After writing & brainstorming our 40 Mom-Daughter Dates for Every Budget, I thought it would be fun to do a seasonal twist – sharing Family Traditions for Valentine’s Day!
Family traditions are a great way to celebrate holidays and counteract the somewhat commercial pressures that can accompany modern celebrations.
Every birthday and Valentines’ Day, my dad would give my sister and I flowers. Sometimes they were waiting for us when we woke up and sometimes they were delivered to us at school; never anything elaborate, often a single carnation as they were my mom’s favourite flower.
It was a special little gesture that never failed to remind me how much I was loved, so I try to remember to incorporate little family traditions like that into our own family celebrations.
Of course, we should make efforts to ensure that our children always feel loved – no matter what the occasion – and family traditions and rituals should be a part of our every day rhythms, but sometimes holidays can serve as a marker and reminder to reinforce those family values and traditions. (Because, let’s face it, we all get busy and distracted.)
I brainstormed a bunch of ideas while trying to come up with some family traditions we could really stick to. We won’t be doing all of these, but I thought I’d share them all in case some appeal to you more than others!
Let me know if you have any suggestions for additional traditions, or if you have any special Valentine’s memories of traditions your family had growing up – I’d love to hear from you!
Ways to Celebrate Valentine’s Day as a Family
1. Special Valentine’s Breakfast or Meal Together. We love eating at restaurants, but I don’t really think Valentine’s Day is a great day to take the family out for supper – so I’d either eat out for breakfast or have a special supper in. A special Valentine’s Day lunch is also a fun treat – whether at home or in a lunch box, and I love this gorgeous table setting and heart-themed supper menu from One Good Thing.
Some of my favorite special Valentine’s Day breakfast ideas (to pair with a large serving of fruit) include:
- Heart-shaped Strawberry Sweet Rolls
- Copycat Cinnabuns
- Dutch Baby Pancakes
- Red Velvet Crepes
- Heart-Shaped Strawberry Cream Cheese Danishes
2. Take Family Pictures. You can hire a professional, but we’ll probably opt for some goofy shots and silly props. I love this sweet collection of Valentine’s photo ideas from Craftionary.
3. Valentine’s Scavenger Hunt. Whether you send the kids looking for a special gift or a clue for the day’s special activity, a scavenger hunt is always a way to kick up some excitement and send some squeals through your home!
4. Random Acts of Kindness. Spend some time spreading love in your neighbourhoods with acts of kindness. Coffee Cups and Crayons always shares wonderful lists every year.
5. Balloon Surprise! Every birthday I fill Ella’s room up with balloons, so I love this idea from the Dating Divas to fill the bathtub with a “shower of love.” Really, any cute little surprise is welcome on Valentine’s Day!
6. Make a Special Treat Together. We collected some of our favourite Kid-Made Valentine’s Desserts – these would be great to enjoy together or give to a loved one.
7. What I Love About You! Spend some time showering your family with words of affirmation and taking turns telling each other all of the things you love about each other. You can cuddle as you talk, or even make a craft with all of the ideas you come up with.
8. Visit or Acknowledge a Departed Loved One. Sometimes holidays like Valentine’s Day can remind us of those we’ve lost and who aren’t here to celebrate with us. Remembering loved ones can be a positive experience and incredibly healing. Look through photo albums, visit niches or memorials, or just talk about your favourite memories.
9. Watch a Timeless Classic. Picking a classic movie that children won’t outgrown and you will look forward to watching year after year is a great idea – or change the movie every year, but make it an event! Pop some popcorn, make fun drinks like rootbeer floats – maybe even drag the couch cushions onto the floor and drape up some sheets for an impromptu fort!
10. Engage in a Family Past time. Our family is really into reading, crafting, and baking together, so we’ll probably spend some time doing a special family craft, but maybe your family loves a pick-up game of road hockey, or playing music. If there isn’t a “common ground activity” try taking turns and setting a timer to keep things equal.
For fun Valentine’s Crafts you can make together, check out:
How will your family be celebrating Valentine’s Day?