- Plan a fancy family dinner. Valentine’s Day is special and involving your children in this traditional day of romance will go a long way towards building the bonds of love among your family. Forget TV, browsing the Internet, and other tasks that can be delayed for another day. Plan an intimate evening with the kids. Hang some V-Day decorations, purchase an inexpensive but beautiful red tablecloth, dim the lights and light some candles. Prepare a special meal that the family agrees on, buy your favorite wine or adult beverage, and hey, don’t forget the kiddos! They can savor the flavors of non-alcoholic sparkling cider!
- After bedtime. Subsequent to putting the little ones to bed for the night, couples can crank up the television or get on Netflix to watch some of the best love-themed flicks. What better way to enjoy the mood of love than watching some of the top-rated films about love, such as The Notebook, The Phantom of the Opera, Romeo and Juliet, Titanic, or even the time tested Ever After: A Cinderella Story? Even if you’re not a fan of Netflix, pull out those old DVD’s and go for the chic flicks for a memorable night that’s sure to turn you both on.
- Valentine’s Day picnic at home. If you’re weary from your typical workday, you can still be revived by nixing the cooking and allowing someone else to prepare a labor of love for you and/or your family. Couples with kids can opt to order their favorite food from a take-out restaurant and enjoy a picnic for all of the special Valentines in your family in your dining room, family room, or, weather permitting, on the patio or balcony of your home. The kids will love it, but there is a caveat: it may become a family tradition!
- Pamper not Pampers. Couples with little ones may have to change a couple of diapers, but once the tots hit their cots, pamper each other and set the mood of love. Massages, facial treatments, pedicures or manicures, and bubble baths topped with rose petals are great ways to spend a fabulous romantic evening. And to help set the mood, turn on some lovely romantic music and go with candles throughout the house for ambient lighting.
- Scavenger hunt. There’s probably no easier way to enjoy a night with your family than having a scavenger hunt inside the house. After all, not all couples who have children will be putting them to bed at 8 p.m. Try cutting up an image of a concealed location into three or four pieces for young kids, eight to ten for older children, or perhaps upwards of 20 pieces for older teens and adults. Simply place all of the pieces in an envelope or hat and distribute them in designated areas. Family members (not the one who created the hunt) have to put all of the pieces together to find the location of their next clue. At the end, be sure a big surprise awaits!
Staying home on Valentine’s Day with your children doesn’t have to be a drag. Be creative and stir that imagination born of love for your spouse and family members. Special dinners, movie marathons, takeout picnics in the living room (Hey, you can build a makeshift fort!), as well as pampering one another are just some of the ways you can enjoy a memorable Valentine’s Day.