Once upon a time, I loved the excitement and anticipation of Valentine’s Day. In middle school, I wanted to get some of those $1 carnations that the Latin Club delivered; in high school I wanted a heart shaped box of chocolates; and as I got older I wanted a romantic night out.
Then I became a real adult and heard from all of the Valentine’s Day haters (PS – There are a TON of them). I noticed how dang expensive all of the hub-bub and fuss was. I saw the complete commercial purpose of the “holiday.” I’m a romantic at heart though, so letting go of a day all about love just seemed so wrong!
Then all of my Valentine’s Day burning questions were answered. One thing helped me rediscover what made Valentine’s Day so wonderful: having children. Yep, you read that right. Having children renewed my love of the day all about love.
Love comes in so many different forms and feels. How could there not be a day to celebrate it? You can’t think of Valentine’s Day as a day all about roses and fancy dinners. You have to realize it is just a day to take the time to say (and show) “I love you.” We have a special day set aside to think of what we’re thankful for, don’t we? So why not a day to share how much you love those near and dear?
Ever since my biggest boy was born, we have celebrated Valentine’s Day as a family. In the beginning, my husband and I still did a little something for each other, but now it’s pretty much all about the family. So what can you do as a family, without breaking the bank, to celebrate Valentine’s Day?
Have a Cheesy Dinner
No, you don’t need reservations at the most romantic spot in town, but you do need something corny and fun. In my family, it’s actually cheesy. Every year, we have heart shaped pizza for Valentine’s Day dinner. We’ve done delivery, take and bake, and even DIY. It’s simple, fairly inexpensive, and a nice treat for everyone.
One Small Gift
A new set of PJs, a silly new Matchbox car, MAYBE a book or movie. ONE thing. Valentine’s Day should be about the time and experience your sharing with your loved ones, not how many gifts you can wrap in red paper.
On a day all about love and sweetness, you really need to have something sweet. Remember, there are no extra love points awarded for difficulty, so do what is the most fun for your family. When I’m really lucky, my husband goes big and makes chocolate covered strawberries (easier than you might think). When we’re only a little lucky, the boys and I make some heart shaped cookies out of store bought dough, and one year, we made s’mores over candles.
Get All Gushy
It’s a day to say “I love you”… so say it! Tell your kids that you love them and tell them WHY. Talk to your sweetie and let them know how much you appreciate what they do. Call your best friend just to say “YOU ARE AWESOME!” Have you read the little Valentine’s cards that grade school kids pass out? Sure the phrases are goofy and gushy, but I guarantee if someone texted you the same thing, you’d smile. 🙂
Don’t Lose ALL of the Romance
Yes, Valentine’s Day is a family affair in my house. However, I still make a special point to be a little extra lovey dovey with my husband. Again, the day is all about love. How can I not acknowledge and pay special attention to the man I have chosen to spend the rest of forever with? I don’t get him cards or gifts. We don’t usually go out on a special date. I just make a special point to let him know I am still very much in love with him…and maybe make sure the kids are put to bed early.