with a list of ideas on how to make the day (or month) special for your little ones.
Below are ten ideas to to show your tiny valentine just how much you love them!
Decorate Their Bedroom Door with Love
Our family started this tradition last year as we were trying to find a meaningful way of including our then 5-month-old son in Valentine’s Day. I broke out the red, pink and white construction paper, rounded up the scissors (because let’s be honest, they are never where they should be) and got to work cutting out hearts.
Starting on February 1st, each night after our kids went to bed we would write something that we loved about them and taped it to the door. For example, “we love your dance moves”, “we love the way your smile lights up the room”, “we love your giggle”… things along these lines. Our plan was to end this on Valentine’s Day, but our oldest son loved it so much that we did it for the entire month. He would wake up each morning, throw open his door and look for the new heart to read. We found that it was a great way to start the day and a way for even the youngest family member to be included in the fun.
Side note: This can also be done in tree form as well. Make a heart for each family member and place them on some branches. You and your child can write down what they love about each family member on the reverse side of the heart. (This also doubles as a wonderful gift for Grandparents. Wink, wink.)
A Very Valentine’s Day Meal
Heart shapes and red foods dominate this idea. Start the morning with heart-shaped pancakes and strawberries or go big with a waffle bar. If you are short on time, since Valentine’s Day falls on a Wednesday this year, make pancakes over the weekend and freeze a few to use on the actual day. Cut the pancakes into cute little heart shapes and maybe even add a dollop of whip cream to sweeten them up for your sweetie. Heart shaped sandwiches are also a way to keep the fun going through lunchtime.
I actually purchased the book “What I Love About You” for our oldest son to do for my husband at Christmas, but Valentine’s Day is a great time for this book too. While our 4-year-old needed help writing his answers in the blanks, the things he came up with were both heart-warming and utterly hilarious.
Valentine’s Day Treat Calendar
This is a fun play on an advent calendar. The idea behind this is to make each day leading up to Valentine’s Day special and exciting. Find 13 little bags (cute burlap bags are usually easy to find at almost any store) and put a number on each bag (1-13). Each day your child gets to open the bag for the corresponding day and finds a little surprise waiting for them. Surprises could be: stickers, toy, candy, love note, gift card, or anything else that you find fitting!
Share Your Appreciation
We all love to feel appreciated. (And a bonus, this idea involves zero crafts for anyone in the family.) As you are sitting down for dinner, take a moment to go around the table and share something you appreciate in another family member. It is a great way to get the kids conversing and to acknowledge what you are thankful for.
An Appreciation Letter
Along the lines of the previous idea, ask your kids to write a letter or draw a picture to give to their teacher, or someone else they appreciate. Set them up with paper, markers, crayons, stickers, glue and let their imagination go wild.
A Valentine’s Day Themed Scavenger Hunt
You can get as crazy as you want with this idea. It could be as simple at leaving little notes around the house, in their lunchbox or backpack to let them stumble across and find, or setup a full fledge scavenger hunt full of clues and a prize at the end. Either way, this is one tradition that your kids are definitely going to look forward to.
Random Act of Kindness
Spread the love. This is something that can be done as a family and is sure to make a lasting impression. A few ideas: make cards or treats to drop off at a nursing home (be sure to call ahead and get permission), bake cookies for your neighbors, donate bottles of water to a local homeless shelter or, depending on your child’s age, volunteer a few hours of your time at a charity. This is something that can extend way beyond the month of February as well. For even more creative ways to get in on RAOK read this post!
This will require a trip to your local Target, Hobby Lobby or Michael’s—try not to be too disappointed. (I am grabbing my keys, wallet and shoes now!) Find a mailbox, or hopefully a smaller version of a regular mailbox, and let your kids decorate it. Set the mailbox somewhere in their room or in front of their bedroom door if you have the space. Then on random days throughout the month, or just leading up to Valentine’s Day, deliver their “mail.” The best part about this idea is that you can deliver your notes, treats, etc. anytime throughout the day, and by putting that cute little red flag up, they will know to check their mailbox. (Kind of makes me wish that our mailman delivered more then just ads now… Come on USPS, get it together!)
Love Note Countdown
Valentine’s Day is all about the love. Make a love note countdown for your kids, so that each day they get a lovely little reminder about how much you love and appreciate them. We all say “I love you” daily to our little ones, but going beyond that and letting them know just how special they are is really what Valentine’s Day is all about.
It only feels fitting to end a Valentine’s Day post with this quote from Eva Burrows, “In family life, love is the oil that eases friction, the cement that binds closer together, and the music that brings harmony.”
I would love to hear how you make Valentine’s Day special for your family. Please leave a comment below!
Find more Valentine inspired posts in our ‘Valentines around the state’ sister site blog tour!